Over Wintering Experimentation
Plants That Require Extra Protection:
Commonly used varieties that appreciate a blanket thrown over them for shelter from winter storms include:
Cabin fever may cause significant
others to try their own experimentation in the garden. My husband thought it would be helpful to shake snow off plants in the perennial beds. Snow and ice acts as an insulator. By removing nature's blanket - as a new storm redies to blow in - as a new storm readies to blow in - the potential for marginal plants to expire is even greater. Better to leave the snow where it falls and money in your wallet.
Earlier in the fall, I selected which plants I truly wanted to keep by mulching them carefully. Wintertime is the perfect excuse to allow plants I may want to replace to fend for themselves. However, others that I would expect to breeze through easily might not make it. Euonymus japonicus 'Greenspire' (Green Spire Euonymus) has bent over due to the weight of the ice. Naturally resilient, I expect the columnar punctuation mark to snap back to its upright, soldier-like demeanor. Where one person may see holes, I see replacement opportunities. For plants that don’t make it, I seek out new varieties for experimentation.
The catalog companies seem attuned to my sitting by the fireplace with a catalog and cup of cocoa - dreaming of what is yet to be. Seed and garden catalogs are arriving daily. Colorful images bursting with life explode off the page teasing my wallet to come out and play. I couldn’t help myself. In order to close the inevitable gaps in my perennial beds, I already placed my first order. Diminutive columbine Aquilegia canadensis 'Little Lanterns ' (Little Lanterns' Columbine) will fill open pockets quite nicely.
In Portland, the darkest days of winter are yet to come. Enjoy the seasonal break that winter provides in your neck of the woods. Without winter, there can be no spring complete with dancing daffodils and laughing lilacs stretching towards sunshine. Despite whatever Mother Nature may deliver to our doorsteps this winter, a gardener at heart is an eternal optimist.
BeeDazzled Gardens & Designs Specializes in creating fragrant, organic, low maintenance garden vignettes that add value and pleasure to a home or business exterior and landscape. Our specialty is staged, perennial bed planting designs, seasonal potted containers and garden renovations.
Photo credit on all photos: Dawn Hummel