Sunday, February 22, 2009

Earth laughs in flowers...

I love to garden. This year I'm trying to put together a container garden on my deck. I had thought I would have a real garden but it doesn't look like it will work out this year. I do like the idea of having everything on the deck where I can see it through my patio door though. I also have a porch swing on the deck that I love to sit in, observe nature, daydream, and write. It will be nice having pretty flowers and plants right there to enjoy. Containers should cut down on the gardening chores too (no weeding for example) and make it more manageable for me with the CFS.

It's already warm here most's been in the upper 70's a lot. We still have some cold nights from time to time (it was 39 last night) but they won't last much longer and the daytime highs are ranging from 59 to 76F. It was cooler today at 59 but sunny. Basically, spring has pretty much sprung in Houston, I think. I couldn't be happier about that...I hate cold weather and the gloomy, dreary gray days get me down. It also means that I can quit dreaming about my container garden and start making it a reality. I'm mulling over everything I'd like to get and editing and re-editing the list. I have to be careful not to get so many that I get worn out watering.

So far I have a bunch of Knock-out roses that I bought on clearance not too long after Hurricane Ike. They were about $10-$15 each to start with but I got them for $1.50 - $3 each. They've done well over the winter...blooming periodically...very pretty. They are supposed to be very disease resistant and pretty much tough as nails. That's a very good thing! Most are still in their original nursery pots. I've only gotten 3 transplanted into big deck size planters that I already had. (Those planters have always had some kind of rose in them over the years.). I got 3 great big pots on sale recently (terracotta colored plastic...plastic doesn't make the soil dry out as quickly and the big pots won't be so heavy). A friend says I'm going to need a truckload of potting soil to fill them and my other pots, lol. I think he may be right.

Knock-out Rose

I also have 2 tomato plants I bought at the same time as the giant pots. I have never tried tomatoes in pots...I've heard that they do okay though. These are smaller tomatoes...not sure the plants will be that small. I'll just have to see. One is Husky Cherry and the other is Patio 100. I was really looking for herbs when I saw the stand of tomatoes. They had basil but it's a little too early...basil likes it consistently warm. I was tempted by some big gallon pots of rosemary and lavender but resisted. I grow basil from seeds usually and I'll get little pots of rosemary and lavender.

I definitely want rosemary, sweet basil, lemon basil, and lavender for the container garden. I want to find a pineapple sage, too, when it warms up. It's really neat smelling and gets nice and has tiny little red flowers and the young leaves are bright green some almost chartreuse. I'm thinking of trying to grow several (or a bunch) of herbs together, maybe in sort of a tub (not a bathtub tub...although I think a claw foot tub might be kind of quirky and cool in a garden sometime). The only other vegetables I'm thinking about are bell peppers and an interesting mix of lettuce. Rainbow coleus would be a pretty foliage plant to add.

Lipstick Pink Hibiscus

As for flowers, I know I want some lipstick pink hibiscus. I love them...I even wrote poem with them in it. I'm not sure what else right now. In a regular flower garden I've always had some mealy cup sage and coreopsis with some kind of white flowers and hot pink ones (blue toned pinks not yellow pinks). I love that combination. Lots of other flowers in those color families but they were the backbone...the standards, I always had. I don't like reds or oranges in my flower garden. For me blue toned pink is a very happy always makes me feel happy. I find that the pink, blue-purple, yellow, and white all lift my spirits. Colors really can affect your mood.

It would be nice to have enough growing to cut some for the house. I always used to have English cottage style flower gardens and herb gardens. There were always little informal bouquets of flowers, herbs drying, and home-made potpourri in the house. So pretty and smelled so good. I don't think that will probably be too possible or practical growing in pots, though...I don't think there will be enough.

I'll pick up a few more plants and flowers on my next good day when I make my grocery run. The potting soil will be a little more problematic.

My head is full of garden dreams these days!

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