November 01, 2006

Easier than planting with a shoehorn

Well, I did it. I got the last of my spring bulbs into the ground! Tulips and mini daffodils, squills and irises, hyacinths and anemones, crocuses and alliums - when I write the list out I understand why it took me so long! This is the gardener's equivalent of having eyes bigger than your stomach...

The last planting session went smoothly because I discovered a little trick. Those of you who figured it out years ago can laugh quietly in front of your computer monitor, or loudly for all I care, I can't hear you. Just gloat with class, that's all I ask. Those of you who haven't figured it out yet, well, I'm about to pass on my newly acquired enlightenment, and you can all look sophisticated and experienced when you pass it on in your turn, and not have to put up with the gloaters. If you know how to do it with class, you could even do a little gloating of your own.

The trick is quite simply this. Jam your trowel in under the edge of a patch of ground cover, fold it back and pop your bulbs in. If they need to be buried a bit deeper, that's easily done. Then just fold the groundcover back over the bulbs and pat it back into place. Soooooooooooooooooo much easier than digging individual holes in all the tiny little spaces between your overpacked perennials. Well, between my overpacked perennials, anyway. When you don't have much space, you overpack plants because you don't want to deny yourself. Well, I do anyway. All you disciplined gardeners who know how to limit your palette and design with restraint can now have a turn to gloat too.

And you'll get another chance or two to gloat at my expense come spring, when I'm busy asking you to help me identify all those strange little green leaves popping up. I didn't keep any records of what I planted where. A disciplined gardener, I'm not.

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13 comments:

Anya said...

I have bulbs sitting on my dining room table waiting to be planted! And, I foolishly ordered more from Dominion House (they were having a sale - I shouldn't have given them my email address!!). And I don't mark where I plant either - I like surprises! Nice to hear I'm not the only "undisciplined gardener"!

colleen said...

Disciplined gardening is over-rated :-)

It took me a while to get that trick, too. I don't want to think about how many hours I spent crazily trying to dig holes with a bulb planter in my clay soil!

Larry said...

Hi Janet
I have always operated under the delusion, it wasn't a great meal unless there was some still some left on the plate. Secondly nature does not have straight lines and square corners, so what seemingly starts as a mess ends up beautiful, as your previous photos have shown.

Kasmira said...

How I wish I was done! I've got around 500 planted. I suppose I have about that many left - all destined for the front yard.

I use the same trick for planting crocus in the lawn. I'm trying species tulips in the lawn this year, too. If they don't die back quickly enough, they are in a place where we can leave the grass long.

roybe said...

Must be lovely planting bulbs, investing in your next spring.

IBOY said...

That's what I like about planting small bulbs will-nilly; having who-knows-what popping up everywhere... of course I wouldn't do it with giant lilies and stuff.
don

Lynn said...

Well the snow sprinkled down today, so I am glad I did the bulbs early!

Billy said...

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Tricia said...

Janet, It doesn't appear that you are posting on this site any more and I'm going to presume that you aren't playing Green Thumb Sundays anymore?

Can you write me back and let me know? I'm weeding out sites that aren't playing so I'd love to hear back from you.

roybe said...

To keep the analogy going Janet, you'll have a real smorgasborg in the spring.

Ottawa Gardener said...

I am routing for you! With such a mild December I think you have a good chance of a beautiful display this spring. I also stuck in a mess of bulbs in my new spiral mixed bed in the front yard.

By the way, I read your comment on perrenial radicchio on gardenweb and am now intrigued enough to set up a corner for it.

ericat said...

I leave the endemic bulbs in the ground, forget where they are and plant more. come rain and many surprises. oh yes. I am from South Africa.
I am visiting looking for somebody who would like to play tag with me. I got tagged. The new blog "game" seems a good idea to read more about a blogger and get some links. I will tag and link your nice blog, please visit and tell me if I must remove it. For the time being I tagged you. ;-D
http://aloegardenwilderness.blogspot.com/

Tricia said...

Janet. I'm not sure what's happening with you since you aren't posting. I hope everythings ok.

I'm going to take your site off the Green Thumb Blogroll since you haven't posted for a long while. If you come back and you want to play again please let me know and I'll put your site on the list again.