About me.

Sheryl Normandeau, BA, is a Master Gardener and writer from Calgary, Alberta, Canada.  Her articles and short stories have appeared in hundreds of international publications.  She is the author of The Little Prairie Book of Berries and the co-author (with Janet Melrose) of the Guides for the Prairie Gardener series. She has also written several nonfiction children’s books. 

Photo by Randal Allcock, Village Studio, Calgary


  1. Hi Sheryl,
    I just read the content of http://shernor.wordpress.com/2011/07/23/uglynest-sighting/
    “If you’re looking for an easy-to-use “bug I.D.” book for the Prairies, look no further than Nora Bryan and Ruth Staal’s The Prairie Gardener’s Book of Bugs: A Guide to Living with Common Garden Insects (2003, Fifth House Ltd.). It is compact and well-written, and the illustrations by Grace Buzik are amazing.” I just wanted to say thank you for the lovely compliment about my art.
    Grace Buzik

    • Hello, Grace, I’m really pleased that you stopped by to check out my blog! The Prairie Gardener’s Book of Bugs is my go-to resource for insect i.d. and your fantastic illustrations are a huge part of the reason why I love this book so much!

      • Grace! I just picked up a book that you once owned in a second-hand book store, Stalking Birds with Color Camera by Arthur A. Allen. I think it’s the most beautiful birding book I’ve run in to. I then googled your name, just to discover that you’ve been an illustrator. I am busy painting in my studio here in Calgary…endangered species! I feel like the world is sooo connected, in the end. Thanks to Sheryl Normandeau for this wordpress! Painter Lady

    • That’s awesome! I’ve learned so much already, and I’ve only just gotten started. Good luck with your studies; I’ll be sure to follow your happenings on your blog.

  2. Love the blog – thanks for visiting mine, it lead me back to you! I don’t have much of a yard, condo living! I am going to try some gardening in pots. Over the last couple of years I have been pretty successful with herbs. this year I am going to add corn to the big pots and peas to grow up them, beans and nastursums in the hanging baskets. Any advise for the newbie container gardener?

    • Thanks so much for stopping by, and for your kind comments! I’ve been really enjoying the photos from your blog, fantastic work!
      Glad to hear you’re trying some veggie container gardening this year! If you’ve already been successful with herbs in the past, then it will be no stretch for you to attempt veggies – you’ve already gotten the whole watering and feeding thing down pat and you know what kind of potting soil works best for you. 🙂 Make sure you have a deep enough and large enough container for the corn – I’ve had a few people tell me that corn can successfully be grown in raised beds, so a large container shouldn’t be much different. I’ve never tried it myself, so keep me posted on how it goes! Peas and beans will benefit from an inoculation of rhizobium bacteria, which you can buy in powdered form from any garden centre or seed company – just follow the instructions on the package to apply. Legumes fix nitrogen and the bacteria assist in the process, which helps to produce stronger, healthier plants. May I recommend a book (or two)? – Andrea Bellamy’s Sugar Snaps and Strawberries is a great read for anyone setting up a container garden and even though she’s based in Vancouver, she has a lot of tips that those of us in Calgary can really use. Closer to home, there’s anything written by Donna Balzer – she has a new one called No Guff Vegetable Gardening that is really interesting and fun to read.
      Hope you have a great harvest! Do let me know how things turn out!

  3. Hi Sheryl,

    Since beginning my own blog, I have spent much time poking around the blogosphere – so many awesome writers, photographers and experts on any subject out there! I might never have happened upon your blog had you not decided to follow mine – thanks!


    • Thanks so much for stopping by, I appreciate it! Your blog is full of excellent design information and I look forward to future posts!

  4. Hi Sheryl, I guess we’re neighbours (almost). I love that you’re able to garden while living in an apartment. There’s a fab community garden in Oliver here in Edmonton (posted about it this summer). It was fun to see a bunch of different styles in one garden. Thanks for visiting Boomdeeadda, I appreciate it. I hang around an snoop a while here too. I love that giant sunflower!

