Documents: Monthly Newsletter: My 2 Cents:

My Two Cents Worth
November 15, 2010

Wow, where or where does the time go? I don’t see the changing times as much as most of you do as here in Panama we have two seasons, green and not so green as I like to call it. You would not think a tropical country could show brown would you, but it does where we live. The grass goes brown because there is no water for long periods of time. It used to be that we would go months without rain, but not so any more. Think global warming has anything to do with it? Perhaps… but living here is like a great compost recipe – full of green and brown and wet and dry.

Send me in some ideas on what you think are really cool gifts for gardeners … tools, books, bulbs anything that you think a gardener might like for a gift. We have lots of new gardeners and they need inspiration! What do you use that you would not part with? I have loads of ideas in Tidbits of info and Did you know.
Are you still reading books or reading Kindle…Tom has one and loves it.

What about your gardens this year…were you happy with the way they turned out or do you already have changes you want to make. Why not send us some pictures of your gardens ... we would be happy to put them up in our Garden Showcase area. There are lots there to go through now and it’s kind of fun to see the gardens in the different growing zones.

I hope you are making a point of visiting the site at least on each Sunday to catch up with the latest in articles. We have some very talented writers that I know you will enjoy plus you might just learn something new! Speaking about writing… some of our writers have been noticed so if you have a gift of writing and want to share that with our site, well, you just never know who may be reading!

Refer a Friend and You Both Win Contest!

We are going to be ending 2010 and starting off 2011 with a bang…we want to share our site and the newsletters with more of you. Why? Because we have great writers, great sponsors and tons of great information. We approached Stokes Seeds with an idea and they loved it and I think you will to, especially since they deal with gardeners in both Canada and the U.S.

For those of you who refer friends to our site and if they sign up for our newsletters, then you both are in for a treat as you both will have the opportunity to win a 100.00 Gift Certificate from Stokes Seeds. Yes, both of you could each win one!

Here’s the deal. When you refer someone make sure to tell them to put your name and email address in the ‘referred from’ line on the sign up form. Also make sure that the sign up forms have the full mailing address as Stokes Seeds is going to put you on their mailing list to receive their wonderful catalogues AND send you a free packet of seeds upon signup.

This will run from now until the end of September 2011 then we will let the winners know in plenty of time to place their orders. (open to gardeners in Canada and U.S. only)

Also during the year I am going to be offering some other goodies to gardeners from our newsletter email list so watch for those announcements.

For those of you who are members already receiving the newsletter, you can sign up again to get the catalogues and packet of seeds. Go to our home page and see our Contest Box…

By the end of this year I will have logged over 100,000 miles in travel, stayed in goodness knows how many hotels, eaten food from India to Thailand and seen some of the most exquisite gardens you can imagine.

Sarah Kinbar put together a very nice article on me for her blog Good Garden Guides. She has a fantastic blog so I hope you will visit her and get to know her a bit more but here is the blog article..  and then I got a note from her…

I enjoyed reading all your answers and noted your full heart of love for what you do. That's the difference between good and great when it comes to tours or anything else for that matter.’

Then I got a note from Stephen, a repeat tour guest… in response to me including it on my facebook page..

I would add that Donna's tours are Dream Tours for anyone who loves gardens. She combines the best gardens with the best of the local sites. What is amazing is that many times they are in the same place, but ordinary tours often pass by some amazing gardens. Donna’s tours also have the advantage of being timed to see the gardens at their peak.

It has been a good year – all that I have set out to accomplish has been done and then some. Most gratifying are the tour guests who have come home from our tours with such happy memories.

And I share this with all of you….

We don't accomplish anything in this world alone, and whatever happens is the result of the whole tapestry of life and all the weavings of individual threads from one to another that creates something ” Sandra Day O'Connor

It is truly magical how things fall into place if you leave your mind and heart open to discover.

With that in mind, I am thinking of doing a tour to Turkey just prior to Floriade in 2012.

The reason I am thinking about it is because we all know that the tulip came from Istanbul and at the time that we would be there, it would be their tulip festival time, plus the tour is a botany tour, full of gardens, arboretums, and some amazing sights.

I also believe that 2012 is the 450th anniversary of the tulip coming over to Holland, so the two would tie in nicely…you would get the true history of the tulip in Turkey plus see a whole lot more!

I would need at least 20 to say they would be interested before I would even consider putting it together ? I am looking at something that would also include visits to Istanbul, Assos, Troy, Pergamum, Kusadasi and Spil Mountain famous for the Manisa Tulips, Ephesus, the Dilek Peninsula and the flora biogenetic reserve area, , Antalya, Ciglikara, Akseki, Aspendos and then back to Istanbul for departure to Holland. This tour is full of botanical wonders and endemic species..and I think a real experience for those wanting to see what grows in Turkey. It’s about a 10 day tour.

So, let me know if you are interested and from there we can decide if we have enough to warrant further exploration. I am thinking it would run just under 3000.00 US, include all breakfasts and dinners and 5 hotels that we would need to stay at to be able to explore, plus assorted other items that would be included like domestic air and ferry etc.

Also on the agenda for 2012 is India, Incredible India with the magical Taj Mahal and gorgeous private Mughal Gardens, Floriade/Keukenhof, Morocco, Chelsea Flower Show, Italy and South Africa. I am also thinking about Japan and Argentina, so if there is anything, let me know and I can send you out the notice when the tours are ready for booking. Everything for 2011 is fully booked now except for the July tour to the HCFS – which by the way, is a fantastic time to see flowers in England. Visit our tours site at  and let me know if anything interests you.

Next issue will be our Christmas issue, very short as I know you are all busy … until then….

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