Gardeners, the first thing we should chat about is the road trip that the Yorkton and District Horticultural Society will be taking to Neepawa on Saturday, July 20. We’re off to see the famous Lily Festival, and everyone who has been to this festival says that it is amazing! If any seats are still available on the bus, they are now open to the public; so if you’re not a horticultural club member but would like to join us on this tour, give Liz a call at 782-2830. It’s a one day trip: just get on the bus, relax, and enjoy the company of other enthusiastic gardeners! It will be a great day!
I’ll also remind you about the Yorkton In Bloom competition. Check out the full details on the City website at www.yorkton.ca (click on “visiting here” and then click on “leisure programs”) Here are the main points from the website to get you started. “The Annual Yorkton In Bloom Competition is a partnership between the City of Yorkton and the Yorkton & District Horticultural Society. This is an exciting program that focuses on beautification of the city. This initiative was designed to involve the citizens of Yorkton in the challenge of improving the visual appeal of our city, and to compete for local awards.” Don’t be shy: you work hard with your yard, so be proud of your accomplishments! If you want to enter the Yorkton In Bloom competition, the deadline is on Friday, July 12 at 4:00 p.m.. Judging will be July 15 – 17. For more information call Darren Spelay at (306) 786-1776. Don’t forget, the Yard and Garden Bus Tour takes place on Thursday, July 25. There will be two tours, one at 9:00 a.m. and one at 1:00 p.m. Both leave from the Yorkton Public Library. (While you’re there, pop in to the Library and take out a couple gardening books for summer reading: the Library has a wonderful selection!)
I was thumbing through a book called “Shrubs and Hedges”, one of the volumes of Sweet Pea’s collection from the American Horticultural Society. I was looking for information about a shrub that we bought, viburnum opulous roseum “European Snowball”. We bought this shrub last fall, at the end of the season, when it was cast on to a rolling rack of sad rejects that didn’t sell in the spring. It still looked healthy, and we felt sorry for it, so we bought it. Fall was a busy time for us, so the poor thing never got planted; we just tucked it near another shrub so that it would get a lot of snow cover, and hoped for the best. Lo and behold, this spring, it was one of the first things in the garden to burst into bud, followed by lovely little white snowballs of fragrant flowers. A winner! So we wanted to be sure to plant it in a good spot. Mom’s book said that this type if viburnum is also called “European cranberry”. Apparently the blooms will turn to bright red fruits later on in the fall, and the leaves will give us a fall show, as well. It says that the shrub will grow eight to twelve feet high, with a spread of ten to fifteen feet. The book says that it is a good choice for a border or screen planting. So far, so good. The only bad thing is that the plant can get aphids; but I plan to keep a watchful eye for that! Further instructions said that the plants like protection from winter winds, and likes well-drained soil. The spot I have in mind can give the shrub all of that. We will keep it a smaller size because of the size of our yard, but I think it will make a beautiful addition.
If you are landscaping your yard, shrubs are a wonderful choice because some of them can grow large enough to provide shelter and privacy. There are many that bloom to provide beauty and interest to your yard. We have terrific greenhouses in our community that can guide you to make the right choices for your space. Just ask them!
Have a good week, gardeners, and be careful of the UV index: be sure to wear a hat!