Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Seed Planting Extravaganza

Hope is not just about the economy. No, hope is about spring arriving. The trickle in of roots, tubers, rhizomes, bulbs in a slow but steady stream in area stores, make everyone cheer for spring! Even nongardeners get excited when they see and smell the aroma of damp peat moss.

Our little dwelling has turned into something out of the movie and children's book, Secret Garden. Little sprouts tossing their hats (empty seed jackets) twirling their green legs and arms with the great miracle of life. No, it's not just one tray. It has become many. There is alot of twirling and tossing here. It seems this year almost everyone in my family has been bitten by the grow it yourself bug. Brown was the predominant color last week and now it's green, green, green. The brown peat-compost is hidden under the GREEN sprouts this week.

Then there are the seeds that you need a magnifying glass to check on such as nicotiana sylvestris, foxglove and snapdragons. Do I really see green in those flats yet? No. You somehow always feel a bit cheated when you open the seed packages seeing just a bit of what appears to be dust. It's actually 100 seeds that weigh less than the paper they are packaged in. For starting out so small these end up four feet tall to six feet and higher. Okay the larger snapdragons can reach 3 feet and maybe a pinch more depending on variety.

I went to check on a book by the English gardener Sarah Raven titled, Bold and Brilliant Garden, and it was backordered and would take 3 to 4 weeks for the Borders store to get it in stock. "Must be a problem with the distributor," the clerk said. I wanted to tell her, "No. I believe she is a genius with color and the book quite popular." She is actually starting seeds as I write this, too. However, it is a large greenhouse not a little humble dwelling. Nevertheless us wee folk manage to grow some great perennials and annuals with just as much enthusiasm and vigor.

To view Sarah Raven's webpages go to http://www.sarahraven.com/

To see a page in her book and to buy it there are a number available, new and used, on www.amazon.com

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