Wednesday, May 12, 2021

On A Cold Wet Day

It finally stopped raining a bit before dark and I ventured outside. I considered cleaning the house while it rained, but that is a far as it got. Resting felt better.

It was a steady 43. Cool, as can be expected in early May. New colors of columbine are showing up. I even discovered a native red and yellow one in an out of the way spot that I have no idea how it got there. Seed flinging?

I have waited patiently for a decade for the deciduous azalea to bloom in some semblance of abundance. This year one plant out of six had three bloom clusters. I keep waiting.

Last Sunday the planting of the road side vegetable garden began. It was earlier than desired because last year when I was ready, no cheap six pack tomatoes and peppers were to be found. I refuse to pay $5 per tomato at the Big Box.

Yes I sprayed the weeds. Better than disturbing the soil with my seed bank. I even reclaimed this far end in the foreground from the wild flowers that had reclaimed it. I need more room for the winter squash. Now I need mulch and the mulch I like has been very hard to come by of late. The Walmart has been out of cat food and litter for weeks and now we are having a gasoline buying panic. 

Tomatoes and peppers do not like 43.

There is a patchy frost warning for tonight. Wish me luck. Buying tomatoes and peppers again could be impossible.

It would be nice to just stay home.

In the land where the wild orchids bloom.


Gypsy said...

Hello Chrisopher: Yes, yesterday was a chilly and wet one here too. It called for a fire in the fireplace! During a stroll through my garden between rain showers to check newly planted Zinnias, I discovered my Acanthus had two flower stalks (fourth year of growth). You can imagine my joy. So I was wondering. You’ve said you wish you could grow Acanthus. Have you ever tried? The reason I ask? The first time I saw this plant was on a hike with my best friend in the mountains near her home. Now granted 3700 feet in the Swiss Alps is probably different from 4000 in the NC mountains but how different I don’t know. I would be happy to share with you seeds from my Summer Beauty. I purchased this particular plant from a specialty nursery specifically because it was said to withstand our heat and humidity. It might be fun just to try and see what it would do in your neck of the woods. Let me know. Gypsy

Christopher C. NC said...

Gypsy of course I tried Acanthus. Several. Needless to say I was most disappointed. The only option left was the thorny Acanthus spinosus which was maybe more cold hardy, but I don't do thorns and never came across any of that species. I even have trouble growing ornamental rhubarb because it so often gets the new growth frozen in the spring.

Gypsy said...

Hi Christopher: I thought you probably had tried, but I don't like to make assumptions and that's partially why I posed the question. The seeds are available if you change your mind. Gypsy

Christopher C. NC said...

Thanks for the offer Gypsy. I do appreciate it. Nature very much has veto power over what will grow here and I have learned to accept that. The unique conditions of the elevation of the Southern Appalachians is a huge factor in that. I have a big zip lock bag full of the plant tags of the departed. I keep trying new things. Now they lean heavily in the native direction and that is not always successful.

FIGGY said...

oh my gosh, me too ! i have my first acanthus bloom this year after 6 years of waiting. I am thrilled. i have had a very love hate relationship with it. I heard the horror stories that it takes over so i put it in a poor soil area clay pit and it grows so slow , probably too slow. One time i cut it out and put it in a pot (old tin) and it died. digging it out the roots were incredible like a huge octoputs with 35X the 8 legs. Then the orignal piece grew back. During the summer with western sun it is very very unhappy. It is not really good in our climate (east tn) but i kind of let it do what it will. looking forward to seeing the blooms. That is my acunthus story.

Christopher C. NC said...

Promises, promises. As you might imagine I have the room for aggressive spreading plants. That is what I read about the Plume Poppy, Macleaya cordata. Fine no problem. Well it does survive and spread slowly up here, but is rather meek and half the height and leaf size advertised. I moved some starts to new locations. Nothing happened. At this point it is still classified as a bit of a failure.