Show us your gardens - a photo thread - April 2013

pixie_louMarch 29, 2013

Broke wrist. Typing leftie. Will edit with all the beginning stuff when cast comes off. Until then, you know what to do. Claire - thanks for keeping March going.

updates 23 April
This is a place to post photos, and to discuss, what is in your garden. This is the thread for April 2013. All garden photos are welcome. As we begin to welcome spring, IâÂÂm happily anticipating the variety of gardenscapes that could possibly be posted in this thread. If it is a photo taken in your garden or your yard, it is fair game to post it here.

Here is the link for the April 2012 thread

For previous 2013 threads:
March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

To see all of the 2012 threads, please click on the December 2012 link. The first post will have links to all previous months.

I am (still) in process of moving all the 2011 threads over to the
photo gallery
. I need to look up who IâÂÂm supposed to e-mail. Plus I have to make the list.

This post was edited by pixie_lou on Tue, Apr 23, 13 at 14:12

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corunum z6 CT(6)

So sorry about your wrist, pixie. Do hope the remaining weeks of healing become easier for you. Bummer.
Jane

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 2:39PM
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claireplymouth z6b coastal MA

Broken wrist in a cast? That's a nasty experience - at least when you type with the other hand it's still readable. I hope you have a nice big mitten you can wear when you go outside (and that it will warm up enough so you won't have to wear it).

I remember having a mangled finger once years ago before the computer era and being forced to write at work with the other hand with nearly illegible results.

Heal quickly!
Claire

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 5:17PM
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spedigrees z4VT

So sorry to hear about your wrist injury. :-( I hope time flies by between now and when the cast comes off.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 6:17PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Oh, pixie lou, of all times to have your wrist in a cast! Just at the start of gardening season?!! Well, I hope that you find many hands to help get done what you want to get done in the garden and they tell you what my DH tells me at times like that.... "just come outside and point." :-)

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 8:09PM
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molie(z6 CT)

Pixielou, I'm so sorry to hear of your injury. I can't think of anything worse for a gardener--- although with the kind of "spring" we are having, perhaps you won't miss much gardening. How many weeks left in the cast, I wonder, then therapy---

Molie

    Bookmark   March 30, 2013 at 8:50AM
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NHBabs(4b-5aNH)

Heal quickly, Pixielou!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 11:35AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Ok, first day of April, the sun's out and we spent two days cleaning up the garden this weekend and spreading half of the 9 yds of mulch deposited in the driveway. Finally seeing some blooms....

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 12:11PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

And right now I have no other way to post multiple pics, so sorry about the extra posts....

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 12:12PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

And here I am trying to take a photo of the first and only flower on this 2nd year Hellebore. I couldn't even see the flower until I uploaded the photo! Very happy with that!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 12:15PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

And the clematis is opening buds, just in time for overnight temps in the 20s this week. ....

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 12:18PM
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molie(z6 CT)

Went out today to see what I could see. This is one of the clumps of hellebores that is opening. I cut back all the old, tired winter leaves.The babies underneath are flourishing.

Btw, is there any way to post more than one pic at a time? I wanted to show more of what I found but I guess I'd have to write a new entry. Bummer

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 3:33PM
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molie(z6 CT)

And so here I am again with a cheerful closeup of a Hellebore. I hope to get a few whites that are upward facing.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 3:35PM
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molie(z6 CT)

Here's my final photo of some baby Hens & Chickens. I was so glad to see they survived Sandy because our yard flooded and salt water covered the lower half of the garden.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 3:38PM
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NHBabs(4b-5aNH)

Molie -

The only way to have more than one photo in a post is to have your photos uploaded to another site, such as Picasa and then using the code for inline links (it's just a matter of choosing the photo size and then copy & paste the code of the photo site.)

Nice to see flowers. I think my only flowers are still the reticulated irises (plus a few crocus open when the sun has been out), but there are several clusters of them in the garden right outside the main house door. It's lovely to see the cheerful bright purple. So far none of my hellebores which I bought as seedlings over the last couple of years are ready to bloom. I haven't wanted to wade through the mud to check out the witch hazels, but I will do that when it dries out a bit.

I am enjoying the temps in the 50's today and yesterday!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 3:58PM
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corunum z6 CT(6)

Okay, something's wrong. PM2 is north of me, Molie is south of me, and my hellebores look like, well, hell in comparison to theirs. Nobody told me that you had to cut back the old foliage. This is the first spring that I've had hellebores, so I might as well get it right right now. Do you both cut (prune) the old winter-beaten foliage away? Just took this picture of my one plant and though I'm glad to see new growth (those red and green gargoyle looking things to the right of the old leaves) these are nowhere near blooming like PM2's and Molie's. Does the age of the plant matter? They're in full sun, well, with a pink scotch broom wispy filter.
Signed, In the Middle...Jane

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 5:05PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Jane, yes, you do cut back the old foliage. There is new growth underneath the old leaves fairly early, like in February or so?

