What’s a cold climate gardener doing in Little Rock, Arkansas? Visiting with P. Allen Smith and a couple dozen garden bloggers, for his fourth annual Garden2Blog event. As usual when I visit a southern U.S. area, I felt like I was in an alien land. Here it was, the third week in May. Back home, the lettuce had been planted, oh, maybe a week or two previously. We did, after all, have a slow start to our spring. On Moss Mountain Farm, Allen’s 600-acre home and botanical laboratory, the lettuce had already bolted.
And did you see those cabbages?My roses are just now starting to bloom, but the roses there were already going gangbusters. Everyone who didn’t already know the name of this rose wanted to know it: As best as I can discover, this rose is only hardy to USDA zone 5, so many of my readers might not be able to grow it. I love the yellow color, so I just might try it, mulching well over the winter.
Here’s something even cold climate gardeners can copy:Violas are edible and can be used to garnish salads and prettify desserts. And in our climate, they often do well all garden season long, whereas they will soon wither in the Arkansas heat and humidity. Score one for us!
And you can grow most–if not all–the herbs in this garden, provided your soil has good drainage:Starting at the bottom and going back, I see sage, oregano, cilantro/coriander (I think), chives, basil gone to seed (I think), garlic chives (another guess), and lavender. Mediterranean herbs are killed more by the wet soil of mud season than by the cold.
I really liked this garden bench/trellis combo. Can’t you just see a rose climbing up it?What a fragrant bower that would be! And I just had to share this quirky multi-bud vase that captured my fancy in the gift shop:
That’s just a taste of my whirlwind two-day tour. I’ll be posting about some of the things I learned in the workshops and tours in the weeks to come.