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I HAVE BEEN ROLLING THIS POST AROUND IN MY HEAD for some time now. About three weeks ago I spotted a little slip of a clematis. I nearly pulled it out while weeding and adding some new plants that I purchased the garden show. I remember planting it here several years ago under an aging lilac thinking it would be a great support for a clematis. It didn’t seem to do well and I was sure that it had died or that maybe I had moved it. I have a vague memory of moving it, but apparently did not get all of the rootstock; what a surprise! How has it managed to survive?

THIS kind of plant behavior always amazes me – I know it shouldn’t – but it does. Plants getting a foothold in the tiniest crack in a rock wall (and turning into large trees), the crotch of a tree, a little hole at the edge of pavement. The will to grow and reproduce is paramount and seems to take place against great odds. And this clematis is a case in point since I broke off a six inch piece of it when weeding – what a klutz! But, the roots are strong and there is new growth as seen in the photo above. Now I will baby it and see what happens this year. With luck it might bloom and then I will know which one it is.

I think that one of the most lovely forms in early spring are emerging hostas. They seem elegant and the color is so fresh. This is a new one, June Fever, from Naylor Creek Nursery, one of four hosta varieties that I purchased from them at the garden show in late February; the others are ‘UFO’, ‘Clear Fork River Valley’, and ‘Blue Angel’.

Speaking of the garden show, the display gardens were big! And showy of course, with fancy hardscape details, and lots of large specimen plantings. For me, there were few new ideas to incorporate into my garden; but that is not the reason I went. I went for the plant vendors. I was not disappointed and this year I made up for what I did not purchase through all of last year. I bought three daylilies: ‘Seal of Approval’, ‘Night Embers’ and ‘China Bride’ (Naylor Creek-great hosta selections); hachonechloa macra ‘Beni-kaze’, crocosmia x pottsii ‘Culzean Pink’, paeonia mascula ssp. russoi (tree  peony), echinacea ‘Sunrise’, and aruncus ‘Guinea Fowl’ (dwarf goat’s beard) from Far Reaches Farm (they have some very cool plants); lilies from my favorite source, B&D Lilies: ‘Rexona’, Belladona’, and ‘Yelloween’; ligularia ‘Osiris’ from Woodland Gardens of Port Orchard (no website), to add to my collection; and a small waterlily type dahlia, ‘Lauren Michele’ (I am partial to simple dahlia blooms) from Swan Island Dahlias in Oregon.  Every plant has a home in the garden except for the daylilies and dahlias which are in pots until I figure out their final locations in the garden.

Aquilegia ‘Lime Frost’

Signs of spring are everywhere and it is such a delight after a very dreary and rainy winter. We have of late, had enough fair days to accommodate general cleanup and weeding. Why is it that weeds don’t seem to have a season and grow the year ’round?

Trillium grandiflorum are in peak form with some are still emerging.

And the beautiful, but briefly appearing sanguinaria canadensis.

It is nice to have a camera available and in working order. The biggest challenge is in learning how this one works. I think the macro is pretty good, but I need to study up. Tomorrow it’s time to start tomatoes and peppers. Hooray, summer is on the way!

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