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Dallying In The Dirt, Issue #407- Some wonderful vegetable gardening seminars are coming soon.
February 05, 2024

Great excitement today. SEEDS ARRIVED! Spring must be coming and now I can descend to the basement and start my winter gardening. The fabulous Begonias, Red on Chocolate that performed so well last year will be the first to be planted. William Dam Seeds sells pelleted Begonia seed that makes working with these tiny seeds much easier. I did save some seed from last year’s plants so we will plant both and see what happens. As hybrids, the saved seed may not come true but rather give me an assortment of its progenitors. Always fun to experiment and I’ll keep you informed about my results. I have a couple of Begonia boliviensis varieties that I saved seed from and we’ll plant those as well to see what we get. When planting these very tiny seeds, 2,000,000 to the oz. it’s important not to sneeze or you’ll wind up planting them all over the room.

A quick look at the backyard today and you would think that it was spring. Green grass and not a trace of snow. This can’t be good for the perennials or for the regeneration of the ground water. I did find some snow on the local ski hill this morning but there were lots of brown spots starting to show through. I need to escape from the basement germination area and go outside for a while when it’s supposed to be winter. The Snowdrops have been in bloom since early January. Global warming???

Are you interested in Vegetable gardening. If you live anywhere near me in the in the town of Whitby or adjacent areas, then this might be of interest. I’m doing a series of 4 seminars this spring to look at many aspects of that great pastime. Details are in the poster.

Walking around the huge trade show by landscape Ontario, I stopped to chat with Barbara, an old friend in the Crescent Gardens booth. They manufacture a wonderful line of quality planters. This year they have several new lines of self watering ones. Of course I gave my friend a hard time about that title as I call them reservoir planters, since I have never seen one of them self water by coming to the tap to get more water. Apparently reservoir planters doesn’t make as good a marketing line as self watering. These planters have a substantial reservoir as well as a fullness indicator in their fill tube and an overflow if you really try to give them too much water. They will keep your plants happy for a considerable period of time, depending of course, on just what you have planted. I’m now trying to decide what to plant in my sample, which is one of their Slat Window Boxes, it might make a great little vegetable garden since it is made of food grade plastic. They now ship free to Canada!! Updates in coming issues.

In my previous “Dallying” last December I showed you a big branch that I had cut off of a Dracaena marginata because it was tipping over. I stuck most of that branch into a big jar of water and put it the bright light of the solarium. It grew roots and didn’t drop more than one or two leaves. This past week or so I took it upstairs and planted it into the big pot with the rest of that plant and again it appears to be happily starting to grow there without dropping many leaves as it transitions from growing in water to growing in soil. Plants often make quite different types of roots in water from those they produce in soil. I could see the leaves starting to droop after a day or two, so I watered that portion of the soil and they came right back up again. Mother Nature is always amazing me.

Now on to sowing those seeds.

In the meantime I will be traveling around sharing my various presentations with hort. societies, garden clubs and corporate presentations for lunch and learns. I would love to come and visit your organization. Check out my web page at for more details on topics and availability.

If you have any gardening questions just “reply” to this emailed newsletter and I will attempt to answer them and then share them here if they are of wide interest.

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