Getting out into the sunshine

If you are a gardener and the weekend has been sunny, chances are very good that you, like me, are now a bit sun kissed, have had to clean up your dusty hands, and are smilingly tired.

Yes, the first really nice weekend of warm weather had me out gently raking fall coverings off flower beds, discovering spring crocus in bloom and fall crocus pushing up greenery. The tulip leaves are showing, and the daffodils are now starting to stretch their flower heads up and toward the sun. Soon they will bloom (maybe sooner if we get the warm rain

Hard to believe that this….
Turns into this as spring progresses. The difference this spring is that the cedars have been trimmed up so more light gets to the garden.

that has been promised for tomorrow.) The iris are sprouting, as are the day lilies, and I can see peonies sprouting here and there through the beds. The fritalleria haven’t started to stink yet (they smell like skunk), and appear to be growing well.

The nice thing about the first real spring rain is the way it brings such dramatic change to the gardens and lawns. Somehow the plants know it’s time to turn green and GROW. And gardeners welcome that warm (hopefully gentle) watering of their treasures.

An update on the garden cats. They had their first adventure outdoors this afternoon, on harnesses and leads until they are familiar with the lay of the land. Amber loved being out, walking with Bill purring through the upper garden beds. Copper on the other hand was simply looking for cover and quite happy be be back in the house. We’ll need to ease him into the gardens while keeping Amber within bounds.

Now, an update on the seeds.

The tomatoes have taken less than a week to sprout, and very minimal watering. The basil is up (both types as you will see in the photo). The cucumbers have sprouted as have one of the sunflower sets. I know that sunflowers are usually direct seed, but I’d like these ones as focal pieces lakeside. I have planted many of the flower seedlings into larger pots, including the zinnia and moonflower, which are already looking robust. There is no sign of the asters yet from their replanting, so I may have to experiment there. I also started some petunias for baskets, and found lovely begonia bulbs (white with a red ruffle) that I started today.

Great news on the hibiscus – you can really see the new shoots coming up by the old stems.

If you look to the base of what looks like a bare tree branch in behind the geranium, you see the green shoots of the hibiscus.

And the geraniums are all doing super well – I will be taking cuttings this week – especially of the citronella plants because it is so expensive to buy for some odd reason. I think I’ll also try rooting a few of the passion flowers to see if I can generate a few more plants from the originals. As far as the jasmine goes, there are definitely two strong seedlings, with a
third perhaps on the way. I have lots of seeds left from the pod, so will try starting more during the summer when I have the greenhouse up and
running.There is no sign or anything above ground from the lemon seeds yet. They may need more warmth, so again, a summer experiment.

Now I’m off to clean up for the day and dream about what tomorrow’s rain will bring.




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