Hi, Gardeners and Friends!
We had hard frost and SNOW this week in Chicagoland. Not measurable, but sad to look at tulips through flurries. We desperately need moisture, as we have missed the last three precipitation events here.
Spring in the upper Mid-west is elusive sometimes. This year is no exception. This is why we have the greenhouse, but first we start everything in the house. I did starts the first week in March, and then as trays were moved or transplanted we moved them to the greenhouse. Then, I started more seeds. It's been fruit basket UPSET every week, lol.
These photos were take around April 15th. I keep the lids on until the plants push them off, lol.
We have two large windows in the kitchen, one facing East and the other South. I have often planted one more shelf high, but we had a lot in the living room wall window, too.
These are Cosmos, which are awfully spindly.
This is Dill which is doing quite well. We had a lot of dull dark days, so we put up a couple of plant lights, which helped.
This is the South window. Peppers and Tomatoes. The top right is coleus that I broadcast seeds in a dirt filled tray. Very Good germination on these. Coleus plants are fairly expensive, large, but I need shade plants...lots of shade plants.
The day after I took these photos, I transplanted the tomatoes into large plastic glasses in the greenhouse and they have been doing well.
In the living room I planted all my bulbs, Caladiums and Elephant Ears (in the tub in front). These are usually very slow to grow. The plants you see are Blue Hostas.
The Hostas took off like crazy and were moved to the greenhouse beginning of last week. Five went to a friends and are planted around a tree, and are doing well. I moved the Caladiums out there also, and they are finally starting to sprout.
I now have two full sized Elephant leaves two weeks later, and I don't know where I'm going to keep them. Tropical, Elephant ears are very temperature sensitive. So they will have to get transplanted to big pots in the house????
(LtoR) Sweet Potato vine. I wintered over, sharing a pot with a Mandivilla. I have one red bloom on that now. It bloomed until Christmas and then shut down. The yellow pot is another one, then the Rex Begonia which is not happy, two variegated Dracena and a Spathiphyllum.
This is a photo of the greenhouse last year about this time, but today, we are a bit behind this year, temperature wise! We finally settled on staining all trim country red. It sure will brighten up the yard. I concede to Hubby's choices on things HE builds...keeps the peace that way!
Inside, the Greenhouse is about half full. I had planted a few pots with annuals, pansies and other stuff for the front porch. The bright green is Scotch moss. Something new I'm going to try here and there and see how they do for a perennial. They are thick masses of plant and roots.
I managed to get 9 pots of Peppermint from some roots I found in one of my dried grass pots. So I chopped them up and planted in small pots and they are doing very well.
PEPPERMINT WARNING: This is an invasive under ground trailer. If you use peppermint for bees/bugs repellant, make sure you burn the plants in Fall. Do not put it anywhere it can seed or the roots can survive...or you will be weeding out peppermint for the rest of your life. I will try and save one pot to winter over for starts, but carefully.
Here are some herbs I started. The Chives are from transplants from the yard, and Rosemary.
I started two large planters with lettuce onions and spinach.
Soon as we get a break in the weather, I'll plant more lettuce, radishes, and spinach in the ground. We should have food in about three more weeks, maybe less!
With the diving temps this week, I moved them back into the greenhouse. Pansies are very hardy, but better safe than sorry. I just keep them where it is shady!
Here are the transplanted Tomatoes....they were actually happy in the cooler greenhouse.
I kept them on lower shelves for a week, with filtered light, then moved them into the sun on top.
I started multiple Zinnia seeds inpots along with lots of other things, Marigolds, Nasturtiums, Bachaelor Buttons, and lots else.
The garden is dry and clear of weeds! YAY! We will till and plant sometime in May.
The Day Lilies and Daffodils, make it look like summer. We have to adjust the play set for the Grand. She is 8 now and so tall...she has to duck in her play house!
On a loop around the yard, I found this little guy was outside all winter by himself...He looks so annoyed! I'll rake in a few weeks, giving the bees and bugs a chance to survive longer. Night time temps are freezing, so they have nowhere to hide if they are above ground.
I took a few other photos of interesting textures. My twenty-year old shelf---finally
submitted to the elements. I guess it needed another coat of Poly last year...well, it's a REDO project now! My dad built these for my pottery business, and the pattern I painted on these matched the flower pottery and flower pots I produced. I'm so happy I kept pieces. I know I have one more of these shelves inside the porch safe and sound, so maybe this one will be country red.
Some of the birdhouses are over 30 years old...but those are the ones the birds like best! This one has been repaired many times.
We really need moisture, badly a few snowflakes hasn't done it. I've never had to water in April...??? Usually there is standing water in this part of the garden this time of year?
Mid-West Gardening---you just NEVER know what will be next! I do have to make a new plan for the garden areas. Update my logs, and make sure veggies get moved around for better crops this year!
Next Gardening Post.
Midwest Gardening April 2021: Perennial Survival and Garden Planning
Please Join me at these fine blog parties:
Please do not use my photos without a link back to this blog without my permission.
Thank you for your cooperation,