Saturday, January 24, 2009

Digging the Blues

Well, I've placed my bi-annual plant order with Bluestone Perennials. I hope some of you took advantage of their 15% off early bird special. I had a bunch of little coupons from them too, so I ended up saving over $30. When you consider that many of these plants come as 3-packs, the value is outstanding. I've had good luck overall with their plant quality as well - a couple of disappointments over the years, but not many. They are Garden Watchdog Top 30 company, after all.

Here's what my order contained:

VERONICA teucrium Royal Blue
RUDBECKIA hirta Cherry Brandy
AGASTACHE Purple Pygmy
COREOPSIS rosea American Dream
KNAUTIA macedonica Red Knight
BUDDLEIA davidii Harlequin
HEMEROCALLIS siloam Irving Hepner (shown at right)
ASTER oblongifolius October Skies
SEDUM spurium Fulda Glow (Fuldaglut )
THYMUS x Highland Cream
HEUCHERA Purple Petticoats
HEUCHERA x villosa Miracle

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Seeds of Change

Yesterday's inauguration has brought a feeling of hopefulness and much-needed change to our country. Kind of like how seed-starting does for me during winter's doldrums.

And that's not to diminish the importance of either occurrence. Just as I am in awe of our new president's sense of fairness and humility, I am always humbled by the simple yet hopeful task of starting seeds for the coming season.

Here's the list of what I started in Jiffy pots this past Saturday:

Tomato 'Valley Girl'
Tomato 'New Girl'
Tomato 'Yellow Cherry'
Tomato 'Orange King'
Radicchio 'Red Surprise'
Cauliflower 'Cheddar'
Cabbage 'Deadon'
Cabbage 'Alcosa'
Pac Choi 'Red'
Broccoli 'Purple Peacock'
Purple Orach
Mustard Greens 'Purple Wave'

Yeah, I still love growing weird-colored veggies, as you can tell. Orange cauliflower? Purple broccoli? Yellow cherry tomatoes? You betcha. For one thing, purple vegetables are said to contain more antioxidants than their common green or white or whatever counterparts. And to me, anything different and unique is usually way cool.

We've had really Sybil-like weather here in North Texas, i.e. 70° one day and a high of 45° the next. So, when things even out a bit, I'll go about the task of direct sowing things like carrots, beets, peas, lettuce, etc.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Good Intentions Make Good Mulch

So I'm starting off 2009 with a few personal gardening resolutions that have been posted for all to see over at Dave's Garden.

Some are ambitious (like not killing any more orchids), while others are just plain necessary (like being more active at the Plano Community Garden). But I'm optimistic about the new year, and not just for good gardening.

After building two 2'x 2' raised beds and filling them with soil the other day, I felt 100 years old. Every part of me ached. So 2009 will be a year in which I also hope to become stronger physically by returning to regular weight training and elevated cardio routines...and lugging bags of compost doesn't count!

Finally, and as my Dave's Garden article mentions, I promise to post here more. Many times I considered shutting this site down since I almost never update it. But then I would hem and haw and never do that either, mostly because I don't want to. I like writing about gardening and I like reading about other people's gardens. So I hope there are a few of you out there who are still interested.