Need a Garden Buddy from Northern Ontario....March

Debbie_N_Ontario(zone 2)March 1, 2005

Well here it is March, soon the snow will be melting, the birds will be singing and we will be seeing the hopes of spring,,, or so I am told. *LOL*

I know the light levels are getting stronger and it is getting lighter and staying lighter for much longer now, which I love!

I am so eager to see how all those plants I transplanted did over the winter. I hope they all survived and will take off growing this apring.

Gale, how was the race? I don't know if u are even back home yet.

Well gotta go.....take care and think spring!!!

Debbie :-)

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Debbie_N_Ontario(zone 2)

I have been busy transplanting more impatiens the past couple of days. Tonight I did over twenty, the other day about 14 and I still am waiting for the cuttings in water to get roots. I transplanted 8 silver tidal wave petunias last night. I am very disappointed in the McKenzie seeds I got at walmart. 6.29 plus tax for 8 seedlngs seems a bit steep. Marcia, I'm going to try Dominion Seeds next year. The other pink wave petunia package didn't give me many more than 8 either. Good thing I started them early. I'm hoping they will grow fast so I can get lots of cuttings from them. *S* I also planted some carraghana seeds as I'm going to be planting them along the north fence to give us more privacy, in 10 years when they grow tall enough that is. *L*

I am still waiting for 14 geraniums I thought had started to germinate in wet paper towels on the top of the fridge to poke up thru the soil. I have a funny feeling they are gonners. I'm going to try keeping one plant of white geranium, orange appeal, raspberry ripple and pink starburst geraniums in the house and not putting them outside. This way I will have a mother plant to take cuttings from next winter and get a head start on things. Almost all the geraniums I did save from the fall and stored in paper bags have survived. About 7 outta 10 are growing again.

Looks like I have about 3 flower buds coming up on the 10 amaryllis I brought from upstairs, but I still have a lot in the cellar waiting to come up.

I hope everyone is doing ok, we are expecting a lot of snow tomorrow. *ugh* I hope they are wrong. *S*

Take care
Debbie :-)

    Bookmark   March 7, 2005 at 5:53AM
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skeevesgirl(z3 MAN)

Wow Debbie! You are a busy lady :)
I am a brand new gardener, and am still really unsure of myself, but I am optimistic...

I am trying my habd at Winter Sowing and have about 11 containers out so far...I am so worried none will germinate, or that I did it wrong....YIKES.

Anyway, nice to "meet" you hope you don't mind me pooping in, since I am technically not from northern Ontario (manitoba now) but I grew up in Northern Ontario, so I am one at heart :)


    Bookmark   March 8, 2005 at 2:35PM
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Debbie_N_Ontario(zone 2)

Hi Julie *waving*
I don't mind at all you posting here. *S* The more the
merrier! We were all beinngers at one time and I found out
I learned a lot by trial and error. I just watch a lot
of gardening shows, read a lot of books, still reading after
22 years of gardening, and take tips from other gardeners.

If your in Manitoba now u must be zone 3 or 4? I have yet to try the winter sowing thingy, but I know that Marcia is trying it again this year. She could probably help u if u have any questions about it.

Take care and ask questions, we will try to answer them.
Debbie :-)

    Bookmark   March 9, 2005 at 6:45AM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

Julie, you've been to the winter sowing forum, haven't you? There's a lot of information over there. Just hang in - your seeds will germinate when the time comes. :)

I've done some more winter sowing myself - 13 more containers on the weekend. Plus, i have impatiens, petunias, godetia, matthiola, and osteospermum growing inside. And all the impatiens cuttings, cuttings from my lantana and cuttings from my little begonia. AND (LOL) all the geraniums from last summer. I don't think the roots i saved have made it over the winter. They seemed awfully dried out, but i planted them anyway. Nothing's happened yet.

I need to plant my peony root, too, and the cannas pretty soon as well. I don't know where i'm going to put all of these things, so the snow better melt pdq! LOL

Hey, guess what! The flooring is all done! :) Now we just need to finish the trim, but dh says he has that all cut (some places never had any trim before)and i just have to varnish it sometime. Anyway, here's what it looks like:

(Pardon the centring - i cropped the picture and there's white space that i can't get rid of).

