Saturday, February 14, 2009

Snow and an Orchid for Valentines

I have recently noticed other garden blogs discussing things like "thaw" and "seeing the lawn again". Meanwhile, we sit under a fresh and generous blanket of snow. I don't anticipate seeing our lawn until April (I confirmed this sad fact by looking at past years' pictures).

It was a lovely cold sunny day, so I tried to get pictures of Kona in her luxurious winter coat. I threw a few large marshmallows out into the snow, where she nosed around looking for them. As it turns out, sniffing for marshmallows in the snow is not a skill of the husky-malamute.

Here's Kona and her "snow nose". It was about -23 C here today, which is about perfect weather for a dog like this. I heard her bark this afternoon (fairly uncommon for her) and noticed some young men cutting through the back woods. They sounded somewhat intoxicated from their language, at one point trying to imitate Kona's bark. We don't worry too much about people getting into our yard though, since the dog is big and folks generally have a healthy fear of dogs around here.

On reviewing my photos, I was surprised to see that this Paphiopedilum "Magic McNavy" also bloomed on Valentines Day of 2008. Prior to that, it bloomed March 2007 and November 2005. I think it has finally closed in on Valentines Day as its blooming season of choice. It is a unique flower in its own creepy bug-like sort of way. That's okay, since I don't see myself as the pink-roses-on-Valentines-kind-of-girl anyways.

My basement seedlings include these Aquilegia vulgaris "Clementine Formula Mix" and Jovibarba mix (a succulent closely related to Sempervivum). Both plants are very easy to grow.

The Jovibarba are probably going into the alpine garden bed, as they are low-growing and form a nice mat. They are nearly indistinguishable from Sempervivum (Hens and Chicks), with only their flowers setting them apart. So say the books anyhow; I will be waiting until summer to see their flowers.


breannep said...

are the succulents from seed or cuttings?

Gardenista said...

These are from seed. I can't recall where I bought them (mail order, like all my seeds). One growing though, you can make unlimited numbers of them by replanting the new little rosettes that roll off the bigger plants. I started these last fall.

blossom said...

Paphiopedilum "Magic McNavy" that you posted here is beautiful. I love orchids and yours is remarkable. Exotically stunning.

jodi (bloomingwriter) said...

That paph is awesome, Gardenista! The other plants are great but I am with you on the fun of orchids as opposed to roses.

easygardener said...

Well at least Kona is happy with the snow! I've not grown a Paphiopedilum before but they are attractive, despite looking like an extra in a sci-fi/horror movie.

kate smudges said...

It's hard to imagine that we'll be seeing lawn for many more weeks. In early April, if we are lucky. The orchid is gorgeous ~ love the colours (so much better than roses in my view).