Wednesday September 03, 2014

Garden planning time


The Yorkton and District Horticultural Society has got their gardening gloves on and is back to their regular meetings again, and we have a great year ahead!  Our meetings are on the third Thursday of each month, in the Sunshine Room at SIGN on North Street. Our next meeting will be on March 20, and our special guest will be Maira Waechli from Florissima speaking to us about flowers that are suitable for drying, and how to use them in flower arrangements. Maira does stunning floral arrangements, and I know she will have great information and inspiration for us.  That’s Thursday, March 20. Remember, you don’t have to be a member of the group to come to the meeting, so I hope we see you there!

If you were at our last meeting, you were able to enjoy a very informative presentation by Frank Woloschuk, who is a very knowledgeable and enthusiastic gardener himself. Frank handed out some new catalogues from Skinner Garden Classics, and looking at the catalogue made me wish we could fast-forward in time to spring, and start working on our gardens! In his presentation, Frank went over some of the new plants that will be available this spring: not only annuals, but perennials and shrubs and trees, too. Listening to all the exciting choices that lie ahead made me realize yet again that a garden is never truly done. It may be done for a season, but by the next year things can change quite a bit.

Last fall, we lost another rhubarb plant to the root and crown rot bacteria disease called “red leaf”. Its demise was quick, but our research told us that we shouldn’t plant rhubarb in that spot again, so this year we have some modifications to do in that corner of the yard. What to choose? There are so many things I would like to try! And even without making changes because of some actual problem that you are trying to correct, doesn’t looking at the plant catalogue make you want to try something new, just for the fun of it? We have a beautiful ninebark in our yard, and there is a new ninebark called “Lemon Candy” that has bright golden foliage with white flowers. Doesn’t that sound pretty?

There’s a new spirea called “Dakota Charm” which is described as “a tiny form that produces golden foliage that gets brighter with time. Pink flowers.” This sounds like an ideal shrub for a smaller yard or as part of an “island” planting.  For those of you who have hydrangeas (lucky you!), there is a new one called “Quickfire” that has “beautiful rich pink flowers one month sooner than other hydrangeas”. Sounds lovely!

Whether your yard is brand new or well-established, there is always work to be done, and it is always a great idea to consult the experts at your local greenhouse.  They have the knowledge and experience to be able to tell us whether our dream choices will work well in our yards or not, and can suggest a good alternative, probably something even better than what we picked out at first! So never be shy to ask for help or advice.

Speaking of being inspired, one of the speakers at the Prairie Sun Seed Festival was Kevin Hryhoriw, who works for the City of Yorkton and is responsible for the amazing public plantings that we enjoyed last summer! He made us wish we could start planting up our planters today!

What can I say — I am looking forward to spring and I know you are, too! I know that one thing we still have to plant this year is a special rose in memory of our sweet cousins, Teresa and Rodney. We love you both, and a special plant in our garden will remind us always of you.

Have a good week, gardeners!



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