We're going to Kenora sometime next week to see if we can find something for the kitchen floor. It's March Break next week - woo hoo! I'm going to get as much winter sowing done as possible! People have been giving me containers, so i have quite a few, but i'll have to eat some more strawberries!

That's about it for now. Not much new and exciting - as usual!

who still has the winter blahs

    Bookmark   March 9, 2005 at 10:09PM
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skeevesgirl(z3 MAN)

Hi Marcia..

Yes, I do go to the winter sowing formum sometimes...although it can get confusing :)

Your flooring looks great! We did that all through our house. It was addicting! We have a brand new puppy so I am VERY thankful for our flooring!

I will be posting some WS questions soon over in the far north forum so hopefully you and the others might have some thoughts for me.

BTW - I got your seeds you sent me yesterday! Thanks SOOO much :)


    Bookmark   March 10, 2005 at 5:10PM
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skeevesgirl(z3 MAN)

Not sure this will work but it wouldn't let me post back to back....thought you might like a pic of the puppy :)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2005 at 5:33PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

He's a sweetie! And so is the puppy! LOL

Our dog is finding the flooring a little slick, so he has to walk carefully on it. But i sure like it, and we'll probably put some in the bedrooms now. Now, i say - i should say "someday" because i know how dh works!

Where did you come from in NWO, Julie? Just curious!

    Bookmark   March 10, 2005 at 10:16PM
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skeevesgirl(z3 MAN)

Well Marcia, I gre up in "Northern Ontario" in a teensy town called Elliot Lake. Lived there most of my life. I had a one and a half years stint in Red Lake, and now am in Selkirk, Manitoba..

I miss Northern Ontario though....very much.


    Bookmark   March 10, 2005 at 11:21PM
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den_vic(BC Canada Z8b)

Hi Debbie

I'm an ex resident of Northern Ontario now living in Victoria, BC. I get a wet Nov, Dec & Jan instead of seasonal snow. But the gardening is quite diverse. Here's a palm tree on Vancouver Island to warm folks up in Ontario.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   March 11, 2005 at 1:44AM
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den_vic(BC Canada Z8b)

One of the most dramatic flowering trees of spring in Victoria, BC.
March 2005 photo


Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   March 11, 2005 at 1:48AM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

Den_Vic, that's NOT nice! :) Especially when the snow is falling again today!

Julie, you were just up the road from me when you lived in Red Lake! I know where Elliot Lake is, though i've never been there. My first roommate at University was from there. Often wonder where she is now...

Happy Friday! Gotta get to work!

    Bookmark   March 11, 2005 at 9:00AM
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Debbie_N_Ontario(zone 2)

Marcia, beautiful floors! They look great! It looks like u are going to be very busy planting things. *L* I think u need an addition for a sunroom for all your bulbs and plants. *L*

My geranium roots looked very dry too when I took them out of the bags, but most of them started to grow, I hope yours will recover. I don't give them too much water when I first plant them at first, I wait until I see leaves popping out on them that way they don't seem to rot as much. It usually takes a few weeks before the leaves start to show.

One of my amaryllis is blooming, it's nice to have some flowers in the house again. *S* I have some more petunias and coleus to transplant too.

Julie, what a cute pic! Looks like those wood floors are going to get a work out. *S* Elliott Lake is now suppose to be a retirement town. I know a few years ago they were trying to get some folks from my mom's building in Guelph to go up there and check out the town, hoping they would move up there.

Hi Den_Vic, nice to meet u, but u have a very cruel sense of humor. *LOL* Nice pics. I did know that Victoria had palm trees, found that out a few years ago watching the Canadian Gardener.

It has been nice here the past few days, a nice balmy -8C! *L* I even got out and went for a walk. B.C. may be nice, but u have poisonous black widow spiders and brown recluse spiders there. I am scared to death of those things, so I'd rather have the snow. *G*

Well I have to go,,,,take care
Debbie :-)

    Bookmark   March 11, 2005 at 2:24PM
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dannie(3b NWO Canada)

Ohhhhh love the puppy!! Is he a Sheltie?
I haven't posted in quite a while cause I haven't had much to say in terms of gardening! I have been inhaling the gardening magazines from the store. We have so much snow that I am not sure it will even be gone by June! I have my future garden beds planned, my containers planned, my shopping list planned as well as a future deck planned if I can talk hubby into it. Going stir crazy here with the snow!


