|Scilla siberica in FEBRUARY?!|
The Daily DuBrule
Today is "move in" day at the CT Flower and Garden show. Three Natureworkers in a caravan of trucks and vans headed north to Hartford early this morning. We made a quick stop at my Middletown home to harvest some curly willow branches. What would normally be a simple task was made more challenging by the fact that these trees were devastated for the second time last year by the Halloween snowstorm. I had already had extensive pruning done on them after the terrible ice storm in January of 2011. They grew back, only to be destroyed again. This time, I waited to have them pruned, thinking, well, we might have a really bad winter. As we all know, that didn't happen!
Anyway, my brave employee Lisa shimmied up the tree with a long pole pruner and cut back lots of giant branches that we are going to use to create a dramatic ceiling at our retail booth. As Lisa, Dave, and I were jockying the ladder into position, Dave noticed that we were stepping on Scilla siberica. What??? I have never seen these diminutive blue bulbs flower this early. So we tiptoed around them the best we could.
Once we got to the convention center, all the landscapers were abuzz with the challenges of forcing plants for the show. Witch hazels are in bloom outside this week, so if anyone brought them in to force them for even a day or two, they would have gone by. Everyone has had to think on their feet and stretch their forcing abilities for this show. Wait till you step foot inside the convention center this week. The show runs Thursday through Sunday. It is going to be an amazing display of fragrant, gorgeous color. It will make you happy, that's for sure. It is really exciting to be there at the beginning, watching the gardens being constructed and all the trucks rolling in with plants and flowers and cool garden merchandise.
When I got home, I went to my back shed to put away some tools. The door to this shed faces due south and bulbs have been up for weeks. I looked down and saw a pretty purple flower at the base of the narcissus noses. I thought it might be a self sown Viola. Nope. It was ground ivy. Growl. That spreading, invasive weed that I have been pulling up all winter was not only in my flower bed, it was blooming in February. We are in for a very interesting growing season ahead. Hold onto your hats, fellow gardeners, and let the games begin!