What I describe as the 'new spring' (in other words, get used to this cool extended weather every spring) has not done anything to deter most of our gardens.
Although a few of the heat seeking plants like
tomatoes and beans could use a shot of warmth, the rest of our garden is booming along, non-stressed by heat and loving the cool weather.
Although I have been told that some plants are a tad behind "schedule," our huge rhodo, which always blooms at the same time every year, bloomed a week early this year.
Go figure, as the kids say. But everything else has been in order of what we expected, and some blooming for longer without the sun to move them along quickly.
What has been missing this year has been the traffic to our local nurseries.
Many are stuck with oodles of stock as the cool weather has kept most of the customers away.
I spoke to Gary Lewis of Phoenix Perennials and he said the nursery is packed full of lush and flowering plants. At 3380 No. 6 Rd., Phoenix evolved from a sleepy nursery a few years back when Lewis bought it, to a nursery which stocks over 4,000 varieties of plants - the largest variety in Canada.
Lewis is well known as a community supporter through his Charity Weekends where a portion of every sale is donated to a community charity.
And, Lewis is proud to point out that Phoenix Perennials has just won an award for customer service, which he feels is second to none.
Phoenix is holding a special event from June 22 to July 1 where they will accept back all the plastic gardening containers you have collected, which they will have recycled.
This is great, as many of us have found that the plastic pots that a lot of our garden purchases have come in, are not acceptable in our blue bins.
I had one woman tell me the nursery she shopped at did accept the pots back for reuse, but this is not a sign of a good nursery. Pots should not be reused in a nursery setting due to the fear of transferring disease.
Along with your garden plastics, Lewis will also accept at this time any of your returnable cans and bottles.
Fellow Phoenix worker Vanessa will put the proceeds towards building funds for a village in Ecuador.
So, all you multi-taskers - this is an event tailored just for you!
Go to Phoenix (along your way you can visit many other local nurseries for your annuals), recycle your garden plastic, donate your cans and bottles to a good cause, seek great advice from the Phoenix staff who will wow you with their customer service, as you purchase perennials which will show their stuff every year to come. Whew! Great fun!
Deb Brodie is a local gardener who is also a member of the Richmond Garden Club. She can be reached at email@example.com.