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Lots of photos, a few words.

early stardrift - tiny!

crocus and phlox

I love the colors of these violas. Perking back up after the winter.

Alice investigates the seedlings.

almost full (THANKS, MOM!!)

side garden + old veggie garden (in foreground)

Quince

Props to my hubby for the cute paths between the raised beds. The bamboo in this pic came from friends who have a ton of it growing behind their house. Bad for them, good for me!

paths

Very disappointed in my tulips this year. Only 4 from the 20 I planted in the fall came up (wtf?!). And all of them (those and my old ones) have only really lasted a day or two because it was hot when they bloomed. Lame. I need better tulips that will do better for me year after year. Suggestions?

tip toe through the tulips

candytuft and 2 types of creeping phlox - also a reseeded dianthus/pinks

flowering dogwood at the edge of our property

…more to come on my winter sowing efforts and some mystery seedlings in my raised beds.

Herb AlmanacAPRIL 11: Predict the weather by emerging new leaves: Oak before Ask/We’ll have a splash/Ash before Oak we’re in for a soak.”

They are, they really are. But it’s starting to get warmer fir good, so no complaints. Got a lot of stuff done outside today. Gave the lawn (/weeds) their first cut of the season The grass didn’t really need it, but the onions and other weeds did. I took a lot of pics, so I’m going to divide them into two posts.

Poker Vase

Poker Vase

I cut some daffs yesterday and put them in this cool little poker vase my mom got me for xmas. We got it at a local craft show (so it is local and handmade). I insisted I didn’t need it, but she ended up going back and getting it for me. I’m glad, because I really like it! I’ll def use it all summer long as I can cut flowers.

seedsoutsideI took the seeds outside for another vacay. It was windy, so that helps them I guess. Those nasturtiums are getting out of control, so it frigging better get warm enough to plant them outside soon! The roots are all out the bottoms, and they’re waaaay taller than the other plants in their tray. They’re also starting to twist all over themselves and their little tendrils are starting to grow – these are climbing nasturtiums! So…yes please get warm. My salad greens need to go in their pot outside, dammit!

hyacinth

hyacinth


^As you can see, the hyacinths are about to burst.

oops - bad planting

oops - bad planting


^But now that the daffs and tulips are up, I see I didn’t pick a great spot to plant these or the early stardrift. They get totally overshadowed. Ugh, I hate to move them, but I think I may have to do some bulb rearranging after they’re done blooming. I’d like to group my daffs and minidaffs better, too.

early stardrift

early stardrift


^Speaking of early stardrift, it’s a gorgeous little bulb! I got it in a big “dutch treat” bulb pack from Breck’s that I split with a friend in the fall. Had never heard of them, but I really like them! White with little blue stripes. Need to move them to a place where they can be seen a bit better, though.

ghetto trellis

ghetto trellis


^ And for the last pic of the day, enjoy my ghetto trellis. I wanted to make a “natural” one for my sweet pea flowers and climbing nasturtiums. I have a ton of twigs in the yard and a lot of grapvine, so I gathered some. Then I stuck them in a pot and tied at a couple crucial places with green garden tie. Well, it looks super ghetto. Of course it doesn’t help that the pot it’s in is all beat up. This is a pot that usually lives beside the shed and has some snapdragons in it that I let reseed each year. It’s gotten whacked by the weedwhacker and lawnmower more than a few times, so I patched it with some duct tape. Normally I would so this to the inside of the pot, but I wasn’t going to empty the dirt out to do it. Sooooo….ghetto trellis. I pushed in a few sweet pea seeds and some more climbing nasturtium seeds. It’s still really technically before last frost, but we’ll see how they do. Usually last frost here isn’t until May 1. It gets warm before then, but the temp fluctuates a lot, so there’s still a good chance of some light frost before then. I’d like to make some more of these trellises for various things, but I need to work on making them look more “rustic” and less ghetto.

k – rest of the pics will post later this week. I know you’re waiting with anticipation! oh – quick poll question. Do my pics take forever to load? My hubby looked on his computer and they took a long time. Trying to figure out if big pics or thumbnails are better. LMK what you think in a comment, if you are so obliged.

(umm….captions totally don’t count as words!)

Daffodil Days stuff came in!

Daffodil Days stuff came in!


Almost all given out!

Almost all given out!


