Thursday, April 09, 2009

Instruments of Change

Thursday, April 9, 2009

You can tell by the absence of communication from Vermont Flower Farm that the weather has broken and spring is struggling to give us an opportunity to be outside. In no way does that mean that the gardens are even remotely free of snow but there are patches of driveway and grass that need picking up and the chance to get some fresh air is just too good. Robins predominate now although the winter birds continue to wear down the feeders. The bears are out of hibernation here and there and I am reluctant to put any more feed in the feeders than the birds will clean up in a day.

The picture here and up top is of a great daylily by Darryl Apps named Over There. It was registered in 1983 and continues to be very popular. I chose this picture to show how strong a grower it is. You are looking at three healthy fans here and this is what we typically begin to break up and line out in the spring to keep all our flowers in rotation and in supply. It's trickier than you might think as a popular seller this year might not even sell six plants next year.

I have written about dividing daylilies before and if you go to the intro daylily page on our website you will hear a little about my thoughts on this. Years ago a friend found the bottom knife with the brown plastic handle at a flea market, garage sale, something like that. She had me in mind having heard my one-on-one exchange with daylilies about to be split up. The knife has larger teeth on one side and is very strong but almost impossible to sharpen. This past year I noticed the top knife at a box store. It's a drywall or sheetrock knife for cutting that plaster board that lines many of our house walls. This one cost about $10 and comes with a spongy soft handle that I like.

As spring arrives and it's time to divide some daylilies, think about what I have said and give a knife like one of these a try. Easy to use after you hose the plant off with water. Although every newly split daylily won't put up blooms the same year, some will surprise you. A vigorous grower like Over There is sure to please by year two and the color and bud count will make you smile!

Writing from the mountain above Peacham Pond where three large hen turkeys just spent some time scratching their way through dinner in the old potato patch. One tried to cross the snowy field but kept falling in so she about-faced and walked the perimeter. Good thinking!

George Africa
The Vermont Gardener
Vermont Gardens
Vermont Flower Farm: our newly released, reconstructed by yours truly website!


flowrgirl1 said...

lovely daylily. thanks for sharing. Its about time the weather break for us!

texasdaisey said...

Hi George, thanks so much for entering my giveaway and leaving your awesome comment. I do feel for you having such cold weather when the rest of the world is warming up. I have always dreamed of visiting Vermont. I have heard it is beautiful there. Keep you chin up it will warm up soon and you will be out playing in the dirt in no time. I used to live in a much much colder place years ago in the Texas Panhandle (at the very top) and it stayed so cold that it really didn't get safe to plant anything until late May and June. You have an awesome blog. I put a link to you in my post. Hope you don't mind

joey said...

George, your new site is awesome! I could spend an entire day just catching up with you through your fine writing and photos. Easter blessings and Happy Spring!

Anonymous said...

lovely day lily. thanks for sharing. Its about time the weather break for us!
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