Sunday, January 30, 2011

a tropical respite

The garden show last week only whetted our appetite for more things spring-like and green. We were in luck because right in the heart of the east side is the City of Cleveland’s Rockefeller Park Greenhouse. Pat and I decided to visit ahead of the blizzard that is on its way.

Outside was a cold and snow-covered landscape, suitable for snow shoeing, skiing, sledding and other assorted winter activities. But not gardening. We pulled into the parking lot and were pleasantly surprised to see other cars in the parking lot. Inside we went, joining others in search of a winter respite. Inside it is perpetually hot and green. The sights are also very, very cool. The place is full of plants that I could never grow, but then, that’s why there are places like this.

The orchid room was straight out of Nero Wolf. My post only shows a few of the hundreds of orchids that filled the room.

Monday, January 24, 2011

I love garden shows

We are real lucky living in Cleveland. We get two garden shows: a big show, which Pat and I went to this weekend, and a huge one later in February. The parking lot was packed when we arrived. It was 10 degrees and overcast outside, but it was spring inside. Voc Ed students from the Auburn Career Center in Concord Township built a 2400 sq.ft. garden. I think it was the best garden at the show. The hosta and flowers were sprinkled with water and were beautiful. You can tell the students worked really hard. Garden shows have that "garden show" smell. It makes you think that spring is right around the corner, not two months away.

A funny thing happened after about 15 minutes at the show. People with cameras were everywhere. I mean Pat and I each had a camera, but I guess I never made the connection between cameras and gardens. That means that there are thousands of people going home after garden shows and saying, "I should do that" or "I should get this".

We met members of the Garden Club of Cleveland. I think I'll give it a try. Pat and I have a busy month ahead with three more garden shows. The Big Home and Garden Expo in Cleveland is 2/5 -13. The Akron Home and Flower Show is 2/25-27. The Central Ohio Home and Garden Show in Columbus is 2/26-3/6. The yard ornamentaton vendor who was at the show last weekend will be at the Columbus show. I told Pat we'll take the Aztec. It has more room than the Hyundai.

Ivy on fake animals, errie.

I never miss a chance to give a shout out to that most magnifcant of Ohio products, sweet peet. Pat and I use 15 yards a year, nothing else, and I don't work for these guys.
Proof that if you don't keep moving in the garden, ivy will get you. It's sort of like Day of the Triffids. It gives me the creeps.
I love yard ornaments. When I pass by, I can hear the voices, "Jim, Jim, check us out."

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Ligularia in January

This is our ligularia patch. As you can see, ligularia don't do real well, flower wise, when it's 20 and snowing. Since we don't dead head, there should be a bunch of new ones in Spring. Just wait, come March, Pat will be telling me to give some of the new ones away.

Butterflies and bees love these things.
Two days till the garden show.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

a little sun

I’ve not posted in a while because I’m been in a mid-winter funk. The ground’s covered with snow, the weather forecasts call for more snow, and I can’t remember the last time I saw the sun. We’re still weeks away from the annual Plain Dealer articles about winter depression and the disappearance of the sun.
Well, today brought a little sun out. While I was not born with a sports gene, I do have a love for Chicago sports teams. It’s more an emotional thing than knowing player names and statistics. That’s why the internet was invented. The BEARS won. Something about orange and blue brings back all those memories of futility interspersed with the occasional “Wow.” I’m not sure what part of history today is, but it was an enjoyable interlude from the depressing gray dullness of a Cleveland winter. Being a Bears fan only goes so far because next week, in addition to the Bears-Packers game, is the first of two Cleveland Garden shows. As you know, you can never go to too many garden shows.

For you Chicago Bears fans, a musical interlude. For any Seattle Seahawk fans, sorry.