Archive for January 22nd, 2010

January is my very favorite month for gardening. By January, the snow is deep on the ground. Even though we’ve been experiencing a bit of a January thaw over the last few days, there is still a blanket of white. But over in my mailbox, there are signs of spring! Seed catalogues, plant catalogues, and gardening magazines are sprouting, gearing up for the new gardening season.

When I stopped by the feed store to get grain for the horses and sunflower seed for the birds, there were lovely Ontario Seed Company (OSC) catalogues sitting there, free for the taking. Who could resist? Especially with that cute baby face on the cover. Not to mention the giant pumpkins, and what’s this? A new Rudbeckia? I probably should have that in my garden.

Ah, yes. January. When you can throw another log on the fire, sit back in your favorite chair and dream of your summer garden. Why, this year will be the best yet! This year, I’ll keep on top of those darn weeds. This year, I’ll keep the tomatoes from trailing on the ground. This year…. Yes, you can plan to your heart’s content, design, make lists, and all without lifting a finger. The spade is safely tucked away in the shed. No nagging back pain. It’s all good.

The list of catalogues you can have delivered to your mail box is long. Most of them are free, or cost a couple of dollars at most, a small price to pay for such pleasure. If you would like to indulge your fantasies, check out this site at Canadian Gardening. I used to get an assortment of catalogues when I was a newbie gardener. These days, I mostly settle for just a couple. Veseys, out in Prince Edward Island, kindly keeps me supplied with a delightful cornucopia of choice. The lovely, colourful catalogues are like candy for gardeners.

Just look at this spread of gladiolus! Oooo! Ahhhh! I don’t actually grow glads. They’re not hardy and I’m too lazy to dig them up and replant them the next year. But I sure do like to admire all the varieties in the catalogue.

Same thing with dahlias. Too much bother. But look at all those pretty faces! Mmmm, mmh. The kids are cute, too.
Then there are the perennials that I actually grow. I have several peony plants, but who wouldn’t want one of these dandies? And probably I could use some more phlox…

There are always a few exotics to tempt the gardener who might be craving something new and exciting. I was particularly taken with the jack-in-the-pulpit, especially Arisaema sikokianum. Here’s a photo from Wikipedia:

Hmm, let’s see. Arisaema sikokianum….69.95 each. Well. Maybe not this year. Maybe a new echinacea. The butterflies would like that.

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