Please Pass the Bulbs

With the colder weather, a new appreciation of interior spaces comes over me. The muted outdoor landscape makes each remaining color a treasure…like an autumn crocus for example.

bulbs

                                             The small but mighty crocus.

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                                    Looking a mite chilly…

A few weeks ago, I’d planted some bulbs and some started sprouting. Then it snowed!

I also didn’t realize some were fall blooming crocus. Awfully fun to see them come up. I’ll remember to find more next year.

Yesterday I cut back the peonies and astilbe. Raked leaves off the gardens by the road and cut down some lilies. Not every plant is quite ready yet – I left some of the big hostas in place –hoping for one more photo shoot of their sunny leaves. Maybe?

A new tradition…

It was Sunday, the day before Halloween, the last bulb shipment came in and I couldn’t wait any longer. Besides, I heard it was going to rain over night. Strategic planning can be challenging at times. Especially as garden time is typically an opportunity for me to unwind. So I let the weather lead me. I opened all the bags and spread them out all around the garden to get a visual.

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                             Can you say, “Snake!?”

Our azalea hill and the new formal gardens next to them are mostly early blooming. This year in particular, I want the gardens to look beautiful in April and May. A little bird told me I was hosting my daughter’s bridal shower at our house this year. I bought a massive amount of grape hyacinth to spread around as liberally as possible. It’s never enough.

How to decide what goes where? It’s timing and mostly, I focused on colors -considering how color will travel through the garden on the approach. This can be tricky as you have to figure out timing for different bulbs. I have a couple beds that highlight purple and blues, one will have Siberian iris, tulips and hyacinth. It flowers in April and continues into summer (hopefully).

Another bed features lavender and purple but will first bloom pink and white –large tulips and an azalea followed by pink peonies. I added a spray of the late blooming silene seeds (hot pink)- simultaneous with a late summer obedient (lavender)plant and russian sage. And, I re-located a very sweet while balloon plant to bloom with them.

Some fall planting info you might find helpful.

  1. Rule of thumb on bulbs: plant at a depth three times the width of the bulb.
  2. Water your bulbs after planting. Soak them well. Bulbs need to root before the winter freeze, so don’t be shy about it.
  3. Ever had bulbs sprout before winter? Don’t worry, they’ll chill out and go into their winter slumber without damage. More on bulbs.
  4. If you’ve seen pods on your lilies, yes, you can plant their seeds. Let the pods dry completely, which will yield you a bunch of hard shiny seeds that look a little like morning glory seeds. Like morning glories, you can baby them to encourage them to sprout- Soak the seeds in water a few days to a week or so, to soften. Change the water daily until you’re ready to put them out-plant them about ½ inch under and apart. Although they shoot sprout in Spring, it may be another year or two before they bloom. More about planting iris from seed here. This website is a good all around resource for planting tips.

I’ve been listening to a fair amount of Willie Nelson of late. Willie Nelson and son Lukas. Willie has a couple offspring who sing. This is his son, and a great duet-generational love- not the type of love song you hear too much about. ( Love the car) Just Breathe.

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Ancienne, a mature hosta.

And then of course….We’re hard at work on our new Etsy store PaolaStudio. And waiting for the go ahead. Subscribe and let us keep you up to date! You can always order from me direct. We have ten pillows in stock which you can see here.

New holiday pricing too– all 18″ pillows with or without inserts..just like this one- a full wrap around print image from my garden to your couch.

 

 

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