Sunday, December 13, 2009

We've Gone To Seed

In the midst of this pre-winter cold, windy blast, we are busy getting our annual seed lists in some sort of order.
The list for the 2010 Atlantic Rhododendron and Horticultural Society Seed Exchange needs to be submitted for publication in a day or two. I do hope there are no seed contributions that will necessitate a redo. The Order Form and little introduction "blurb" are ready to go. I always hope that after they leave the premises I don't discover too many grievous errors.
The online version will get done in the New Year. It doesn't get posted until after the members get the published copy in the winter Newsletter.
Our "Saved Seeds" list from here at home has been pretty well updated and is now posted on our website. Enquiries for these will likely not be in the forefront until after Christmas.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

November hasn't been too bad!

November is usually THE most unfavourite month, but so far it has been quite pleasant from a weather standpoint.
The essential garden chores have been done.  The bulbs have been planted. The stray plants have been stowed in the "ditch" for the winter. The pots of peonies slated for our spring sale have also been "entrenched".
We always have things that can be done , it seems.
There are still lots of colorful contrasts, such as the bronze foliage of the PJM rhododendrons and the foxglove foliage.
Bill has been very busy doing some edging and trucking manure for some much needed top-dressing.

Posting from I-Google

I just noticed this little box on I-Google. I very likely had it put here, but hadn't paid much attention. Expcect there isn't much flexibility from this posting standpoint.
I did discover it doesn't recognize image code!
An after the fact image insertion.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Begonia Season at an End

The annual begonia "harvest"  was accomplished(at least partly) October 15th. Not much different than usual, but we managed not to have early snow make things a mush. There were still lots of blooms, but things were looking a bit tired.
Click for a pictorial of the process.
Begonia Season at an end - Garden Gallery - Canadian Gardening Forums Posted using ShareThis

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Too Busy to Blog!

We are very busy these days getting ready for our annual Plant Sale which will happen on May16-17th.
I expect we are about 90% done with plant preparation, but there is still some logistical work to do.
The garden is bursting forth on a daily basis. The Forsythia have been especially lovely this year.
The first rhododendrons are in bloom. R. mucronulatum, April Rose, and good ole 'PJM' are making a start.
Magnolias are bursting out of their little fur jackets
It is interesting to watch for the "new" things that were planted last fall. This group of tulips called 'Candy Club' were touted as late, but I fear that is a miscalculation on someone's part.
We have a very pretty new corydalis called 'George Baker'. It is very early and a lovely bright pink.
We have found the narcissus show to be somewhat disappointing. The proportion of leaf to bloom seems a tad out of whack. There are many places that should have many more blooms.
We are off to do more things today since rain is called for on Sunday.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A Week of Ups and Downs

We could be talking about the weather, or our ability to get outside and do some spring chores.
We were blessed with a few rather pleasant days, followed by the inevitable threat of snow, rain, real snow, and then cold winds.
Last Friday we accessed our potato pit and removed part of the potatoes and the bucket of carrots stored there.
It was a lovely day with lots of wonderful crocus in full bloom.
I had a brief respite to attend The Celtic Thunder concert in Halifax, which was very enjoyable. The audience seemed to be a very mixed crowd......from the "oldies" like me to young people who were very enthused. It was very well done, and wisely included Rita MacNeil's "Working Man". Halifax and Sydney were the beginnings of a Canadian tour.
We had a brief chat with one of the "transport" guys who found Sydney to be a very quiet town but thought Nova Scotia was a beautiful place.
I seem to be having a very "Irish" touch the last few weeks, from the Black Donnellys to some CBC coverage of the Irish heritage of Quebec, and the history of the Titanic's origins in Belfast.
To my knowledge, I do not have any particularly strong Irish roots.
We had a brief wander through some of the Rhododendron Nursery beds yesterday. We are debating whether we will bother with a sale jaunt to the ARHS Member Sale this year.
It would be a lovely thing if we could encourage more Members to pay us a visit here, and perhaps relieve us of some of the many surplus Azaleas and Rhododendrons.
There are a lot of broken branches here and there courtesy of harsh winter storms.
The cold days aren't overly encouraging. It will be a while before we can tell if there is much bud damage. Cautious optimism would seem to be the order of the day.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Cat Walk

