Saturday, May 18, 2019

Feeling Sluggish and an Update


So I thought I would post an update on how the season is progressing around these parts.  One word:  Cold.  I'll add two more words to that:  Windy and rainy.

Some plants, however, are loving the cool weather including the hellebore I purchased at Canada Blooms.  I can't believe that it's been blooming for almost 2 full months now!

The blooms start off deep pink, then lighten as they mature - so gorgeous!

It's been a rough start to the season, weather wise, with relatively few good gardening days.  But it looks like we are FINALLY turning the corner - and I couldn't be more ready.  Sort of.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

A Slow Start


We've had a very slow start to the season around here, same as last year.  The temperatures were on the cool side throughout April - we only hit the normal "average" high for this time of year a handful of times all month.  Between the rain, cold and wind, good gardening days were few and far between.

Several veg should have already been transplanted into the garden including the onions, lettuce, kale and broccoli.  I have a couple of trays that have been hardening off for a long time, waiting not only for a good day to transplant, but also a favourable long range forecast.  It looks like this is the week when they will finally make it into a bed.


Friday, April 26, 2019

A Rundown of Winners in my Garden


It won't be long before folks are heading to the garden centres to see what’s what in the world of ornamentals.  I’ve already stopped in at a few nurseries, but around here in Southern Ontario, the droves don’t come out until mid-May and many garden centres, especially the smaller ones, are still closed or not fully stocked yet.

This family-run nursery near Elora, Ontario was an exception as it was well stocked in mid-April.
Their selection of sedums and coleus was incredible!

Last May, I received a variety of plants to trial from Proven Winners, all of which will be newly available at retail this year.  With our last frost date just around the corner, I thought now would be a good time to talk about some of the winners in my garden.  I’ve highlighted each of these on Instagram, but I’ll provide a few more details on my experiences in this post.  If you don’t follow me on Instagram fear not - all the info I posted there is also included here 😊


Friday, April 19, 2019

Before the Rain Set In...


They say April showers bring May flowers & we are certainly getting our fair share of rain.  We did have a few good days this past week, however, and I was busy getting the garden ready for planting.

Raindrops on spruce trees...

The task that was at the top of the list last week was spreading compost on all the beds.  Since I get compost in bulk using a utility trailer, it's a job that's dependent on the weather, as is the task of getting it from the trailer onto our beds.  Thankfully, I was able to finish up yesterday before the rains started.

Other than plant specific soil amendments such as manure,
the beds are all ready to go...

I still have about a quarter of a trailer full of compost left which is destined for the asparagus beds & fruit trees, but that will have to wait until the rain lets up.  In the meantime, the trailer has traded places with my car so it's safely in the garage waiting until our next dry day.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Getting Started....


This past Saturday, I spent an entire day in the garden....hurray!  Spring-like weather has been a long time coming this year.  It was a lovely day with no wind (which is always a biggie in my books when it comes to comfort) - perfect for getting out and doing a few things in the garden.

The ground is still rather soggy and there are sections on the north side of the house where the snow has not completely melted away, but we are getting there.  The first task on my list was removing the straw from the garlic and asparagus beds & I managed to get this done…sort of.

We had quite a lot of freezing rain and ice buildup this winter and that was evident when we peeled back the top layer of straw….the bottom layers were encased in ice and frozen solidly to the bed.

Each bed was left with a few inches of straw, frozen to the bed

I removed what straw I could & the rest of the ice will hopefully melt over the next week or so as we are expecting temperatures to be above freezing on most days.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Starting Ornamentals and my "No-Plan" Plan


Each year I add a few new ornamentals to my seed starting list and 2019 will be no exception. 

Ornamentals on this years list that I’ve not grown before include:  Honeywort (Cerinthe major), Craspedia (Pycnosorus globosus), Celosia, Ageratum, Annual Baby’s Breath (Gypsophila muralis) and an annual grass “Frosted Explosion” (Panicum sp.).  All of these were received as sample packets at various events I went to last year.

Celosia 'Asian Garden' baby

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Sowing Has Begun!


Here in Southern Ontario, the majority of veg seeds don’t get started until mid-March/April.  When it comes to peppers, however, I typically sow them in mid-February, as they can be slow to bulk up.  In addition, pepper seeds can take a long time to germinate so I try to give myself a bit of a buffer, just in case there’s a problem and I have to resow.

A pepper harvest from 2018

This year, however, there is zero buffer.