Friday, August 17, 2007

How did this happen?

Warning! Porn alert! These are pictures from catalogs! Do not expect this at home!

This is the first white version I will have of this native plant (erythronium).

So far—for a property already riddled with bulbs, stuffed with perennials, and severely limited by tree roots/shade and a good amount of hardscaping—I have allocated close to $500 for bulbs, not counting an as-yet-unsubmitted order to The Lily Garden (see Sunday’s Garden Rant post for some thoughts about them).

I am adding species tulips. This is batalini "Bronze Charm."

One reason is that I decided to plant up more containers this year; last year I just did a few. In spite of the cool weather, they look very cheerful lining the patio. Another is that I have created a new perennial bed in front—it won’t look too good in the spring (I am expecting a few plants won’t make it—frost heave) and will need some color. I have allocated some wildflower tulips, erythronium, and martagon lilies to that space.

And, of course, I ordered no lilies last year. I’ve noticed a decline in some of the older plants (six years seems to be the magic number), so they will need to be replaced. Also, I am going to remove the biggest rose bush in order to make room for lilies and tall summer perennials and annuals (sage, tall rudbeckia, nicotiana sylvestris, verbena bonariensis, etc.).

I am renewing the White Henryis in the lily bed.

Finally, I did far fewer hyacinths last year. This year, I’ll buy more antique forcing vases (yeah, ebay, here I come) and give a few more as gifts in pots.

Grand Soleil d'Or. A difficult tazetta to force, but, unlike Ziva, it does not smell like urine. Always a plus.

Oh, yes—I expect to give a sampling from this order to Ron, my gardening … pupil? That doesn’t seem right. I am not sure I like apprentice either, as that would imply that he is helping with my garden as part of his learning experience, which he sure as hell isn’t. I know I’m the coach, but what is he? Oh, well, to be pondered another time. In any case, I want him to try out some of the more unfamiliar bulbs to see if they work for him.

I have always wanted these. Not the prettiest eremus, but it is an old one and might be hardier.

So far, the lucky vendors are Old House Gardens, John Scheepers, and Brent and Becky’s. Scheepers for the bulk of the hybrid tulips (which will be treated as annuals), B&B for the small bulbs and wildflower tulips, and OHG for species lilies, as they are one of the few vendors that bothers. Though—Scheepers has some. Let’s see if they send me the right bulbs. (If I like what they send instead I never complain.)


Blackswamp_Girl said...

Gardening Mentee? As in, you're the Mentor?

Carol said...

Hopefully when all those bulbs flower in your garden, you'll feel like you're the winner! Serious envy going on from here. I NEED to get my fall bulb orders figured out.

Carol at May Dreams Gardens

Apple said...

It sounds like you'll have enough bulbs that you might want to rethink making Ron an apprentice! He will have to learn how to plant them after all. After seeing all the beautiful lilies on GW that will most likely be the focus of my order so I'll check out OHG.

Ron said...

I am glad to see you have raised this issue of nomenclature with your readership, Coach. Your role is easy to name: coach, mentor. I sort of like mentee the most of the various options I've thought of/tried out for my own role, but I am very open to suggestions. Not sure I like the way this is heading from the first few comments--me heading over to GWI Central to plant hundreds of bulbs while you sit sipping basil mojitos on the veranda. (Do you even have a veranda? Or will I have to construct one for you as part of this work/study program? I'm not that kind of mentee! After all, I barely work when I'm paid to, as you well know.)

That sounds more like an internship, come to think of it.

But I am looking forward to these new gifts heading my way. I should be giving an apple to my teacher at the very least--perhaps an appletini would be more like it.

EAL said...

Mentee it is. Don't worry Ron, my garden is a minefield of previously planted bulbs that only I can negotiate.

Apple, OHG is pricey, so also consider Brent and Becky's or Scheeper's for your hybrid varieties.

kate said...

Hmmm... I'd say Ron is like the pupil and you're the teacher.

I haven't even begun to think about spring bulbs yet. One of these days ... I like those daffodils. The orange tulip is stunning too!

Kati said...

I had such a good laugh at this post, filled as it was with delightful 'garden porn' and being introduced to Ron. I heartily commend him for realizing that every serious gardener needs a 'mentee' who offers to bring the teacher appletinis!

Grace said...

Does anyone know if you can plant eremus in pots?

EAL said...

Not if the contents of the pots would freeze over the winter. As is apt to happen.