At the moment we are in another "winter" slump .. I'm in 5b growing zone by the way, but some of my blogging friends, who are in the same growing zone, are inching closer to Spring than I am.
Lisa from Greenbow ... has shown some of her gorgeous hellebore flowers that are smiling.
She does qualify these are well established plants so they do more than survive winter .. they flourish!
BUT ? what was more of a stunning surprise for her, and what really drew me in to her post ? was the discovery that her tree peony that she thought had perished .. read her story ... had gone dormant after being cut back .. retaining life in the roots .. and was showing her it SURVIVED !
Now originally she cut the plant down after thinking it was dead after a brutal summer .. and was going to dig it out in Spring .. instead it
How many times .. after a lot of experience .. have everyone of us gardeners dug up and discarded a plant we thought was DEAD ...
I did it with buddleia davidii Black Knight ... you know how buddleia can be tricky being the last in the Spring to show signs of life right ? .. no ... no excuse but a learning curve was reached.
I know there are others that got the boot from my garden because I was not patient enough.
So on the top of my list ? ... BE PATIENT .... no matter how much I want things to be sorted and neat, it might just be too much for my garden to live up to .. too soon !
I not only demand too much from my garden but of myself as well .. that is the bit of dread I have with Spring .. I will work myself into the ground .. hubby will sometimes literally have to help my up off my knees, and into the house .. I draw the line about helping me into the shower though .. I have some
OK .. so .. I've touched on two don'ts here ..
Don't expect over the top things of your garden in the Spring .. period .. give it time!
Don't expect .. as either an older gardener, or one with physical drawbacks, to just jump in and work yourself into the ground with enthusiasm .. it won't help you or your garden.
Do's ? .. what all the good advice gives you .. don't for pity sake walk on the garden while it is trying to wake up ..my rain boots save me from sinking in mud .. but who saves the "mud" aka garden, from me? .. common sense ... just use common sense ... no intense scientific calculations needed.
If it is squishy ? BIG RED LIGHT .. let it acclimatize and dry out with the new Spring weather.
Another Do .. when you can .. cut that tattered brown foliage of any plant, because it is not coming back to look like fresh green growth.
As a rule of thumb for hellebore I cut it all off, to let the plant put out new growth ..
It can look drastic, but it has worked for me for years .. I have a whole raised bed dedicated to hellebore and once that foliage is set for the year , looks wonderful.
The BIG question is ... will I listen to my own advice ?