The tagline of my blog is "Hardy plants for hardy souls," because you have to be a hardy soul to endure the fits and starts of winter ending and spring arriving. Cold climate gardeners are resilient in the face of adversity and prepared for setbacks before winter is gone for good. Here's how I'm coping. How about you?
Those lilies-of-the-valley I forced? I transferred them to a decorative container and they became the centerpiece for a tea party baby shower. It turned out very well, if I do say so myself. Click the link to learn how I did it and view the pretty pictures!
Move over, hyacinths. Stand back, amaryllis. It's time for lily-of-the-valley to take center stage. Yes, lily-of-the-valley! Did you know you could force lily-of-the-valley indoors during the winter? It's not too hard at all, if you buy specially prepared roots. And the fragrance is wonderful, not to mention the pleasure of actually watching plants grow while it's snowing outside.
Sometimes plants surprise me. It surprises me that this 'Sweet Nymph' amaryllis is blooming. Why? Because I didn't follow any of the "rules" for getting an amaryllis to re-bloom. I did not put it (or my other amaryllises) in a closet in mid-August or early September. Why would I, when the plants were growing lushly? [...]
I have whined before, here and on Facebook, that some of my Christmas cacti (Schlumbergera hybrids, also called zygocacti) were failing. I got plenty of advice as a result, most of which I was already following, when I happened to stumble upon an old blog post of Matt Mattus'. In it he advised to avoid [...]
I was really looking forward to bulb forcing this winter. I had read Bulb Forcing by Art Wolk, my new bulb-forcing bible (review here), and was inspired to broaden my selection of bulbs to force, plus I had a gift certificate from Brent and Becky's Bulbs that made broadening my selection painless. So far, however, [...]
Henry Nicholson Ellacombe believed that every great gardener reads a lot of gardening books: I have always found that a lover of gardens and flowers is also more or less a lover and reader of books. … and the more they love their gardens and their flowers the more they wish to read about them; [...]
I have Matt Mattus to blame (and thank) for these primulas. I never would have looked for them at my local Wegmans if he hadn't mentioned that's where he found his. (Wegmans in Massachusetts? Who knew?) Since he brought it to my attention, when I saw them for 99 cents each I grabbed two. Finally, [...]
I've bought yet another plant after saying I was tired of my houseplants. I pounced on this forced hyacinth in bud while grocery shopping. I didn't force any hyacinths myself this year because I was short of funds and many of the bulbs I tried to force last year went moldy on me. But right [...]
A long winter is not for sissies. If you are new to the tribe of hardy plants and hardy souls, here are 10 time-honored ways to beat cabin fever. How many do you already practice?