Spring has sprung!

March 19th, 2008

It may be the first day of spring 2008 alright, but it isn't as if some magical transformation suddenly takes place in the yard. Matter of fact, these Daffodils really look no different today than what they did yesterday. And there's no sudden change in the weather neither, it's just about as nippy as it was yesterday. Oh well, we need dates apparently to delineate the seasons, just don't expect overnight miracles....

Our #3 pot with 'Mouse plants' or Arisarum proboscideum isn't anywhere near as far along as it was last year at this time. Matter of fact by the 14th of March last year it was fully leafed out already, something we're certainly still at least a week away from this year by the looks of it.

I'm also getting a little concerned about the first plant sale of the season: April 5th. It sure doesn't look as if we'll have an awful lot on the tables this first time around. We're committed to the date because of the neighbourhood yard sale that happens that day, but I don't think we'll really be ready to get into the swing of things with our plants until the weekend of April 19th. Things are not warming up quickly this year, where's global warming when you're looking for it?

When we put up our little 'greenhouse' again in February one of the plants that went into it for a bit of 'forcing' were a couple of pots of a new small Hosta, which I suspect may be 'Lemon Delight'. This is one of the divisions made late last summer and it's already in the process of starting to unfurl. Some of its siblings which were kept exposed to the elements are not near as far along as this one is, and that's a nice thing to see in as much as it helps reaffirm that there are benefits to keeping things just a little warmer.

This time of year I'm like a little kid in a candy store, all excited and not knowing where to turn and what to look at first. This is the big division I made last year of my 'Fortunei Hyacinthina' sport. When the division was made there were four distinct shoots, each with a somewhat different variegation pattern. I'll save you the trouble of counting, this spring 8 noses are working there way up and I cannot wait to see what pattern shows up, all very exciting!

One of last year's additions to our yard was a small narrow leaved Hosta variety called 'Stiletto'. I received it in trade and made three single divisions of it. Obviously I do not know a great deal about its growth habits as yet but I'll make the observation that it looks to possibly be somewhat stoloniferous. This single division has gone to a total of 5 shoots now and is spreading itself almost all the way out to the edges of the pot it's in on 3 of the 4 sides.

This is not the same plant as the one above, but look at how much they are showing in terms of leaves? This was shot only 5 days later and these little guys are sure shooting up!

In the frontyard we have a fair number of Chinodoxia interspersed amongst the Daffodils and Tulips. They tend to get lost though amidst the larger foliage of the Tulips in particular and I think I'll have to relocate a few of them to make them stand-out better next spring, they have such a nice, soft, delicate colour to them.

This last week of March has been rather miserable here weatherwise. We've seen snow, hail, and rain of course, and the temperatures have been on the blustery side. Not exactly conducive to plant growth to have them look a little bigger and more presentable at the upcoming first plantsale of the season, April 5th. Next week is supposed to be somewhat warmer, let's keep our fingers crossed.

While I don't recall the winter being particularly cold, certainly spring has been thus far. I can sure tell that by how far some of the Hostas have come along. For example 'Blue Mouse Ears' was beginning to unfurl, as was 'Wide Brim'. This year they are barely nosing up, it's quite remarkable.

While we may have been happy to eliminate another rat earlier in the month, we both suspected there were more about. And sure enough, yesterday I noticed there were a couple of Lily shoots that had been cut-off right at soil level! Time to bait a trap one more time.

Can't remember what the name is of this little cutie, I've had it for 3 or 4 years and while it does keep coming back, it has been rather slow to grow beyond just the one specimen.