Seed starting area setup change #726. Now +1 lamp, still want to find a tiny fan.

Seed starting area setup change #726. Now +1 lamp, still want to find a tiny fan.


Houston, we have germination!

Houston, we have germination!


a daffodil at home

a daffodil at home


How fun is this crocus?

How fun is this crocus?

It’s my second bloom day! I actually have some blooms outside, so that’s exciting. One thing that is definitely NOT in bloom is my cyclamen that was beautiful on Valentine’s Day when my husband got it for me. It’s just too warm in my house at 70°, I guess. So it slowly yellowed and I cut it down and put it outside. I’ll plant it when it gets warmer, and hopefully it’ll come back outside next year. Now on to things that ARE blooming on this rainy day.

crocus in the rain

crocus in the rain


daff1
raindrops on a daffodil

raindrops on a daffodil


quince w/raindrop

quince w/raindrop

And as a grand finale, the mystery bulb does appear to be a daffodil (look towards the bottom of the pic below). If that one stays, I might have to plant to friends there for it this year. Not a bad spot for some daffs, anyway, and I do have a pot coming in next week from the Daffodil Days for Cancer thing I sponsored at work this year (must remember to post about that when they come in – will have to sneak some pics at work!). The daylilies are also coming up! The bed looks pretty sparse now, but it fills in fairly well, and hopefully the stuff I’ve ordered from Bluestone will also help with that. Also I really need to get to weeing and put in an order for a couple truckloads of mulch with the nursery that is conveniently located about a mile from my house. If only it would stay warm so I can feel good about removing all the old foliage that provides a bit of protection. Come on, weather!

Signs of spring making themselves obvious.

Signs of spring making themselves obvious.

Also, to end the post, a confession. I planted my daffodils and tulips in SLOP. They line the front of the “driveway bed.” Sigh. What can I say. I suppose I planted them before I knew that this was an affliction. But I’ve since planted more bulbs around them, and they should still clump up fairly nicely as time goes on and I add more in. Please don’t hold this against me. More details on the condition as more blooms arrive.

I will also admit a Freudian Slip. When I first write this post and went to preview it to make edits, I realized I’d titled it “Bloom Day – May 2009.” Sigh. Wishful thinking? On Bloom Day in May, I’ll actually be in Hawaii, and my mom will be looking after my plants for a week!

First Spring Flower! Crocus!

First Spring Flower!

Ok – so 2 posts today not exactly on purpose. I wrote the “weeds are pretty” post over the weekend, but didn’t want 2 long posts in one day, so I set it to post on 3/10. I checked today and it had some weird message like “schedule missed” (uhh ok?), so then I copied/pasted into a new post and posted that, at which time I noticed the old post had appeared as well. Anyway – problem solved. But I still want to post “actually today” so here I am.

Bulb from 1/10/09 post pic

Bulb from 1/10/09 post pic - almost ready to bloom!

Went to a viewing this PM for a friend of the family. He’s a longtime buddy of my dad’s and was actually my mom’s boss for a few years (she’s a school secretary and he was her principal). I’m ld friends with one of his daughters, too. His wife also works in the school system and was a coworker of my mom’s when my mom worked at a different school (before he was her principal. (Are you following along? I’m not going to draw a chart.) We went to the school our moms worked at, so we (and other teacher daughters) would hang out together after school. She was a year behind me and my BFF, so we did pick on her a little, but it was all in good fun and I wish we’d stayed in contact better through the years (though I know everything about her between Facebook and school gossip!). I hate hate hate having to do that. I swear I feel sometimes like I should be a special guest at that funeral home! But eh. What can you do. It really makes me appreciate the time I have with my parents though. Because you really do never know. It’s a very scary thought. (Love you, mom and dad.)

Sunshine Helenium

Sunshine Helenium

And on to less depressing things, I realized I never bitched about the fact that Springhill Nursery already sent our order! lolwut? We actually got the stuff when it looked like this outside. Awesome! Let me just stick em in the ground right now! uhhhhno. So my mom called and I sent an email complaining. Our complaints are now on record, so if they croak due to being sent out waaaay early, they’ll replace or refund. Also kind of annoyed because for some reason, when I tried to order the “add another plant for 1¢” deal, apparently it didn’t go thru. Bummer. The cust service person gave me a confusing answer about still being able to order the 1¢ one, but I wasn’t sure about shipping and whatev. Basically they said “lolwut” like we did (definition here for those not familiar with the memes of the tubes of internet), and said “well, we send them out according to your grow schedule!” uhhno. Even when there isn’t a freak 1-ft snowstorm, temps are generally in the low 40s-mid 50s rt now. Not planting season yet for at least another month!

