It's that time of year!
Every gardener spends some time during the winter 'off season' (though truly here in the deep South there is no 'off' season) in their favorite chair, with their newly delivered seed catalog making their lists for spring planting. Here, we're just weeks away from needing to get seedlings started if we truly start from 'scratch'. Last year, for reasons of economy, we started nearly our entire garden from seed. The cost of 'started' plants has risen steadily and the health and vigor of the plants that we've been able to find the last few years have been less than impressive in a number of cases.
I'll post my list when I've narrowed it down a bit.
We're very fortunate to live in close proximity to one of the time honored seed sources. Park Seed has an amazing garden center located at their greenhouses, where they sponsor an annual festival in June, I believe that attracts thousands of people from all over. While certainly living close enough to attend, I cleverly manage to skip that, but love to 'hit' Parks anytime I'm in the area. They always have end of season specials which are truly music to the frugal gardeners ears. They have also opened an outlet store in conjunction with Jackson and Perkins a few miles away from their main location. I must admit that I went to both places today.
There's something almost magical about wandering among the greenhouses with the sun beating warm against your shoulders looking at all that raw potential and wondering what lovely green-ness will call your name today.
It is entirely possible that I might have purchased some early season seed, some amazing sweet English peas, called Maestro, and some early lettuces, that might be found growing in a container very soon.
And I was completely unable to help myself, when this beauty followed me home.
A lovely kumquat, which I have never grown before, and now will be needing to research. It's one of those odd things, where they only had a few plants at such a price that no self-respecting plant lover could leave it sitting there. This particular cultivar is the Nagami. The plant cost me less than a small bag of kumquats at the grocers, which I'll point out would be eaten and gone in one fell swoop. I will also admit to eating one of the sweet tart orange globes of goodness on the way to the car.
I will admit to having purchased a few items like this that didn't work out so well.
In my defense, I tend to love things like the kumquat, and prefer the exotic over things like longstem cut roses. Some of my 'finds' have been amazing, and a few have simply been perplexing, but those are stories for another day.
For now, I'm pretending that I actually read and figured out that the Nagami is going to get 12 feet tall BEFORE I brought it home. Really... but I don't want to go counting my kumquats before their arrival, now, do I?