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Posts Tagged ‘Perennial plant’

Throughout the long, dry winter, gardeners dreamed of spring, when we could get outside and get growing.  And while catalog shopping is nice, what we really wanted was to get our hands on some plants and sink them into the soil where they could thrive.  Green thumbs are nurturers by nature, coaxing seeds and seedlings into glorious displays in summer.

So it’s no surprise that when a group of gardeners gets together, they throw a plant sale to benefit causes close to their hearts.  This weekend kicks off the season of plant sales, where you can pick up plants while supporting community causes.  Make room in your schedule and planting plans to attend several of these worthy fundraisers.

Denver Botanic Gardens plant sale, today and Saturday, May 7, is the largest event in the area.  They’ve changed their layout this year, so look for the digital map just inside the entrance to plan your shopping spree.  To ensure that you get the plant of your dreams, plan ahead by checking the lists of plants offered on their website, botanicgardens.org/content/spring-plant-sale.  Looking for a perfect gift for Mother’s Day?  Check out their container gardens for a pre-planted mix designed to show off in sun or shade.  Shop from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.  Admission is free to the sale, unless you’d like to shop the plant sale preview party Thursday, May 5, from 4 to 7 p.m.  Tickets for the preview party are $35 per person.

 Boulder Garden Club’s plant sale, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 7, at the Eisenhower School, 1220 Eisenhower Dr., Boulder.  Browse member-grown perennials, annuals, vegetables, herbs, shrubs, and trees from the oldest garden club in Colorado.  At the Boulder Orchid Society table of orchids, you’ll find unique plants and good advice from the staff at the event.  Proceeds go toward supporting the club’s civic projects in Boulder and their international projects.

 The Gardens on Spring Creek Spring Plant Sale, Saturday, May 7, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 2145 Centre Avenue, Fort Collins.  Unusual annuals, heirloom vegetables, herbs, and perennials are offered for the discerning shopper.  For a plant list and more information, check out fcgov.com/gardens. 

Loveland Garden Club plant sale, Saturday, May 7, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the All Saints Episcopal Church, 3448 N. Taft Avenue, Loveland.  Perennials, annuals, vegetables and herbs are ready for your garden and if you’re unsure which is best, ask one of the Colorado Master Gardeners staffing the event.  Proceeds go to community causes, such as Larimer County area tree plantings, Loveland Youth Gardeners.  For information:  Laura 970-223-2265/970-222-3322

Happy Transplants Garden Club plant sale, Saturday, May 21, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the parking lot of Vectra bank, 3300 west 72nd Avenue, Westminster.  Sale of perennials, annuals, herbs and vegetables fund community projects and scholarships.  Information: 303-423-2923.

Growing Gardens Community plant sale, Saturdays and Sundays, May 14, 15, 21, 22, 28, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily at the Growing Gardens Greenhouse, 1630 Hawthorn Avenue in Boulder.  The event offers thousands of vegetable seedlings, plus annuals and perennials and benefits Growing Gardens programming, such as Cultiva! Youth Project, Able Gardening, and community gardens.  For information: growinggardens.org/.

Golden Gardeners annual plant sale, Saturday, May 21, 8:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. held in downtown Golden on the corner of Washington Ave. and 12th Street.  The sale offers perennials, annuals, ground covers, day lilies, and iris, plus a few begonias.  For information, call 303-271-1830.

 Plan to make your trip easy on the arms, by bringing your own boxes, wagons, wheelbarrows or carts to carry around your plants.

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Now that your Christmas tree — which brought such joy — is tattered and dry, how can you keep its spirit alive throughout the year?  By tearing off its limbs and grinding it up for mulch.  Though this may sound like Halloween got mixed up with Christmas, treating your tree to a gruesome end gives it a makeover that will have other plants cozy through the rest of the winter.

This year, the weather’s been dry, with warm days, freezing nights and plenty of wind; this is a recipe for disaster for plants in our landscapes.  Moisture from exposed ground is wicked away and in bone-dry soil, roots wither and die.

Perennial beds endure the double jeopardy of the freeze-thaw cycle, where soil heaves and cracks; exposure to the elements kills roots and bulbs.  In spring, your perennial bed will be a shadow of its former self, spotted with dead plants surrounded by a chalk outline of leaves and stems.

Fortunately, this is something that can be remedied with a nice drink and thick blanket, but get yourself up off the couch on the next warm day to go outside and water those perennials.  Then cover them with the ground up Christmas tree.

When experts say “apply a thick mulch,” how deep do they mean — a bag or a truckload?  While you don’t need to pile mulch up to your chest, the depth of the coating depends on the size of the wood chips. Because they compact more, smaller chips should be applied thinly; no more than one to two inches thick.  Larger wood chips should be spread three to four inches thick. More than this and you run the risk of smothering the plants.

Evergreen branches from the Christmas tree are excellent blankets, giving evergreen plants extra protection from the winter.  Evergreen and semi-evergreen perennials, at risk from sunscald (called winter burn), can’t replace moisture pulled from leaves by windy, sunny days when the ground is frozen.  Boughs trimmed from your tree will buffer these plants from the worst of the elements.

Use only those branches that still have needles clinging to them, laying them two layers deep across the perennials.  In spring, slowly move them off of the plants to let air circulate to the plant, and ensure new sprouts harden off as they grow.

This post was previously published in the Longmont Ledger.

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