    • Thanks so much for spending some time browsing around Flowery Prose! I love the diverse subjects you cover on Boomdeeadda (not to mention that everytime I visit your site, I get that song in my head! Awesome!). I look forward to your future posts! 🙂

      • I’m happy to hear you’re enjoying your visits to Boomdeeadda. I’m never sure what tommorrow will bring but that’s part of the challenge. I love that song too..it really says everything about my site. Thanks for your visits!

  5. Hi Sheryl,

    So enjoy reading your blog and wanted to let you know that I nominated you for the Sunshine Blogger award. If this is a blogger activity that you do not participate in there is no expectation to follow through. Just enjoy the well-deserved promo! ~Thea

  6. Sheryl, thank you for stopping and following my blog today. We live up the road from you in Edmonton. I look forward to following your blog and its conversations about all things flowery.

    Take care,


    • Hi, Ivon! Thanks so much for your message and for following Flowery Prose! I look forward to reading your upcoming posts, as well! Nice to meet a fellow Albertan.

  7. Hello from Dublin Ireland (via Blooming Blogs) Sheryl. I’ve just read your blog about the Devonian Gardens – you’re right,they’re not much of an improvement on the old ones, are they? I remember them from the early nineties when I lived in Calgary.
    Happy Solstice from Dublin – same latitude, different weather 🙂

    • Happy Solstice to you, too! I’m so happy that you stopped by my blog! Maybe the new gardens will “grow” on me – they do showcase interesting plant forms and textures, and I’m definitely a big fan of the living walls. But I just found the old design much more appealing and welcoming.

  8. I am delighted to have found you and your blog! I live near you and enjoy learning and growing in this challenging zone! Woohoo, let’s hear it for incredibly hardy native perennials and fast-growing vegetables! I have transformed my front yard into a native wildflower, perennial and shrub garden and in the backyard I utilize all the space – including horizontal – that I can. I look forward to learning more from you and enjoying lots of reading here.
    Cheers, from a new fan, Gina 🙂

    • Thanks so much for your follow, Gina, I’m so happy you found my blog! Your garden sounds absolutely amazing – you’re definitely up to the challenges of our climate! I did some browsing on your blog as well – it’s fabulous, and I look forward to following all of your future posts! All the best! 🙂

    • Hi, Jo Ann – thanks so much, I really appreciate the follow and the inclusion in your blogroll! I’m so happy to have come across your blog, I’ve really been enjoying your posts! I love to get outdoors and explore nature as well.

    • Thank you so very much for the nomination – I really appreciate it! I’m currently buried under a few projects, but once I get a handle on them, I will create a proper post to celebrate! 🙂

      Have a wonderful day!

  9. Hi Sheryl, Thanks so much for introducing yourself by following our site. Today the monsoon started–ah, an alleviation from the heat!–so we can relate to that feeling of relief when seasons change. How wonderful that you’re studying sustainable urban agriculture! That’s certainly a subject dear to our hearts, especially as World Environment Day and the theme of food waste reduction is upon us. Please check out the RAXA Collective facebook page, we’re posting lots of fun ideas on it this week. See you there!

  10. Thanks so much for becoming a subscriber. I’m an avid gardener, and a backyard steward for our local nature society. Also, I retired a few years ago from a marvelous job working in Special Collections at a university library, where we had a huge horticultural collection. Happy blogging.

  11. Hi Sheryl, thanks for dropping by my blog – always nice to make new friends! I grow sprouts too, though not on the window sill as Orlando has chosen that spot for himself! I’m also inner city living and my tiny courtyard only gets sun six months of the year, something I find really challenging. Having a quick peek around your blog I begin to pick up a few ideas already, so I shall enjoy to read further posts!

