Spring has started, at least the laboring part of it, though the weather also is cooperating most days with mild temperatures and no extreme cold in the forecast. An odd few days of cold are common through March, and even into April, but now we’re calling a daily high of fifty-three chilly, so that’s making progress.

Yesterday was the first day I did much digging, though unfortunately not in my own garden. After months of relative inactivity, it was a joy to grab a shovel and dig, and I look forward to more in the next few weeks.

The yellow leafed Ogon spirea typically flowers in early to mid March, so it’s right on schedule. After flowering it must be cut hard to maintain a compact shape.

Deliveries of winter ordered plants have begun arriving, with more scheduled over the next month. These are small pots or bare roots, so not much digging has been involved, and unfortunately I’ve already chopped into a few allium bulbs. New growth is barely started on a number of perennials, so I’ve removed old growth, and so far I happily report that I haven’t dug into anything except the few alliums that are likely to be ruined. There are many, so the few will hardly be missed, but still it’s a shame.

Almost certainly, there will be conflicts once perennials grow. There’s always something that I’ve planted an inch away from another that wasn’t apparent in its winter dormancy, and usually these are quickly fixed with a new spot found for one or the other.

As I plant I’m trying to keep in mind what’s been ordered and still scheduled for delivery, and at the moment I’m stumped where I’m going to plant handfuls of orchids that will arrive in a few weeks. The spot for a marsh orchid (below) is easy, I have plenty of damp areas, but the Lady Slipper orchids must have moist, but not wet ground in filtered sun, and be in a prominent area. I didn’t pay a small fortune for these to not see them, so there’s likely to be a bit of moving things around that will happen when they arrive.

For me, this is the fun part. I have no plan, just general ideas, so I’m making it up as I go. And at the end of the day, or a month from now I’ll look at what I’ve done and mostly think all went well.

7 Comments Add yours

  1. Linus says:

    Where’d you get the Dactylrhizza from?

    1. Dave says:

      My memory is not that good, but probably Keepingitgreennursery.com

  2. Lauren says:

    Spring has sprung here as well- here is to more flowers to come!

    1. Dave says:

      As if there were not enough spring bloomers, there are plenty of flowers now from unopened buds on autumn flowering camellias, joining the spring bloomers that have just opened.

  3. tonytomeo says:

    Is that first orchid a species of Bletilla? It seems like there are more cultivars of that now. When I was in school, I knew only of bright pink Bletilla striata. It was considered to be invasive. I do not see it around anymore, so I suspect it was not as invasive as we learned it to be.

    1. Dave says:

      Yes, I’ve planted a handful of Bletilla cultivars. Here, it spreads enough that after five years there are enough to pluck a few divisions to share with my sons, but it’s definitely not at all invasive or overly vigorous.

      1. tonytomeo says:

        Well, that is nice. I would grow it regardless, even if it is more invasive in our region. I know I will eventually encounter the straight species like I knew in school, and will make a point of getting a pup.

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