Sunday, February 24, 2013

Cold but spring is on its way

View of the backyard
Some of the horses have started shedding, a sure sign of spring. Skipper still has his full coat and is only wearing a new rain sheet so I don't expect him to lose his winter coat for a while yet. Have heard that light levels trigger the annual shed...not sure but I do know that temperatures play a part too.

The front yard
30-35F today, kind of cold and gray. February, I think, has to be the toughest month to get through. Good thing its the shortest month. The winter snows have been hanging on and we have what the forecasters call "shovelable snow" coming in a couple of days. The skis are at the ready at the front door, but so is my new aluminum cart for taking soil and pots to the back nursery area.

Feel a cold coming on so I am megadosing on Vitamin C and taking it easy. Pam and I had an easy day of work yesterday seeding and transplanting - counted the varieties I have seeded so far, not including vegetables, and it comes to a whopping 83 new varieties. Don't know if all the seeds will sprout, but that means a boatload of transplanting coming up.

Cold frames with remnants of box elder
We're out of space in the Oakland County Greenhouse and they have been so stingy with the leftover beds that they are still wanting a hefty price for them. Think I'll call again tomorrow and see if they've come down. Vicki's greenhouse was a comfy 58-60 yesterday but it is still going below freezing at night,. Perennials are hardy, but only when they've been in the garden, seedlings are tender. Have been cooling off the herb and perennial transplants in the bed by the door so they might be hardened off enough to go to Vicki's greenhouse.

New stock is coming in in 2 weeks - 17, 36 count flats of assorted plants from Raker's, a wonderful plug grower here in Michigan. I am always so impressed with their quality and their packing that I will always consider them as a supplier. The week after, more flats and 75 bare root plants are coming in from Walters Nursery - another excellent supplier and one of the largest growers of perennials They're here on the west side of Michigan and also will be one of my go-to suppliers.

Nursery beds covered in greens
So we're juggling space and hoping for some warmer nights so these new babies won't suffer. Wandered around the yard taking a few pictures today. A couple of posts ago, I asked whether you wanted to see gorgeous photos or the real thing. Well, an outdoor perennial nursery is not a glamorous place in late February. But, you can see the bones of the place and know that when spring hits the place will be up and growing,

Big cold frame swaddled in greens

Birdfeeders and boxwood
Greenhouse with birdfeeders

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