    Bookmark   March 11, 2005 at 7:25PM
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Gale(3/4 NW ONT)

Hi Buddies and NEWCOMERS!

Sorry I haven't posted since we got back from Florida.....but I tell has been crazy!

The vacation was AWESOME....great weather...lots of fun...great time at the racetrack!Everyone had a blast and the townhouse was EXACTLY as it was pictured on their website.....just wonderful!The weekend on Daytona Beach went quickly, but was awesome.

So....after we get back, I need to catch up on bookwork, get T4's & taxes filed , month end stuff, yr.end stuff, etc., etc.,...BUSY.

Then I need to get seeds started.........busy!
Got lots of sprouts now under the lights.

Then Steve gets ill last week and is diagnosed with diabetes and is on insulin at the moment...I tell ya...I've been running hectic here......but I have been keeping up to date on reading everyone's posts.......sounds like everyone is getting prepared for SPRING.....BRING IT

Anyhooo.......HELLO again to EVERYONE.

Just a quick post....payday is tomorrow and gotta get the chqs. printed out before the kids want back on the 'puter (as usual)

Enjoy your week off *Marcia*....not a great week for me with kids all over the

Will post more than once this

Talk to ya'll later, Gale

    Bookmark   March 14, 2005 at 8:42PM
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Hi I want to plant some morning glories. Where will they do best?
do they need a lot of sun ?
Thank you
ps: im in Northern On. also

    Bookmark   March 18, 2005 at 5:02PM
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Debbie_N_Ontario(zone 2)

Hi everyone
It has been a nice couple of days, the snow has been melting a bit and it has been over 80F in the porch with the sun shining in there.

I have been busy transplanting and finished getting the last of the coleus done, I have to buy some more plastic pots so I can transplant the geraniums into bigger pots, maybe they might bloom by June *L* I will have to start planting marigolds and tomatoes in a few weeks.

Hi Danni *wave* I sure hope your snow will be gone before June. Most of ours really starts to melt in April and most of it is gone by the end of May. How much snow do u have? We still have 3 ft.

Hi Gale, welcome back! I'm glad u had a good time on your vacation! Was hubby surprised about the side trip to the race track or did he know about it before u left home?

I'm so sorry to hear about Steve, if u have any questions about diabetes I will try to answer them for you. I was put on new meds last week and one of them was to stop my sugar from spiking after I ate something. I have been diabetic for 42 years and have always been on needles, but I'm hoping this pill will help with my sugars.

Claire, I start morning glories in the house about 3-4 weeks before the last frost. I soak them for 24 hrs before I plant them. I plant mine in containers where they get sun from about noon until 4pm. I'm sure if I was able to give them more sun they would do better. Some years I don't seem to get many flowers from them if it is a cool wet summer.

Take care
Debbie :-)

    Bookmark   March 19, 2005 at 10:14PM
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dannie(3b NWO Canada)

Hey all

We still have at least 3 feet of snow left but it has been melting the last few days. Maybe it won't last till June!

I finally finished adding the pictures to my garden website. I had forgotten that I had taken quite a few last summer and was planning to add them. I found them again when I was downloading my daughter's pictures from Europe (Yes the little brat visited London, Paris and Nice for the March break while mom, dad, and pets stayed home). Hope you enjoy the pictures...they sure gave me good memories of last summer. I can't wait to see how my garden will look this year.


Here is a link that might be useful: Danni's Garden 2004

    Bookmark   March 21, 2005 at 10:12PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

Loved your pictures, Danni! Where did you get the planter with the cats on it? I like that!

If i get to Thunder Bay during the summer, can i come for a tour? :)

Gale, too bad about Steve. This will mean a lot of changes for you guys, i guess. But a lot of people live successfully with diabetes, so it shouldn't be too bad once you get used to it.

