Don’t be shy – get a new plant

You can’t go wrong with color when you add primroses to your yard or garden.

Grace Peterson
You can’t go wrong with color when you add primroses to your yard or garden.

I’m a plant addict.

Since I was a little tike, I’ve loved plants. Trees, shrubs, ferns, flowers, mosses and water plants — I love them all.

It’s the texture, form, fragrance and colors that draw me in. I’ll probably never have all of the plants I want because neither my wallet nor my garden is big enough.

But until the day that I’m too old to garden, I’ll undoubtedly try to squeeze a few more perennials and smaller shrubs, ground covers and vines into my already-full landscape — especially if they have fragrant flowers or a long blooming period.

This is the best time of year to shop for new plants because nurseries are full and plant sales are happening almost every weekend. And this is why I call spring the most wonderful time of the year.

Finding just the right spot to plant that something-new is not as easy as it seems. Our goal is to have everything mingle and thrive but this requires making sure there is enough room and that the newbie is compatible with its neighbors.

Of course, there are also sun and water requirements that must be considered. And from a design sense, the plant needs to have something that links it harmoniously with its surroundings, such as leaf, flower or stem color but also a contrasting element like texture or leaf size.

I’ve been working on this design process for over 30 years and I still haven’t perfected it. Sometimes it can be very frustrating but the rewards make the painful hard knocks worth it.

All of the rain in February and March made gardening next to impossible so I spent many hours armchair gardening.

While normal people like my husband would read or watch TV, I would be on the internet, researching plants and coming up with ideas for areas of my garden that aren’t quite up to my standards.

Doing the research and having a list of possible plant choices can help us keep sight of our goals when we’re bombarded with possibilities at the nursery.

Google is a great starting point if you know the name of the plant. Here, one can see lots of photos and then click on sites that offer good information. You might want to know the eventual size of the plant, whether its winter-hardy here in the Pacific Northwest; whether it requires full sun, full shade or a combination of both; and whether it needs moist or dry soil.

Because many of the plants I’m looking for aren’t readily available, I have to research further to locate a mail-order nursery that carries them. Then, I have to decide if the plant is worth the cost of having it shipped — usually an additional $12 to $15.

With all of that said, Plant Lust is a website that has it all — plant photos, information and nurseries that sell many plants — all in one place. It’s simple to navigate. You can simply type the name of the plant you’re looking for and get the information from a variety of nurseries.

Comments

Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment