Friday, December 21, 2007

And to all a good night!!!

While visions of sugar plums may not be dancing in your head, for who among us really know what the heck sugar plums are, hopefully you are ready for the holidays and looking forward to being with family and friends as we are.

This past year John and I relied on our years of experience to launch our new venture. However, we have also drawn from the knowledge of others in the nursery business we are fortunate to know. These folks helped lead us in the right direction, avoiding pitfalls that may have slowed our progress.

One such person was Eric of Blue Mountain Nursery, a wholesale perennial grower John has known for over 20 years. John and I were going to build a make shift cold frame for our potted peony plants until Eric told John about an insulation blanket he has used successfully for years. Eric stated if he had known about it sooner he never would have built greenhouses for winter cover.
The 12'x300' roll of fabric arrived and believe me we made an amusing sight as the two of us rolled it out on our driveway in order to cut off a 90' length. Then came the task of moving this huge piece of cloth to the field. Drawing on the memory of wallpapering with my daughter-in-law, I suggested her method of folding (thanks, Mel!) and it worked like a charm. Just in time too, as you can see winter has arrived and snow is lightly falling as I write.

Our plants are nestled all snug in their beds and we wish you and yours happy gardening in 2008!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Wreath Time

After spending a wonderful Thanksgiving with our West Coast family, it is again time for us to turn our attention toward Christmas.

Upon our return, we were greeted by our first snow of the season which put a few of our outdoor perennial chores on hold until some better weather returns(we hope!). So in the meantime, John has busied himself with something he has always enjoyed-making wreaths, swags, etc. for us and our family. Using a metal wreath ring, he wires a mix of greens, mostly from our own plants, makes a red velvet bow, slaps it on, then turns the wreath over to me to finish up.

John made one while we were in Washington for me to decorate with our granddaughter. Having learned his lesson from years ago when he made one for our sons to decorate, he only brought pine cones and glass balls as decorations. Our sons had access to all the Christmas decorations when we had the garden center and believe me EVERYTHING ended up on their wreaths including plastic poinsettias, Santas, candy canes, multi-colored glass balls of all sizes, etc. Such a hodge-podge and the boys loved it, but John not so much. Quite frankly he was embarrassed for anyone to find out that the wreath had been made at our garden center, for as their proud mother I insisted on hanging their handiwork on our front door. John prefers tasteful and understated as opposed to, well, gaudy.

In any case, our granddaughter has a very good eye for design and decorated a wreath that made her Pop proud, but there's no telling what she would have created if she had had the materials that had been made available to her dad and uncle!