The age of the plant definitely matters. When IâÂÂve bought very young plants IâÂÂve had to wait as long as three years for the first flower to show up. The Hellebore photo above is one that I bought as a plug, very small. I thought it was last year, but I looked it up and I bought it in 2009 and this is the first flower on it. I also have other Hellebores that I bought in 2011 that are blooming this year but they were a lot larger plant when I bought them.

Here is a photo of my oldest clump that is just ready to open, and the old foliage that I havenâÂÂt removed yet. Not a great photo, but itâÂÂs been raining and I ducked out when it stopped for a minute. â¦.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 5:38PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

And here is the same plant from another angle....

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 5:39PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

The plant above with all the dead foliage still on, is in mostly shade and the new growth is up but the flowers are not open yet. Here is another Hellebore which is the first Hellebore plant to look good in the spring and it is in almost 6 hours of sun. I've already cut off the dead foliage. It was also a 2009 plug.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 5:47PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

So Molie is Southern CT, that's why your plant looks fully open. Looks great, Molie! Very pretty variety. Don't you just love those centers?!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 5:53PM
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corunum z6 CT(6)

Thank you, PM2. My hellebores were in bloom last year when I bought them, so there is great promise, even if they are a bit slower in their first year here. Lovely blooms north and south of me, lol. Thanks for taking the time take the latest pictures...helped.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 6:11PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

You're very welcome and your plant looks like it is going to be a beauty with those huge leaves. Can't wait to see what your blooms look like.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 6:34PM
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molie(z6 CT)

Don't give up hope, Jane --- hack away at those old, tired leaves from last year. PM2 gave you great advice and I second her request to show us your plant as it blooms. Hellebores are pretty carefree. Yours will surely fill out and get more luscious as the seasons pass.

@PM2, yes, I do use Picassa and usually can load many at once from that site, but the other day GW would only accept the final photo in the series. I'll try it again to see if I can post some pictures of my dwarf narcissus, a small clump down by the river --- emerging among Dianthus and the usual weeds :-) From April 1, 2013

Hens and Chickens alongside the daffodils.

Yea! Today it worked!

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 8:58AM
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spedigrees z4VT

I love looking at everyone else's blooms! I do have some daffodil shoots with buds beginning to poke up out of the ground, but it will be some time before they bloom. We had snow again today and the temps are in the low 30s - high 20s! I should have started my seeds in pots yesterday, but we had torrential rains and sleet and snow yesterday, so maybe tomorrow.

The pussywillows beside our brook are out. That's something I guess!

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 4:45PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Very cheerful daffodils, Molie. I'm thankful few of mine are open with the overnight 20s this week.

Spedigrees, the cold has shriveled up any potential spring look out there today. Cold and windy all day. Pussy willows are so great. Do you cut them and bring them in the house? You have water there that they love. I am so dry here, I could never grow them.

In a couple of weeks, I think we will all be singing a different tune. :-)

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 6:53PM
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claireplymouth z6b coastal MA

All those gorgeous hellebores! Mine are not doing well this year. I may have to move them.

Nice to see the pussy willows, spedigrees. I have a few but the squirrels last year pruned many of them off when the flowers opened. I have no idea why, they just left them on the ground.

At least the Scilla sibericas are finally appearing! Not too showy, but very blue.

This is when the coastal gardens fall behind the inland gardens, even in colder zones.

Claire

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 3:58PM
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molie(z6 CT)

Love Scilia, Claire. I had them at my first house and miss their bright color. Along with crocus, I need to plant some in my new home.

Hellebores are great! I find that they need very little care. One clump is on the north side of the house but gets good late afternoon sun; the other clumps face east. I guess you just need patience with them. We've been here 10 years and, if my memory still works, they've been in the ground for about 5/6 years. They spread like crazy and need no care. In time I've come to appreciate their centers as PM2 mentioned. So that's why I'm looking for a good upward facing white. Thing is, Helebores can be so expensive. I know I can find what I'm looking for but don't like paying $20+ for one plant!

