Tuesday, May 15, 2012

What's Blooming: Woodland Tulip

Here it is, the 15th, already. What's blooming? Tulips, more daffodils, and snow drops - yes, snow drops. I seem to have a different variety that blooms much later than most. 

I have quite a mix of daffodils, too. While most have faded, the later blooming types have just begun to open.

This frilly white variety also is very fragrant. 

The Forget-me-nots are forming incredible waves of blue this year. Here and there I find them in pink and white. The wild violets add splashes of purple. This whole sea is sprayed with the tiny white foamy flowers of the wild strawberries. Together, they make a wonderful backdrop for the tulips and daffodils.

A favorite this year, are the Woodland Tulips which I planted last fall for the first time. I love their big droopy petals that close each evening and open each morning.

Out front large glowing tulips push up through the phlox, but the dainty little Lady Jane Tulips steel the show.

A tulip fades among the poppy buds.

These short iris given to me by my Mother are another favorite and appropriately bloom for Mother's Day.

The crabapples streetside are in full bloom. Their blossoms vibrate against the green. Now I know why this variety is called Purple Prince.

The dogwoods and columbines are budding and will be blooming next. The Forget-me-nots will pale next to budding Jacob's Ladder. 

Thank you Carol at May Dreams Gardens for hosting garden bloggers bloom day the 15th of each month.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

What's Growing: Scallions

Compared to last Spring, the year of monsoons in the Northeast, I feel pretty organized. That could change quickly so I hope I didn't just jinx myself.

The garlic is looking amazing. I have planted lettuce in between the garlic because I read it will discourage flea beetles who moved into my garden last year. You could use a row cover to prevent these tiny pin prick holes in your lettuce leaves but I just can't bear to cover up any of the garden. I want to see green and growth. The lettuces are just beginning to grow.

I've already been harvesting herbs especially chives and garlic chives.

This worked out well for me: Last fall I simply cut down my cilantro and laid it over the bare dirt where I wanted it to grow this year in a criss-cross pattern as a sort of over winter mulch. Now I have a nice crop of cilantro already coming up! I think I'll try this method with the basil as well this fall.

The peas I planted around St. Patrick's Day are finally coming up and looking good. Borage and calendula have freely reseeded themselves all over the garden. There are worse things. This year I will be planting Cardinal Climber among the peas so that when they're finished, I'll have some pretty flowers that the hummingbirds (who just came back this week!) will also enjoy. Hopefully in the full sun of the Potager they will bloom into summer.

Each fall I dig up as much of the horseradish root that I can and then only plant a few smaller roots. This prevents the horseradish from taking over.

New for me this year, scallions. These tiny grass-like blades are my first ever scallion crop. These are salad scallions great for eating raw or lightly sauteed. They are green and red. I can't wait to see the red ones. (Salad Scallions, Delicious Duo from Renee's Garden).

Indoors, my seeds are not the most robust but now that night temperatures are a bit warmer, I'll start keeping them outside. They should fill out with a couple of warm, sunny days. Next year I hope to invest in a good seed-starting lighting kit.

Strawberry fields forever, that is exactly what I have. Wild strawberries cover the Woodland Edge floor. Ever bearing strawberries are creeping into every corner of the Potager. Hopefully I can beat the birds to a few of each but probably not enough for six cups which is what this wonderful, easy balsamic strawberry freezer jam recipe requires. The rhubarb is looking larger this year. Last year I moved it to this spot where the soil stays more moist. My favorite rhubarb recipe is Heidi Swanson's recipe for Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble – I'll be making this for Mother's Day.

Radishes, kale, swiss chard and spinach have also been sown in the Potager and their tiny first leaves are just beginning to push through the soil. Right now it's raining and the garden is receiving a good soaking. 


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