Garden Writers Association annual conference Tweet Up, Raleigh

“Anyone going to GWA interested in a tweet-up?” This simple question asked,  using 95 less characters than allowed,  led to an A-list garden writers tweet-up on a free evening during the Garden Writers Association annual conference in Raleigh.

A rouge party, not sanctioned by GWA, proved to be the best ice-breaker for first timers, and seasoned attendees.  Tweeters were not there selling, there were no barriers from one group to another, we were all just followers who became friends through Twitter.

Best yet, Proven Winners @ProvenWinners4U sponsored the tweet-up.  THANK YOU!

Yours truly, got the ball rolling for the Tweet-up.  One response of yes led to nearly 50, with 10 or so more regretting; oh yes really regretting, just ask Stephanie Martin @GettingDirty.

Social media networks like Twitter have gotten a bad rap; mostly from people who don’t get it.

Elizabeth Licata @GWI (Gardening While Intoxicated), and the @GardenRant fame, volunteered to co-host the event.  Elizabeth had great wine connections with Total Wine in Cary, NC Elizabeth’s contact selected a fabulous evening line-up – the list is below – yum!

GWA 104

Others offered to help, like  Keith Alexander @Hyperating who helpedGWA 100

fetching ice and such, Kathy Jentz @WDCgardener offered a “what ever needs to be done”, Southern Living’s  Steve Bender a.k.a. @grumpy_gardener offered to come early to start tasting the wines.

Rebecca, Steve Bender, Sharon Bright

Rebecca Reed, Steve Bender, Sharon Bright

Jim and Sharon Bright graciously opened their garden for the event.   They are getting use to being around these garden writer types having had their garden photographed for Country Gardens last year and recently by Southern Living.

The home and garden of our host, Jim and Sharon Bright
The home and garden of our host, Jim and Sharon Bright

The evening.

Laura Schaub and Amy Stewart tweeting at the tweet-up

Laura Schaub and Amy Stewart tweeting at the tweet-up

Erica Glaisner, Joe Lamp'l and Helen Yoest FINALLY meet

Erica Glasener, Joe Lamp'l and Helen Yoest FINALLY meet

Here's some fo the crowd.  Looks like Billy Goodnick is doing the Egyptian

Here's some of the crowd. Looks like Billy Goodnick is doing the Egyptian

Kate Frank, Michelle Gravis with Fine Gardening Magazine with Jean Anne VK during her "Good Enough Gardneing" podcast.

Kate Frank, Michelle Gervais with Fine Gardening Magazine with Jean Anne VK during her "Good Enough Gardening" podcast.

Patty Craft, Dee, xx

Patty Craft, Dee Nash, Carol Michel

In summary, we got it, until the last tweeter left.  Not one apology for what we do needed to be made all evening.  It’s good to be with like minded gardeners.


