Oh my what a winter we've had: Ice storm, damaged trees, cold, snow, old furnace died, new furnace installed, aluminum wiring discovered, aluminum wiring removed, now the dishwasher is leaking. So what's a girl to do?
First, I went online and ordered seeds from Renee's Garden:
1. Bush Bean, Nickel Filet (New)
2. Bush Bean, Roma (delicious last year & a good producer)
3. Bean, Rattlesnake and Purple (this is one of the strengths of Renee's that you can buy small seed packets of combos, rather than have to fork out for two packages)
4. Broccoli Raab, Super Rapini (feeling healthier already)
5. Chard, Rainbow Brights
6. Greens, California Spicy Salad
7. Greens, Frisee Glory (if it's not edible, at least it will be attractive)
8. Kale, Heirloom Lacinato (definitely going to start these earlier and plant more)
9. Kale, Darkibor
10. Lettuce, Italian Misticanza (selected for the name alone)
11. Lettuce, 5 Variety Blend (obviously selected for the varieties of lettuce)
12. Lettuce, Paris Market (will be as close as I get to Paris this year)
13. Radish, Petit Desjeuner Breakfast (who knew there were breakfast radishes?)
14. Daisy, Chocolate Berlandiera lyrata (flowers not food)
15. Four O'Clocks, Mirabilis jalapa Broken Colours (keen on growing this one it's been years)
Then, with my order placed, I bundled myself up, got in the car and went to a nursery where I knew they'd have something that needed to come home with me.
I picked up Dahlia 'Otto's Thrill', three Kalanchoe at $1.99/each, and two Arisaema grifithii for $4.99, oh, and a bunch of yellow tulips - my shopping expedition photos follow:
I'm a sucker for wine glasses and flowers the size of baby's head:
Dancing tulips for the dining room table:
and then this oddity. What were the two most important selling features for me? #1 it was NEW. #2 it looked really cool. Don't you love the "Great for Mixed Borders"? I don't know, but it looks like these were found in a forest (moss, trees, bulbs, ferns - could be a mixed border I suppose). One of the sites that came up when I was doing research about them said that they are on an endangered list....although mine say they've been grown from cultured stock....in India. Ah yes, the cooler the plant, the less likely they are to be able to survive a Canadian Winter. Guess I'll plant them up and put them in the garage for now so I won't be able to hear their screams.
So, that's what's happening inside. Outside, not much so far. Here we are today. It's nice and sunny and as you can see very little snow has melted.
It is so cold, I broke down and got Bart a new coat.
This was our last snow storm a couple weeks ago:
Same shot a year ago: (notice the big branches that we lost off the Eastern White in December)
And one year earlier 2012:
And then this. Over the last few weeks, I've scanned the photos from my Granddaddy's photo album of 1913-1924. Looking at weather records (the album isn't in any particular order) I believe it was from 1913. The photos are of a frozen Lake Ontario at Toronto. What made me laugh was his comment: "when we had real winters". Little did I know, that even 100 years ago, people were saying the very same thing that we say. And, even then, despite how cold it was/is, that cold and snowy winters are somehow superior to the the wimpy variety.
All I can say is thank goodness 100 years later, there are events like Canada Blooms, so wimps like me can forget about the "real winter" of 2013/14! See you in the display gardens.