Waiting for spring.

Bursting buds on a wee Canada Hemlock. Tsuga canadensis 'Loowit'

Bursting buds on a wee Canada Hemlock: proof the spring is here. Tsuga canadensis ‘Loowit’

A Garden For All: Waiting for spring.

Janit Calvo
April 1, 2009
It’s snowing as I write this. April Fools, huh? Hummm…. Let me think for a moment. Oh ya, I remember where I am now, I’m not in Kansas anymore – I’m in Seattle. Did someone forget to order spring?

So, what to do? We want to get out in the garden. We jumped on that one spring-like day and worked madly for as long as we could – but it was only one day. Ok, there was that other day, about a week ago too, remember?

We need to appease our inner gardener. It’s spring. Here are some ideas I’ve come up with:

It’s really not so bad to don your raingear and get out in it. With your “space-suit” on and an iPod playing your favorite music, you instantly create your very own bubble. You can drown out the neighbor’s band practice, and have a lovely time getting some much-needed chores done. It is a good idea to have a couple pairs of garden gloves so when one pair gets wet, you can change into dry ones, and keep going.

If you’re going out to garden now, don’t play too much in the soil when it is wet, as you’ll do more harm than good. But, you can pull some weeds, clean up the debris in the beds, and maybe do some pruning too. Put your empty pots out in the rain to get washed, and take a scrub brush to them if needed. There’s nothing like puttering, tidying or container gardening in the garden shed, or on the porch, with the rain pattering on the roof.

This cold spring has given us a little more time to dig up and divide some of our perennials if you haven’t already done so. Plant the divisions in different parts of the garden to create a more cohesive, overall design. Watch out for the plants that you can’t see yet! And do take care to mix up the foliage textures a bit: contrast leaf textures and match, or compliment, leaf color so it doesn’t look too sketchy. Share unwanted divisions with your neighbors, or plant them up in pots to donate to a charity sale later on.

The garden centers need you too. They are hurting this year – big time. Remember spring last year? Ya, that’s my point, we didn’t get one! With this being the second year in a row for a cold spring, the garden centers, the growers and garden artists that sell to them – could use a sale or three. And that’s just it ~ there are sales now to be had! Go and check it out. We are our own stimulus package!

There is always virtual gardening too. There are thousands of gardeners online these days and wealth of information to gobble and digest. One of my favorite garden sites is Dave’s Garden. It’s overwhelming to the newcomer as it has a ton of information on plants of all types, nurseries, birds, books, bugs, forums, you can buy, you can sell, you can post questions… this guy Dave has really taken gardening to the next level and has joined people from all over the North America to share their expertise and experience. I think it is under $20 for a subscription for a year, but you can still poke around and browse to your heart’s delight without paying.

AND Dave’s Garden is home to the only miniature garden forum that I know of. It’s under “Tiny Gardens” in the community section under forums. Join us for a little garden small talk because you can always garden in miniature… while you wait for spring.

Visit Janit’s Web site; http://www.TwoGreenThumbs.com. Her online store is http://www.shop.TwoGreenThumbs.com. info@TwoGreenThumbs.com, 206-352-0494.

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