Saturday, April 11, 2015

A bit of Spring Optimism

Spring has had a hard time reaching us here in Nova Scotia. In spite of having serious winter not start until almost February, we have been deluged with storm after storm with little respite or mild intervals.
Everyone in the province is very tired of shovelling and ice chipping.

The great accumulation of snow and cool temperatures has seriously delayed even the Maple Syrup production in most areas. That rite of spring is only just now getting under way.
Our friends at The Sugar Moon in Earltown are hopefully getting their first good sap run this weekend.
Here at the Willow Garden, we have been a bit occupied dealing with the ARHS Seed Exchange for the 2015 season. The list is quite long and interesting. We have sent out 500+/- packets of seed so far. Gardeners have until April 30th to avail themselves of this exchange.

Spending most of the time indoors has been somewhat improved by a very nice, long period of bloom from our various Amaryllis.
This 'Red Lion' variety gave us two lovely blooming stalks. We were pleased because it was a "saved" bulb. Our success with carrying over Amaryllis is a bit variable.

The sunporch off the kitchen where we have been overwintering a variety of plants has been a bit interesting. A pot of Scopolia carnifolium, which I feared was dead, came to life early this spring. It has grown quite vigorously and has even put forth flower buds.

There have been a few flowers on the old, gnarly Rosemary. Our other Rosemary plants have spent the winter in the basement and seem to be doing okay. I seem to kill one or two a year, maybe my luck is changing.

The season for our own seed starting is underway. Bill has done very little seed starting this year, but has some very nice little plants from Xanthoceras sorbifolium (Yellowhorn). These are offered on the ARHS Seed Exchange list. A very unusual plant for the most part.

The usual seeds of veggies, herbs and a few flowers are in the works. Tomatoes will be planted in a few days. We haven't taken the Begonias out of cold storage yet, but that will happen a few days.
Looking towards May....I have decided to have a mini-vacation and together with my sister attend the "goings on" at the Annapolis Royal Rare & Unusual Plant Sale weekend.
This is a very popular event amongst Nova Scotia gardeners.
This weekend and the coming week are forecast to give us some quite nice sunny and mild days.
The hope is that some of the icy layers and tall banks of snow will indeed subside.
We want no more of this scene.

The late spring and huge snow cover has been posing a problem for many bird species who cannot find their usual foods. Many of my acquaintance have been making bigger efforts to put out a bigger variety of food items to hopefully help a few feathered friends.
Here is my friend Lynda's effort to help robins. She made a little video of a robin visiting soon after.

Quite the hodge podge of pseudo-spring items.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Our 2014 year has come to an end without a very regular assortment of blog posts.
Last year was somewhat exceptional with a few health issues between Bill and I. These do seem resolved. Our hopes for 2015 is that we proceed in a "normal" manner.
My thoughts ran to the variety of changes that occur over a year....both inside and out. Thus the following pictorial.