Thursday, June 1, 2017

Welcome Spring! May in Photos

     Happy Spring! It's nice to be working with plants again instead of suffering the long winter we just went through. It has been a few decades since we've had such a cold and snowy winter, everyone I talk to is so glad it's over!

While we had record snowfall on Christmas Eve, which was bloody magical, the windchills in the minus 30's left me cold. The below normal temps continued through most of April but came to a sudden halt in May which was well above normal, more like summer weather in the high 20's C. The sudden shift in weather made everything bloom almost at once from early bulbs to lilacs in the span of a few weeks.

     I planted these Quail Daffodils not knowing they are not really suited to our zone, I later read best in zones 5 to 8! Remember that we are zone 3. So, although late, partly due to our cool April, they bloomed nicely in early May and a few weeks later in other areas of the yard more in the open. They are small yet bright and lovely and also bloom in 3's on the same stem. I'm still a bigger fan of regular old Dutch Master Daffodils though.

     I experimented with some tulip varieties I ordered from Veseys, because I am a total sucker for plant ctalogues! This one is Antoinette Bouquet, a multi-headed bloomer that also changes colour as it ages. Even though I am not big on yellow flowers this variety is so bright in the garden that I can make an exception.

     This tulip is called Black Hero, a peony type variety. It would have been a bigger clump except the resident baby jack rabbit bit off a few buds just to see what they tasted like and then spit them out on the ground. 

The parrot tulip, Texas Flame, has excelled in our hot spring weather blooming early for our region. The bright colours are wonderfully eye catching.

Pasque Flower is derived from the native Prairie Crocus so exceeds in our climate, this plant blooms for weeks in the spring often having seedheads and flowers at the same time.

I spotted this Mayday tree in my neighbourhood, perhaps one of the largest around. Usually one of the first trees to bloom in our area, also nicely scented. The flowers only last a week or so before turning into small black berries later on.

     A hillside of Saskatoon Berries blooms in a mass of white, these too only last a week or so before turning into the berry adored for pies.

New this year, vegetable boxes! I took a large Manitoba Maple out of this location and decided to grow a few vegetables. This area gets about a half day of sun but gets very hot in the afternoon. From the foreground is pole beans and squashes; onions, wasabi and red cabbages; peas, kale and radishes; and finally beans and swiss chard. Against the fence is a shorter growing and super early yellow corn.
This was a helluva project that was way more expensive than I thought, from the boxes to the soil to the tree removal so lets hope this pays off!!! I will give updates of course. If the hot weather holds for the whole summer we will be in good shape.

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