Dark & Damp

Today was certainly cooler than yesterday and included overcast skies and some decent drizzle from time to time.  Things are greening up nicely out there including the notorious garlic mustard (Alliaria petiolata) seen above which actually stays green all winter under the snow.  We’ll target these soon as the second year plants (biennial) will be flowering and producing seed within the next three weeks or so.  There are still plenty of bulbs blooming out in the gardens and it’s a perfect time to catch the brief overlap of daffodils (Narcissus) at peak along with early tulips and many other minor bulbs (grape hyacinths, Siberian squill, striped squill, etc.).
It was another busy Spring day around the gardens.  Two fellas from Evergreen Irrigation came to start up our system today which includes checking all of our sprinkler heads throughout the gardens.  Joel and Shawn were also here to install a new water mover and get the large fountain in place.  They also helped clean the pond and added our first wave of organic treatments this year.  We’ll need some tweaks on both the fountain and some irrigation zones next week but should be in good order shortly. LP Tree Service was also on site for a tree removal.  At one point, all of this was happening at once!

Above is Kathy who earned some extra credit by coming in early to start transplanting plugs in to larger pots for this year.  She started by working on the new, variegated milkweed (Asclepias curassavica ‘Monarch Promise’) seen below.  I included some photos I took of this plant last summer which really show off the interesting foliage.  Eva later came to help Kathy out and they also  headed out in to the gardens for some tidying.  Kay was in to tidy a tough area but she always does such an excellent job.  Our daylily dividing crew today was led by Lisa I. and included Bev, Bob, 2 RECAPPERS, Ken, Peg, Deb and her granddaughter.  They did an excellent job and accomplished what they set out to finish!  Maury worked on lots of odd jobs and Dick H. was around to help as well.  Our Garden Development & Maintenance Committee had a meeting (Christy M., Big John, Ron, Hal, Iza, Maury, Larry H. and me).  We also saw Sue M. and many others today as well.

The rain didn’t slow the grounds crew.  Cindy helped process more caladiums and the plants that the ladies were transplanting.  She also worked on tidying, preparing tools for the divide today and applying more pre-emergent weed control.  Big John helped all our on site contractors today and kept everyone moving along.  He also had a wide range of duties as well.  Larry H. was also a big help this morning and continues to have a lead as our #1 mulch spreader (2016) – in terms of volume!   I had meetings and caught up on some desk work as well.

 ‘Monarch Promise’ milkweed (Asclepias curassavica) – annual
 ‘Monarch Promise’ milkweed (Asclepias curassavica) – annual
 ‘Monarch Promise’ milkweed (Asclepias curassavica) – annual
Grandma Deb with little helper
 daylily divisions (will be on sale April 29 and 30, 8 am – 4 pm) as will the pansies below!