Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Diary June 2007 - Planting Week

I always take a week’s vacation in May to do my planting. Well actually my planning, searching, purchasing, weeding and then planting! As I said last month, it’s wedding fever around here and the first occasion was a bridal shower at my house this past Sunday - the first opportunity for Garden Touring.
The week was excellent for working outside. The first day was my nursery scouring and hunting. I love this! I planned on 3-4 spots to pick up the annuals, perennials and shrubs on my list. I put on my “bound-to-get-muddy” black clothes and best duck boots. I wasn’t the only one buying plants – in one nursery I could barely get a parking spot! I dragged my trolley through aisle after aisle checking for the ones I needed and just admiring the rest. I bought my kitchen herbs: parsley, rosemary, basil, thyme and dill;
for the beds: impatiens, lobelia, nicotiana (both short and tall scented ‘Nicotiana sylvestris’), geraniums, dark purple petunias and flowering kale and cabbage; Eremurus (Foxtail Lilies, because I loved them from last year’s Guelph Garden Tour), 2 new clematis, 2 new climbing roses and 2 quince bushes; trailing geraniums, lobelia and wave petunias for the deck containers as well as potato vine, helichrysum and Pennisetum;

Heuchera, tuberous begonias, and coleus for the front urns and 2 gorgeous hanging baskets for the deck! It took 3 trips of shopping and unloading but I did it. My Dad gave me 4 Datura, 2 yellow and 2 double flowering purple, which I’ve potted and put into the beds and onto the deck. They were spectacular last year. He also gave me another new pot favourite – oxalis.
Day 1 was lovely – sunny and cool - we did weeding and that took ages as usual. Day 2 was sunny and warmer and we planted a few beds. The next day was sunny, hot and humid. We called it quits at 1:30. (Humidity really takes your energy away). The last day was hazy, hotter and extremely humid. We were melted by noon so that was it. I had errands to run for the remaining days and of course, baking and setting up for the shower. But even though we still have a few alyssum and half a flat of impatiens left, I knew we were ready for Sunday.
It poured rain all night Saturday and Sunday morning. I was still hopeful that it wouldn’t be rainy all day. I must admit that the garden looked dewy and alive after the rain -maybe a bit wet for walking but definitely “fresh”. I hoped that the guests would enjoy the Viburnum plicatum ‘Mariesii’ and Cimicifuga ramosa ‘Brunette’

as well as the Giant allium among the golden euonymus and hosta ‘Great Expectations’.

The shower went very well. I am going to digress slightly from garden talk to tell you about 2 special touches I created for the party. I am not at all imaginative but I copy exceptionally well (!) In a book about bridal showers, I saw an interesting idea: make the front door look like a gigantic gift!

I also read that it’s nice to put out photos of the wedding couple surrounded by flowers. I was able to incorporate the Giant Allium, Bleeding Hearts, Deutzia and Dogwood into a large flower arrangement for the dessert table.

The weather held up nicely during lunch – the rain only started again during the opening of the presents. (whew!) The garden was enjoyed by many. I felt very proud and happy that this was only the beginning of what promises to be a great gardening season!

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