Reviewing an old order

3/9/2007 Tulipa bakeriI emailed High Country Gardens yesterday to request a copy of my November invoice, which they gladly sent to me.

  • Tulip Bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’ x1
  • Muscari Botryroides ‘Album’ x4
  • Muscari Armeniacum x4
  • Tulipa Humilis ‘Alba Coerulea Oculata’ x2
  • Allium Christophii x2
  • Allium Karataviense ‘Ivory Queen’ x1

To my knowledge only the Tulipa humilis was the no-show in my garden this year…the one I most wanted to see in bloom. The Tulipa bakeri was kind enough to put out 2 blooms before disappearing into the ground altogether (picture taken 3/9/07). The white flowering muscari and allium weren’t nearly as spectacular as their darker colored counterparts, Ivory Queen proving to be a shorter, ground hugging allium than Christophii. The alliums however do make for interesting dried subjects, their preserved spiky heads still linger in the garden today….

The Bug

Bitten by the gardening bug, I went ahead and dumped the rest of the unplanted allium and muscari in the last remaining flower bed, hoping that they haven’t festered too long in the confines of a cold, dark garage. Weather permitting, I will be rearranging them again tomorrow morning, since I only dug trenches and tossed them in without a single thought but to get them buried. After inspecting the other sprouting bulbs, I see that there is little art to planting a straight line of bulbs. I hope to scatter them even more.

I also find myself browsing bulb/seed e-tailers and checking the selections on Ebay. I definitely plan on featuring more daylilies in the flower beds…but some of the more exotic cultivars fetch exorbitant sums online. I’ve decided to do a bit more research in finding the style and height I want. Of course, I had to go to Home Depot this afternoon to check out their perennial bulb collection. I walked away with 2 bags of Crimson Pirate Daylilies, 2 bags of mixed Aquilegia and a 6 pack of Lollypop Asiatic lily bulbs. I have every intention of getting them into the ground this weekend. Now, watch it rain tomorrow….

Tulips Redux

I’m giving tulips another try. I’ve laid a wire mesh (similar to chicken coop wire) down to deter any intrepid bulb-eaters and diggers from upsetting the bed. My High Country Gardens order arrived last week, and I’m just now getting to planting them. I’ve decided on the middle rear bed to house my tulip ambitions. Twelve each of Tulipa bakeri and Tulipa humilis are sharing the bed with Eye of the Tiger Dutch irises, about 4 or 5 Muscari botryoides ‘Album’, and 3 large bulbs of Allium karativiense ‘Ivory Queen’. Flanking each end of the bed stand a white salvia greggii and a transplanted salvia microphylla Hot Lips, sparsely leafed after surviving the dry summer heat. I’ve left some room for a rosemary bush to keep the greggii company, and I plan on adding Muscari armeniacum and at least 6 Allium christophii to the mix. I’m still exploring more plants to populate this Cool-in-the-Shade White and Blue garden, especially since the current flower selection consists of early spring bloomers.

Fall gardening is all work and no play

A problem I’m seeing due to having no gutters on our house is that water runoff tends to erode chunks out of your flower beds. I’m exploring the possibility of installing lava rock on top of the mulch to reduce some of the ugly pits caused by cascading rainfall.

It’s back to weeding and winterizing the beds this Saturday. The weekend forecast threatens rain, but so far there are no clouds in the sky. I have a dozen plus Iris bulbs from Brecks that need to go in the ground ASAP. I also posted an order with Hill Country Gardens for some muscari, allium and tulip bulbs, and I’m looking forward to a trip out to Covington’s Nursery in Rowlett. They have a great planning guide for the October-November gardener.

I discovered an interesting and cost-efficient way of making your own seed-starting pots out of newspapers while researching lava rock and mulching on the net. If only I were a seed-starter….