Robin’s Garden

We’re excited to have one of our own designers, Robin, as a guest blogger this week. She will be sharing information on one of her many passions, gardening:

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My yard in Spring is like an out of control, multicolored soiree. The flora and fauna go from stark to lush in 2 days of sunshine. There are old friends arriving, new guests from who knows where, no shows and the inevitable unwanted guests usually in creeping weed form. The house and multitude of chores inside must wait until October now, for the real party has begun outside.

In all this chaos we must remember not to rush out of the gate prematurely and that there may be better times to plant or prune certain species. There is no blanket rule for your pruning duties. So don’t get Edward Scissor Hands on your shrubs without researching your specific variety and it’s tailored needs.  For example, some hydrangea varieties are best to be pruned when you can decipher new and old growth by swelling buds in Spring.  The buds of some plants have set themselves in fall and by pruning at the wrong time you will cut off any potential flowers. Our cold, windy winters prove to be too much for some deeply pruned and hallow Hydrangea stems. A light prune just to shape the plant is always safest until you know for sure.

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Be careful raking too early, “your roots are showing” isn’t just something of a coiffure slam, but your actual lawn has tender shallow roots in the early spring. By raking too soon you will rip and damage that manicured lawn you are striving for and eventually killing with kindness. If you unsightly stalks or clumps of leaves, just pick them up by hand until we have more consecutively warm days and the grass has started flourishing.

Some other fun spring tidbits that will help you out is to be patient. You may have received a beautiful bulb garden basket this past Easter or even for Mother’s day. The best treatment for the bulbs after they have bloomed is to trim the dead flower stem off and allow the foliage to run its course and eventually wilt. After wilted, place the container in a cool, dark, dry place for the summer. In late fall after temperatures drop, is the perfect time to place them in the ground with a little fertilizer/ bone meal (follow the instructions about depth. (Not too shallow!)  The bulbs should pop up in the spring and be back on their “normal” schedule.

Last but not least, I will single out my favorite spring flower. The true sign of new beginnings, the flower of Wales and the most resilient of the bulbs, the Daffodil. Ever since Narcissus drowned in that pool of water after being so taken with his own beautiful reflection, the plant has had many myths surrounding it. Animals instinctively know not to eat the poisonous plant. The sap has sharp crystals of calcium oxalate that may irritate your skin and are poisonous. However, it is fine to place Daffodils in a vase of mixed flowers as long as the water is changed daily. There is nothing better than to see a few simple stems of their happy yellow faces peeking out from your favorite vase.

Tick-tock, Spring time is fleeting in Rochester, Ny so go out and enjoy the fresh, new pallet of your space and the pride in last year’s good planning.

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