The Wednesday walk had lots of company. Jodi, Voodie and Slayer accompanied me on the stroll.
Cats have a tendency to always be looking the other way. They are having a little "meeting" in the front perennial bed where today I found some actual flower buds showing on a group of Hellebores
Both have been spending more time outdoors than usual, but still want to come in and out a dozen times a day. It may be too wet, too cold or just too dull.
Slayer was crawling about a group of rhodies.We investigated the broken down nursery bed framework. There are a some nice looking rhododendrons in various places. This one is in the 2001 area. I didn't investigate its pedigree.
There are a few that really need to be "purged".
Every day is showing more springlike conditions. This was the first time we had seen the garlic shoots. Not very photogenic!It is quite amazing how quickly these little bulbs pop up and come into bloom. The Eremurus noses are showing. I hope they don't freeze.Today I actually did some gardening work. Not much, but enough to get a start on the pruning, and the aching body. Each year seems to be very much like the one before. Perhaps we are just too dull!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Another Small Step

Before the last couple of wet days, we had a chance to look over the yard in the sun.
Bill chose to start on the "pick up" of woody debris that is always a harbinger of spring here.
Winter winds prune the birch trees all too well.
The sun had the various crocus patches absolutely glowing.
These Crocus ancyrensis hold the glow record" as far as I am concerned.
It was lovely to see many other groups popping up with full colours in effect or at least a hint.These dark purple crocus amongst the lamb's ears are one such group.
There are still some snowy areas. The back hillside with the 2004 nursery bed is still very wintry. It would also appear that the wooden framework around the bed has succumbed to heavy snow. That bit of structure was (is)destined to be removed this spring anyway.
Anywhere the snow has disappeared there are emerging shoots of one thing or another. These big noses belong to a species Peony seedling that blooms long before the "regular" peonies.
The cats have been keen on being outdoors this spring. Voodie came along for the walk.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

A Whoosh of Spring

High winds and rain have magically brought us a glimpse of "real" spring. Part of this day was spent doing a little transplant job of the first seedlings under the lights. Basil, parsley, petunias, thyme and Buddleia were moved to bigger quarters. Jodi and I had our first real walk about in the back garden areas. The lovely little patch of Crocus Tricolor are in full bloom. It is about 15degrees Celsius today.
It is now possible to walk on some of the garden paths without wading through snow. The little Crocus ancyrensis are always ready to leap into bloom the instant the snow has receded. It is amazing how much warmth is felt on the leafy debris here on these beds. Some of the paths are still very snowpacked, but that should change in the next few days.The snow has left the potato pit, so we can access that anytime we feel inclined. There are many Snowdrops anywhere the snow has left their beds.Even the noses of the Crown Imperial Fritillaria are poking up. We were wondering what had become our the planter barrel at the bottom of the driveway.... it was slightly upended by the snowplowing efforts. No harm done, it seems. I always hope to see signs of the Hellebores in the early spring, but they are never very swift. This little hint is all we were able to see for now. The other patch is still snow-covered. There is always a lot of debris lying about, so nothing looks very tidy. Bill will be out with his rake any day now!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A Busy, Wintry End to March

The last week has been pretty busy. We had a nice jaunt to the Garden Club in Prospect Bay Road.
Bill took  some baby azaleas and rhododendrons for everyone to take home.
The weekend had visiting and an outing or two.
Ian and Gina were here. Ian was doing two concerts with Hector MacIsaac at StFX. He plays bass(and other things) with the group. This was the Antigonish debut of The Legend of the Black Donnellys.
Both concerts were capacity crowds, and were very well done and received.
I've been listening to the CD here at home today as a supplement to the stories and songs of the live performance.
More info at Hector MacIsaac's website.
Ian brought the interesting "treat" of a beef tongue. I was in charge of cooking, so for Sunday brunch we had tongue sandwiches.
Ava and James were also here, so everyone got caught up.
We had actual spring-like weather for part of the weekend, so last weeks' snow had started a retreat. This Monday, of course, saw a repeat of last week, so were all white again!
There were a few little crocus finally showing some colour. Monday's storm also meant the first session of the Computer Course I was to start was postponed. I guess we will get off the ground next week.