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TheH (Hazel)'s Journal

TheH (Hazel)'s Journal February 2010

Last Post 2819 days 6 hours ago

Did my garden really look like that?

28 February 2010 16:18:06
Greenhouse with seedlings

Greenhouse with seedlings

I've just been sorting out the photos I posted in the "My Garden" section and have quite surprised myself with what actually managed to grow in my garden last yesr! I did a patrol of the garden yesterday and was quite downhearted at how many of my plants don't appear to have survived this harsh winter. We didn't have a lot of snow in this part of Laois, but the hard frosts have been pretty constant The fields are white almost every morning. Last year we put up a greenhouse, the main idea being to protect a large lemon tree given to us by Brendan's son. this lemon tree was most unhappy in the house the previous winter. losing leaves at a great rate and also producing lots of lemons the size of a jelly-bean, which then fell off - so I decided it was too hot for it and that a greenhouse was the answer. Unfortunately, I didn't get around to getting a frost-heater until this month, so despite being well wrapped in fleece the lemon tree has had it!

There have been a few other casualties - the Trachelospermum Jasminoides which cheered me up all winter with its beautiful red foliage was finally overcome by the frosts as were a couple of Kniphofia, cordeline and the herbaceous border is looking a bit sad - time will tell how severe the casualties there will be. A few brave plants are showing signs of life but most of them look dreadful.

Even the lovely ferns I got for the stream have been devastated, not by the frost, but by the flocks of rooks that descend on my garden on a regular basis. This hard weather must be leaving most of the wildlife struggling. I can hardly keep up with the bird feeders and the rooks have even been coming up to get the seeds that fall to the ground from the feeders.

But isn't it an indication that all gardeners by nature have to be optimists - I've succeeded in getting my sweetpea off to a good start and just planted a load of sunflowers for next summer. I'm not sure what I need to do to keep the sweetpea happy - they look a bit leggy to me - and this is where I usually fall down in the seed-growing business - I get them to germinate no problem but then don't know how to manage them properly!

Today also saw the dahlias I got from Bakker this week planted in the pots below the bench - not sure if this is the right thing to do here either! And the greenhouse also has its first pot of cuttings - I was pruning my Cornus and decided to try and see if cuttings will strike or not - nothing lost if they don't and a lovely bonus if they do!

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