Friday, March 30, 2012

Dayton "Dirt" - March 30, 2012

Well, the frost this past week did a quick number on the Magnolias and some of the fruit trees and small fruits such as blueberries. It’s still too early to assess all of the damage on fruits but even if much of the orchards were spared this time what about upcoming freezes that we normally receive in April!

It’s almost time to bring the remainder of our stock out from winter storage as we have that in our plans next week as long as the forecast is decent.

Palm Sunday weekend is here and with it the Easter flowers adorn the greenhouse. Lilies, hyacinths, tulips, daffodils and then some will be showing off their skills.

I’m hoping that the weather remains somewhat cool in order to save some flowers for May! It won’t be long for the greenhouse to open late next month.

See you soon!


Friday, March 23, 2012

Dayton "Dirt" - March 23, 2012

Strange weather just continues here in northeast Ohio. According to local weather records that go back to 1886 this past winter was only the ninth warmest. The weather record that was broken was the 65 inches of precipitation we received in 2011.

At the nursery we had to accelerate our potting of bareroot trees and shrubs although I would much rather have cold to cool weather so that the plants would be able to push out some new roots before growth would break out.

Last Saturday with the “What’s New” seminar I was astonished at the turnout as when weather warms work in the garden beckons.

Tomorrow our seminar will be “Cooking With Herbs” that should acquaint many of us with this sometimes strange pallette of plants.

I remember visiting the United Kingdom in 2000 and thinking how expensive was the food in London and the food’s blandness. Then off through the Chunnel to Calais, France and then to Paris. At the time the French franc exchange rate with the dollar made France so much more affordable than the UK and the food was delicious! Sauces, creams and herbs seem to be a hallmark of French cuisine.

Maybe on Saturday, our expert will give everyone a few pointers on the “art” of herb use even if no one aspires to become an expert chef.

Plants in the greenhouse have gone “wild” with the warm, sunny weather so that we’ve had to do more trimming than normal to keep the growth in check.

See you Saturday.


Friday, March 16, 2012

Dayton "Dirt" - March 16, 2012

Tomorrow, on St. Patrick’s Day is when we’ll reveal the “new” for 2012 in trees and shrubs as well as perennial plants.

Then, the 24th will be our last program (almost) with a Cooking with Herbs presentation by the herb expert Amanda Saunders.

Actually, Debra Hardwick will be here on April 14th at 11 a.m. with her very popular program of All about Clematis which has been very well received in the past. Debra has about 900 clematis at last count and over 300 varieties. This then will be our final program for the season.

The nursery has been extremely busy with receiving stock, planting, transplanting and the like as well as getting ready for Easter. I must say that I really don’t like the early push of the season but as they say “Que Sera Sera”.

Hopefully it will be somewhat of a cool down just like the beautiful spring of 1973 when temperatures were in the 60's and 70's for late February and early March. Then the cool down came along with a foot of snow on March 17th. I remember vividly shoveling out our driveway and then joining the then 80 year old neighbor Joe Oser across the street. That year the weather just warmed gradually that resulted in one of the most beautiful springs ever.

Happy St. Pat’s Day and we’ll see you at the seminar on Saturday at 11 a.m.


Monday, March 12, 2012

Dayton "Dirt" - March 9, 2012

Paul Myer’s program on Aquaponics or put simply, the production of food for the home by way of a sustainable system. Sustainable is the key word here as the Aquaponic system is able to help people without ruining the earth. It reminds me of Wangari Maathai when she addressed border guards in her home land. She stated that the soldier’s should have a gun in one hand and a tree to plant in the other hand as it made no sense to protect the country when beneath their feet the land is eroding away and so much so that the case can be made as to what they are protecting.

Our presentation tomorrow is Garden Maintenance with Michelle Riley. Michelle has many years of the landscape trade under her arm and has a good feel for garden maintenance that must be performed and in many cases on time in order to achieve a landscape or garden worth enjoying..

Friday, March 2, 2012

Dayton "Dirt" - March 2, 2012

The sudden slip in the weather reminds us that winter is still capable of a cold blast now and then. About a week ago, I spoke to Mike at Bauman Orchards in Rittman about the problems of the mild weather and a possible too early spring.

Tomorrow, Paul Myer’s will give a program called Aquaponics that is in essence a self-sustaining system of producing food (including meat) for the home. Last week Paul was my guest during a series of interviews that I did to promote the Home & Garden Show in Akron through 1590 WAKR a.m. radio.

On the 10th of March, Michelle Riley who has conducted seminars as our adjunct to the nursery’s 11 a.m. seminars will be telling everyone about the do’s and don’ts of Garden Maintenance.

At the nursery, we’re now fully in the swing of production in perennial and annuals that will be ready starting about the first of May. Unfortunately, the longer days for us makes for a longer work day although I must admit that everyone enjoys the longer day lengths compared to the short dark days of winter.

This year, March 11 will mark our first day on daylight savings time as determined by Congress. For years the last Sunday in April was the standard for the time change.

Mark your calendars for the “What’s New” seminar on Saturday, March 17th as we’ll be showing you what’s new for 2012. The power pont program had to be cut back somewhat and doesn’t include all our new plants as trimming was necessary to avoid a long, long program.

The nursery is open now for business after the long winter hiatus.

Just remember spring is coming!