Merry gardeners lay their picnic blankets under the inviting shade of the Propagator and share tasties from their baskets and tales of plants past, present, and future.
1. The seedlings. Several weeks ago, a tray was hopefully prepared, sown with 6 kinds of seeds – 5 newly acquired. The tray was duly placed under a grow light controlled by a timer, and the water trough below dutifully filled. Now, having transplanted the last of the seedlings from said tray into pots of proper soil and placed them in a small “greenhouse” to harden off, I can reflect on the successes and failures of this project. First, it should be said that 4 of the seed varieties sprouted. The highest germination rates were shown by Culver’s Root and Datisca cannabina. 4 strong yucca seedlings emerged. The sticky monkeyflower seedlings were tiny and appeared to have minimal root development at time of transplanting. The scarlet globe mallow and Dutchman’s pipe did not make an appearance. 2 different shades of slime – a bright green and a rust – appeared on the surface of the planting medium. My conclusions are that I will have to thin the Datisca and further research how to germinate the Dutchman’s pipe and globe mallow.
2. The wall finally wills itself into existence. Following the removal of rotten fencing and assorted detritis, the retaining wall that will hopefully allow us to render the back area more level is finally going up!
3. Supports for cane berries. These were planted as bare roots more than a month ago. Now, I plan to place salvaged wood from the demolition of the back fences at either end of each row to create a support for the canes when they begin to grow.
4. A crowded corner. This corner has been causing me some consternation. It is far too crowded, and I feel that I must relocate several plants in order to restore balance and allow adequate growing room. Specifically, I am thinking of moving the Cleveland sage, far too wonderful a plant to be consigned to the almost invisible background. I also contemplate moving the bronze fennel, which would appear to far greater advantage elsewhere.
5. Madrones under stress. The leaves of my transplanted madrones are showing stress. I have no idea how many – if any – will survive this trying time. My only comfort is that madrones are notoriously difficult to transplant, so the blame for this current sad state of affairs cannot be entirely assigned to me.
6. Seed and scion exchange! After a long “dry spell,” there is finally a local exchange of plant matter scheduled for Saturday at a farm in Cave Junction. I plan to filter through my seeds for redundancies and things not to my taste and bring them, along with a few cuttings, to this event. I have no idea how the event will be formatted, particularly in light of social distancing requirement. My dearest hope is to behold some of the local plantcentric eccentrics, hippies, survivalists who I imagine are likely to crawl out from under their respective rocks for such an occasion.