Signed, The Thrifty Mole

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 6:18PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Claire that blue is so vibrant! So if spring is slower to get going, will it last longer for you?

molie, I haven't paid a lot for any of my Hellebores. The first couple I started with were actually given to me at a swap from DtD. Thanks DtD! :-) And I've picked up a few every year at that annual local plant sale, for reasonable prices, although they were young divisions and took a long time to bloom. The doubles, I bought through a coop were also very inexpensive and they were plugs, which again took about 3 years for the first one to bloom and three other varieties are just blooming this year, so that was a five year wait. The only one I bought as a full grown blooming plant, was 'Ivory Prince' at an end of season sale. I really am kicking myself on two counts, one that I didn't realize they do well in more sun and my first few Hellebores languished in shady sites and didn't spread much or reseed until I moved them into more sun. And two, I wish I had spent the money to buy blooming plants, sooner. I'm getting too old to wait so long for blooms. (g)

    Bookmark   April 6, 2013 at 6:05AM
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molie(z6 CT)

I hear ya, PM2! I really feel compelled to buy Hellebores in bloom for that very same reason of time. But also, many vary in shade that I prefer to "see" the color of the bloom. I've been looking at a bunch of whites/very pales --- Joseph Lemper, Honey Hill Joy, Mrs. Betty Ranicar, even Green Corsican --- online in various catalogues. Once last year I actually saw white hellebores at Whole Foods. But was hesitant about keeping them indoors during the winter. (Still kick myself over that decision.)

Yesterday I was desperate for Spring and we went to HD and bought some pansies to plant outside the windows where we could see them. More & more I vow to get early bulbs for next year.

Of course, then I read here and in other threads about folks still settled in winter. :(
And I say to myself, Quit your yapping, Molie.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2013 at 9:35AM
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claireplymouth z6b coastal MA

PM2: We don't really have a good Spring most years here on the SE coast. A few years ago, 2011 maybe, was great, otherwise Spring just turns into Summer without much fanfare. We're good at Summer and Fall, though.

The first pieris have started blooming! P. 'Little Heath' buds suddenly opened when my back was turned (probably distracted by the Guinea Fowl).

I need to cut back some more of the ornamental grasses so I can see the pieris better. I've been leaving some of them up as a windbreak for the birds. Today is really windy and they've posted a red flag Fire Weather Warning for high winds and low humidity. Wasn't it just last week that we were getting Winter Weather Warnings?

Claire

    Bookmark   April 6, 2013 at 11:37AM
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defrost49

Glad to see it's spring someplace! We are planning to move a 10' tall viburnum Onadago which the nursery said should be moved before it leafs out. The ground has finally dried enough and now I see I've forgotten about a few clumps of daffodils that are probably going to get damaged. Oh well.

The herb garden is beginning to wake up. The overwintered parsnips are starting to sprout. The maples look like they have budded up since yesterday's warm weather. I'm glad for today's rain since I forgot to water the sugar snap peas I planted on Sunday. Hope to get the camera out this weekend.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 8:15AM
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Steve Massachusetts Zone 5b

I looked at the pics from last April. What a difference! This year is about a month behind last year's early Spring.

This is a Hosta seedling from last year just emerging. It overwintered on the 3 season porch. Looks like it's going to remain streaked.

H. Mirror MIrror starts out this soft blue green and then changes to lime green, then gold

H. Mango Salsa. I brought this one in early to use its pollen.

Hellebore Pine Knot White Strain

Here's the flower from above.

First Daffodil just opening. N. Ice Follies

Violas self seeded

Hellebore Golden Showers

Steve

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 12:29PM
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claireplymouth z6b coastal MA

More beautiful hellebores, Steve (sigh), and interesting hostas, yet! My hostas are all hunkering underground with their heads covered.

I've still got crocuses in bloom and the scillas are not quite at peak.

Crocus t. 'Albus'

and C. t. 'Ruby Giant', the last of the crocuses to bloom here.

This was the scene at the bottom of the stair on April 4. When I finally believe ice season is over I'll remove the rubber treads from the granite steps.

Sciilla siberica 'Spring Beauty'

The aptly named Narcissus 'Toby the First'. Toby will be much paler soon.

and N. Jetfire in the middle of the Grey Owl juniper patch.

A new little fungus I've never seen before.

The start of a bleeding heart - I think Dicentra 'Goldheart; this one was established, the two I moved last year are nowhere to be seen. I hope I was careful enough with the move.

Claire

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 4:43PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Molie, I bought 3 white Hellebores âÂÂIvory Princeâ last year that are blooming. I want to get a few more different whites. I like SteveâÂÂs white Hellebore and IâÂÂve been eyeing a double at Terra Nova âÂÂWhite DiamondâÂÂ, I think? I would love to get more. And I find myself thinking about adding a lot more bulbs this fall, too. I bought pansies over a week ago and havenâÂÂt potted them up yet.