Over the March Break, i did a lot of winter sowing. I have over 60 containers outside now! There should be a lot for trading later on, eh? LOL

We've had decent weather, too, and lots of melting going on during the day. Not enough by far, though! There's still a ton of snow out there.

Debbie, the dry-looking geraniums still haven't done anything - think they might be dead? Poor dears. I'll just have to replace them! LOL I just got another large pot for my canna bulbs today. I've no idea where the one i usually put them in has gone to. Probably buried!

Anyway, not much else going on. Just dreamin' of spring!

whose dreams are buried in snow!

    Bookmark   March 21, 2005 at 10:33PM
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dannie(3b NWO Canada)

Hey all

The snow is melting, the snow is melting, the snow is melting.... (picture me dancing around and chanting that) I actually saw snow-in-summer peeking out from the four feet of snow that is sitting in the front yard.

The cat planter was made by my hubby as a window box for the kitchen. He found a pattern for the cats, cut it out in wood and then sponged on stencil paint to outline them. I am hoping he will make me a bigger one to go under the living room window.

Marcia, of course you can come over and visit. I would be glad to give you a tour.


    Bookmark   March 22, 2005 at 9:49PM
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nanatina(3b CDN/4b USDA)

Hi all.
It's been (still is) a looong winter. Signs of spring around here are sure welcome. So much snow I have to say I hope it melts slow and steady so we don't get too much flooding.
We went to Mexico for 2 weeks - got back 2 weeks ago. It was absolutely fabulous. Sucked to come home to more snow.
Between work and weekends with gd I am just now thinking of what I should start indoors and/or winter sow. Part of the delay is making room for the grow light set up.

Danni your yard looks amazing! Sure makes me itch to get out there and garden again.
So are any of you TBayers planning on getting together this yr for seed/plant swaps?

    Bookmark   March 23, 2005 at 7:30AM
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skeevesgirl(z3 MAN)

Beautiful yard Danni!

I am envious for sure :)

My yard needs soooo much work. Oh well one thing at a time right? I think I need a ten year


Oh and the pup is a Border Collie cross with a Blue Heeler :)

    Bookmark   March 23, 2005 at 7:24PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

Tina, i'll be in Thunder Bay the last weekend in April, as usual. Gale and i usually get together for a nursery run on the Saturday. Maybe you and Danni would like to join us? Or meet at one of the nurseries? That would be great!

    Bookmark   March 23, 2005 at 10:07PM
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Debbie_N_Ontario(zone 2)

Hi everyone..

I transplanted the rest of the geraniums into bigger pots today and had to do some rearranging cause I'm running out of space. Brought some more amaryllis up from the basement too.

Yesterday I picked up some seeds from Walmart, marigolds, sunflowers and coleus for next year. I didn't like the marigolds I had last year so I wanted some new ones for this year.

Son and his daughter came over today, so that was nice to see her. We had a nice time. *S*

Danni, I have been working on my website lately and I love your garden pics! Very nice and your hostas were lovely! Your August Moon is huge! Wow! Mine is just a wee thing, I hope it puts on some growth this year. It is about 5 years old, but was being smothered by a rose bush. Last summer I moved it into a nice new fluffly bed so I'm hoping iit will put on some nice growth this year. I have Wide Brim and really like it. I have 3 of them in fact. *S* I love your cat planter too!
Sounds like a wonderful trip your daughter took! Lucky girl! i always wanted to go to England.

You must have very tall snow-in-summer to be peeking up from under four ft of
snow. *L*

Marcia 60 containers? Wow! Where are u going to put those plant and what did u plant?
Did u water those poor geraniums yet? LOL

Hi tina, Mexico sounds wonderful! I bet u hated to come back to all the snow.

Could u put the plants in the celler? I
have grown plants in the basement for years. I put some big hooks in the basement under the basement lights so I could raise and lower the shelves. Then I just turn the switch on for so many hours, we have to be careful we don't smack our heads on the shelves though. LOL
Take care
Debbie :-)

    Bookmark   March 23, 2005 at 10:14PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

Yes, i've watered the geraniums! LOL No sign of life, though. Oh well - have to get more then, eh?

