Sunday, October 31, 2010

English Delphiniums, Lousy Weather and Primula Auriculas

It has been a while since I last posted. Some of the delphiniums shown above are named cultivars brought over from England and some are seedlings grown last year. The delphiniums this year were greatly affected by root maggots which killed many a good plant. Moreover, the weather in Anchorage this summer was awful, especially with 30 consecutive days of rain. The only highlight was the progress of the primula auriculas many of whom can be divided every year. I have posted some pics below!

The roses are buried and everything is ready for winter. Hopefully, next year the sun will appear....

Monday, July 27, 2009

Awesome delphiniums and auriculas!

Finally, I am done with summer school, but it is now so wet and windy! Plus , we are remodeling. The view from the new kitchen window is a dream. In the garden, my delphinium seedlings are starting to sprout, and the garden is almost at its peak. I added a new part to my web site, top 10 plants for Alaska, and music too!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

It's Almost Spring in Alaska!
Tuesday, March 10th

In some ways this is my favorite time of the year: The days are getting longer, it is light when I go to work, and the stores are stocking up with plants. Talking of plants, I bought at Costco one of my favorite Oriental Lilies, Dizzy, and the eye-catching Dahlia, Pooh, plus some Suncrest lilies and Eryngium.

As to delphiniums about 800 have been seeded. Some are in 10 inch pots; others were started using plastic salad trays and damp paper towels. As the seeds germinate they are put into a seed tray. In this way, you should have as eedling in each cell in the seed tray and no wasted space or space due to the erratic germination that some delphinium seeds exhibit(probably due to old seeds or ones that have not been stored in a fridge). Moreover, I attempted propagating lilies by scale divisions.

I also started 3 Aerogardens, 2 with herbs and one with seeds. Using the polystyrene seed tray, means I had to remove the top that activates the pump. To remedy this I hooked up an aquarium pump with an airstone. Unfortunately, it is way too powerful and the bubbles overflow. Anyway, I will see how the seeds compare to others started in potting soil.

Here are the seeds started so far:

February 28
1 Tray Lavatera Mont Blanc
1 Tray Stocks - White
1 Tray Nicotiana - Alata

800 or so delphinium seeds(mostly blues with some cream, lavender, purple, and cranberry colors

March 1 1/2 Tray Lauren's Grape Poppy
1/2 Tray Love Lies Bleeding
1/2 Tray Karma Blue Pansy
1/2 Tray Salpiglossus Kew Blue
1/2 Tray Calceolaria Cinderella Mix
1/2 Tray Nicotiana - Perfume Blue

March 7 1/2 Tray Malva Sylvestris
1/2 Tray Papaver Ohh La La
1 Tray Calceolaria Fothergillii
1 Tray Stocks-Lavender
1 Tray Snaps Wild Salmon

March 8 1/2 Tray Lavatera Pink Beauty
1/2 Tray Pansy Orchid Desire
1/4 Tray Pansy Cornish Rose
1/4 Tray Pansy Darjeeling Ruby
1/2 Tray Snaps Elegance Bronze
1/2 Tray Perennial Stock
1/2 Tray Cheiranthus Cheiri
1/2 Tray Salpiglossus Peacock Flame
1/2 Tray Stocks Sugar n Spice

Aerograden Seeds:

Viburnum farreii
Viburnum carlesii
Cestrum nocturn
Murraya paniculata
Amaranthus caudatus
Centaurea hydrocephala

Also Started:

Globe basil
Agastche - Apricot Sprite
Dracocephalum Tanguticum
Eryngium Miss Willmott's Ghost
Eryngium Superbum
Eryngium Blue Glitter
Eryngium Silver Ghost
Knipfofia Tritoma
Primula Gold Lace
Primula Silver Lace
Penstemon Hot Lips
Penstemon Sweet Lips

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Greetings from Alaska! The recent warm wet, and very windy weather makes it look like spring a false spring that is since we still have a month and a half left of what is usually very cold weather. In fact, we still have about 2 months left of winter.

Meanwhile, There a are a few Red Lion Amaryllis in bloom. In addition, I ordered some of the new stunning dark red amaryllis, “Benfica” aka “Royal Velvet.” Alas, just after I placed my order we endured a prolonged cold snap. Now minus 15 F. during the day is cold by anybody’s standards, especially mine as the hairs in my nose froze as I got in and out my car. The plants arrived as complete mush. I can’t blame the shipper because only a silly gardener, albeit a fanatical one orders tropical bulbs in the middle of an Alaskan winter,
Fortunately, Smith and Hawken were very gracious and sent a new order. I will take some pictures of them when they bloom.