Wine List

Botter Verduzzo Prosecco

Bougrier Muscadet

hebus Torrontes

Milton Park Shiraz

Mousset CdRhone rose

Ropiteau Pinot Noir

The List

@29Mingardener Kathleen Hennessy
@AARSroses Julia Young
@ChiGardeningMag Bill Aldrich
@Citygardening Lorraine Flanigan
@Compostinmyshoe Jim Martin
@Containergardening Kerry Michaels
@Dkprinzing Debra Prinzing
@douggreen Doug Green
@EdenMaker Shirley Bovshow
@EricaGlasener Erica Glasener
@Flowergardengal Anna Lopper
@GardenerSusan Susan Harris
@Gardenofwords Katie Elzer-Peters
@Gardenwiseguy Billy Goodnick
@gettingdirty Reno Martin
@grumpy_gardener Steve Bender
@GardenLiving Theresa Loe
@GWI Elizabeth Licata
@HelenYoest Helen Yoest
@herbncowgirl Ann McCormick
@Hyperating Keith Alexander
@Idahogardener Mary Ann Newcomer
@Indigogardens Lynn Felici-Gallant
@IndyGardener Carol Michel
@Interleafer Laura Schaub
@JeanAnnVK Jean Ann Van Krevelen
@joegardener Joe Lamp’l
@Judydigginit Judy Lowe
@Kate_Frank Kate Frank
@KathyPurdy Kathy Purdy
@klsnature Kelly Senser
@Michelle_at_FG Michelle Gervais
@mycornerofkaty Cindy Tournier
@Nestinstyle Jayme
@PattyCraft Patty Craft
@ProvenWinners4U Danielle Ernest
@punkrockgardens Laura Mathews
@reddirtramblin Dee Nash
@RobinRipley Robin Ripley
@SeasonalWisdom Teresa O’Connor
@SusanCohan Susan Cohan
@SusanlMorrison Susan Morrison
@susanreimer Susan Reimer
@TheGardenPlot Suzi McCoy
@thegardenlady C.L.
@TinkHanson Christa Hanson
@WDCgardener Kathy Jentz
@WesternGardener Jodi Torpey
@Wildwoodwoman Penelope O’Sullivan
Helen Yoest

Gardening With Confidence


  1. personalgardencoach said

    Great post Helen! thanks for helping those of us who couldn’t be there in person feel a little better about missing out. It looked like everyone had a fun time. And all were SO well behaved! That is compared to some of our late night garden writer tweets. 🙂
    Thanks again,
    Christina Salwitz

  2. Janet said

    What great fun!

  3. Grumpy Gardener said

    Thanks for arranging such a splendid event, Helen. As you know, Rebecca Reed (my colleague at Southern Living) and I will go anywhere for good wine and this event featured plenty. Favorite wine of the night — Phebus Torrontes. Wish I knew where to buy it in Birmingham. Maybe in Wal-Mart next to the MD 20-20 Pink Grapefruit flavor or the 2001 Arbor Mist?

    As soon as I get back home, I will give the guest list to our IT people and make sure I am following them all. Great venue for the party — Jim & Sharon Bright’s garden (which will be in SL next summer). Everyone make sure to buy 100 copies when it comes out.

    Before I go, I would like to formally apologize to Jean Ann for unintentionally crashing her podcast last night. I had no idea what was going on, but if you know me, you know that’s pretty much the story of my life.

  4. meghan said

    ooohh, that evening looks like a dream!! i’m so envious. is that carol of “may dreams” in the last pic? i think i need to go buy some pansies right now, to give myself a little gardening fix!

  5. kk said

    Is there no end to the list of your many talents Helen? Now we have party organizer and tweet maven. Whats next? And how do you do it? Whew!

  6. Thanks so much, Helen! Wish I could have joined you. A great, fun group.

  7. Thanks again, Helen, for arranging this and ou hosts for letting us take over their sweet garden.

    PS The photos of so many shiny faces remind me ofthe humidity that night – LOL.

  8. Erica Glasener said

    Thanks again Helen for all your work to make this event happen. It was great to meet you and I love your garden.
    Enjoy the fall.

  9. Paige said

    I hate that I missed the tweetup, but I’m thrilled I got to meet so many of the attendees eventually! Great photos.

  10. I was there, but so exhausted I just sat there, glassy-eyed, and missed my only opportunity to miss some of the guests. And now I have iPhone envy! Thank you so much for organizing the event. Maybe it will be an official event in Dallas, and not a rogue one!

  11. bovshow said

    Thanks for including me Helen! Would I be a hog if I asked you to add to the list


    I want to make all of you’s famous!

  12. A rouge party? Ah. A rogue party.

    Thanks for the Twitter list. I know most of these people already but it’s always nice to find some new garden bloggers/tweeps.

  13. I am sorry I missed the Tweetup and the conference but hopefully one day I can meet many of you!

    Thanks Helen for making me feel almost like I was there.


    aka @lafarmgirl 🙂

  14. Doug Green said

    A good party Helen – good wine and great organizing, not to mention a fine garden and good company. Looking forward to Dallas and the rogue party – let’s hope we never become mainstream and boring. 🙂

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