Gardening Vacation 2007 - Tuesday
Did you ever offer advice to another customer at a garden center? I'm not talking about working at a garden center or nursery and giving advice, I'm talking about being a customer and offering advice to another customer.
Today I was at a greenhouse and the woman in line behind me had two one-gallon containers of Evening Primrose, Oenothera speciosa. I said quietly, "that's a spreader so you probably only need one container of it". I also volunteered that after the first big bloom in spring, she should shear it back and then she'll get some repeat blooms through the season, but it won't be as prolific as the first blooms.
She seemed a bit disappointed because she was looking for a perennial to put around her mailbox that would bloom all-out, all season. She ended up putting both of them back.
I hope the greenhouse people didn't notice our little conversation and the result. But gardener-to-gardener, sometimes you have to speak out when you see that someone is about to make a mistake or spend money on plants that, when you get right down to it, are somewhat weedy or invasive, like Evening Primrose. I think it has a place and is a pretty pink delicate flower in the spring, but it wasn't what this woman really wanted after I told her about it.
I think I've finished shopping for plants for awhile, at least for a few days. After visiting one big box store and four independents today, I've got enough plants now that I can start planting containers. If I run out of anything, I've picked out one greenhouse I'll go back to, where I ended up buying most of my plants. Regardless of "needing" any more plants, I'm going back there on Friday because the owner told me she would be all stocked up by then for Mother's Day weekend.
And so I move on to planting as I reach mid-week. Right on schedule. The picture above is of some of the containers I planted for my younger sister. She doesn't garden. She says she got her green thumb from my mother, who also doesn't garden. For the last several years, I've planted her containers for her as I am faster and surer with a trowel than she is. In past years, she went with me to buy her plants, but this year she left it up to me to get whatever I thought she would like. So as I went shopping for my own plants, I got plants for her, tough drought-resistant annuals that would live in containers and put up with full sun for most of the hot afternoon.
And then lickety split, "we" got them all planted this evening. She's all set. Most of what I got her won't even need to be dead headed, just watered.
Tomorrow, I'll start on my own containers. And as I do so, I'm eagerly awaiting the next Garden Blogger's Bloom Day on May 15th, just one more week. The idea behind this one day a month is for all garden bloggers to post on their blogs what is blooming in their garden on the 15th, and then leave a comment here on my post for that day, so we can all go to the different blogs and see who has what blooming. Based on the comments for the last bloom day on April 15th, I would guess around 50 bloggers participated.
From bloom day, I've learned that it takes a long time for spring to reach some of the northern garden bloggers. But by May I'd hope that everyone has a lot blooming.
Here's a peak at something just starting to bloom in my garden, the first Spidewort, Tradescantia virginiana.
I've got some other flowers and shrubs just starting to bloom, but I'm going to hold back posting pictures of them as buds and single blooms now and wait until May 15th to hopefully show them in full, glorious May bloom, so you can see why May is such a great month to garden around here.