Posts tagged crocus

Toronto Botanical Gardens-Spring

Spring has sprung, the grass has riz, I wonder where all the flowers is!

I was hoping I would find out.  A garden lecture that I was attending with Helen from Toronto Gardens, was being held at the Toronto Botanical Gardens and I thought I would visit a little early and see what was happening in the garden. Luckily with daylight savings time, it is light in the evening, the last lecture that I heard there, Heathcliff of the Hedgerow, was in winter, and it was too dark to take pictures.

The first plant I found as I walked towards the front door was Hamamelis x intermedia  ‘Primavera’. She is much paler than Arnie, and I couldn’t get close enough to have a whiff(darn), there was a wide flower bed under her.

In the small floral courtyard was a large collection of Helleborus “Blue Lady“.

At least that is what they were labelled, although quite a variety of shades.

Isn’t she lovely,

And she is very fertile, I could not believe how many babys were scattered around.

In the large courtyard, heaths were flowering. I have never grown these, although I was smitten by a gorgeous display of them at Holland Park, in London.

 Galanthus was rising out of the heath, not nearly enough for my liking. 

Actually, I thought there should be a lot more small bulbs on display at the TBG. It could really extend the season for them, maybe they could even have “snowdrop parties” like in the UK. I wonder if there is a suggestion box inside.

But they did have eranthis. I am hoping that mine will be in flower when I visit Kilbourne Grove next time.

I love these sunny little flowers, again, big drifts are needed.

These crocus, (don’t know the variety) were a good match with Euphorbia myrsinites.

Another patch of helleborus, this is Helleborus niger “Maximus”.

But, look at the magnolia above them. This is a sunny, warm, protected corner, and she is certainly taking advantage of that.

More helleborus, this time Helleborus foetidus.

I grew this in Kingston, but it never did this well, it keeps its flower bud above ground all winter. I wonder if the massive snow cover at Kilbourne Grove would make it happy.

Because, it is gorgeous.

They only had one urn, potted up so far, right at the entrance.

Can you see the lettuce in it? Toronto Botanical Gardens theme this year is “Edible Summer” and they are starting here.

But an urn does not have to be planted to be beautiful.

At least, that is what I think.

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In The Green

No, I did not win the lottery, although the above title usually does refer to money. But in this case I am referring to snowdrops.

I was reading an English garden blog the other day and drooling over her pictures of the snowdrops in her border. Dear Reader, she had thousands. OMG! how could I possibly achieve this look in my lifetime, (ok, forget the lifetime, I want to achieve it in the next two years).  She wrote that she had planted 2000 bulbs and was thinking of purchasing more “in the green”.  And then Sylvia (who all Blotanists know and love) wrote a letter on Tulips In The Woods blog about her snowdrops.  Now I am even more greedy!

Now, every UK gardener knows what this is, but it is not common at all for North Americans. In fact, I do not even know if you can purchase them this way at all. But, you can buy snowdrops, (as well as bluebells, aconite and some crocus) “in the green” or growing. They are dug up and shipped in the spring, when they have roots and leaves. Snowdrops settle into your garden so much easier at this stage, they hate being dried out.

When I was moaning to Julie about the lack of North American (at least Canadian) doing this, she was appalled.   To quote, “how are you ever going to get them to grow”. But then Julie had a brilliant idea, she suggested advertising for gardeners who might be able to spare some.

So if you, or you know of anyway one who would be interested in selling some snowdrops, please let me know.  Obviously, they would have to be in Canada, such a headache importing from the US or overseas. I am so hoping to have (one day) the kind of show that you can see in the Rococo Garden Painswick.

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Yummy! In Toronto, we have “Summerlicious” and “Winterlicious”.  It takes place during the slower times in a restaurant, and was planned to bring in more business.  You get a prix fixe for a set price and a lot of very expensive restaurants participate. For a lot of them, it is the only way, you will ever be able to afford to eat there.

For me,  I need bulbilicious. I could never afford to plant the quantities of bulbs that I would want to in my garden, after all how much would it be for 10,000 scillas, thousands of daffs, millions of crocus, etc.  I want what the English have. I want a snowdrop wood, where all you see are yard after yard of snowdrops, crocus lawns, bluebell woods.  In England, they will plant them in the thousands and then give it 100 years or so, it will be spectacular. I want to see Wordsworth vision of daffodils in my back yard.

Whats a poor girl to do? In Canada, we do not have the huge number of mail order bulb companies that England and The United States have.                                                      

I was reading  Gwendolyn’s Garden blog and she was talking about ordering bulbs,,   so cheap from, a wholesale mail order company.

 So, I went on line and found Flower Bulbs R Us.  This is the cheapest place that I could find in Canada. If anyone knows someone cheaper, please let me know.  I did a cost comparison,  Flower Bulbs R Us to ColorBlends.  OK, there is no comparison. Scilla -FBRUS  1000/$199.60  Colorblends 1000/$120.00,  Frit melagris  FBRUS 1000/197.60 CB 1000/145.00,  Chionodoxa FBRUS 1000/115.00  CB 1000/95.00 .

 If I bought all 3000 bulbs (which is the quantities that I would need in order to achieve my dream, well, semi-achieve), FBRUS $512.20 and CB $360.00, that is a difference of $152.20.

Now don’t think that I am slagging FBRUS, they are quite a bit cheaper than all the other mail order bulb companies in Canada.  So, once again I am ordering from them, just not in the quantities that I would be if I could order from Colorblends.

The dream will just take longer!

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