Cottage Garden 2/26/2016

My favorite part about gardening is that the fruits of your labor don't happen over night.  It takes a "vision" and time and lot of effort to finally see an accomplishment.  At times it takes only a few weeks, sometimes it takes a few months and other times it takes years. I've even achieved half way to what I thought was a dreamy 'vision' and changed my mind.  For example, last fall I decided to remove these two hydrangeas that were on the walkway going up to my chicken coop.  I love how they spilled over into the walkway, but they were getting out of control.  I moved them to another location in the landscape.  Now seeing this photo makes me anxious to see how my new vision of this area will evolve.

This is what it looks like right now.  I've added three new Dwarf English Boxwoods to the walkway, I always buy small because they are less expensive and they will grow.  Plus my garden is so dense, it's easier for me to dig a tiny hole for planting rather than a large one.

I also love a good challenge.  Over time, I've learned to become a DIY'r in the garden.  I've divided and propagated plants from cuttings, started some from seed, nursed diseased plants back to health mostly by trial and error.

I recently saw a video on propagating boxwood and so I thought I'd try it for myself this year.  I've noticed that there is a hole between my arbor and the row of Green Velvet Boxwoods and have been searching for a reasonable price to place one there. These boxwoods are difficult to find, not to mention the online pricing is crazy expensive.  I've also been wanting a row of boxwoods between the coop area and my Fairy Roses. So today I decided I would try my hand at starting my own.

Step #1. Take a six inch clipping of the boxwood that has new growth with rose buds at the tip.
Step #2. Remove all of the lower leaves and branches
Step #3. Dip end in root starter
Step #4 Poke a hole into the ground with your finger where you want the planting to take root.
Step #5. Place a jar over the top to create an atrium effect for eight to ten weeks.

The video said it's best to do this in the fall and allow growth to take place over the winter months. I have nothing to lose trying it now. We are expecting rain over the next few weeks and our current soil is very moist. I'll keep you posted on how my boxwoods work out. I know it will take a few years for them to really get established and i'm looking forward to seeing the results.

Another garden solution I have accomplished this past week is putting blocks under all of my cement garden features.  Those darn moles (or rats) have softened the ground so much that my planters and bird baths have fallen over.  These precious statuary pieces can only take so many falls before they break. 
So my simple solution is to purchase square blocks (under $5. from Home Depot) with a little gravel underneath to keep them in place.

Now for what is blooming this week....
Primroses. I purchased these on the clearance rack for .49 cents each last year after their bloom season was over. So pretty to see them now blooming in the garden this spring. Love finding clearance plants for next years garden. 
This Camellia is called "Big Red" - every year this row of gorgeous shrubs hides my fence even more. Couldn't be happier with this plant next to my walkway.  
More varieties of my much loved Lenten Roses, also known as Hellebore have emerged.  These take about three years to get established in the gardens which means this should be the year they are crazy blooming.  But I am not seeing that to be the case.  These varieties here are "Red Sapphire" and "Ivory Prince". Maybe its early in the season or I might have to await another year. 
Brunnera “Jack Frost” has made it's appearance in a few places in my "secret garden". I divided and planted more of these last fall so they aren't as showy as they've been in years past. 
Pulmonaria ‘Sissinghurst White’ also known as Lungwort has begun blooming this week.  
"Candytuft" along the bottom of my rose terrace has begun blooming but seem more leggy than in years past.
Hyacinth bulbs are beginning to bloom, but every year they just don't seem as pretty as the first year. But their fragrance is still delicious! 

