Saturday, February 28, 2015

Winter Interest

I know some gardeners like to talk about winter interest in their garden. We've gotten over 100 inches of snow in about a month. My idea of winter interest is... well...

I'm interested to see if our dog figures out that the fence is proportionally low enough for her to get over...

I'm interested to see how much work and/or money it's going to cost to repair the damage from the leaking roof...

I'm interested to see if the gutters stay on the house or if the ice dams are strong enough to pull them down...

Most of all I'm interested to see how long it will be before the snow is gone and I can even start to THINK about planting my vegetable garden... It's under there. Somewhere.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Problem with Snow

In case you've been living in a hole - Boston (just down the road from me) has had it's third snowiest winter on record this winter. And most of that has been in February. I've got about 4 feet of snow on the ground in my yard right now.

The bit of plant to the right is part of a four foot tall Pieris 

Even our fuzzy dog is tired of it. 

But what problem is this causing to my garden? It's causing a problem that I'll have to deal with in April and/or May.

I'm still getting new catalogs from mail order companies.

I've ordered too many plants.

Because of the snow I'm not getting out of the house as much as normal. So I'm stick inside, bored, and longing for some green. And I've got this great big stack of catalogs on my desk. 

Add to that the fact that my garden looks like this...

and I can't exactly go outside and look at the garden and notice where the empty spaces are or where I could possibly tuck in  a new plant. I think I've ordered about 2 or 3 plants for each space.

Oh, look. I haven't ordered anything from the new High Country Gardens catalog yet...

Monday, February 2, 2015

What's that smell?

I'm a mad biologist who has filled her house with life: about 70 houseplants, 3 cats, 1 dog, 1 large fish tank and Walter the snail. So sometimes my house, well, smells (not in a bad way, just in a well lived in way. Well, I guess the house perfume industry would argue that any smell except for their house perfume is a bad smell but I just don't buy that).

Last Friday I went upstairs to bed and smelled an unfamiliar odor. Sweet. Floral. Hmmm... I didn't think anything upstairs was blooming. I checked. Nope nothing. Maybe the maids used a new cleaning product when they came earlier in the day?

I found the source the next morning when I walked into my home office (which is right below the bedroom) and go a stronger wiff. 

Ah-ha! Hoya!

Hoya iacunosa

This is a very small Hoya and it only has one bloom cluster (yes, those are my fingers holding the bloom) but it is enough to spread fragrance throughout the office, through the ceiling and in to our bedroom. Very impressive!