Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas to Cat and Garden Lovers Everywhere!

A bonus photo collage from Stephanie Brock of gardening kitten Lizzie in a Christmas tree. More of Lizzie on this previous post. Enjoy the rest of 2013!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

The Trowel Hunter

Stephanie Brock submitted this darling kitten: 

"The kitty's name is Elizabeth (we call her Lizzie) and she is a 5 month old true DC native. My boyfriend, Eric, found her abandoned by mama while landscaping St. Elizabeth's hospital (converting to DHS) this summer.  He had seen the family and mama moving the nest, each kitten one by one, but the next day he found little Lizzie all alone in the old nest, crying and hungry.  She was about 3 weeks old.  He waited for a while and decided that if mama didn't take her by the time he was done for the day that he would bring her home. We bottle fed her for the next few weeks and gradually switched her over to big girl food"

"Now she lives with us in Centreville, VA, with two older kitty brothers - Lucky (the oldest) and Shadow (the middle), who were both also rescues from abandonment (Lucky, who's whole family was hit by a car and he was the only survivor at about 4 or 5 weeks old - with a shattered hind leg, broken in 9 places - but is as good as new with the surgery we were able to get him, and Shadow who was a stray kitten). Lizzie loves to run around the house, torture her brothers and get into anything and everything that she's not supposed to!  She is a total ham, always making us laugh!"

Stephanie Brock works at Merrifield Garden Center, Fair Oaks, VA location, and  blogs at She can also be found on Twitter, IG, FB and Pinterest .

Saturday, December 7, 2013

William the Conqueror

The staff of the Arcadia Center for Sustainable Food and Agriculture in Alexandria, VA, submitted this little cutie. Arcadia Farm is located on the historic grounds of Woodlawn Estate. 

"Behold, William, the Mighty Arcadia Barn Cat. 

Born and raised at Mount Vernon, William joined the Arcadia staff this spring and has absolutely failed at killing anything worthwhile. William, it turns out, is a lover. Folks who have visited the farm have taken classes with him sitting on the bench next to them. He runs up the brick path in the middle of the farm and leaps into your arms when you arrive. He has a weird meow.

For the winter, he has been ordered to guard the homestead of a brave Army officer on the grounds of Fort Belvoir"

William himself also wrote to say: 

"I shall miss the volunteers, groundhogs, and mice whom I befriended during my assignment at Arcadia, but the blow of separation is lessened by the fact that the family under my care is in desperate need of a fluffy kitty with extremely large paws who prefers cuddles to doing violence. On this front I shall not disappoint.

I am doubly pleased that my duties keep me on Mr. Washington’s original property. I do not like to stray too far from my birthplace, Mount Vernon.

I am told I had a benefactor cover the doctor bill, and that she is a great admirer. I blush. Kat, I thank you and look forward to renewing our acquaintance when I resume my former duties.

My post continues to surprise me with ever more sybaritic pleasures. There is this thing they call 'sofa' that envelopes me in lavish warmth. I must be careful around it as its temptations threaten to dull my wits. My duties require me to be ever sharp, so I am exercising a wholesome discipline and rise from it several times a day.

Willam the Barn Cat"

Saturday, November 30, 2013


 Joanne Watts of Bill's Lawn Care, Maintenance & Gardens By Joanne in Kent, CT, shared these glamour pusses photos.

She said: "Just got myself this beautiful Australian Tree Fern (Sphaeropteris (Cyathea) cooperi) I wonder where Bella and Lucy went...."

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Calendar Cat

Cathy Wilkinson Barash submitted this darling kitty: "Sebastian in 1995. He was the cat of my life and is greatly missed. Sebastian was Cover Cat and Centerfold in the Cats in the Garden calendar in the 1990s! I shot this image of him in our Cold Spring Harbor, Long Island (NY) garden. His whiskey barrel moved with us to Des Moines, IA in 1997. Here he is surrounded by edible flowers - sage, chives and dianthus. His catmint and oregano bloom later in the season."

