Friday, May 24, 2013
From First To Last
Plant and seed catalogs begin appearing in our mailbox earlier every year. Many winter hours are devoted to reading about new to us plants and dreaming about the coming gardening year. Orders are written and rewritten building interest in what is to come. Roots and Rhizomes specializes in choice Daylilies and Siberian Iris and we have established a pleasing collection of both with their help.
Coronation Anthem Siberian Iris was selected for purchase this year. When our order finally arrived here none of the plants looked alive and the iris was missing. A second box was delivered yesterday and the picture shows the contents and their condition. One of the plants appears to be totally dead while the other two may find some life this year but flowers are years away. If I were younger waiting years for a new flower would be reasonable but the number of seasons left for me is not limitless.
The purpose of the energy drink, included for free with my order, eludes me. Is it offered as an explanation for the poor quality of the plants or is it intended to ease my pain? I think it's bouncing around in the box only helped to the damage the plants in transit! The energy drink went out with today's trash.
Campanula portenschlagiana has a name long enough to be impressive. It has shown us that it will grow in a crevice in our stone walls. How this plant finds either anchorage or nutrients in such a location is not understood but it puts on impressive growth each year. Healthy green foliage sporting violet colored flowers looks great against our walls. When removed from the shipping box, this year's plant had been reduced to dark slime by too many days in the box. I was certain that it was dead but I placed it on the wall in partial shade anyhow. The plant appears to be finding some life which is truly amazing.
Some how the abuse that these plants have been forced to endure has sucked the fun out of obtaining them. We garden because we enjoy both the challenges and the rewards that come with working the soil. Commercial distribution of plants should not nearly kill them before they reach their new home. Working with the plants that already grow here sounds like a more pleasant undertaking. Roots and Rhizomes managed to kill off more than plants this year.