Monday, March 22, 2010

Spring beginnings

March 21, 2010

A week ago, the backyard was buried in 6" or more of snow. After a monstrous rain storm that flooded our basements and our yard, we spent hours wet-vacing the water and digging trenches for the water to flow away from the house. After two days or rain, we were graced with several days of warm, beautiful 60 degree weather. Ahhh! The snow is almost gone and this weekend we were able to get outside, rake out the flower beds and do some major clean up - cutting down foliage left up for the winter and digging up the problem child rudbeckias who were taking over everywhere. Shorter mildew-resistant rudbeckias will be planted this year instead.

I was ecstatic to see so many plants beginning to emerge already:
  • Autumn Sedum Joy (love these)
  • Delphiniums Magic Fountains (love these)
  • Carpathian Bellflower White Clips (love these)
  • May Night Salvia (love these)
  • Lupines
  • Obedient Plant (not sure if I'm keeping this; will give it one more year)
  • Daylily Stella de Oro
  • Alchemilla Lady's Mantle

Several of my perennials stay green all winter under the snow and just needed the brown, damaged leaves trimmed off:

  • Coral Bells 'Firefly'
  • Rose Campion (love these & missed them last year... biennials)
  • Shasta Daisy 'Snow Lady' (love these)
  • Dianthus 'Ideal Mix' (not normal - they even have buds on them!)

I ordered more plants from Graceful Gardens (I just love them - and their prices - and can not resist ordering at least 2 trays every year). Two years ago I ordered some gorgeous Delphinium Chinensis from GG - short with constant blooms all summer in the most beautiful blue - only one came back last year. They're so pretty, I ordered a full tray (32 plants) to plant in the side garden and around the outside of the pool fence to try and tie the two together. I also ordered some Echinacia 'Baby Pink Swan' and Dianthus Sweet William. My gardens need more pink! I have mostly yellows, purples and white.

I bought several bags of Stargazer Lily bulbs as well as some iris bulbs to plant. The gardens definitely need more spring / early summer blooming flowers. I have Bleeding Hearts and some irises, which I divided and moved along the pool fence and in the side garden. We'll see how things look this spring.

I also bought several packets of seeds - I always get carried away. I'll list them some other time. I collected Rudbeckia seeds from the landscaping at work last fall. I want to grow those from seed as well as the Shasta Daisy 'Snow Lady' from my garden. Guess I better hurry up and get them planted. I'm not sure if either will bloom this year anyway.

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