Cathy is well-known garden communicator and a self-described "photographer, videographer, author, gourmet horticulturist, chief cook & bottle washer." She 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Budding Tulips

Kay Bischoff of Fresh Garden Living sent in this charming cat:

"Buddy Love wandered onto my farm one-and-a-half years ago with a fish hook in his mouth and a ruptured hernia. Such a sweetie, once healed he is still the ultimate curious cat, or Cat About Town as well call him."

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Clean Living

Here is another cat submission from Lynn Title of Lanham, MD:

"Zeli is 18 years old. We think she is part Abyssinian; she has the facial shape and her color is blue roan, not grey. She was born at the D'Arcy Street shelter, the same place all my cats come from. We got her as a kitten, as company for the rowdy Labrador Kona we had back then -- she was a tiny thing tussling with her brothers, but stopped immediately upon seeing us to give us a huge PUURRRR. She was afraid of nothing, and regularly pounced on Kona, who barely noticed her attacks. But she was never a good hunter. Now she's a sour old lady who doesn't like the other cats, but she is still fearless and very people-oriented."

Saturday, November 2, 2013


Here is another cute cat submission from Eileen Daniel:
Stinky is 5 yrs old, Ziggy's big brother & also lives in Pensacola, Florida. 
Stinky got his name,  when as a kitten his favorite activity was to roll in the kitty litter! These days, Stinky prefers a good roll in the nip!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Siamese, if you please sir

Another cat submission from Hunter Ten Broeck, owner of WaterWise Landscapes Incorporated, in Albuquerque, NM.This stray visitor stopped by the 'Tiger Eyes' Sumac, which is just changing to its brilliant fall colors.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

The Hunter and the Housemaid

Ella and Cypress Vine

Barbara Pleasant writes the long-running Gardening Know How column in Mother Earth News and the GrowVeg Blog. She submitted the following tales about her two garden cats.

"I have two cats, Leon and Ella. Named for my late father, Leon, is the head cat and my special boy. When we got new puppies a year ago, he broke my heart by going to live in the woods for three weeks. This trauma reminded me that relations with felines are set up on their terms, with humans and their abandonment issues small matters compared to a full food bowl."
"Theoretically, Leon earns his keep by catching mice, voles and other unwanted creatures, and he is a good enough predator for our rural place in Southwest Virginia. But he has a show-off attitude that compels him to share his kills, so he often stages the kills, gladiator style, in the downstairs bathtub. And, while I can't say for sure that the two baby king snakes we found slithering through the house this summer were Leon's doing, I have my suspicions.
"Ella is the ladies' maid who seldom ventures more than a few steps beyond the deck, preoccupied as she tends to be with matters inside the house. She monitors the water bowl, the doors and windows, and becomes a maniac complainer when things are out of order. Ella has us well trained now, but every time I think of this little OCD kitty in a foster home with six other kitties, I don't know how she did it. At the adoption event, how did this crochety cat who doesn't like to be picked up manage to charm us by purring in our arms? Can cats analyze a situation and change their behavior to get what they want?"
Leon and artichokes

Saturday, October 5, 2013

A Sunny Haven

Helen Yoest of Gardening With Confidence and author of Plants with Benefits submitted this week's pretty kitty:

"Meet Sunny, the garden cat. We didn't start out wanting a cat, but then one day a yellow cat with yellow eyes showed up on the back porch. Sunny adopted us.  We did all the right things to try and find his owner. We put up pictured posters with a phone number to call, we posted on pet-finding sites, we even got in touch with local vets, etc.  Some of the responses were really sad. There were a lot of missing cats that fit out cat's description. We had people come by who were hopeful that it was their lost cat and others coming over to see if it was their cat so they could close that chapter of their life. (They didn't want the cat back, but wanted to know he was OKay.) We even had people call to say it was probably their cat, but they were heading out of town and could they come by in a week or two to pick him up. We started getting very defensive of this animal. We wanted him to go to his rightful owner, but only if it was someone who wanted him and who treated him well.  Within a week, we were crossing our fingers that no one would claim her, and she would be ours to keep. That was two-and-a-half years ago. The vet figures he was under a year old when she showed up.

