Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Diary January 2007 - Garden Journals

When we first moved here 19 years ago, I started a garden journal. I picked up one of those spiral-bound “Three Year Planners” and copiously took notes about what was planted and how it bloomed. After it was full, I either got too busy or grew bored with it because I didn’t continue keeping it.

A few months ago I got it into my head that I needed a new one. Well, isn’t it always the way – when I finally wanted a new one, I couldn’t find one anywhere! I had a very specific type in mind and no ordinary blank journal was going to do the trick!
Being as obsessive as I am, I finally did find exactly what I was looking for, in Barnes and Noble, while on vacation in Florida.

Garden journals are cool for many reasons: they can
a) add to your gardening success
b) enhance enjoyment of gardening activities
c) record as much or as little as you want – just what was planted when and where
d) Or hold tons of info (if you have the time!) about fertilizing, watering, rainfall, hours of sunlight, etc.
The new journal I bought will serve many purposes. I want to write down specific types of annuals and perennials that I buy in the spring or fall. I like to keep the labels and this journal has a pocket for them. I also like to add my photographs and there’s space for those as well. I can keep track of seeds, if I try to grow plants from seed again this year. I should keep track of bloom times, although with the extreme weather we’ve had in the past few years (drought or non-stop rain), I’m not sure the comparisons would mean anything. I can also keep my bills in there, in case a plant has a guarantee and I need to get a replacement.
I was looking through my previous journal and discovered things I had forgotten.
I had hoped to see lily-flowered “Dynato” tulips come up near some “Mount Hood” daffodils but they never did. I wrote in the journal: ”….suspicion: very WET where Dynato should have been (uh oh…)”
“Darwin Apeldoorns (deep red tulips) – gorgeous! Strong, tall, red – Thalia daffodils – thin and delicate. Beautiful combo – both came up! Quite lovely with the forsythia in bloom, too”
I put in lots and lots of bulb combination ideas with photos (I must have had a lot of time on my hands!!) Combinations like: single early white Diana tulips with violet triumph tulips Attila and double late pink ruffled Angelique; Flair tulips – red with a yellow stripe – alongside Tahiti daffodils; white Triumphator tulips with rose-violet ‘Modern Style’ tulips (I wonder if some of these specific names exist anymore. I used to order from a wonderful bulb company called Cruikshank’s in Toronto but they have gone out of business)
I have certainly tried many different types of shrubs in the perennial border and many have perished. I once had: Mock Orange, Butterfly bush, Beauty bush, and Winterberry,
Annuals also struggled: Heliotrope (“too shaded near the daylilies still not blooming by August 3rd (but great in sunny Bed #2!”); Salvia (”were sparse and eaten up by slugs! Never became full or colourful”)
I used to grow many annuals from seed: Small World cherry Zinnia – 16” – red; Sophia marigolds mixed – 10”; Amaranthus – Flaming Fountain – 36” as well as larkspur, lupins, cosmos, dwarf asters, snapdragons and salpiglossis
I look forward to capturing impressions and details from last summer’s garden as well as planning neat things for the summer of 2007 in my new garden journal!

No comments: