Showing posts from November, 2011

Moldy Tulip Bulbs

Moldy tulip bulbs are a big disappointment when you are hoping to fill a bed or some pots.

It is not that unusual for their skins to have a bit of penicillin mold but these are beyond that tad bit stage.


So, what to do? The plant references say to throw them out and buy new ones but I already spent $22 for 50 of these white tulip beauties.

First, they got a soak in 1% bleach solution in the kitchen sink in the hope that the bleach would stop the mold from continuing to grow without killing the life force in the bulb itself. After a good slosh around, I wiped them off to see how much damage was beneath the blue and black.

 This tulip bulb is soft to the touch and there is little chance it will thrive in the soil.
This basal root on these have been ruined by mold. The final step I took to try to salvage part of them  was to spray them thoroughly with fungicide.

 They are all planted in the garden now though some of them will probably not do well. In particular, the ones that the mold tu…

Propagate Begonia Stem Cuttings in water - Cane-like Angel Wing Begonia

Propagating by stem cuttings is just about the easiest way to make more begonias for next summer's garden. During the fall, I regularly trim off 3-node long cuttings and put them into the growing pots where they take root.

Now that cold weather has arrived, I root the stem cuttings in a vase of water. It's a great way to produce more pots of Begonias for next summer's garden.

Water the plant well the day before.

Take a cutting about 4-inches long, with 3 nodes, from a healthy stem.

Use a perfectly clean container. Rinse the container with a drop of bleach if you are uncertain about its spotlessness.

Remove all but the top leaf or two. There should be no leaves in the water.

The cutting should  have a healthy leaf node at the bottom. Don't leave a stub below the node. Place the cutting into the water, and place the container out of the sun. In a couple of weeks, you will see new roots beginning to form.
Check the water periodically to make sure it is still fresh. If it…

Carols and Crumpets Craft Fair - Dec 3 - at Tulsa Garden Center

Tulsa Herb Society Carols and Crumpets: An Herbal Craft Fair Dec 3 from 8 to 3pmSnowflake Café open from 11 to 2 Tulsa Garden Center,2435 South Peoria AV, Tulsa
Information – Patsy Wynn 918-496-8019 or The annual Tulsa Herb Society holiday craft fair, Carols and Crumpets, will be held on Saturday, December 3 from 8 am to 3pm at the Tulsa Garden Center.
Their annual raffle is always popular. This year’s winner will take home table top white wool, feather tree with felt beaded cupcake, petite four and ribbon candy ornaments with a coordinating beaded tree skirt. Many of the outside vendors will be familiar to attendees but there will be plenty of new crafters and the artists’ creations will make great gifts for yourself and anyone on your gift list.
Herb Society members contribute a room full of fresh greenery from their gardens that you can take home to use for decorating. In addition, Utopia Gardens will have live wreaths and Lori Wilbins Designs will have greenery wreaths…

Winter's approach

No longer frost warnings, the freeze warnings are coming on the local weather forecasts. Seems too soon but everything has been pulled into the shed despite my current state of denial.

The local big box store had these hostas on sale for two bucks so I bought a few. On the right side of the photo is one of the plants as purchased and on the left is another plant that I divided into two pots to double my bounty for spring planting.

 Each  fall for the past three years, I've taken cuttings from our trailing petunias and potted them. They root easily in potting soil, without growth hormones. A few died so the empty planting cells were re-planted with fresh cuttings. They grow like crazy and will bloom in the shed this winter.
 The succulent in the clay pot made a dozen babies, or pups, as they are called by growers. When bringing them in for the winter, each pup was carefully pulled away from the parent plant and potted. They will probably be given away.

The plant on the far right is a …

Clematis - 3 types and 3 pruning guidelines

Regular pruning is much better than letting plants grow and grow without shaping. But, I've never pruned our 3 clematis vines. It's a little confusing since you are supposed to know what you have in order to prune at the correct time to make the plant healthier and bloom more.
Did you know that the color we enjoy is not clematis's flowers? Their flowers have no petals. The color is sepals and stamens. The pretty fluffy plumes that show up after flowers fade is the stamens expanding and curling.
In "Armitage's Vines and Climbers" Allan Armitage confesses that his favorite Clematis varieties are the Clematis texensis, Texas clematis, because they are not rampant growers, are idiot proof,  slow growing, take full sun and have little trouble with our humidity.
Scarlet Leatherflower is another name for the Texas native Clematis.
Our 3 vines came from assorted plant sales so their lineage is questionable. They bloomed less this year than ever before so one can assume i…