"Sunny is extremely sweet, has a dog sister, Pepper They play/wrestle a lot. The best part of Sunny is that he leaves the birds alone, he is an excellent vole-er, and sometimes burps chipmunk. We are there for him when he needs us, but otherwise he is on his own, and has found a wonderful home in Helen's Haven."

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Stardust Memories

This week's kitty was sent in from Eileen Daniel. She has a total of four kitties and all love the herbs and flowers in her garden.

"This is Ziggy, from Pensacola,  Florida. Ziggy was rescued two years ago by his human mama, after some crack heads had abandoned him at a rental house. Ziggy is believed to be Siamese & possibly Maine Coon."

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Mark of the Cat

This week's cat was submitted by Lynn Title of Lanham, MD.
Lynn writes, "Tilde (named for the diacritical mark, because she has one on each shoulder) is a nine-year-old former feral kitten (from the D'Arcy Street PG County Animal Shelter, where all three of my cats come from) who is now a thoroughly-domesticated "sucky cat".  She is an indoor-outdoor cat, and keeps the local mole and vole population down.  Last week she presented me with a newly-killed rabbit nearly as big as herself!
"The photos were taken in my back yard, in late afternoon, atop a stacked-stone wall I built myself using free stone I brought home from highway and construction sites near a friend's house in Brunswick, MD; for years every time I went up there I came home with all the fallen stone my poor Corolla wagon would hold, enough to build another couple more feet of wall.  The plant behind Tilde is a Scotch broom.  They want alkaline soil and sharp drainage, so there is chicken-grit mixed into the soil, and it is mounded above the rest of the bed. In front is a variegated liriope."

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Alles Gute zum Katzentag!

This is "Katze" -- cat in German. See lots more of Katze here:

These photos are by Till Westermayer aka Tillwe of Freiburg, Germany. You can find his blog at and his Flickr page at

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Cats Supplies Make Great Garden Tools

As a two-cat household, we go through a lot of litter and as a bonus to that, I get to re-use the litter containers in my garden. I wonder if the kitty litter manufacturers know of this direct connection between cat loves and die-hard/thrifty gardeners or is it just a happy, natural coincidence?
Here is a picture of the kitty litter containers I've been using for watering my home garden and community garden plot. This is Aldi's store brand and the plastic label slips right off and I put it in the recycling bin along with my plastic grocery bags. (Tidy Cat has much the same model.) It is the perfect size for watering and mixing in liquid organic fertilizer. It stores well and does not tip easily. I line up several in a row as a wall for my Faerie Garden when they are not in use. Their squared-off shape makes them much better than many round watering cans. I especially like that they have a big opening for filling up easily at a hose spigot.
I like the large, square, lidded kitty litter buckets as well for storing compost and potting soils. The only drawback I notice is that they can crack down the side and the lids break occasionally. I don't buy my litter in such large quantities though, so I post an occasional note on my neighborhood yahoo list and ask if anyone has extras and always have good luck getting several.

What cat-related supplies do you use in your garden?

Here is a great DIY Project for making your own self-watering containers using kitty litter buckets:

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Quebec Trek

 I'm just back from touring public and private gardens in and around Quebec City in Canada with the Garden Writers Assocation. Every garden I went to I looked for felines to photograph. Alas, none. (Plenty of dogs though, go figure.) On the last day, we stopped at a village on the I'lle-d'Orleans (the island of Orleans just outside the city in the St. Lawrence river). There, we visited a wonderful store full of garden statuary called L'Art au Jardins. The inside and out of the shop was stuffed full of garden art pieces. Here are a few cat representations I saw there.

And finally, this one just HAD to come home in my suitcase with me. It is by a Toronto artist and I just love that head-on silhouette. The artist also makes the classic side cat silhouettes and other creatures like Cardinals and Woodpeckers for your garden and tree decor.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Butterfly Kisses

Tracie McWhirt Ballentine wrote: "We inherited Tuxedoman on January 2, 2007. My daughter went to the Stafford Co. (Virginia) Animal Shelter after Thanksgiving to get some 'kitty loving.' After I explicitly told her not to bring home a cat. She brought home a cat. Not just any cat but a pregnant cat. Tuxedoman was born in my bedroom closet the day after New Year's Day. He has been an awesome cat. He is the only cat that I know of that will come when he is called no matter where he is in the yard. By day, he patrols the yard protecting my husband's vegetable garden and my butterfly garden. By night, he is pampered puss ( I bring him in after the sun goes down). He makes an awesome sleeping companion. Cats get a bad rap for being aloof or standoffish, not my Tuxedoman. He is the coolest. As he glides across the yard you can almost hear the jazz back beat."