What did i plant? Wow, you want a list? LOL Here goes, then:
1. Aquilegia bertolonii
2. Aquilegia Music Pink & White
3. Aquilegia skinneri "Tequila Sunrise"
4. Aquilegia "Tower Pink"
5. Aquilegia (unknown)
6. Allium karataviense "Ivory Queen"
7. Wild lupines
8. Baptista australis
9. Meconopsis grandis

  1. Gentiana andrewsii
  2. Persicaria polymorpha
  3. Cimicifuga dahurica
  4. Adlumina fungosa
  5. Alcea rosea "Indian Spring"
  6. Hollyhock (dk pink single)
  7. Clematis tangutica "Helios"
  8. Clematis ligusticifolia
  9. Alyssum saxatile
  10. Dianthus knappi
  11. Digitalis grandiflora
  12. Achillea "Cerise Queen"
  13. Dianthus superbus
  14. Dianthus "Sooty"
  15. Digitalis (pink)
  16. Digitalis (white)
  17. Delphinium "Tom Pouce Sky Blue"
  18. Epilobium flescheri
  19. Gaillardia grandiflora "Burgundy"
  20. Gaillardia "Goblin"
  21. Guara coccinea
  22. Geranium bohemicum "Orchid Blue"
  23. Geranium "Visions Light Pink"
  24. Dianthus crimsonia
  25. Linum perenne
  26. Heliopsis "Lorraine Sunshine"
  27. Hemerocallis (salmon)
  28. Hemerocallis (coral)
  29. Hesperis matronalis
  30. Centaura montana
  31. Leucanthemum x. superbum
  32. Lychnis coronaria fuchsia
  33. Lobelia cardinalis
  34. Malva fastigata
  35. Penstemon strictus "Rocky Mountain Blue"
  36. Penstemon hirsutus
  37. Papavar anomalum "album"
  38. Polemonium boreale "Heavenly Habit"
  39. Echinacea augustifolia
  40. Rudbeckia x. hirta "Chim Chimeree"
  41. Stachys lanata
  42. Veronica "Darwin's Blue"
  43. Verbascum phoeniceum "Rosetta"
  44. Verbascum bakerianum
  45. Verbascum chaixii "album"
  46. Verbascum nigrum
  47. Yucca glauca
  48. Shirley poppies
  49. Salmon poppy
  50. Peony poppy (white)
  51. Large pink poppy
  52. Rudbeckia hirta
  53. Rudbeckia hirta "Rustic Colours"

Nuts, eh? If they all germinate, i'm in biiiiiiiiiiiiiiiig trouble! :)



    Bookmark   March 24, 2005 at 12:14AM
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kellyrae(3/4 NW Ont)

Happy Easter Everyone

I am so happy. I finally have days off and....... ooohhhhhyeeeaaaahhhhhh!
4 in a row! WOW

I have a couple of terrific friends coming over to tomorrow to help.....yes, really help me get a "big" jump on "starting" my WinterSowing.

Dinner @ Dad's on Saturday....Breakfast @ Dad's on Sunday
Settin' up the grow light Monday...holy molly...busy busy


An end of April Thunder Bay get-together sounds great, give me a shout whenever you have a chance Gale and we can make a plan.

Julie, that is the cutest puppy ever!

Marcia...send me spring weather please!

Think Spring

    Bookmark   March 25, 2005 at 3:52AM
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dannie(3b NWO Canada)

Hi all

I would love to get together at the end of April. Keep me posted. There is a dog show on that last weekend but we haven't decided yet if we are entering the dog or not. She needs to coat up some more first.

Marcia, I can't believe you planted all of those... I am amazed!!! Where do you put all those containers and how do they get enough light?

Debbie, the snow has melted along the driveway and it down to bare ground along it. On the lawn is still a 4 foot snow is at the bottom of that drift that I can see snow-in-summer. It would be pretty funny to see 4 foot tall snow-in-summer peeking out from the top of that drift. LOL.


