Monday, March 5, 2018

Saturday, February 24, 2018

After our brief warm up, I'm starting to see signs of spring. Outside, the pussy willows are showing.

And inside, planting has begun in earnest. This is a flat of newly planted echinacea or purple coneflower seedlings.

John was home so I had help for the first day of transplanting. We did all the first batch of seedlings that were ready and also did a few of the perennial plugs I have ordered. Most of the plugs I order are for specific varieties of plants, like lavender, some sages and rosemary that cannot be grown from seed.

As the winter winds down, it's always exciting to see plants in the greenhouse again.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Some winter weather, a warm up for a few days, more winter weather and another warm up. The February roller coaster is in full swing. Ice can be quite hard on garden plants, but it certainly makes everything look like a glistening fairy land.

When the weather is discouraging, I focus on spring. The number of flats of seedlings in the basement is increasing. The combination of cooler temperatures in the basement and being under the lights produces nice, stocky seedlings.

And I received my spring order of pots and soil. After warming up in the greenhouse, I can start filling flats of pots with soil so they will be ready at transplanting time. The smell of warm soil early in the season is a real treat - another indication that spring is coming.

Winter hours for the shop are Thursday-Saturday from 9am to 5pm.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

I have given up hope that my outside rosemary plants have survived. After the New Year's cold snap, I held out hope for one plant. It still had green leaves at the bottom and the inside of the plant. But after the second round of cold temperatures, it looks completely brown and dead. I've had outside rosemary plants survive two winters fairly regularly, but never had one make it through three winters. I'll just keep trying. Last year, my creeping rosemary made it through the winter and that was a first.

But I have seen some signs of spring when I was out. I saw a few tiny springs of green lemon balm in the garden. Salad burnet still has green foliage. And check out the witch hazel flowers. I know they're small, but you have to love any plant that can bloom in the middle of winter!

I can watch our progression towards spring inside, too. The first batch of seedlings is growing on nicely under lights. The second batch has just germinated. Now, I've reached the point where I start seeds every week. Not a lot at first, but each week the numbers grow. Happiness is seeing seedlings growing in winter!

Thursday, January 4, 2018

With the extremely cold weather, I'm glad there's some snow to provide insulation to the plants in the gardens and the stock plants that are buried in what serves as our vegetable garden in the summer. Cold temperatures and high winds without any type of protection are very hard on plants, particularly those that hold their foliage in the winter.

I'm preparing myself to lose my large outside rosemary plant. It has survived two winters, but I'm afraid this cold snap will do it in. The larger the plant, the larger the root systems, which gives it a better chance of survival. But an extended period of cold, like this one, usually means the end of the plant.

On a springy note, my first batch of pansy seeds have germinated. So spring is just around the corner!

Due to the extremely cold weather, we have delayed the opening of the shop. Beginning January 11, the shop will be open Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 9am to 5pm.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Thanks to all who came to our recent holiday open house. The weather was cooperative and we had good turnout both days. We realize how many things are going on this time of year and we appreciate the fact that you took time to visit us. We still have lots of unique and fragrant herbal gifts in the shop plus live topiaries and a small selection of culinary herbs available. If you didn't get to our open house, stop by and visit during our regular hours - Tuesday-Saturday from 9am to 5pm through December 22.

This Sunday, December 10, we'll be a vendor at the Lancaster Liederkranz Christkindlmarkt at the Lancaster Liederkranz pavilion. The show is free to attend and is open from noon until 6pm. There are vendors selling a variety of products, (we're the only herb business) plus German singing and dancing and lots of German food and drink. That's what John is really looking forward to!

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Most of the leaves are off the trees, revealing some treasures that were previously hidden. I'm always intrigued by birds' nests. Like their makers, there is a lot of variety to be found. There are different shapes and sizes, lots of materials used and quite a range of craftsmanship involved. Some are carefully and intricately woven while others are more slap dash in appearance. I guess birds can be like people in that way. This nest even had a bit of plastic woven into it - maybe a bit of weather proofing.

And I also came across a praying mantis egg sac. I always wonder how many hatch out of each casing. It looks is it could be a lot.

The shop is nearly ready for the holiday season. Our holiday open house will be held Friday and Saturday December 1&2 from 9am to 5pm. We'll have specials in the shop, plants available in the greenhouse, prize drawings and herbal refreshments. We hope you can stop by and enjoy our herbal take on the holidays. Our regular hours (Tuesday-Saturday 9-5) continue through December 22.