Saturday, March 17, 2007

Seed king to the rescue

Be careful what you wish for. Through a combination of persuasive rhetoric and petulant threats, I managed to sell the neighborhood association on returning hanging baskets to the street this summer. Of course, it turns out the budget isn't all it should be, so we're cutting corners everywhere we can, including potting our own baskets. We figure most of our resources will need to go toward a watering service; the baskets are too high and water sources too few and far between on the street.

As we sat conferring on plant selection during our first meeting, we had the impulse to call in one of the neighborhood's best plantsmen. Bob grows hundreds (thousands?) of annuals from seed in his basement every year; he also maintains a small but lovely perennial garden and koi pond. He immediately and most generously offered to grow as many plants as we needed and obligingly wrote down cultivars and colors.

Yellow, purple, and white, we're thinking. They'll need to be hardy and drought-resistant. Bob is growing us some marigolds, wave petunias (Tidal Wave Silver), tall ageratums, and other annuals, while another basement magician will produce a crop of yellow cannas. We'll have plenty for both the sidewalk planters and the baskets.

Even if they're not the most exciting plants in the world, I'm looking forward to this effort. While many have landscaping services take care of all this for their neighborhoods, we're growing and planting our own. I've found too, that while Bob's seedlings will start out small, they'll be lush and healthy when we need them the most: in late July, August, and September.


Rosengeranium said...

I think you do wonders for your neighbourhood!

Happy Gardening!

snappy said...

What does he normally do with the hundreds of annuals he grows?Here in Wakefield they have started advertising Britain in bloom where towns and cities beautify with flowers and shrubs trying to win acclaim and fame,lol.
At leat you feel community minded enough to participate, and to think about hanging baskets.Who will water them?

EAL said...

I'll have a post about all the "in blooms" on Garden Rant Wednesday.

Bob shares his plants with all--but his seedlings really don't get big until mid-July, so for beautification purposes, we have to buy mature plants to get things started.

He does not have greenhouse conditions.

Someone will water them--not me!

KC MO Garden Guy said...

I think this is a great ideal. Maybe I will get some of the neighbors together and try to do the same. We have no neighborhood association but it could be fun as long as my money holds out.