Field Notes for Autumn 2019

Learn how to take great photos, green your thumb and learn Spanish!

September 16, 2019 | | Field Notes

Forget your mom’s dusty spider plants or your grandma’s lonely aloe vera. Indoor potted greens are trendy all over again, riding a Millennial zeitgeist that recasts succulents and fig trees as chic décor items. Here’s a few ways local green thumbs are spreading the gospel.

Brittany Leonardelli calls herself a plant concierge. With her Orangeville business, Planting Bliss Co., she’ll design an indoor gardenscape for homes or workplaces, shop for the plants or provide clients a DIY shopping list. She’ll install the lot herself or online via customized planting plans (from $125). How did she become “the plant lady”? “My nonna (grandmother) played a huge role in piquing my plant interest. We’re super close and are constantly talking about gardening, and she gives me lots of advice. And my dad will send me photos of a pineapple he’s growing or a flowering cactus, and it makes me want to try more things.” Brittany also creates custom-built terrariums in different themes and sizes (from $45), and is developing a range of workshops.

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  • For a different kind of greenery fix consider the Mindfulness, Flora & Fauna workshop at Suzanne Gardner Flowers in Orangeville on Wednesday, September 25, 6:30 to 8:30pm. You’ll meditate and make a Zen terrarium to take home, topped off with wine and charcuterie (for $68). In other words: Eat, pray, plant.

    Once you’ve caught the bug, peek into Flowers by Ms. Design in Creemore and take a selfie with your plant pals by the gorgeous rustic Flower Bar sign. If you’re on the hunt for a particular plant, send an Instagram message to concierge service Bolton Complete. They regularly go on plant-buying binges to supply real estate agents with the most coveted plants for staging homes and will pick up an on-trend monstera for your favourite room in the house, too.

    Find foliage at:

    “Port Credit, Ontario, 1938” by George Paginton, Canadian (1901–1988) Oil on board, 30.5 x 35.5 cm © Collection of Tony Paginton and Roswita Busskamp

    “Port Credit, Ontario, 1938” by George Paginton, Canadian (1901–1988) Oil on board, 30.5 x 35.5 cm
    © Collection of Tony Paginton and Roswita Busskamp

    Mark your calendar: PAMA Art Show

    Canadian landscape painter George Paginton (1901–1988) is the focus of an upcoming show at Peel Art Gallery Museum & Archives (PAMA). He painted in a style similar to the Group of Seven and many of his works depicted landscapes in Caledon or elsewhere in Peel, including the 1938 Port Credit scene shown below. George Paginton: Painting a Nation opens Thursday, October 10, with an exhibition reception and book launch at 7pm. A curator talk takes place Sunday, October 27 at 2pm. The show runs to February 9.

    Courtesy Femke Photography.

    It’s a snap!

    Sure, you take great photos on your smartphone. But if there’s a nagging feeling you could be doing more with your real camera, photographer Femke Randeraad can help. Her Understanding Your DSLR course (October 7 or 21) will take you through scenic Mono Centre (from $50, with follow-up sessions available). She’ll help you say goodbye to the “auto” setting, learn about those mystery buttons you never use, and try for better portraits. “You want to capture the essence of your subject. A portrait is meant to reveal your subject’s personality and character. It may even tell a person’s story.” Of course, you could step in front of her camera, too, during a fall mini-session for some leafy family shots.

    Pet projects

    No mere kennel, Mono’s new Red Barn Pet Resort offers premium care and lodging for your beasties when you need to travel without them. Owners Jason Phillips and Delia Teixeira treat dogs to a loving, safe stay in darling barn-like cabins – complete with closets for all their personal items. The pups will enjoy two leashed walks daily, supervised play time in a dog run, clean beds and even a Kong toy filled with peanut butter. Your pooches may not want to travel with you ever again. Stays start at $50 per night.

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  • When families experience financial hardships it can be tough to stretch the budget to include pet food and supplies. Headwaters Pet Food Bank is a new initiative in Caledon to help cover the gaps. They co-ordinate donations of pet food and supplies, and hold fundraising days featuring services such as claw trimming.

    For more:

    Habla español

    Maybe it’s our yearning for Mexican and Costa Rican escapes during the long Canadian winters that has Headwaters folks clamouring to learn Spanish. Whatever the reason, a recent local Facebook thread looking for a teacher garnered a ton of feedback from folks interested in flexing their linguistic muscles and former Berlitz teacher Yolanda Potter’s name kept coming up. She first held local Spanish classes last fall as a way of sharing her passion and bringing people together. “A number of my students travel to destinations where Spanish is spoken and they want to speak  it,” she says. “Friendships form in class since there is a common interest and then students have another reason to look forward to our meetings.”

    • For information about beginner and intermediate classes, call 519-942-6803.

    Save the date: Sustainable building workshop

    It’s not always easy being green, but Shelburne’s Izabela Busby: Sustainable Design and Lifestyle can help with her lineup of workshops and events, including one on sustainable building methods on Friday, November 22 at 7pm.

    About the Author More by Janice Quirt

    Janice Quirt is a freelance writer who lives in Orangeville.

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