Sunday, January 10, 2010

Baby, it’s cold outside—everywhere!


This picture of the rapids in winter is from last year; it's pretty much the same now.

But I feel sorriest for those in the south who are experiencing single digit temps with no snow cover to protect plants that are normally hardy for higher zones. And, unlike me, they’re not used to this. I can only imagine their horror. Cheer up, guys, your cold and snow will be all gone in a couple weeks! Mine, on the other hand, will be here for at least 3 more months.

I am used to it though, and I have several strategies for getting through the frigid times. One involves a lot of indoor bulb growing, and I’ve already talked about that (and will again).

The other involves planning a week in a warm place if at all possible. The only thing that bothers me about that is that the landscaping at the average tropical resort is generally kind of boring. I’d love to see real native flora in its natural setting; one of these days I’ll have to go on some excursion that would allow that.

My third strategy for getting through the winter is shared by almost all other gardeners: I read plant catalogs and put in some orders. I have plants coming already from Brent & Becky’s and Select Seeds and now it’s Plant Delights Nursery’s turn. Both SS and PDN are offering an really interesting dicentra: a climbing yellow variety. I am considering ordering one from each and seeing which does best. PDN calls their “Athens Yellow,” and SS calls theirs “Golden Tears.” Apparently it was bred by Allan Armitage (and it is listed on his site).


Interesting. Anyway, my all-summer-blooming dicentra has kind of wishy-washy pink flowers, so I’m very interested in a yellow variety. PDN also had a yellow hardy gladiolus and a beautiful yellow hellebore. This may be the year of the cool yellow plants in the GWI garden.

I did not mention probably the most important strategy I have this year for getting through the winter—planning this years's garden bloggers' meet-up in Buffalo. I hope I will see you there.

14 comments:

Carol said...

And don't forget when it gets really bad, run into the nearest tropical greenhouse at your local park or botanical garden. I know there is one near you, and there is one about 15 minutes from my house. It is pure heaven to step inside and smell the damp dirt mixed with various orchids and other tropical blooms and feel the warm, moist air, while just on the other side of the glass, there is snow and cold and ice!

jodi (bloomingwriter) said...

I'm thinking about staying inside til about the end of April. Hhowever, that means longsuffering spouse will need to learn to grocery shop...so I guess I'd better just suck it up and remember that, like you, we're used to the cold up here. Just need more wine, don't we?

Leslie said...

I feel for you and the months long cold. But that's one of the reasons you became the bulb diva!

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Even our little river has ice bergs floating by this winter. It is a cold one.

Jean said...

Eek, I can't imagine it cold enough to freeze rapids! This past week has been really tough for me so one of the things I did was peruse the web requesting seed and plant catalogs. I figure I'll have so many dead plants that I might as well start planning on buying new ones!

laura said...

funny, that yellow climbing dicentra really caught my eye, too. (Like you, I have a lot of shade.) If you buy it, will you post about how it does?
laura

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

Maybe you should try Dicentra 'Burning Hearts.' It's supposed to bloom all summer, and it's a good, dark crimson.

EAL said...

NND,

The climbing aspect of this gold one is what really intrigues me!

EAL said...

Jean, they are not frozen. Now that would be something. Niagara Falls froze, I believe, just once over the couple hundred years we have been acquainted with it, and noting things.

Rose said...

I'm with you, Elizabeth; every time I visit a blogger in Texas or Louisiana or another area in the South I feel so badly for them. At least we Northeners are used to this cold, as are our gardens. Besides looking through seed catalogs and websites to get through the winter, I've been checking out a lot of gardening books from the library and reading magazines, dreaming of my "perfect" garden:)

Looking forward to visiting Buffalo in July!

Cindy, MCOK said...

We do appreciate the sympathy, Elizabeth. I have even more respect now for y'all living with that kind of cold for months on end. It pretty much quashed any fleeting thoughts I've ever had of wanting to live somewhere that has 4 seasons!

EAL said...

well, I don't know about your summer, MCOK!

lisa said...

Your bulbs look great! I forgot to buy bulbs to force last fall, this year I'm going to for sure. I have that dicentra, it's really nice! I let it get exposed to one frost in fall, then bring it in. It always dies back for a couple months (even if I bring it in all lush before a frost), and it starts re-growth about now. (Mine has been growing again for about two weeks.) Be sure to get a trellis at least 4 feet tall (even for in the house), it gets bushy!

EAL said...

Thanks Lisa. I must admit, I was a bit taken aback when I saw the dicentra was not hardy! Heck. It's a dicentra!