Sunday, April 26, 2015

No Scent Yet

It is not likely that more closely watched wild arbutus plants exist anywhere.  Six days each week two trips are made down the hill to the mail box.  Arbutus plants are given a visual inspection on every return trip.  Frequently the protective wire cage is set aside so that fallen tree leaves can be removed from arbutus leaves.  This year's heavy snow load really flattened these evergreen plants.  I must confess to a certain amount of fluffing to expose hidden bud clusters.  Finally today, buds are beginning to open.  Their sweet fragrance is still a day or two away.  The sight of open flowers was a super spirit booster.

All of the flowers here from previous years have been white.  This plant was transplanted last year and the bud tips have shown pink for the past few days.  It is a female plant as shown by the seed clusters it produced last year.  We will watch to see if any of the other female plants display pink flowers.

We feel extra pressure to keep this bed adjacent to the road in good shape since it is on prominent display.  Most cars whip by at a high rate of speed so all that is seen is just a blur of colors.  Grass clippings did cover the undeveloped section in the distance but the quack grass made a return.  We will try to extend the garden by at least six feet this year.  The distant brown mound holds all of the plant clippings and weeds removed from the garden last year.  We were surprised by the volume of material taken from the garden.

The garlic planting looks promising.  Only five of the two hundred seventy bulbs planted have yet to make an appearance.  Daphne's method of treatment before planting has made a big difference on the health of our plants.  Last year we tried dried grass clippings as a mulch at planting time.  A winter's snow packed the trimmings into a difficult to penetrate mat.  This planting was covered with a thin layer of ground leaves.  Garlic tips had no trouble pushing their way past the leaf mulch.  We will watch to see if any problems follow this mulch.

1 comment:

Donna@Gardens Eye View said...

Great to see your arbutus growing so well. I also use leaf mulch on the garlic beds and they seem to thrive with it.