Steve, what great shots of your hostas. You are such a lucky duck to have a three season porch! ItâÂÂs so nice to see fully emerged Hosta leaves this early in the season. Mango Salsa is a very pretty yellow with the red base. Is this the one that stays yellow all season? That Mirror Mirror is a very unusual color. I would love to see photos of the color changes. And of course, your Hellebores are wonderful. Love the white. A viola already in bloom in your zone, isnâÂÂt that early? My âÂÂIce Folliesâ are fully open for the past two days in one area of the garden that gets the most sun. In less sun they are just about to open.

Claire, my crocus for the most part are gone by. Even my âÂÂRuby GiantâÂÂ. Except under my Japanese Maple which is the last area to bloom for crocus. It is in more than half shade there. I love that area by the bottom of your steps with the different shades of purples and blue. And what a great idea to protect your steps for the winter. Where did you get those rubber stair treads?

IâÂÂve seen Dicentras poking out, but I think yours are up a little more than mine. I saw some epimedium foliage for the first time yesterday. That was a surprise, OH, and I have one little patch of bloodroot that is blooming. It was a volunteer that just showed up three years ago. So I guess spring is officially here.

Does anyone else think itâÂÂs pretty dry out there? We keep getting showers that arenâÂÂt producing much rain. IâÂÂm thinking of using my sprinkler already.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 6:04AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Actually, I was curious enough to know just how much precipitation we've had this spring that I visited the weather underground site and this is about what I thought...

Feb 3rd, snow 0.00
Feb 5th, snow 0.00
Feb 6th, snow 0.01
Feb 8th, snow 0.30
Feb 9th, snow 0.25
Feb 11th, snow 0.23
Feb16th, snow 0.01
Feb 17th, snow 0.00
Feb 19th, rain 0.23
Feb 20th, rain 0.00
Feb 23rd, snow 0.11
Feb 24th, snow 0.50
Feb 25th, snow 0.00
Feb 27th, rain 1.21

Mar 3rd, snow 0.00
Mar 4th, snow 0.00
Mar 6th, snow 0.10
Mar 7th, snow 0.02
Mar 8th, snow 0.21
Mar 12th, rain 0.37
Mar 15th, snow 0.00
Mar 18th, snow 0.04
Mar 19th, snow 0.79
Mar 21st, snow 0.00
Mar 25th, rain 0.00
Mar 28th, rain 0.00
Mar 29th, rain 0.00

Apr 1st, rain 0.10
Apr 9th, rain 0.04
Apr 10th, rain 0.20

And there was even less in January. So, in 3 months we've only had an inch or more of water on ONE day. And although it rained yesterday, you see we only got 0.20 of rain. Friday is forecast for more rain than we've had so I hope, but I'm definitely going to be using my sprinkler this spring to make up the difference.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 7:25AM
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Steve Massachusetts Zone 5b

PM2,

Here in the Worcester area we had over 100 inches of snow last winter. It was the snowiest city in America. Everytime the snow would melt in my daylily bed, I would see a viola plant or two that was in bloom. A few of them never stopped all winter. Now they are popping up all over, in the lawn too.

The three season porch and attached garage are great places to stash valuable potted plants for wintering over. The only problem is that these spaces accelerate your zone by one or two zones. That's why Mirror, Mirror started so early. It was in my garage and in March I saw a lot of growth. I put it under lights for a short time and then brought it outside when the weather turned nice. I'll have to put it on the porch with the others over the next few days. Here's a picture of it from last year in its soft green phase. It was a gift from the hybridizer of the plant.

Mango Salsa is available from NH Hostas. It's a small plant and it remains gold all year. It will take a good deal of sun. The Hellebores are all from Pine Knot Farms. My favorite place to shop for those plants. Link below. Careful, you'll be ordering if you visit the link.

Here is a link that might be useful: Pine Knot Farms

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 9:08AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Thanks Steve, I will spend some time looking around at Pine Knot Farms. I'm by no means a collector of Hosta but I do want to really love the few that I buy. I'm going to look for that Mango Salsa.

I LOVE violas that reseed. I had one that did that the year after I planted it, but then it didn't reseed again. I guess you have to have them every year. I wish I had the time to focus on figuring a way to have a ton of violas or pansies every spring! Especially started from seed so they would not be a big expense. Probably would have to start the seeds late summer/fall and winter them over as seedlings every year. For some reason, I never do very much planting or seed starting in late summer. I always mean to but I never do. One of these years.