    Bookmark   March 25, 2005 at 7:24PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

Danni, i can't believe i planted all that stuff either. LOL Some of the containers are on the deck, some are on a patio table, some are dug into a snowbank in front of the house and some are on a mini-greenhouse shelf thingy outside. Actually, i had some in a sheltered corner in the front of the house but it's pretty warm there, and today i was able to move them to the shelf because the snow has gone down enough that i can use another shelf. Hopefully it will melt a lot more for when i start more annuals! Eek!

Spent much of today transplanting impatiens. So many of them germinated that i'm going to be awash in impatiens this summer - wonderful! There are a bunch of petunias too, but none need transplanting quite yet. When the plastic is on that mini-greenhouse, it stays quite warm, so i'm hoping i can use it for some of these things in a few weeks.

Kelly Rae, the Weather Network says it will be +16 here next Friday. Of course, Friday is April 1st, so what do you think? LOL I'll share what i can, but there needs to be a lot of warmth to melt all this snow. Still looks like winter here! Yuck!

Not much else tonight - getting sleepy here, so i'll be off. Take care!


    Bookmark   March 25, 2005 at 11:31PM
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claubill(z3Sud ONT)

Hi everyone. I need some advice from the experienced gardener. I started some crocosmia from seed and they've already sprouted. I realize that I'm going to run out of room soon since there are so many things I want to start inside. I already have my upstairs bathroom full of geraniums, about 32 of them, and another 30 or so in the basement. Do you think it would be okay to put them out on the deck or is it way too early? I'm in zone 3 (Sudbury, Ontario). Also, last fall, I dug up my four o'clocks and saved the tubers. I'm wondering if I can pot them and leave them on the deck (say, around mid-April).

    Bookmark   March 28, 2005 at 12:53AM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

I'd say way too early for both. I've never grown crocosima, but they're zone 6 and there'd still be a good chance of frost in April. However, for the 4 O'clocks, perhaps if you started them outside in April, they might grow. Keep an eye on them and bring them inside if it gets too cold.

Do you have a Lee Valley in Sudbury? They have these neat window shelves - a little tension rod that fits between the frame and a shelf that attaches to it. I'd really like to get one (or two) (or three)!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2005 at 9:08AM
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Debbie_N_Ontario(zone 2)

Hi everyone,
It has been melting here the past few days and we have lost some more snow, still over 2 ft to go. Hope everyone had a nice Easter, it was the two of us here so hubs and I went out for dinner. It was very strange after 22 years just being the two of us and me not cooking a big meal, but no sense with only the two of us.

I cleaned off the plant shelves in the basement tonight cause I'm quickly running out of space up in the family room under the plant lights. Last night I took some cuttings of petunias and will have to take some more soon.

Marcia, yep I think your geraniums are toast. *S* Though one of mine has just started to get leaves on it,,,I don't think it will do much though. Time for u to go plant shopping. *G* You sure planted a ton of plants. I hope u remembered to label them. *L*

Kelly, what kind of gardening do u do?

Claubill, unless u can heat your deck I'd say it is to early. I don't put plants in my enclosed porch until May and even then I have to sometimes heat it and sometimes cover the plants up at night time.

Take care
Debbie :-)

    Bookmark   March 28, 2005 at 10:27PM
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Hi it is gorgeous here this week, about 14 degrees above today and i'm thinking of starting my seedlings. Is it too earl to start tomato seeds and marigolds?

    Bookmark   March 29, 2005 at 12:24PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

I just started my tomatoes this past weekend, so i'd say go ahead. Marigolds, i believe, can be started fairly soon. I'll be having some kids winter-sow them tomorrow.

Oh - just remembered this site. It has the dates for indoor sowing and is geared towards setting plants out on the May long weekend. It's pretty useful!

Here is a link that might be useful: Seeding dates

    Bookmark   March 29, 2005 at 9:41PM
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Debbie_N_Ontario(zone 2)

Hi clairdo2,

I usually start my tomatoes and marigolds around April 11th. I find if I start my tomatoes too early they get leggy and the marigolds I just pinch them back if they get leggy.
Good luck!

I'm making an April thread now.
Debbie :-)

    Bookmark   April 1, 2005 at 2:04AM
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