Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Not just perennials

I confess that I am growing ANNUALS up here. Yes, I am not a perennial purist. However, I do know one of these types, who wanted to know if I grew perennials or annuals before taking up a gardening friendship.

Pictured: Yellow pot liles "Lemon Pixie", white zinnias, Snapdragons, and Pink Lilies "Farolito".

Sometimes I even feel bad for growing annuals, yet I justify this act by emphasizing that almost nothing else will grow in containers left out over winter! Those pampered gardeners in Toronto and Vancouver can flaunt their Tiarellas, Tulips, and English Ivys flowing from ornamental containers. Unfortunately, the rule for plants in containers is that they must be hardy to a climate two zones less than your present zone. That is, if you live in Zone 6, the plants in containers must be hardy to zone 4. This might work in warmer places, but technically, it would leave us in negative numbers.

Remarkably though, the snow cover does wonders here and I actually have some yellow pot lilies ("Lemon Pixie") that made it through the winter in whiskey barrels. I intended to leave them there, thinking they would die and compost away. I was quite suprised to see them back this year, especially since our dog's brother ATE all the flowers off those lilies last year. I since found out that lilies are very poisonous to animals, but he was fine except for the yellow pollen "mustache" that gave him away!

The doggie picture is our fine friend in all her sleek summertime glory, without the heavy undercoat. She looks much smaller in the summer! The wild blueberries are growing in her backyard habitat though I don't think she has been eating any of them.

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