    • Thanks so much! I can understand that Orlando may not wish to share his windowsill – he’s got his perfect little place! 🙂 I hear you with the small-space gardening challenges – but it just makes everything more interesting and fun! I look forward to following all of your posts!

  12. Sheryl…thanks for following my blog. I am looking forward to hearing more about your gardening adventures in a climate zone that is sooooo different from mine!

  13. Hi Sheryl. Thanks for following my Blog. I am from Alberta originally although I now live in New Brunswick. I am a botanist and interested in local foods, so I will find your site interesting, I know. Jane

  14. Sheryl, thanks for visiting and following my blog. I love gardens although I’m the world’s worst gardener! Especially here in Central Florida! So, I’ll just enjoy your gardening adventures! 🙂

  15. Thank you for following WoollyMuses. I have enjoyed your photos and will be back. I must look up Angelica to see if it grown in Australia…I have never heard of it until I read your article.

    • Thanks so much for your follow as well! I’m so happy to have found your blog, and I look forward to your future posts! 🙂

      That would be interesting to know if angelica grows in Australia; if you find out, please let me know! I think there are several different species, not all of them edible.

  16. Hi. I am glad to meet you and your blog. 🙂 I am a wannabe gardener who has trouble keeping plants pretty. Your blog is very appealing to me. 🙂

    • Thanks so much for your message – I really appreciate the new info! I did make the recipe, but I didn’t end up processing them in the canner – I just refrigerated all of the jars (I only had 5 lbs of pears instead of 10 so I didn’t end up with too many jars). We’ve already eaten one and enjoyed it very much. Once again, thanks tons for this update – that’s very thoughtful of you to reach me.

  17. Hi Sheryl – thanks for stopping by my blog and following – I see you too are fascinated by the world around you 🙂 – Zone 3a is a real challenge and I thought my zone was bad!

  18. Hi, Sheryl! Thank you for stopping by my blog and following. I like the content of your site so will follow your blog. Maggie

  19. Thank you for the follow! I hope you will not be disappointed…because for the last ten years I haven’t grown vegetables for the household. My work is consuming me and we travel too much.

    My grandparents were gardeners both, though, so I love everything green. Here’s a place for me to learn new things – I will enjoy your company!

  20. Thanks for stopping by and following my blog! I love all those gorgeous flowery pics…Looking forward to more, and hearing about the microgarden (I could use the tips).

    • Thank you very much for your kind words – I’m so happy to have found your blog! I’m a total newbie at cross stitch, and I will definitely draw inspiration from your work. I also love the fact that you review books and work as an editor – very cool!

  21. Hi Sheryl. Thank you for your encouraging visits to the Healing Garden. I appreciate your courage as a gardener in Calgary. I was partly raised on the North end of the Kootenay Lake. The Lake tempered our climate, but like here, a sudden arctic blast and we are delivered to your zone! You have all the best qualities for work as a horticultural therapist. Regards. The Healing Garden gardener.

  22. Hi Sheryl thanks for popping by my blog from time to time, you have some beautiful rose photos up, and I love the berry jelly, there is something so satisfying about foraging and then bringing your spoils home and turning them into jams and jellies and other delicious foods!
    We should go pick mushrooms soon, although we may already have missed the season now I think about it 😦

  23. Thank you for stopping by at my blog; it is a nice surprise to see how much we have in common. I look forward to have a bit more time for exploring around your site – your jellies look so yummy!

  24. Sounds like you and I share some occupational and interest-related loves (and approaches to life), Sheryl. I’m so happy you stopped by my blog and introduced yourself and now I can look forward to learning from you here. I’ve only been in Calgary twice thus far, both times only passing through really, but know it’s a place I’d love to return and explore further, so it remains on my To Do list for ‘someday’. Meanwhile, you and another blog friend or two will have to give me my fix via vicarious visits. 😉

    • I am so happy to have found your blog as well and I am excited to “meet” you! This is one thing I adore about blogging, the chance to chat with so many different people and learn from them…it will be a delight following all of your posts! Have a wonderful week! 🙂

  25. Hello! That sounds very interesting! Sustainable urban agriculture is something we eventually want to pursue 🙂 I liked the “growing words” bit too! Regards.

