Sunday, March 26, 2017

Finally Spring and Those Pansies

Spring arrived and so have those beautiful pansies and violas. No the Philadelphia Flower Show wasn't enough, it's time to garden and plants have started to arrive at garden centers and nurseries. It took me several seasons to figure out exactly the right time when certain items would arrive starting after Christmas. First the after Christmas sale, then the hustle and bustle of assembling displays of garden furniture, arrival of onion sets, bare root grape vines, and berries, summer bulbs, and seed starting mix, trays, and seed racks. 

Able to handle the fluctuating weather as winter tries to hold on are the arrival of shrubs, trees, and cool season perennials including my favorites, pansies. I guess they're considered annual but they can survive in my region when planted in fall until the following spring. It's more difficult here to keep them alive over summer till fall due to the heat and humidity because they're cool season lovers. Hard to choose a favorite with so many varieties, but I'm partial to the blues. They're all beautiful. 

In the yard robins arrived weeks ago with increasing numbers, the largest I've ever seen them and possibly not due to food but maybe a heavier coat of feathers to protect against our cool winters. They must not migrate in the fall. I know our cardinals and sparrows, and other birds stay. I'll have to read more about them because they were huge almost 3 times their normal size with huge brown breast. Sadly some spring blooming trees won't bloom again. 

Every spring I look forward to see my neighbor's cherry blossom tree but not this spring. We live on the same street so how did I miss it blooming. Must of been for a few hours during our snow storm because the blooms are dead, dead! Her narcissus are in bloom and pretty. My patch in the yard didn't do as well for the first time ever. Don't know if I want to pay to go to the Cherry Blossom Festival this spring. The trees will be there but they also may have already had a short bloom. Well I'll wait to see what the magnolias, and dogwoods will do. Until then, I'll enjoy the pansies and my sister's forsythia which has already started to bloom.

Those beautiful pansies. 








For sidewalk planters.







Homedepot wanted twice the price for a hanging pot of pansies. That will never happen to me. Got to find the bargains.





Crocus and waiting for narcissus.







Yes I just started forcing these, hyacinths, lol. I have to do better next year. They got lost on the porch, not true. Let's see if they'll do anything before it gets too hot. They may do better in my basement because the porch heats ups starting in spring.

On the porch. Next week it's going to be nice weather, so I'm going to start painting the porch floor after work. Did you laugh. I should be laughing too. If I'm not too tired after work, I'll start painting before it gets too hot.


Finally freshened up and removed ornamental cabbage. Actually squirrels didn't tear it up over night and that's rare.
 The arborviate look bad and will be removed when I find something I like to replace it with. Thinking of ornamental grass or scotch broom. I know scotch broom is invasive in some areas but not mine, and a fire hazard. It'll be fine. It's blooms are so beautiful and it'll be evergreen.
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Plans for the flower bed include more rocks if I can find some similar and taking up the shrubs for blooming annuals and some perennials. I'll relocate them to the yard.




In the yard.

Bleeding heart.





Critters have been digging but they must not like crocus.

A columbine is in the center from last season. Hasn't shown any signs of life yet.

Have to put some pansies in here maybe next weekend until it gets warmer and I can plant something else. Never occurred to me o plant some tulips here. Next fall.

Looking forward to replanting this soon.



Peony



This patch of narcissus has always been  pretty but not this year and there are only 2 blooms.


Lettuce or kale. I didn't label anything and it all looks the same.

Beets I think or carrots. I've never grown neither. I'll know when they get bigger because carrots have hairy tops.

Radishes amongst the strawberries.

Strawberries

Last night my cat was watching the yard from my bedroom window. The security light was on so I went to see why. Two raccoons twice the size of my cat were in the yard walking the fence. I missed a good opportunity but they always come back. Soon they'll be heard in the trees fighting at night. They make a strange noise.


Not only was I playing in the pansies this weekend I got loose in other plants. All these and 2 bunches of tulips for thirty dollars. I couldn't pass it up. I spent more for my orchid. It's still alive!
I've never had a white cactus, two for a dollar and fifty cents. No I wasn't leaving that in the store but I only got one. The common names of the others are I think poka dot plant, oxalis, flamingo plant, and gloxinias. Where did I put them? The bottom rack of my plant shelf although oxalis went on the porch because it can tolerate some cold. I don't think we'll be having any more below freezing nights but time will tell.


I normally get the purple oxalis. The white flowers are pretty. This size was 4 times more money at the flower show.