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RE: spring arrives

It sounds beautiful, Chris?  Do you have photos to share...when you time, of

Bonnie (SW OH - zone 5) 

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-gardenchat@hort.net [mailto:owner-gardenchat@hort.net] On Behalf
Of Chris Petersen
Sent: Friday, April 14, 2006 7:56 PM
To: gardenchat@hort.net
Subject: [CHAT] spring arrives

Hello from rainy Northport!

I have been trying to keep up with my lurking, but as you all know - there's
never enough time to do everything that you'd like to do! Since my garden
will be one of the convention open gardens, I'm trying to stay ahead of my
gardening chores. Most summers, I'm still trying to catch up when October
rolls around! There's always evidence of uncompleted tasks in the shape of
black plastic pots scattered around the grounds! I'm always amazed at how
many of these plants survive on such neglect, sometimes more than a year I'm
embarrassed to admit.

Every spring a new weed seems to make its presence known. The bitter cress
has taken over my lawn and the garlic mustard is invading the woods! Not to
mention the ivy that keeps finding its way into my garden beds and lawn.
Don't ever let it get a foothold! And, there is such a thing as too much
periwinkle! Then again, I should have paid more attention when people were
bemoaning creeping Charlie and ground ivy! One of this year's thugs is
lysimachia ciliata purpurea.  It has beautiful purple foliage and dainty
yellow buttercup flowers.  It grows in sun or full shade, but my colony has
grown out of bounds and now I'll have to beat it down somehow! And then
there's the rudbeckia lanciata...

On a positive note, I'm almost done cleaning the leaves and other debris
from the beds! I've even fertilized many of the cleaned beds with dried
chicken manure.  I resorted to using some Preen in the beds where I grow
rampant reseeders such as Eupatorium 'Chocolate' and perilla. I guess that I
should use some Preen in the beds where the perennial ageratum grows! I had
some help this week clearing a 300 square foot bed that was my mothers when
she was alive.  It was completely overrun with weeds.  We took the first few
inches of soil out in an attempt to get rid of the worst offenders, but I'm
thinking of covering the whole bed in layers of newspaper and mulch as there
was houttiana cordata, chameleon vine, growing in waves throughout a large
section of the garden. I tried to shift through the soil, but there's no way
to get it all! This plant is another deceptively pretty thing with red,
green and cream leaves! Grow it in a container if you must have it! Put the
container on a cement patio, of course, as the roots go down to China and
every little piece you leave in the ground will root!

Almost all of my daffodils are in bloom, but the only tulip blooming is T.
'Toronto'.  This perennial tulip is a bouquet bloomer with coral flowers!
Loads of minor bulbs are in bloom and I noticed Rhododendron 'Mary Flemming'
with its delicate yellow flushed coral flowers is blooming by the pond.

The first gardening package to arrive on my doorstep was a box of 500 zinc
Eon rose markers. I'm trying to rid my garden of the little white tags next
to my perennials, grasses, and shrubs! I already had about the same amount
in the garden (not including the daylilies) and I'm sure that I'll run short
of these as more than half of the box is gone. I just called my husband and
begged him to stop at Staples for more P-touch laminated tape!  Of course,
the much more reasonably priced tapes I ordered over the internet will
probably arrive tomorrow!

Here's wishing everyone a good gardening weekend!

Chris Petersen

Northport, Long Island, New York

 Zone 7a (Average min temp 50 - 00)


My garden: http://photos.yahoo.com/chrispnpt

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