In With The New?

If you’re thinking that I missed New Year’s Day with this post by almost 5 months, you’d be correct. But where I garden, it’s about the time to decide what has lived or died over the winter, where I have holes in any existing gardens, and what to plant in my containers.

As an aside, a friend of mine from Texas says she has a disconnect every time she hears me refer to the word “garden.”  Where she comes from “garden” means vegetable or crop planting. Clearly I am not using the word in that sense (for any that share my Texas friend’s sensibility). For me, the word refers to any ornamental planting on my property.

A trip just about anywhere brings me into contact with plants. I can’t even walk into my grocery store without walking by a decent display of annuals and perennials. So that brings up two questions: first, where do I buy my plants and second, what do I buy?

The first is sometimes easier that the second. In general, I try to get my plants from family owned garden centers. Does this mean I never shop the box stores or buy from my grocery store? Of course not. I am as susceptible to impulse purchases as the next person and if something looks really great outside the grocery store, I might just grab it.

Next, I worked for one of the box stores for over two years. They treated me very well (despite the way  some of their plants appear. I now have an explanation for that. In spring, they are literally so overwhelmed with customers that watering takes a back seat. Also, it not safe to be dragging hoses around when there are so many customers present. And they would prefer that customers not trip on hoses or slip on wet floors than worry about plants wilting. Now you know as well. Don’t fault the stores. It is part of the plan.) So I am loyal to my former employer to a certain degree.

But I worked for a family owned garden center for much longer so I try to shop those much more. If we don’t shop those, we will not have them–we will lose them to the box stores and the grocery stores. And we don’t want that.

I am already running a little long with this post. On Friday–Arbor Day in my state–I will talk about actual plant choices.

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