Tuesday, February 17, 2009


I just saw Ben Franklin's quote, "God helps them that help themselves."
I think that statement really applies to all gardeners, don't you? Every gardener I know does a good job of taking care of themselves and their gardens. If someone else is doing their gardening, it's not really THEIR garden, is it?
Even at this time of the year, most gardeners are busy pouring over their gardening catalogs and dreaming of warmer days to come. Some have been outside picking branches of spring flowering shrubs, bringing them inside for the wonderful phenomenon of "forcing". Read the article found by clicking the link and follow the directions. If you do this, you too can help yourself to early spring bloom in your home.
Of course, we have to assume you are able to get to your shrubs! I don't know about you, but we're expecting a nasty snow storm tomorrow and the next day. Remember to gently remove the heavy snow from the branches of your shrubs. The best way to do this is to go out with a rake or some tool with a plain, broom type of handle. Poke the handle end of the tool into the bush, gently pushing the branches so they move and topple the snow off. However, if the branches are covered with ice, DON'T do this. You don't want to break the branches. If there's ice, you're better off just waiting and letting nature melt it off. Sometimes you also need to know when NOT to do something!
Wayside Gardens Fast Growing Screens

Monday, February 02, 2009



Bring home some wonderful blooming flowers to enjoy around the house!

Look around the garden (if it isn't covered by snow) and be sure none of your perennials have been heaved out of the ground by frost. If they have, press them back down.

Remove any heavy snow from the evergreens.

This is the time to get out and take a good look at your trees to see if they could stand some pruning. It is easy to see whether there are broken or diseased branches now that there are no leaves.

Are you ordering from those catalogs? This is the time to plan on making your dreams come true! At least in the garden.

As you look around the neighborhood, make note of plants that have "winter interest". Find out what they are and plan to add them to your garden when the weather is better!

Trees are easy to identify in the winter because all the leaves are gone. However, you have no leaves to use to help you either...so go to the book store and buy a Winter Tree Identification Guide. It's kind of fun identifying trees by their shapes, and the kids love doing it as well.

If you haven't done it already, sharpen those tools-and while you're at it, organize them as well.

Before you know it, it will be time to roll out the lawn mower. Has it been serviced? Get it to the shop before everyone else beats you to it.

If you have grapes, prune the vines now. If you wait until it begins to warm up, they will "bleed".

Force some of your spring blooming twigs for indoor color. Try fruit trees, forsythia, dogwood, pussy willow and quince. Just bring them inside and allow them to sit in a large vase with water.

Keep those bird feeders full.

Be sure to keep the leaves of indoor plants "dusted". It helps to wipe them with a damp cloth to keep the pores open.

Park Seed