In The Garden: Abundance of Blossoms Is A Good Thing… Some Exceptions!

The display of spring blossoms really gives both heart and soul a lift; we bury dead looking bulbs in the fall and new and breathtakingly beautiful life emerges miraculously in the spring, Hope springs eternal and does not disappoint! In order that the investment placed in our spring gardens might yield future abundance it is essential to remove all dead flowers from Daffodils, Tulips, Hyacinth etc. The stems should be cut off at their base but ALL leaves be left in place; they will continue to feed the bulbs which will not only produce more robust flowers next spring, but will multiply the number of bulbs; by removing the spent flowers, all the plant’s energies will go toward these two goals. Needless to say, when the clump grows too thick the quality of bloom will diminish…too many folk in a small tent gets uncomfortable… So, if the clump is getting cramped; wait until all the foliage is practically withered away, dig up the whole works and allow the bulbs to dry off; they will then easily separate and can be re-planted in a new spot with a dash of bone meal and compost, or given to a friend or Fall plant sale.

Some exceptions! Well clearly, not all flowers are welcome in the garden, or indeed in lawns! Please refrain from using toxic weed killers, we consume far too many preservatives in our food chain as it is, to deliberately introduce harmful chemicals into the atmosphere and the waterways is simply inviting disaster, there are alternatives! A wheelbarrow, Dandelion digger and an hour’s light work can dispatch a massive pile; Dandelion greens, when young, are a tasty addition to a salad and Dandelion wine is a very respectable product, great at the end of a hard day’s gardening… what more could you want? With all the many jobs in the garden it is not possible to get everything done at once, so even if there’s not enough time to get all the weeds out at once, then concentrate on the ones in bloom and stop the little blighters from spreading thousands of seed around! Young children love to pick flowers, encourage them to help by picking the weeds, teach them their names and maybe look up some of the interesting folk lore that abounds in the world of nature; make it an educational experience and maybe grow enthusiastic gardeners!

Now that the Forsythia has finished blooming the bushes could do with a good pruning, they have a tendency to get straggly and while pruning one can propagate new bushes by simply burying a low lying branch into the soil and weighting it down, by Fall it will have grown new roots and can be transplanted to a new site.