Ready for the Garden

Garden Gnome

Finally the temperature is above freezing and the snow is starting to melt. Like my gnome friend here, I’m ready to get out in the garden. I’m itching to take #goodmorninggarden photos, witnessing sprouts turn into stems and leaves and flowers. I’m curious to see whether my parrot tulip bulbs made it through or whether the squirrels had a feast. I’m looking for the daffodils I planted in honour of my mom. She planted them under our backyard trees in Montreal. I felt like I was in the wild woods when I was beneath them. I long for that feeling again!

The only thing that’s helping me with my restless desire is planning for the season ahead. I recently discovered¬† Botanus and indulged my love of white flowers with a big order from their stores.

Here are some of the new treasures that you’ll be seeing in my In the Garden with Jamie videos this year!

Acidanthera Bicolor Murielae: Its beautiful shape made this an immediate yes for me. I can already imagine drawing the clean and curving lines. Apparently they have a wonderful fragrance too! I’m so excited that they come in a package of 25. Imagine the impact!

Astilbe japonica ‘Deutschland: My mom didn’t like astilbes at all, but I’m quite fond of them. They bring a lovely feathery flower to the shadier parts of the garden. I had one that ended up living with my neighbour when our fence was installed, LOL! Now it’s time for a fresh planting.

Astrantia major ‘Star of Billion’: How could I not get something called “Star of Billion”? It felt predestined when I heard about this plant for the first time on a gardening show in the morning and the catalogue arrived in the afternoon! I look forward to seeing those stars!

Athyrium niponicum ‘Metallicum’: What a dramatic fern – the colours, the textures! What a treasure I imagine it will be!

Cafe au Lait Giant Dinnerplate Dahlia: Ever since I went out for dinner at the Rectory on Centre Island and they had huge dinner plate dahlias as a centrepiece, I knew I wanted to have some in my garden! I grew dahlias for the first time last year and haven’t mastered the art of removing them from the garden and storing them but maybe with this beauties I will!

Helleborus orientalis ‘Double White Pearl‘: I love, love, love green-white flowers. They feel so fresh and new, almost liminal. Plus it’s exciting to have shade plants that bloom.

Philadelphus ‘Snowbelle’ or, as I know it, “mock-orange” : I have one in my garden but its health has been waning. The mock-orange is a deeply meaningful shrub to me. I have loved it since I was a little girl when my mom planted it outside my little brother’s bedroom window so that he could enjoy the scent of it on spring mornings. I will always, always want one in my garden.

Hemerocallis ‘White Temptation’: One thing I’m not very good at in the garden is having a place for something before I bring it in. (I’m not very good at it in the house either, LOL!) This is the exception. I have the perfect spot for these hardy, re-blooming perennials! I do seem to be learning to plan for a full-season garden instead of focusing, as I usually do, on my fierce love of spring! These beauties will be at their best in mid to late summer, which has been a little quiet out back.

Claire Austin David Austin Rose: This was the big splurge! I’m not generally drawn to roses but wow, I couldn’t take my eyes off these. Imagine the photos from bud to bloom, a gradual unfolding of beauty. I can’t wait!

What are you looking forward to in the garden this year?



  1. Johanne says:

    Hi Jamie! Glad to hear the snow is starting to melt in your area. It is here too and it’s exciting!

    I am looking forward to expanding our garden this year and working alongside my husband. There is nothing like early spring dandelion greens, edible flowers on a fresh bowl of lettuce, and also my first crop of strawberries.

    The strawberry variety I planted is called the Sparkle…:) It was in my parents’ garden when I was a child. Imagine sweet juicy berries with red flesh. So good.

    The garden is a great place to grow food and flowers, of course. For me, it is also a place to cultivate family memories and to relax with my sketchbook.

  2. chrislally says:

    Happy for your snow melt, Jamie! Those daffodils – what a lovely memory for you. I will think of your story whenever I see them. Your choices from Botanus (thanks for sharing the link) are just wonderful. Wishing you success with every planting.

    We’ve had a mild winter here in Portland, OR – more sunny days than usual. I’ve already planted organic veggie starts in raised beds and big pots: snow peas, radishes, and varieties of lettuce and kale. Can’t wait for the big guns – tomatoes.

    Gardening (and urban homesteading and foraging) is really popular here. Yes, we are even permitted to have chickens in our yards. Unfortunately, my big dog is not a fan of live chickens.

    I’ve got flower seeds started in the house: varieties of sunflowers, Chinese lanterns, love-in-a-mist, and my favorite moonflower. Moonflowers are nocturnal bloomers; their flowers seem to glow at night. They grow way up (up to 15-20 feet), so they need some kind of support such as a trellis or a fence. I guess you could compare them, in a way, to morning glories. Moonflowers are annuals.

    This year, I really want to partner with nature, but still make the garden an extension of our home so I’m immersed in DIY garden decor project ideas.

    What an exercise in optimism! Can’t wait to read about everyone’s adventures in gardening.

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