BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: Blossom by Blossom


Blossom by blossom the Spring begins.
Algernon Charles Swinburne

I don’t know about where you are, but around here Spring is having an identity crisis. We are having such extreme ups and downs and so much rain. But with it all, Spring is still very welcome. I give Spring a lot of grace just because it is NOT WINTER.

The above quote is just perfect I think. Every day as I walk in the garden I see something new. All signs of life. Just a perfect setting to lead us up to Easter and a time when we celebrate the sacrifice Jesus made to bring us eternal life.

DAFFODILS

Daffodils are my favorite spring bulb. They sure make a difference in the spring garden. Even though I love them, I go slowly when it comes to planting them as I don’t want their messy leaves still around when the roses are getting started! I certainly get creative about where to put them. But oh how wonderful it is to see them when they come. 

For containers, I buy the mini starter pots at Lowes and Walmart. Usually, Tete de Tetes are the mini daffodils used. But this year the ones I bought from Walmart were different than the ones I bought from Lowes – and I liked them much better! With a little investigation, I found out that this “new” mini daffodil was a sport of Tete de Tete — Tete Boucle. Boucle is the French word for loop. Ms Boucle was not only gorgeous but she also did very well in a vase. 

On Social Media Paul Zimmerman introduced me to another daffodil that I am on the hunt for — Yosemite Valley. Have you seen this one? Oh my word! GORGEOUS! I have found the perfect spot for more daffodils and I hope these will be the ones! So far, I have not found a supplier. If you see them for sale, let me know!

YEAR OF THE GLADIOLUS

The National Garden Bureau has named 2022 as the year of the Gladiolus. I am thrilled. I love this old-fashioned beauty. I know they fell out of favor except for “funeral” flowers for a time but I am “glad” to report they are coming back!

Some fun facts from the Garden Bureau:

  • The gladiolus bulb is actually a corm.
  • They are part of the iris family.
  • The original varieties existed naturally in South Africa.
  • Gladiolus owe their botanical name to the Latin word gladius, which means sword.

Some growing tips…

  1. Gladiolus should be grown in well-drained soil and full sun.
  2. You can grow them in a cutting garden, add them to your perennial garden, grow them in raised beds or containers, or plant the corms in your vegetable garden.
  3. Before planting, prepare the soil by loosening the planting area to a depth of 6 to 10”. Adding compost and an all-purpose granular fertilizer will help your glads reach their full potential.
  4. You can expect the flowers to begin opening 80-90 days after planting. To extend the bloom time, don’t plant all the corms at once. Plant the first batch in spring after all danger of frost has passed. Plant additional corms every week or two until early summer (about 90 days before the first fall frost).
  5. Plant grandiflora types 6 to 8” deep. Planting deeper helps keep the stems upright. Dwarf glads should be planted 4 to 6” deep. Space the corms 4 to 6” apart on center. Use the closer spacing if you plan to cut most of the stems before they are fully open.
  6. Water regularly and deeply, especially during dry spells. When plants are stressed by heat and drought, they become more susceptible to pests and disease. Applying 2 to 3” of mulch after planting will help retain moisture and control weeds.

To read more from the Garden Bureau on growing these garden beauties … head over to the Garden Bureau site HERE.

There are so many varieties at the garden centers and box stores right now. So far I have purchased 3 different varieties that I plan to work in groupings together…

Rose Chat Spring Fling:

Last week we released the first in the 4-part spring fling series…

ROSE PEST & DISEASE CONTROL … without the “hard” stuff
Jason Croutch of Fraser Valley Rose Farm

On this episode, Jason Croutch, owner of Fraser Valley Rose Farm, shares his rose growing philosophy and gives us tips on managing rose pests and diseases without using “the hard stuff.” Listen in for so many great rose care ideas plus stories behind his very popular YouTube Channel. You might just need a pen and paper for this one! 

LISTEN HERE.

Next in the series…

Potting Shed Putterings

Tomatoes have germinated in record time. Mr. G is very happy. Since I started them later than I usually do, he was getting a bit anxious about it! So far everyone is doing well. Fungus gnats seem to be fewer and more under control – hopefully! Although I am certainly creating their ideal habitat! 

Holy Week

This Sunday starts Holy week for Christians. From Jesus’ triumphant entry, to his death on the cross and resurrection. The images from Mel Gibson’s movie The Passion are forever etched into my mind. We will rewatch on Good Friday. Such love is hard to comprehend. But he calls us to the same… 

“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you are also to love one another.” –John 13:34

If you’d like to read more about the events of this special week … read on here

Friends, I wish you a beautiful, love-filled week. 

