Saturday, January 21, 2006

Garden report January 21, 2006

January 21 and it is crazy warm, up in the mid 60s. Went to the garden to see what might be peeking up and to strategize about next year. A lot of trees are showing buds, especially the maples. Daffodil tips are pushing up out of the soil.

January shoots
(c) 2006 Beautiful Dreamers

I have a wish list of very early spring or late winter plants, many of which are on the street. For starters, hellebores (Christmas and Lenten "rose") with their mysterious and vaguely sinister greenish flowers. Several people on Biltmore have big clumps of them. I wonder if we can get some seedlings to go into the shady end of the garden under the tree, near the tree peony.

Biltmore Triangle -- shady end
(c) 2006 Beautiful Dreamers

Other gardens on the street are bright with berries: dwarf nandina, euonymus and another unknown berry, all giving winter interest. A camellia is in bloom--winter roses that will come in January and February if the shrubs get shelter. There are some varieties that are cold hardy this far north. Can we put one in the shade at the end of the garden, or is the mimosa too thirsty a tree for it to survive in its rain shade?

Early starters include pulmonaria. One gardener on the west side of the block has a goodish clump of this borage family flower with its silvery spots. It is an early bloomer that looks a little like Virginia blue bells, with a shade-friendly leaf that is interesting all year. Forget-me-nots that I sowed directly last year are covering ground, we'll see how they bloom come spring.

(c) 2006 Beautiful Dreamers

Some seedlings are starting to show up as well, and hopefuly they'll tolerate the cold they're likely to get before true spring. I see starts of foxglove (old witch's plant, we'll be wanting it for its digitalis if the drugs mess-up continues), columbine, love-in-a-mist. The bronze fennel is sprouting back where I cut it down in the fall, as is the wormwood. A pink in the rock garden by the pump has two flowerbuds ready to bloom.


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