Sunday, April 26, 2009

I don't care what month it is.... and a wonderful book

90 degrees is too hot any day of the year, in my opinion... all those cool spring plants would rather have a light frost. my pansies pant and celebrate some cool water at the end of a long day.

OK, rant is over.

Tina's comment on my last blog had me looking for the seed packet for the Thoroughly Modern Millie Godetia seeds, which reminded me of why I don't favor that seed company except of course for their varieties of flowers. The back of the packet had little or no info to pass along.

So I turned to a highly favored book...

From Seed To Bloom: How to Grow over 500 Annuals, Perennials, & Herbs by Eileen Powell.

How many times have I turned to this book? It is wonderful. Looking up Godetia, the author had me go to Clarkia. and here is the advice Tina wanted...

space them around 9 inches apart,

Light: full sun in cool climates, otherwise part shade,

Soil: cool, moist, well-drained, pH 6-7, and prefers low nitrogen content.

at the school we got the onions and leeks and pac choi planted. We will try to get the fingerling potatoes in the ground this week. Some seedlings got too dry this week. But nothing was devastated, which is always good news when one is not careful and mindful. However, I was aware enough to notice that these tulips had opened this week.


Rob (ourfrenchgarden) said...

Hi Wayne

Clarkia really shy away from full on sun.

I think the avoiding nitrogen tip relates to most flowering annuals.


Wayne Stratz said...

Thanks Rob. I got plenty of semi- shady places to put. this is the first time I have grown them.

tina said...

Perfect Wayne! My first year growing these too. Good thing I have them in part shade. Now the moist area is a bit problematic. I did look at them the other day and they are hanging tough. Thanks again!

walk2write said...

You have had some mixed up temps for sure. Our warm Gulf air must be finding its way up there. The book sounds like it would be an excellent reference. Does it suggest appropriate zones for each selection?

Wayne Stratz said...

Tina--- glad I could help, maybe I will put them in a good spoy myself.

Walk2write--- came home to some really sad pansies. one more day of heat then they can relax a bit. The book is not in front of me, but if memory serves me it does list zones. It is rather general and goes by genus.

Chandramouli S said...

The book sounds like a perfect one for gardeners who grow from seeds. Hope my local bookstore has it. Thanks for the info, Wayne.

Iowa Gardening Woman said...

I agree, 90 is too hot any time of year, we had 89 on Friday but on Saturday we had a high of 47........what a difference.

Lovely seedlings! Good luck with the raspberries, wonderful eating.

The orchid plants you photographed were stunning!

Pomona Belvedere said...

Here in California the wild Clarkia tend to grow on hillsides (drainage) and one good patch I know has a northern exposure, under pine trees.

I'm impressed to see Lady Jane grows in Louisiana, I have a friend who lives in BR and she chills a few each year. Do you have to chill Lady Jane, or does it come up without fuss?

You and your students have been busy, makes me embarrassed for my own garden.

Wayne Stratz said...

Chandramouli--- it is a great book (in my opinion) for giving basic growing info about many many plants.

Iowa Gardening Woman--- I got a blessing of a day today, the heat left and light showers over night moistened the soil. But not nearly as cold as you experienced.

Pomona--- a bit confused, I live in PA. anyway, if you saw how much we need to do in the garden, you might feel better about your own.

Dana said...

I always figure that the month of April is one for inactivity in our home garden. We have lost too much between heat waves and even snows in the past.

Wayne,I walk by the horticulture center to pick up my son everyday, for quite a few years now. have to tell you,one of my signs of spring is seeing signs of labor beyond the greenhouse. what are the big green poles for, beans?

Wayne Stratz said...

Dana--- I usually get some cool weather crops in before May... spinach, lettuce, radishes... not this year.

the big green poles--- actually deer protection. I will tie twine from one pole to another pole than drape floating row covers over the twine. Typically used to protect against insects and frost, but I have found it keeps deer away from most things.

I am listening to McCoy Tyner. Hope you got to see him. We had a craft fair this past weekend.