Hard to believe my landscape will soon be lush and pretty again. When I take a walk through the garden it seems I have so much open dirt space and avail real estate.  It just takes a few minutes of looking through old garden pictures to realize that I not the case. For now I will enjoy these simple bloom!
Thank you for coming over and seeing my garden progressing this week! I appreciate you and all your comments. xoox, tracie

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Mindy said…
I'm really anxious to hear how your boxwood babies do! One evergreen shrub that is super easy to propagate is Sweet Box. I bring cuttings in the house for vases and they root in just a few days.
Judy said…
Love your garden...
I know! Me too! I hope they take root, I did this same process with roses last fall - all but one made it thru winter. I took the jars off of those yesterday and did these! I hope it wasn't too early to take fr the roses.... 😳
Thank you Judy! I love sharing it!!!
oh I always love seeing your pictures and love the way you detail whats happening in your own garden, its like visiting without the luggage lolol. I hope your boxwood comes through, looks like you did a good job.
I watch alot of British gardening shows with Monty Don and bought all his available videos and I watch them over and over dreaming of gardens I have yet to make some where I can grow things not of the tropics. I high recommend them if you haven't seen them, you can find them on youtube by various uploaders, but often they are taken down.
I remember your hydrangeas and hope they come back as they were....were they the vanilla strawberry ones? I love hydrangeas and buy them every Easter but they don't bloom again here. However we at least can get the cut flowers and I will be taking photos of the ones my housemate brought home which are probably the most gorgeous I've seen in these parts yet. :D
Sylvia said…
Your garden is always will be good to see it in the Spring!
Wow, Tracie, you're seeing a lot of activity in the garden already! Those boxwoods should be a great experiment in not just horticulture, but in patience! In our region (7a), I have seen crocuses, lenten roses, and crepe murder so far, lol. The ground was warm through periods of winter, and my daffs emerged about 4", and I'm hoping they weren't damaged with heavy snow and cold temps afterward. I took a walk through my garden last week, and things are starting to emerge, but still mostly bare. I have mixed feelings of the work I want to do this year in my landscape. Yours will be a delight to follow.
Rita C at Paoply
Pondside said…
So beautiful! I always like to see what's going on in your garden, as we are pretty much in the same zone. When we were at Pondside we created all of our box hedges from clippings from a few plants. They don't take long to grow big and it is a big saving!
lala said…
Great tip about the boxwood -I am definitely going to try it. I also bought the primrose on sale, about 25 plants, so hoping they come up. Here in CT it's still too early for bloom, but with the mild winter we had, my ground is not frozen, so lots of green leaves from bulbs have already made an appearance. I thoroughly enjoy tours of your garden and get so much inspiration.
Villrose said…
A lovely garden you have! You are clever to find solutions.
Yes, gardening is a combination of passion and patience...
The vanilla strawberry hydrangeas are still in place, in fact I added more along the picket fence line! :) the ones I moved are a macrophylla variety - hope the do well in the new location!
I will look for the videos in you tube! I love learning new garden tips!
Thank you for coming over and commenting! ❤️
Thank you Sylvia... I look forward to sharing more next week!
Hi Rita! I've missed visiting with you. I'm sure your garden under the snow is fine! I've learned that snow insulates the plants - it's the freezes after plants emerge that we worry about! I'm too hoping that the Green Velvet Boxwoods end up rooting and helping along the 'vision' I want to see. Appreciate you coming over and commenting! Hoping all is well w/you. xoxo
Yes... I look forward to seeing what is going on in your garden too! Love that we are similar in zones and can compare notes! I hope my new starts if these Boxwoods take off this spring - would be nice to stop searching for a good deal on these and hoping they help keep my "Fairy" roses in their place in the garden!
You will have to let me know if this boxwood propagation works for you! I only have one primrose blooming (must be just the right conditions) others are only showing green foliage. Thank you for saying that you find inspiration from my blog posts, sometimes I wonder if anyone is interested in what's going on over here!
Thank you so much Villrose! I love gardening and love sharing it... Yes you are right passion and patience is what is gardeners learn! :)
Tracie, I'm always amazed how beautiful your garden is. Thank you for sharing your smart tips on saving our statuary in the garden. I've been putting square tiles under our statues because they last longer that way too. Great idea on propagating boxwood! Your garden is just gorgeous, Thanks for sharing your photos at Simple & Sweet Fridays!

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