Best and worst for 2011

marthacr(z5 Me)February 13, 2012

I'm SO behind in my seed ordering. I haven't been able to even think about the coming year. Have forced myself to sit and make my orders this week. I thought maybe reading and posting here would boost my inspiration:

My best producers last summer:

Digitalis Camelot, Lupine Red Castle, Dahlia mix from Banner Farm, dianthus b. Amazon Neon Rose magic, Scabiosa a. Cut Brite (need to stake better for straighter stems), Mrs. Burns lemon basil (could have been taller for bouquets but produced heavily),zinnias did better than usual.

Disappointments:

Lavatera (stems were dfficult to cut for larger bouquets), Buplureum and Bells of Ireland (growth stunted due to late spring, I think), snapdragons (lots of stink bugs and decreased bloom)

This is what I can remember off the top of my head.

How about you?

Martha

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flower_farmer(5/6 MI)

Hi Martha,

What a pleasant surprise to see mixed Dahlias from BFF mentioned! The last couple years we have left tubers in the ground in an unheated greenhouse; and, they have returned the following season.

As far as our seed orders, we are behind as well.

Warmest Regards

    Bookmark   February 13, 2012 at 11:03PM
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marthacr(z5 Me)

This was my first attempt at dahlias. While my growing experience was great, I'm not so sure about my storage technique. It's great to hear about your success with leaving them in a hoophouse. That my be the only way I am able to have continued success, as I hate to dig up and store things in the fall. But the burgandy colored dahlias were especially stunning!
Glad to hear from you. Hope you're feeling well!
Martha

    Bookmark   February 13, 2012 at 11:18PM
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magz88(5a - Central Ontario)

I ordered everything early. I just have an ornamental oregano for drying that I have to order as plants since they don't come as seeds.

I have doronicum and armeria (joysticks) testing as indoor starts and will do outdoors as well. Also have lavender to start.

I ordered white and red zinnias, the giant cactus flower zinnias, tons of clarkia, tons of gomphrena, I started some larkspur outside last year but have seeds for the spring as well.

I also have salpiglossis, nigella, sweet peas, canterbury bells, robinson's daisy, plus asters for next year. I am also going to do some chinese lanterns in pots to sell in the fall.

Oh, also hare's tail and craspedia seeds for dried.

Plus I have a yard full foxgloves and aquilegia that I planted last year for late spring cuts.

My best from last year were sweet peas, zinnias, harlequin marigolds and asters. There wasn't really anything terrible that I would label as 'worst'.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 12:50PM
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pitt(IN-Zone5)

Best in 2011
Seastar asters
Blue Horizon ageratum - cut back and had great 2nd crop
Sunrich sunflowers - never have enough of these for markets
Dahlias (thanks Banner!)
Benary zinnias
State Fair zinnias - huge last summer
Sweet Dani Basil - great filler for us
Seeker Series statice - produced over long period
Frosted Explosion grass - florists loved this
Amazon dianthus - succession seeded 2000
Chief celosia - (had to "mud" about 500 back in after wind!)

Had some other favorites, but these were our largest crops.

Only disappointments were bupleurum and ranunculus.
I started ranunculus too early and killed them with kindness by overwatering. Bupleurum was OK, but not my favorite filler.

Love the posts. Pitt, IN(5)

    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 8:03AM
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Noni Morrison

Last year decided to stick with dahlias and perennials becaue of Arthritis problems. Can we say "Boring!" My customers didn't complain but I was bored. This year back to starting snapdragons, zinnias, calendulas dianthus, cosmos,ammi, larkspur,batchelors buttons, all the old favorites. I will manage somehow and hubby will help with planting, as he retired this year. I also swim 3 days a week now which is helping. My first love is still the dahlias though.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 10:15PM
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Belgianpup(Wa/Zone 7b)

Lizalily, just a thought...

I have a friend who is in her 70s, and she's been having problems keeping up with her vegetable gardens (front and back) for the last few years. Down the street from her lives a younger couple with a baby, in the second floor apartment.

The younger and the older woman came to an arrangement where the younger one brings her baby and lets him crawl around in one of those tent-like things that's really just an awning with a zippered door, while she helps in the garden.

The younger woman learns gardening skills and takes her pay in fruit and vegetables, and the older woman doesn't have to wear herself out with the digging and bending so much.

The reason that communities exist is because no one can do it all by themselves.

Maybe there's someone nearby who loves flowers...

Sue

    Bookmark   February 23, 2012 at 7:37PM
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Noni Morrison

Sue, it would be great to find someone like that but so far i have had enthuiasm for the idea then they never show up, or they want to sit and chat and enthuse without actually doing the work. The people whom I have talked with just want to come help me make bouquets (Over my dead body!)

    Bookmark   March 1, 2012 at 10:39AM
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