I see what you mean about the porch. You still end up taking them in and out in the spring. A lot of work moving. I only keep a few houseplants over the winter and one large standard tropical hibiscus that won't go outside until it is consistently over 50 degrees at night. I used to try to keep a lot more in pots, but I began to dread the spring and fall migration. (g)

Thanks for the 2nd photo of Mirror Mirror, and the link!

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 9:19AM
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claireplymouth z6b coastal MA

Steve: Yesterday I did a search for Hosta Mirror Mirror and got this site, THE DEER WHO EAT MY HOSTA MIRROR as well as genuine hosta sites.

PM2: I've had these or similar treads for years. The first supplier no longer sells them, but I recently bought another rubber mat from Ballard Designs - I think it's the one at the bottom of the steps. I love them for winter when it's icy. I also have them on my porch steps. None of them have failed yet.

Claire

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 10:42AM
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Steve Massachusetts Zone 5b

Claire,

When you are searching for a Hosta first try the Hosta Library. It's a picture database of pretty much every plant arranged alphabetically. Mirror Mirror is on there, but it's not on the market, only in a few gardens. No shopping on the Library.

Steve

Here is a link that might be useful: Hosta Library

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 5:38PM
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Tina_n_Sam(CT-Z6)

I am so jealous of your plants! So jealous, that I went out to rake yesterday and found buds and shoots! I can't wait until everything grows in. Last year, was the first time I started a garden.

The majority of the plants I got from last fall's swap and George's survived. Yaay!

Molie, your hen and chicks are the size of saucers! I checked on mine and some did survive the winter. They are the size of nickels and quarters. But, hey, I'll take them.

-Tina

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 5:51PM
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claireplymouth z6b coastal MA

Thanks, Steve. I did try the Hosta Library after the first search, but it wasn't in the front of my memory. It should be, so next time I'll try that first.

Claire

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 6:34PM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

A little OT, but regarding those treads - do you keep them down all winter, or just put them out when(after) it gets icy. Seems if they were out all winter the ice would just form around and up and over them.

I bought some once but they seemed so slick I didn't even use them. Didn't seem like they would give any traction at all, they seemed so slippery. I'm intrigued to hear that they seem to work well!

Dee

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 9:55AM
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claireplymouth z6b coastal MA

Dee: I leave them out all winter. Granted, we don't usually get large amounts of snow here - just lots of ice since we hover around the rain/snow line.

These rubber treads are not at all slick. The pattern is like a web with holes in it for the ice to settle in. I'll occasionally lift them to shake off the ice, although sometimes the ice is too thick to to move them. I tend not to use those granite steps when it's too icy anyway; I have an alternate route down the bluestone paver path (which has different problems). I have to shovel these anyway to feed the birds so I don't always bother to shovel the path away from the granite steps.

The rubber treads are best on my wooden porch steps which are partly sheltered and essential for my getting out and in.

Claire

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 10:25AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Took some photos in the cloudy weather and of course, now that I'm in the house again, the sun is out. (g)

I finally have all the dead foliage off the Hellebores. I took a repeat photo of that awful mess of a one I posted before and surprisingly, it looks a lot like yours, Mollie.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 4:09PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

I also wanted to compare where my Bleeding Hearts are to yours on the cape, Claire. Yours must be showing more foliage than mine by now.....

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 4:11PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

That was the pink Bleeding Heart, and here is the white one. It makes you believe that spring is really here....

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 4:35PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

'Ice Follies' again.....

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 4:37PM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

Thanks, Claire, for that additional info regarding the treads. I'm still not convinced, though. I took another look at your photos and the treads I have are exactly the ones you have. When I got them, I put them on the steps and walked down them and I just didn't feel safe or stable. I thought I would perhaps try putting them down on top of whatever ice/snow could not be cleared completely after a snowstorm, but again just wasn't comfortable.

So now I look at them from time to time and wonder how/if I can incorporate them into the garden - garden art, trellis, etc.

:)
Dee

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 6:00PM
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pixie_lou

Tomorrow is the 15th. Do we need a part 2 for April?

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 6:04PM
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claireplymouth z6b coastal MA

pixie_lou: How's your wrist doing? If it's not too much of a strain, it looks like spring is really ratcheting up and more photos will be coming. A part 2 would be good (but not if it hurts your recovery).

Dee: If you don't feel safe on the treads then they're no good for you. Are they slippery on the top where they meet your shoes or on the bottom where they meet the stairs?

I have a mat that's great on the top but it slides around on the wooden porch so I had to put a rubber mat under it.

I guess you could use them as a stencil if you want to spray an interesting pattern on a concrete walkway, or your driveway....

Claire

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 5:35PM
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