When I enter the intoxicating atmosphere of a greenhouse in May, I am immediately overcome with an urgent and deep desire to possess as many of those plants as I can possibly afford and which fit in the SUV. The greenhouse addiction helps me relate to a few people I've met who are shopping devotees.
The begonias were beguiling so I bought two pots of Santa Cruz Sunset in brilliant orange which can grow in sun to part shade. I learned that there are now begonias that thrive in sun. The two pots anchor the west-facing front porch. As I write this musing, they are blowing gently in an evening breeze. I purchased them at Lohr-A-Lee Greenhouses, about 10 kilometers west of Olds, Alberta. Lohr-A-Lee is owned by relatives on the Lohr side of my family. It's worth the trip there for the healthy plants, plus we get to have a visit. I drove all the way home from Olds surrounded by the seductive smell of spring.
Orange was also my choice for the petunias in the large pot at the end of the driveway, for the glorious geraniums backed by burgundy spikes in the antique wheelbarrow along the lane, and for the gerbera daisies paired with millet in the pot by the front door. The orange looks rich next to our brown stucco house.
For the back deck, I went with shades of purple. Petunias rule there along with verbena for variety. I need something hardy because the back porch pots are more exposed to the wind. Last year, one potted plant was so exposed to a southern Alberta gale that the plant holder pulled right out of the column!
Of course, I had to buy a few pansies for their cute faces loved by both younger and older family members. This year I went with dark purple ones that look almost velvety with a few yellow plants for variety.
I had promised myself that I wouldn't buy more perennials. Then I saw the lime green and burgundy coleus plants, and I knew the exact spot for them. My sister was visiting for a few days so we donned rubber boots and running shoes and dug in the dirt enriched by a good rain last week. You know that expression that you can take the girl off the farm, but you can't take the farm out of the girl--well that's me when it comes to digging in the dirt.
On our May-Long opening the cabin weekend, we visited Gail's Greenhouse located near Wakaw Lake, Saskatchewan. There we found two healthy-looking ninebark with amber leaves which just fit into the truck bed under the canopy. It was fate that they would come home with us. With Doug's help, we got those planted where the roses were previously. We've learned that the deer will not usually come to the front porch to nibble the rose buds and blooms so the roses were moved as close as possible to the house. We have several prospering Diablo Ninebarks which the deer tend to leave alone so our two new ninebarks join their cousins on the berm south of the house.
I think that's my addiction fed for another spring--no more greenhouses for me. Happy Gardening everyone, and enjoy the short season of sensation. It's a good thing for me that we have a short season in Southern Alberta as my addiction can be kept in control for most of the year. (And, yes, I know that I got carried away with alliteration in this musing--plants do that to me.)