Mr. Rogers Does It Again and Again

Today is day 2 of being home for our health and others and I am remembering a sweet song from Mr. Rogers… Let’s Think of Something to Do While We are Waiting…

LISTEN HERE…

 

MY SOMETHING

My SOMETHING to do this week is planting those cold crop veggies and flowers and starting seeds inside.

First, I’m getting seed packets organized (and I have a ton of them)…

A new flower I picked up at Renee’s Garden online that I am VERY excited about is this cutie…

I have white and blue but never this color! If you are interested, check it out here

Look at this stunner! Earl Grey Larkspur from Renee’s too. The name alone!! I soooo want this one to do well but I’ll admit that Larkspur often is tough one for me. There have been years where it self seeded with will abandon and years I can’t get a thing going even with the very best seeds and care.

Another one I am excited about is the Cupcakes Mix I picked up in the UK last summer.

My roses will love all their new garden companions!

… at 4′ high, these will be spectacular!

Seed starting station…

This picture does not tell the entire story. Before I could set up my new grow light… it took quite a while to find homes for all the plants that usually reside here in the winter. But they are happily in their new spots and we can get onto seed starting.

I bought a couple of new grow lights this year and they came with this simple but helpful stand. My old ones where way past their prime and this one was so easy to pick up at Lowes. I’ll let you know what I think.

BLOOM THYME THIS WEEK:

🌱Each day there is more and more green and I am grateful.

 

MY WISH FOR YOU…

Friends, I am wishing you a wonderful spring season that is sprinkled with beauty, love and an extra measure of health and safety while we deal with this horrible virus that has us all on edge.

The garden is a place of comfort and healing for me and I pray it will be for you too.

The National Garden Bureau shared this on Instagram… 

We learned with the release of the Mr. Rogers movie last year that his words have the power to speak to all of us regardless of our age. So, I’ll will say goodbye for today with more good words from Mr. Rogers…

Celebrating the Arrival of February

I think it is time for celebration when you survive January. Seriously, isn’t it the longest month. 40 days at least.

February is here and it is the month of love and Mr. G’s birthday. 🥰 Definitely a reason to celebrate!

TODAY I AM LOVING…

My trip to Dammann’s Garden Center (link).

What started from the desperate need for something spring and the desire to walk through greenhouses that smell like dirt and are alive with the hustle / bustle of spring work, turned into a delightful morning. I met and had a wonderful conversation with Kathy who is in charge of the houseplant section and is so knowledgeable. Don’t you love conversations with those who love what you love? Just being there was renewing. Add to that a little sunshine today and I am renewed and energized.

I came away with little 3 beauties I’ll use in the same pot:

  • 2 Haworthias (Aloe family) native to Africa, Arabia and Madagascar
  • 1 cute little waxy trailing Crassula to compliment the spikiness of Haworthias.

POTTING SHED PUTTERINGS…

SPEAKING OF AFRICA … Hudson’s African Violet is going on 5 months of continuous bloom. NO JOKE. Talk about ‘Bang for your Buck’. What started as a tiny leaf 2.5 years ago is a major winter buster. It is in the potting shed where it gets “some” light but not much! Our winters are dark.

First blooming in September (Thank goodness for image time stamps.)

How it looks this week…

Here’s H potting up another beauty he found rooting in water in Grammy’s potting shed. He’s so small. Now he a big boy in school. 🥰

Tomorrow is Mr. G’s birthday so I need to put plants aside and get to baking. He wants a Black Forrest Cake. Hope it’s yummy. I don’t bake that much so wish me luck and wish Mr. G a happy birthday! He’s the best.

He’s the best. … she is too. 🥰

FUN CONTINUES:

This week I had the pleasure of interviewing Natalie Carmolli of Proven Winners on their new releases, some gardening trends and PW plants that will be great as rose companions.

The podcast will drop on Sunday evening. Check out all Rose Chat Podcasts here.   (Easy to remember: rosechatpodcast.com) If you haven’t listened to Michael Marriott’s podcast, it’s fabulous too. Check it out while you are there.

Monday I am speaking to the Johnson County Garden Club. What fun to talk gardening especially this time of year. A room full of people excited for spring… FANTASTIC!

CURRENTLY:

I’m making lists of plants by height to find new plants to add this year! Once that project is done, I’ll probably need a few more seeds. You’ve seen my treasure trove of seeds in previous posts, so I won’t need many, right?

Only a few more weeks and we can begin to start seeds. Ahhhhh …. I don’t want to miss any of the “spring things.”