Monday, 16 February 2009

HGTV Canada finally airs some GARDENING programs!

I keep meaning to mention to my flower-loving friends that HGTV is finally putting a little bit of garden back into Home and Garden Television:

On Mondays at 10:30 p.m. they’re running a show called Petal Pushers. Supposedly it’s a behind-the-scenes look at a florist’s shop. I expect that most/all of it is staged (I can’t imagine anyone could be so nasty to their customers and maintain a business—wait, actually, yes, I have been in a florist like that on St. Clair West, so maybe it’s more realistic than I give it credit). The best part of it all, for me, is seeing how they construct the arrangements. The arrangements aren’t high-end floral competition style (i.e. Canada Blooms), but are interesting and offer some insights for those of us arranging for home and local hort society competition.

The better gardening show is Around the World in 80 Gardens. This BBC documentary-style program promises to showcase 80 spectacular gardens from around the world, over the course of its run. I haven’t caught every episode, but have thoroughly enjoyed the ones I have seen. They are, of course, on a scale far more grand than I could ever hope to garden personally (New York’s Central Park, anyone?), but it’s good for vacation destination ideas and some garden escapism. Around the World in 80 Gardens airs Fridays at 10:00 p.m.

Sunday, 1 February 2009

Garden Renovations in My Sleep

I don't know what other folks think about to put themselves to sleep at night, but I often pick a part of my garden I want to change and think about what would improve it.

Lately I've been obsessed with this one spot in front of the chain link fence I share with my neighbour. I've been steadily planting a series of tall and dense plants along this fence to block out my view of their garbage bins, etc. One of the last open spaces receives a fair amount of sun so I decided to put in a rose. After scouring all of the garden centers at the end of the
summer I picked what looked, from the tag, to be a dark pink edged floribunda. I checked out a description of the plant on the internet and learned it was relatively well behaved and disease resistant. Great, in it went.

Do you know what I mean when I say "hot pink"? Not bubblegum pink, Pepto-bismol pink, or little-girl pastel pink. I mean fluorescent, knock your retinas out pink. Well, it turns out that this lovely, healthy rose bears large white flowers, thickly edged in a particular shade of pink-hot pink-that I had not previously believed could be found in nature.

I suppose it wouldn't be so bad if it was surrounded by nothing but green and white, but no, of course it is positioned directly beside a very orangey-red Maltese Cross (Lychnis chalcedonica) and the clash of colours is quite something to behold.

The only good thing about this rose's colour is that I think my neighbour's daughter will like it, as I've seen her wear soccer shoes in that exact shade of pink (it looks cute on shoes, but not in my garden).

So lately, as I work at drifting off to sleep, I wrestle with this patch of garden in my mind. Do I uproot the rose and haul it off to our plant sale for someone more appreciative of its distinctive hue? Do I grow it, in hopes that it's "unique" blooms will score points with the flower show judges? Can I plant something bushy in front of it to hide it from my view, while letting it still get enough light? If I moved it, which rose would I put in its place (the lovely newer "David Austin" with the orange-toned blooms?).

It looks like it will be a long winter, so I have many more nights ahead of me to sort it out. Maybe I'll dream up a solution during one of them!