Now is the time to plan which seeds to start and which plants to order. I have no luck starting many of the Eryngium species from seed with the exception of planum, so this year I intend to order Eryngium gigantium, Miss Willmott’s Ghost from 2 plants sources. Moreover, I would like the clematis, the Vagabond and Horn of Plenty in my collection.

I am thinking of what may be the highlights of this year’s garden. I now have 5 or 6 plants of my favorite peony, Red Charm which is one of my first peonies to bloom, well it is by the foundation of the house and faces South. Red Charm seems to grow quickly and the blooms are a stunning dark wine red. Many of my new peonies were not given much room to grow last year, so this year we will be more careful of what we plant around them, well until they get established.

This year, either side of the main grey arbor, we will see if a couple of Cardoons will lend their drama to the entrance of the upper garden. Previously we had 2 large pots containing that wonderfully fragrant English rose, Gertrude Jekyll.

I did buy about 800 English delphinium seeds, mostly blue with a few creams. Where I will put them all who knows. Also, I hope my imported named English cultivars have survived, so I can attempt to propagate them.

I think the highlight of the spring garden will be all those primula auriculas I bought last year from Pops plants, and Mt. Tahoma nursery. These plants are some of the first flowers I have in bloom and multiply quickly.

I end this week’s blog on a sad note; According to its owners Salmon Bay Events, this year’s Northwest Flower Show will be the last. Below is a list of the seeds I am growing this year(excluding my delphinium seeds).

From Plants Of Distinction:
Bellis White Page 26
Bellis Deep Red Page 26
Snaps - Cinnamon Blue Page 20
Lupin - Millenium Page 59
Aqiliegia -Red Star Page 22
Snaps - Wild Salmon Page 7
Pansy - Kashmir Blue Page 8
Pansy - Darjeeling Page 8
Ranunculus - Macki Page 10
Snaps - Elegance - Page 10
Aster - Lady Carol Page 14
Pansy - Cornish Rue Page 15
Eryngium - Little Hobbit Page 17
Eryngium - Silver Ghost Page
Calendula - Orange Star Page 28
Calendula - Neon Page 28
Calendula - Gold Star Page 28
Calendula - Porcupine Page 29
Eryngium - Silver ghost Page 43
Nicotiana - Perfume Blue Page 62
Pansy - Orchid Desire Page 64
Pansy - Kharma Blue Page 64
Penstemon - Hot Lips Page 66
Penstemon- Sweet Lips Page 66
Primula Gold Lace Sachet Page 68
Primula Gold Lace Silver Page 68
Primula Gold Lace Black Page 68
Salvia Patens Page 71
Salpiglossus Peaches Page 73
Salpiglossus Kew Blue Page 73
Sweet Pea - Jilly Page 75
Sweet Pea - Bristol Page 75
Sweet Pea - Ice Cream Page
Sweet Pea - Hampton Court Page 75
Sweet Pea - Charlies Angels Page 75
Sweet Pea - North Shore Page 75

From Chilterns, The Fragrant Path and Diane's Seeds:
Amaranthus - Cruentus
Centaurea- macrocephala
Cestrum nocturnum
Cheranthus -Chieri - Progress
Cheranthus -Chieri - Fair Lady
Cheranthus -Chieri - Paris Market
Dracocephalum - Tanguticum
Dracocephalum - Moldavicum
Eryngium - Miss Willmott’s Ghost
Eryngium - giganticum
Eryngium - alpinum superbum
Eryngium - Blue Glitter
hesperis - Blue
Hesperis - Purple
Hesperis - White
Lavatera - Mont Blanc
Lavatera - Pink
Mecanopsis - Lingholm
Murraya Paniculata
Platycodon - blue
Stocks - Lavender
Stocks- White
Stocks- Crimson
Verbascum Phoenicium - Purple
Verbaccum bombyciferum
Viburnum Carlesii

Still To Buy:
Amaranthus Love Lies bleeding
Apricot Foxgloves
Night Phlox
Night Stocks
Purple Malva
White Foxgloves
White Malva

Sunday, January 18, 2009


The bear pics are from a trip to Wolverine Lake.

The primula auricula is called, "Ice Maiden." The asiatic lilies are called, "Knock Out." The stocks are lavender stocks from the Fragrant Path seed company.

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