Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Day Neutral Strawberries and the Lonely Rose

The Papaver rhoeas (Shirley poppies) are looking just fabulous, bringing lots of comments from passers-by. I just bought some seeds for double-flowered Shirley poppies in mix of colors and plan to spread these in other flower beds for next year.

While you may not be impressed by this rose bloom, it is probably one of the few ones in our town or region this year. I haven't heard of any living rose bushes around here after this past winter's severe cold. This rugosa rose was covered in a heavy layer of snow over the winter (shoveled off the driveway and dumped on the rose) and a few branches are still alive this year. I hope it will come back and flourish again next year.

Finally, I ate the first strawberry from the new plants I bought this spring. I later found out the other members of the family were terrified by the disappearance of the ripening berry, thinking the local marauding bear had eaten it. I reassured them that I was the berry eater, and that I heard a rumor that the conservation officers had dealt with the garden-raiding bear. This is a day-neutral strawberry of a variety called "Hecker". I got 6 plants from Dutch Growers in Saskatoon. I sought out this new type of strawberry after reading this Univ. of Saskatchewan article about day-neutral strawberries, which gave me hopes for bigger and better fruits than I have ever grown before. I should add that the strawberry was delicious.

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