Gardening in Dry Shade - Graham Rice has recommendations

If there is a tree, shrub row or a building on your property, you have dry shade.Shade by a fence, overhanging roof or wall often has enough light several hours a day to make many plants grow. The shade under a tree can last all day and the tree’s roots can steal all the water, making it even more difficult for flowerbeds to thrive.
Fall and winter are a good time to take on these areas. The drought seems to be behind us for the time being and it is easier to work outside in cooler temperatures. Perennial plants (those that live more than one year) can successfully be planted until the ground is frozen.
If you are adding trees to an existing landscape, choose the ones that allow sun to filter down to the ground. Trees that produce dense shade include maple, beech and magnolia. Trees that allow sun to penetrate to the soil include paperbark maple, dogwood, birch, white beam and ginkgo.
Some of the best shade trees to plant if you want lawn and plants to grow below are: Paperbark maple, pa…

Plant paperwhites inside now for Christmas bloom

Paperwhites are daffodils or narcissus that are commonly used for winter indoor forcing because they need no chilling period to successfully bloom.

They are perennials in zone 8 but annuals in colder climates such as our zone 7. I confess that when I take them out of the forcing bowls each winter, I do plant them in the garden. If the winter is not too harsh, they bloom at least one more year.

Ziva has become popular because this variety has less scent than the others and many people think the scent is too strong.

They bloom 6-weeks after planting so if you want them for Christmas, it's time to start.
These came from a big box store and are already sprouting which is not necessarily desirable.
Do not remove the outer skins but if they fall off while you are working with the bulbs it's OK.  You'll need bowls, vases or pots without holes. Add 2-inches of sand, soil or stones. I've always used gravel and stones.
If you google containers of forced daffodilsyou will see coffee…

Three Rivers and Three Forks Trail

Today I went on a trek with Scott Robinson, Muskogee Port Authority Director, to see places along the Three Rivers where the extension of the current Three Forks Trail would be extended.

By the way, if you are interested in walking/hiking trails, here's a website to check out - "Arkansas and Oklahoma Hiking Trails"

Here are a few photos from places that will eventually be opened up to walkers, hikers and mountain bikes. The larger, long-term plan is to connect the Three Forks Trail with the Jean-pierre Choteau trail that goes from Ft. Gibson's Clinkenbeard Park to Lock 17 on the waterway.

This snapshot of a map of the area shows the three rivers area with the Port of Muskogee on the left.

Here's one of the beautiful places along the rivers. Right now it is accessible - notice the fishermen on the other side. Usually it can be walked over but the recent rains have filled the "road" so it's too deep to go across.
 There are several p…

Three Forks Harbor Trail

The new primitive trail at Muskogee’s Three Forks Harbor has a lot to offer nature lovers. The winding dirt and sand paths take hikers through Oklahoma native trees and wild flowers that are alive with butterflies and skippers. Plus, there are phenomenal bird watching opportunities.
A primitive trail is one that is unpaved and maintained only enough to keep it open. There are holes, rocks, and a few tree trunks in the path to walk around, so sturdy shoes or a mountain bike are required.
Sometimes called the Port-to-Fort Trail, it is opened up 2-miles so far, and will be 4.5 miles long by next summer. When complete, it will end at the historic Ft. Gibson landing where steamboats loaded and unloaded until the railroads replaced them.
Lewis McLemore, Port of Muskogee operations manager, said that the idea for the trail came out of 1999 planning sessions. Then, in 2003 the trail’s GPS coordinates were established and a 50-year Corps of Engineers lease was signed. A rough trail was cleared in…

More scenes from Lauritzen Gardens - Omaha NE

It took my breath away to be strolling along and suddenly see the Japanese Garden. Sunpu Castle Gate with the Mt. Fuji replica in the distance.

The Song of the Lark Meadow is a gift to the hundreds of insects and birds that visit.

There are many restful places to stop and soak in the beauty.

Scenes from Omaha

A portion of Lauritzen Gardens in Omaha is named for the Union Pacific Chairman and CEO John c. Kenefick. The area is beautifully landscaped.. There is no charge to visit this incredible display.

Kenefick Park is home to Centennial No. 6900 and Big Boy No. 4023. Largest, most powerful diesel-electric and steam engines ever built.

The Lauritzen Gardens landscape is dotted with significant art pieces. Everywhere you walk you will wonder if you are in an outdoor art museum.

 This bronze is in the Founder's Garden, a shade garden filled with 50 varieties of hostas and ferns.