A GROWING CONCERN: New year, new you, same chores

WEDNESDAY IS THE New Year — out with the old, in with the new!

Next week I’ll get all of you (and me, I’m healed!) back to work because the new year is an extremely busy time for gardeners here on the Peninsula.

But please pause here for a moment, at the cusp of a new beginning, to realize just how great it is horticulturally here on the Peninsula. It is never hot, never cold, no mosquitoes, no humidity — Camelot!

Do not lose sight that everything is always working out for you botanically here on the Peninsula.

But keeping in a New Year tradition, let me begin:

First, the resolutions.

• I’ll be resolute in promoting and encouraging everyone regardless if it is a person or a business, to put up one hanging basket, flower box or decorative container in front home or office this year.

And let’s be clear in the fact that such an easy task will accomplish such an enormous aesthetic fit for our community.

• I resolve to answer reader questions in my columns and to encourage more local folks to write in with their concerns. Make this the year of answers.

• Be it resolved that with so many beautiful gardens spread out across North Olympic Peninsula, a bona fide effort will be made to travel, record and report on these local garden treasures.

• I will work on naming more plants and making sources available along with information from all angles, you are the new trend. Dream your garden designs and create them.

Plant breeders and collectors have now introduced plants ideal for conditions, from absolute shade to dry full sun.

Plants that are disease resistant, more prolific and have earlier or later bloom dates are everywhere. You are the only one that knows what your perfect yard is. The future is for you to create.

Is this where I sing “Que será, será”?

• Remember that year-round gardening is looming on the horizon. A theme others and I have been pushing for more than 20 years is taking root.

Look for more and more articles on how to extend each season. Watch for books on winter gardening or blooming plants for the dark months.

American horticulture is on the verge of its “coming of age.” The world will take notice in the years to come.

• At this time let us be reminded that the North Olympic Peninsula is the most ideal place for gardening. Not only do we live in one of the most gorgeous places in the world, but our climatic zone is perfect for the widest range of hardy plants.

Our evening temperatures are the best to be found for plants, yielding abundant harvests.

• And since we are reflecting on the coming year, let us mark the last week of February when the North West Flower and Garden Show makes its annual appearance in the Seattle Washington State Conference Center Feb. 26 to March 1. Go to www. gardenshow.com for details.

This show is world class. Within the aisles and booths, all I have ever written or talked about is there. I will discuss this again.

Tasks at hand

It is Day 1 of early winter. The dark and wet cycle is fully upon us.

Avoid walking on your soggy lawn. Now is the time to fix drainage problems in your yard.

This is also the perfect season for pruning and removing storm damaged or diseased branches, plants and trees.

With the warm weather, weeds are taking hold. Go out and remove vigorous roots while the soil is saturated.

Plants are still in bloom, so never forget to deadhead.

But again to all, may this year bring good fortune to you and your family.

May all your thumbs (and fingers) be green.

May your garden be weed free and may all your flowers bloom prolifically.

Happy New Year, fellow gardeners.


Andrew May is a freelance writer and ornamental horticulturist who dreams of having Clallam and Jefferson counties nationally recognized as “Flower Peninsula USA.” Send him questions c/o Peninsula Daily News, P.O. Box 1330, Port Angeles, WA 98362, or email news@peninsuladailynews.com (subject line: Andrew May).

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