Tuxedoman on the prowl.

Most days he can be found laying under the leaves of my coneflowers waiting to ambush someone or something.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Sunny Days

Kimberly Bell sent in this photo of Sunny. Kimberly works at and lives in Oregon.
"Sunny is 10 years old, and a very special orange, tabby female. Orange females are rare from what the vet has said, and she’s polydactyl to top off her 'specialness!' She’s an indoor cat until summer rolls around, and then she spends most of her time lounging amongst the flowers. She used to be quite the mouser when she was young, but now that she’s more mature, she prefers more refined, dignified behavior – and sleep."

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Tilly Tends the Garden

This is Tilly. She enjoys patrolling the garden and greeting visitors. She lives with Irene Sinclair at her home in the Palisades neighborhood of Washington, DC.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Head of Lettuce

This guardian of this lettuce is owned by Anna Ristsatama in Hamina, Finland. Her name is Anastasta. She is one year and two months old. Here is one of her earlier gardening attempts:

 Gardening runs in this cat family. Pictured below with a grey/ white bobtailed boy called Pekka, who is two weeks older than Miss A and loves to lounge in the ferns. There are also two other cats in the household, Renne (the Reindeer), Pekka's brother, that has no tail at all, and Mikki, Anastasia's brother.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Meadowbrook Looker

Spotted this pretty kitty statue at Meadowbrook Farm last weekend. Meadowbrook is now owned and operated by the Pennsylvania Hort Society, but used to be the private estate of J. Liddon Pennock, Jr. You can tell that he was not only a plant nerd, but a dedicated animal lover. I hardily recommend that you stop by for a tour of the grounds and to shop at the PHS nursery whenever you are in the Philadelphia, PA area.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Sun Worshipper

 Magnus FahlĂ©n and his wife, +Tuula Pennanen, live in Fellinsbro, Sweden with 7 cats. I came across their cat photos in the Caturday community on Google+.

 Magnus wrote: "Our super nice Shakir enjoying the summer sun ... :-)
Probably the kindest, most clever and life loving cat I've ever met ... ^^
He have spread his love to life and positive attitude by us for over 8 years now ... ^^
 There are not words enough for our Shakir.
2 weeks after he was born, he got one eye in Uveitis (
No treatment helped, so when he was 3 week old ached the hole in the eye and I do not include how a 3 week kitten can survive such a pain.
He was probably very near death with the fever and pain he had.
However, he survived and when the body after a time come away remnants of the eye so he recovered quickly.
I guess our care and relief of the pain made him an extremely affectionate and positive kitty with an enormous patience, etc.
Even today after 8 years he radiates positivity and joy of life and as soon as one comes close he so he purrs and smiles with the whole face ...:-)
We chose not to sew again eye socket which the vet thought was good then this is a difficult operation and results rarely becomes completely good.
On the other hand, we must help to clean around his eye socket with lukewarm water daily in principle, because it is always collected some dirt in the coat there.
We have done this since he was so small that he was held in my hand and then it was "eye" in principle, a varklump. ...
He has 3 siblings, and none of them has a chance to match him in terms of speed, intelligence, agility, and hearing. His good hearing is a bit extra as compensation for the lost eye and when they are playing and someone tries to sneak up on him, they are always detected before they can surprise him ... = D
He is a real gold Kitty simply ...:-)"

Saturday, June 29, 2013

A Cat in Monet's Garden at Giverny

Flickr user
snap713 shared this photo. She said it is from a collection of postcards published by Pomegranate. The back of the card reads:

"Pink cosmos and golden sunflowers tower above Fifi, the calico cat who resides in Monet's garden, as she strolls down a gravel path in the silver mist of dawn. Photograph by Elizabeth Murray c 1990."