Thursday, February 6, 2014

The Big Chill is Back

So far we are not having a freeze, but to gardeners in the Coastal South days without sunshine and with under 60 degree temperatures is a Big Chill.

Poppy Seedling

The few days of warm that we had, I was outside pruning, looking and pulling weeds. Poppies have shown up. I even dug and transplanted California Poppy seedlings from the lawn. Not native here, California Poppies make themselves at home in my garden. Corn Poppies are a darker green than 'Breadseed' Poppies. I am seeing seedlings of all three kinds.

I'm seeing lots of weeds. Weeds are a way of determining whether your soil is fertile. The more lush the weeds, the richer the flower bed, lol. I pull every Bittercress I see. I pull as many chickweed as I can, but hot Spring sun will take them out. Florida Betony is a thorn in my side, requiring deep digging and soil sifting to get out all the fleshy white roots. I pull as many as I can for temporarily discouragement and smother them in places with cardboard. Hot sun will take them out too.

Tulips and Muscari are up. This is another of my 'Yes, I can grow these' projects. Puddles of Muscari are not rivers, but they will please me nonetheless.

I got started on the boxwoods. Again. There is no end to pruing boxwoods, yet I continue to stick cuttings along the edges of beds where a little hedge would be nice, knowing that if the cuttings and I live for a few more years, there will be even more pruning, and shaping in the meantime. My newest boxwood notion is to encourage some that are tending to grow in a column shape.

Bird''s Nest Fern, Purple Heart planted with 
Persian Shield behind and a bonsai container of 
Hyacinths with Sedum acre in the greenhouse.

Indoors I am making plans not only for Spring but for next fall too. Fall-planted bulbs include a jonquilla that I've intended to plant for years. I want hyacinths in Purple and peachy Pink. I think the giveaways for next winter may be Begonias. One of my favorite begonias is a seedling scooped off the  


More time than necessary is spent here looking at Pinterest. I try to prune my boards so I don't have so many photos to skim through and to group them by projects so I can remember the projects I have in mind.

Alison and Outlaw Gardener are writing about and posting photos of the NW Garden Show. I can hardly wait for more. It's been more than 35 years since I visited the Pacific Northwest, but I think I left a little of my heart there.


  1. What a bummer about your freeze, we are having temps below freezing here too. I've actually been suffering from terrible insomnia lately, and decided to skip the show today. I probably won't make it back. Outlaw will have to carry the load for both of us.

    I wish you were still a traveler. The Fling this summer is in Portland, and you would love it so much.

  2. We are still cold too; 3° this morning.

    This winter has been a shock to all of us no matter the zone.

    BTW, I never prune my Korean boxwoods. So far they are staying within bounds.

    I love the greenhouse grouping. I can just imagine the smell of the narcissi. I do hope I have poppy seedlings this year after our zero temperatures.

  3. Glenda, when boxwoods reach the age of mine, they're 7 feet tall left unpruned. Poppies do not seem fazed by cold.

    Alison, I would love to show up for the Fling. However, the anticipation is the joy for me. By the time I got there I would be all worn out. I'll just read everybody's blogs -- almost as good as being there. Some of you have such a good eye for what I would like to see.


I look forward to comments and questions and lively discussion of gardening and related ideas.

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