So hopefully the plants hang on. Luckily, most of my mom’s were bulb or bareroot, so those should be OK. My sunshine heleniums however, are now being dutifully covered with a bigger pot during threat of frost, or being brought inside altogether at night when its under 40° (then covered with a pot for cat-proof protection). Sigh. The Bluestone order isn’t due till April/May, so those should be alright.

img_5767

Also, when I was out with my parents on Sunday helping them get their mind off things and look for a new washing machine, I picked up a palm from the Lowe’s “rescue plant” cart. They had a bunch – this one was literally falling out of its pot, but looked good and was only $3. I had eyed it and left it there they day before, but my mom is a bad influence so I bought it (and my mom bought a rescue gardenia). I have no idea what kind of palm it is. I’m hoping it’s a kentia, deemed a good houseplant/all around plant, and not a majesty palm, which I hear is impossible to keep alive indoors. Any palm experts around? I plan to keep the plant outside for the summer and bring it in for the winter (it’s currently in-and-out with the heleniums till warmer weather). I guess even if it is the “bad” one, it’ll just be a super-fancy annual since I only paid $3 for it anyway. More pics of the mystery palm are below. Any ideas??

img_5802

img_5797

volunteer...daffodil?

volunteer...daffodil?

As I was taking some pics some some sprouting bulbs today, I found this. Looks like a daffodil. Weird thing is, my neighbors don’t have any bulbs, and all of my bulbs are on the entirely opposite side of the yard with a very large gravel driveway in between. We did have moles last year, so I suppose they could have moved it – but it seems like a very long way to go! Anyway, it’ll be interesting to see what it turns out to be. I’ll have to keep an eye out for more migrating bulbs, now.

cold pansy

cold pansy

tulip babies

tulip babies

Can’t wait for some warmer weather. My pansies are even getting tired of the cold! And I’m getting impatient waiting for my crocus to bloom. But it’s really too early. Waiting sucks!

brave bulbs

brave bulbs


So there are fairly remarkable and weird signs of life in parts of my garden. I have no idea why my dianthus (carnations) appear to the evergreen. I don’t think they’re supposed to be, but they look just as green as they did in the summer, minus the flowers. And though it has been warm a few days, it’s also been plenty cold enough to kill off stuff. I still have a million bells that has some green on it, and both of my spike plants that I was only going to save for a few additional weeks out of pity are still going strong. It would be pretty sweet if I could re-use the spikes in the spring. Whatever kind of seemingly creeping phlox I have is also nice and green. The one pictured here with the dianthus looks the best, but I did move the other 2 at the end of the season, so they have an excuse.
Dianthus/carnations, phlox, and brown daylilies

Dianthus/carnations, phlox, and dormant daylilies

As for the rest of the garden, I’m still enjoying the rosemary, which I know is evergreen, and the lemon thyme, which seems like it might be. The holly bushes are all berried, and the bulbs are peeking up. Frigging spring needs to hurry up. Oh well – I bought a houseplant (philodendron) at Walmart today to cope with my cold-weater blues. Can’t decide whether to leave it here or take it to work (I’m up to 6 plants there, and I do have a small cube, so eh). I think you can propigate philos just as easily and in the same way as pothos (which I have rooting all over the place and is nice and easy to deal with)? I’ll have to look that up.

Holly bush

Holly bush

lemon thyme

lemon thyme

My daffodils are already starting to poke up for spring, and with all the new bulbs I planted this winter, I can’t wait for springtime. I’ve also got a new composter to put together and some plants put in in late fall that should perk up the side garden. Is it warm yet? Here’s what things looked like last year. Hopefully they’ll have multiplied.

Oh – this also reminds me I have to work on setting up my webpage for Daffodil Days. I’m going to be the coordinator for my office. Yay cancer research! Only apparently the Daffodil Days website portion is pretty crappy, and has been giving me a lame error message since I first set it up. boo! But I did get a few orders/donations today already!

tulip2007 tulips2007 daffodils2007

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