Sunday, March 09, 2008

Windy At 1530 Feet

Sunday, March 9, 2008

A breezy morning here at Vermont Flowerless Farm. We're at 1530 feet elevation and the wind has had no problem blowing us silly for the past 24 hours. We have no idea how much rain we received but as we repeatedly tried to get to sleep last night, it continued to pound the roof and house. It was 14 degrees at 5:30 this morning, a drop of more than 30 degrees since yesterday afternoon. The large drops of snow in Ohio, Kentucky, and western New York never made it here but we did receive a couple inches of snow on top of glare ice at breakfast time which made walking Karl the wonder dog a difficult feat for his feet and mine!

Alex and I drove to Cabot today for some groceries and a paper. Route 215 across the Cabot flats was wind blown snow and visibility was tough in places. As we passed the three nursery businesses along that route I somehow was reminded of our first spring here in Marshfield. That
year Gail's father planted his peas, a very important ritual to him, on April 1 st. That was the first and only year the snow was gone and it was warm enough to plant since we moved here almost 20 years ago.

Today is a different story. I know that maple syrup producers join me in wishing the snow would drop quickly and they could prepare for the their involvement in one of Vermont's shortest but most important businesses. The snow is deep in the woods, even after yesterday's heavy rains, and pipelines are still buried in many places and hanging buckets in others will be a chore done on snowshoes, with heavy breathing and aches and pains.

Despite the snow, I can always remind myself of flowers that we have come to enjoy so much. Last night I was scanning pictures of gloriosa daisies and I came upon a few lily pictures that I liked. Lilies were one of the flowers that we started to grow and study when we operated Vermont Herb and Flower Farm in Shelburne, Vermont many, many years ago. Times have come and gone in terms of popularity and availability with this bulb crop but I'll always enjoy them, even if we do not grow them in vast numbers as in the past. This one just below here is Cannes, an Asiatic, followed by Acapulco, a great Oriental lily with large flowers and a nice fragrance.

Next are a nice 5 foot tall yellow lancifolium, a beautiful Orienpet (oriental-trumpet cross) named Smokey Mountain from The Lily Garden, and a longiflorum Asiatic cross named Golden Torch. These are all sleeping nicely under snow someplace but are lilies to consider this year if you enjoy bulbs. We are not going to grow lilies this year as we make the change to our new location, but the ones I mention are available on line. Previous writing I've done here on The Vermont Gardener and also on Vermont Gardens mentions some of the problems with the lily leaf beetle and fungus among lilies. Just the same, they sure are a nice complement to any garden!

So as daylight savings time has me operating at a different time, best wishes for what's left of the weekend. If you venture out, remember Karl and walk safely, not quickly, as there's lots of ice out there. And if all else fails, try a flower catalog, book or garden show this afternoon.

From the mountain above Peacham Pond where two Green Mountain Power Company trucks were camped out for part of this morning, apparently waiting for yet another call to repair a line taken down by wind and tree limbs.......

Best Sunday wishes,

George Africa
The Vermont Gardener
also at Vermont Gardens
and selling plants on-line at Vermont Flower Farm


thepowerguides said...

and i thought it was bad here with a bit of snow last night and today , hate the strong winds it rocks this old converted barn ( post and beam ) and can be scary sometimes


Jane Marie said...

The lilies are wonderful. I am aching for the weather to warm up. We were told it would hit 50 yeaterday and instead it snowed again, big huge flakes. I can't even walk out in the yard to see what's what. Too deep still. Yuck.