Thursday, September 3, 2009

Labor Day Garden Blues

Almost nothing is on the come and the sun-kissed bliss of summer has turned many leaves to leather and only made the weeds more audacious. Putting the garden to bed is next on the agenda and as you do this gradual clearing, note all the room you are making for the fabulous bulbs and tubers that you should begin to order right now. When you think of daffodils and crocus - you normally do not think of this:
But the time to order it and when to plant is the exact same as that of your favorite tulip or hyacinth. The very name Dracunculus vulgaris is more emblematic of necromancy or some other dark art than a reminder of the coming sighs of spring, but that time is still now. This astonishing plant will emerge just as the spring lovelies are waning and it shocks the garden into a new sort of splendor. During the 3 weeks of the unfurling of the big carmine-red-drenched spathe, even the dog is spellbound. After the 'flowering', a fabulous arrangement of circular leaves becomes more apparent. Their luminous white markings become almost transparent at the twilighty end of the day. Available from Brent and Becky's Bulbs and quite a bang for your buck. Five for less than $20 and although it looks like the most exotic of rain forest denizens - it is completely winter hardy here on Long Island.

The biggest news...and a spec of info that I didn't discover until this year when our winds and rains of June knocked one completely down - it can even be kept inside in a vase for ultra-drama. It's fabulous and not nearly as stinky as some would have you believe.

Watch my blog for other great bulbs, both classic and otherwise, and where to get them. Plenty of time for planting - October, November and then some. But ordering is September - that's now!

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