Not What – But Where?
Do you remember “Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego?”, “Where Is Waldo”, or “Where In The World Is Matt Lauer?” ? Hmm, that is a lot of quotes and question marks….oh well, let us proceed.
Shown above, a crocus we just bought at the grocer’s, having nothing whatsoever to do with …wait a minute! It could show how we want to keep track of bulbs that are dormant in the garden since these will go in the ground after blooming. Yes, that’s it! A perfect bulb example photo, and current too, not from the files. The task assigned for this month by the creative fireballs at Gardening Gone Wild was to write about labeling and record keeping in the garden. This is a topic that touches us all, but maybe some are more affected, or is that afflicted, than others. The posts of other bloggers so far have shown baskets full of tags, photo records and labeling tips among other things. I do think the photos with text added, something I have been toying with anyway to prevent my photos being used without credit given, is an excellent idea that VP showed in her post.
Shown above is Heuchera ‘Caramel’.
My efforts at having attractive and long lasting stakes have all been dismal failures. I have spent some wealth on pens and paint, not to mention the time spent writing and remembering what the name is of that lovely daylily that has been moved umpteen times in an effort to use some design principles rather than the usual imperative of where is there an empty spot in this mishmash of growing things. Last year I thrust the tags into the ground near the new additions that came to live here. But those plastic tags have a way of breaking, fading, becoming dislodged and just disappearing into thin air. There were two types of plants, geums and crocosmias, that became collections as several different cultivars were purchased at various nurseries. I am not that familiar with the differences between them and the foliage gives no clue when they are not in bloom as to who is whom. Leaving the tags in the ground is my only hope for discerning Little Red Head from Emberglow.But, (what would our discourse be without the all important but), the problem here is not WHAT is planted, rather it is the WHERE has it been moved to? Somewhere in the garden journals is the name, as complete as the tag read at the time it was entered, if there was a tag, the day of purchase if we were being a good little gardener. If diligence is applied, that name can usually be located if needed. I have given up writing down where the newcomer was planted, with the knowledge that it will not be there permanently. Most of the large trees that were planted when we first began carving this garden out of the steep slope, large being a five gallon sized pot, are still in their original spots. Dogwoods and conifers, azaleas and hollies are old friends whose names we know well. It is the newer arrivals and the perennials that have been participants in a game of musical chairs. Always learning new design techniques and better combinations means that the little shovel that is dear to my heart is never put away in the shed, for it is in use daily, weather and health permitting, moving something to a better location.
Shown above is the emerging Allium ‘Christophii’. Seeds were collected the first year after planting from the large round flower heads and sown in rows behind the knot garden. They were like tiny blades of grass for several years but last year some began to bloom from those rows and were moved to better growing locations around the garden. Notes were written about those locations, and photos will be taken to help us remember the where of them. That is until they are moved once again.Photo journalism can keep a record of what is planted where on a given date, but that is likely to change at any time. There will always be pictures of the garden taken. Well before blogging, even before the first digital camera, snapshots of the flowers and gardens where I have lived, from Pennsylvania to California to Tennesee to Texas and back again to Tennessee are secured in albums for posterity. With the march of progress the garden photos are now on discs and jump drives and even on the world wide web, but the placement of the plants is fluid, not static.
Shown above is a photo record of Hamamelis intermedia ‘Diane’. It is a good thing that I love surprises, for each spring as the garden awakens, seeing who is growing in what bed is a delightful endeavor.
Shown above is Fuchsia boliviana ‘alba’ with the cyclamen bloom entering the frame on the right and a begonia leaf wanting to join the fun on the left. The sunroom/greenhouse is party central at the moment. The Fuchsia was sent from friend Chuck of My Back 40(feet). Click here to read a recent post of his that I just love.