This time of year, those of us in New England begin to feel a bit like caged animals! It’s cold outside; sometimes damp and rainy, and it’s brown. The color of summer past lingers in our mind as we begin to think about what the future months will bring. Impending color; close your eyes and imagine….blue hydrangeas, purple clemetis and red geraniums. Do you remember the book Frederick? Written by Leo Lionni, Frederick was a mouse poet who collected colors for the winter. He kept his friends warm throughout the cold days with his colors and his poetry! It’s a wonderful children’s book!
Our warmer than normal weather has coaxed a few of my snowdrops out! Although it’s early for these delicate, tiny, white flowers to bloom, it’s not too early to explore your ideas for this year’s garden. My first suggestion is to shop local and pay a visit to the Madison Flower Shop, which has been servicing Madison for over forty years. As a little girl growing up here, I loved to wander through the greenhouse. The bright colors, the smell of the warm earth and the sound of the water feature revive the soul on a cold day! The Madison Flower Shop has recently begun a Facebook page; follow them on Facebook for information on new products as well as potential coupons! Circle Country Gardens (aka Hockings, LLC) offers a convenient web store. Find it at www.hockingsllc.com!
It’s so exciting when the seed and flower catalogues begin to arrive in the mail! White Flower Farm located right here in Connecticut will send you a beautiful catalogue. Just log on to www.whiteflowerfarm.com and sign up. You may also sign up for one from Annies Annuals and Perennials. Go to www.anniesannuals.com to sign up. While you’re there, check out their “Random Stuff We Love” link!
Baker Creek will also send you one. You can find the link at www.rareseeds.com. At Baker Creek, Jere Gettle and his wife Emilee are currently working to preserve and restore the Wethersfield, Connecticut landmark, Comstock, Ferre & Company. Comstock, Ferre & Company is the oldest continuously operating seed company in New England and it‘s right here in Connecticut! Go to www.comstockferre.com for more information.
You’ll find an E-tool manual as well as a catalogue link at www.johnnyseeds.com. You’ll also find a link to a seed calculator! Very useful. Go to www.forestfarm.com to sign up for yet another free catalogue and while you‘re there, check out the link for “Potentially Invasive Plants“! www.onaleeseeds.com let’s you shop by color; what fun! At www.oldhousegardens.com there’s a helpful link for the beginner gardener as well as an advanced bulb search link. Something for everyone! www.almostedenplants.com provides a Common Name Index and has their complete product inventory sorted by Common name or Botanical name!
Many of these websites will send you a few E-newsletters, such as www.summerhillseeds.com which also provides a “new seed” link. www.edenbrothers.com offers gorgeous wildflower mixes and provides very helpful planting information including a zone map; necessary for perfect planting. www.dianeseeds.com also offers an E-newsletter along with fabulous gardening links.
Brides-to-be take note…..www.easytogrowbulbs.com has a wonderful link called “Wedding Favour Bulbs”; I love that idea!
In several weeks, you’ll be able to take an inspiring day trip to one of the many flower shows happening in New England! Choose to visit one or more of the following for your garden inspiration. Spring really is just around the corner!
Connecticut Flower and Garden Show
February 23 - 26
Connecticut Convention Center
February 23 - 26
Rhode Island Convention Center
Boston Flower and Garden Show
March 14 - 18
Seaport World Trade Center
Portland Flower Show
March 8 - 11
Portland Company Complex
Seacoast Home and Garden Show
March 26 and 27
Whittemore Arena, University of New Hampshire