Monday, November 8, 2010

let it snow?

Nothing like a little white stuff on the ground to remind you how much still needs to be done in the garden.  It's the first week of November, and it snowed this morning.  Early and a bit of a fluke here in Connecticut, but pretty much the kick in the pants I need to get things done.  Like plant bulbs.  Definitely not too late (bulbs can be planted until the ground is frozen) but it would be good if I actually would place a bulb order, and get them here.  Then they might have half a chance of getting in the ground. I've been stalling, because my bulb order is going to be so large this year.  Bulbs are usually the gift that keeps giving - you plant them, and they keep coming back every year with very little effort.  At our old house I would just add a handful of new ones each year, to replace the ones that had peetered out, or had been eaten by various animals.  This year, I'm starting from scratch.  There is not one bulb on our entire 3 acre property, not one daffodil, or crocus, really. So I'm thinking my bulb order bill might rival my mortgage payment this month.  Little known fact about bulbs (and corms, rhizomes, tubers) is if they are planted the wrong way they will turn themselves as they are sensitive to gravity/sunlight.  This seems like a silly piece of information - until you look at some and they seem to have roots growing out of both ends, like this...
Crocus sativus via SRGC Bulb log

The only bulbs I have managed to get in the ground is my garlic.  When you look up garlic in catalogs, it always says, "garlic seed"  but it's not tiny little seeds, just heads of garlic, looks like what you would buy in the supermarket.  The heads get separated, and the largest and best looking get planted.  I chose a hardneck variety as these are the only types that send up a "flower" known as a garlic scape. Prized find at farmers market each spring, they make an awesome pesto.

German Red Rocamble Garlic
These get rejected, since they have a little green growth already (probably from the random warm days we had this fall, when the bulbs were in the gararge.)

And in they go...

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