Wednesday, June 11, 2014
A beautiful day here on the mountain. Not a cloud in the sky, windless, 46°, birds singing at the house, loons talking at the pond. Just spoke with a friend in Barre, 20 miles away, and it's clouded over there. Last night as I watched the baseball game it was raining in Baltimore and Philly so I expected we might see some much needed rain today. Right now there's no indication here.
There's always talk about what garden labels to use. For years I used a large white plastic cardboard label in our display gardens but then people complained that the gardens looked like cemeteries. I switched to Paw Paw Everlasting Labels, pictured here for the display gardens but I still use the Parker Davis labels to mark all the rows in the growing fields. They make it easier for old eyes to see when I am on the hunt for a daylily to dig. I like this Paw Paw brand because they hold up in heavy snow and they don't corrode like some. I buy the rose markers because they are tall enough to put in front of tall hostas such as Abba Dabba Do or Empress Wu and still be able to see the name. Obviously with something like hostas you have to move the markers forward as the summer progresses and the hostas grow.
For labels I have always used Avery brand laser labels. I have never spent the money on the weatherproof labels as it's not necessary. As example of durability, I put labels into the hosta display garden when I began building it 7 years ago. Three years ago there was a tropical storm and the garden flooded under ten feet of water. Many of the labels--an plants-- were torn out of the ground. Last week a helper found a collection of labels that had floated until caught by a Nugget ninebark and then covered with gravel. They had been underground for over 3 years and all the labels were still in place and readable. The markers were a different story as rolling through the flood had twisted them out of use.
The labels are the peel off type so they are easy to make on the computer. Do not use an ink jet printer as the labels will run when it rains. Some say you just sandpaper the marker face to get them to stay put but that's not needed. Just don't buy the no-name cheap labels because laser or not, I hear they don't work. Avery works!
As a caution to my bad memory, I always "plant" a white plastic plant marker with the plant name written in No. 2 pencil with every plant. Since I do all the planting myself, I always plant the marker positioned at about 3 o'clock so I know where to look if the other marker is moved. This has never failed me, not even one time when a kid (g-r-r-r-r-) decided that collecting the tall markers was fun while her mother was walking the display. My only other problem was memory because after that flood, many hostas were torn up and floated away. Those that landed close by included over 35 "blues". Take it from me, blues are not the easiest to identify in that number.
Well, I have to get clicking here. Start the day opening up the business for Gail and then I heave to head for Montpelier for the dentist, then the credit union, the ag supply, and the plumbing supply. I'll be busy. Bet you will too. Come visit soon!
The Vermont Gardener
On Facebook as Vermont Flower Farm and Gardens and also as my personal page, George Africa. Lots of pictures on each.
On Twitter as vtflowerfarm
Always here to help you grow your green thumb!