    • Oh, that’s very exciting – I do hope you get a chance to pursue urban agriculture! Thanks so much for checking out my blog – I so appreciate it! I look forward to following yours and keeping up with all your new posts! Cheers!

  26. Hi Sheryl,

    Thanks a lot for visiting my blog and following it.

    Pretty nice photos of flowers and nature.

    There many flowers here which I haven’t seen in our part of the world.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Have a great time.

  27. Wow! And I thought I was the only one with a micro-garden, my kids make fun of my kitchen full of baby plants and my dream was to rent a communal spot but someone told me they’re usually passed on to the next generation & stays in the same families forever.
    I’m looking forward to browsing through your blog & following… thanks for coming on mine it is nice to find alike bloggers 🙂

  28. Hello newest Spikey! I know, a bit corny, eh, but that’s the term that has come to stick for those folk who are part of the clan known to be followers of Uncle Spike 🙂

    Thank you… I really appreciate that as I for one, know how many interesting and entertaining blogs are out there.

    My aim is to deliver an eclectic offering of posts, from my ‘point n shoot’ attempts at basic photography, to the sharing of my travel adventures over the decades, as well as day to day happenings here on the farm. Oh, plus a few observations on life as I see it, thrown in for good measure.

    My promise to you is not to be overbearing, just a couple of posts a day, maybe 3 at weekends if I have something special to share. But if you are at a loose end one day, maybe you’ll enjoy trawling through some of my older stuff too. I have added plenty of categories to help in said digging process.

    Thanks again and hope you have a great day…


  29. Hi Sheryl, thanks for the follow! Looking at the images of the flowers kinda make me think of my aunt.. she loves gardening too! Your pictures are really lovely by the way! 🙂

  30. Hi Sheryl –I want to thank you for stopping in over on cookiecrubmstoliveby and for now wanting to follow along on my life’s little journey–your words and images are truly lovely and I look forward to exploring your site and beautiful gifts in more depth—again Sheryl, thank you and many blessings—Peace and Grace—Julie

  31. Hi Sheryl – thank you for visiting Urban Cottage Life and liking some of my posts! I thought I’d come check out what you’re doing here, and was delighted to see what your blog is all about. I’ll be following along! Cheers, Marlene

  32. Thanks so much for following Oh, the Places We See. I’m so interested in your blog not only for the pictures but also the wealth of information. Looking forward to learning more. I’m also taking more and more macro photos of flowers, so this info enhances something I’m learning more about. Best wishes for much success.

  33. Hi Sheryl. Though I have no idea how you might have stumbled across my little blog, I am humbled you have chosen to follow RV inSane?.
    I am enjoying reading through your posts, having already learned more about dandelions and rhubarb than I thought possible, and I think your photography is stunning. I look forward to exploring the rest of your work and your upcoming postings!

    • Hi, Steve – thank you so much for your kind words, and for following Flowery Prose! I follow a few camping and hiking sites and found a link to your blog through one of them (wish I could recall which one at the moment, but I’m afraid I can’t). I love to hear about camping adventures all over Canada – and I look forward to more of your posts!

  34. Hello Sheryl, I was searching for information on Cow Parsnip and your site showed up. I make a calendar for family and friends each year and this years theme is wildflowers. Thank you for providing the facts about this Alberta wildflower. I will return to search for some of your other wonderful ideas, we all have a few extra pumpkin seeds at this time of year to roast.
    Bryan Flaman

  35. Hi Sheryl. I just found your blog. I’m looking forward to browsing through all the information you have posted – it is nice to read content about things so close to home. I’m just NE of Airdrie!

I'm delighted to hear from you - thanks so much for your comments!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.