Chick season continues with chicks arriving every two weeks and there is still time to order specific varieties for your back yard flock. Barred Rocks and Rhode Island Reds are popular layers, Araucanas lay green eggs and we carry many other fun and interesting varieties. Raising chickens is a great developmental activity for kids as they learn to nurture and care for their egg-laying friends.
Come in and spend $25 and choose four baby chicks to take home for free! March is the perfect time to bring home these little darlings and get them started on the road to becoming adult egg-layers.
With our cold and often wet spring weather, early blooming fruit such as plum, pear, and cherry can have trouble getting pollinated. Fortunately, there are a number of early bloomers that attract mason bees and other early pollinators to your garden. Here are some good options:
Pieris japonica: This evergreen shrub is related to Rhododendron and comes in a wide variety of sizes and colors. Pieris blooms from late winter into early spring, and has a sweet, mild fragrance. It is deer resistant, and tolerates a wide range of conditions once established.
Skimmia japonica– Skimmia is an early pollinator magnet. It is an early blooming evergreen shrub that has fragrant white flowers in late winter/early spring. Skimmia has both male and female plants. The male produces pretty reddish flower buds in winter, which attract pollinators when in bloom. The female plant has smaller fragrant flowers which become red fruits in late summer and fall. Skimmia is best suited to semi-shaded areas out of hot afternoon sun. A male plant is necessary for the female to fruit. Skimmia is deer resistant.
Daphne odora– This is the plant that Ciscoe claims is “so fragrant it will make your socks roll up and down”. Winter daphne is a somewhat open evergreen shrub for semi-shade areas. The golf ball sized purple tinged white flowers are highly attractive to people and pollinators alike. It is also deer resistant. Daphne flowers cut well and will perfume your house.
Helleborus varieties– So many new varieties, so little space. These mostly evergreen perennials bloom throughout late winter and early spring. They are long blooming and come in staggering color and variety. The flowers hold up very well through freezes and are very attractive to early pollinators.
Photo by Stan Shrebs [CC-BY-SA-2.5] via Wikimedia
Ornamental grasses are perfect for fall and winter interest. The colors and texture help keep us hopeful once the rains arrive. In addition, grasses are the perfect companion for fall decor.
Deschampia Northern Lights Seed Head
Consider trying this arrangement of gorgeous grasses in a tall vase: Carex Red Rooster, Pennisetum Burgundy Bunny, and the graceful flowers of Deschampsia Northern Lights. It will knock your socks off!
Here are some of the many varieties of ornamental grasses we have in stock:
• Carex: Red Rooster, Prairie Fire, Evergold, Orange Sedge
• Stipa Mexican Feather Grass
• Pennisetum Burgandy Bunny
• Ophiopogon: Black Mondo Grass, as well as green
• Miscanthus: Morning Light, Yakujima and Adagio
• Panicum Shenandoah
• Molina Veriegata
• Blue Fescue
• Blue Oat Grass
• Japanese Blood Grass
• Hachonechloa: Albostriata, All Gold and Fubuki
• Deschampsia Northern Lights
Photo Credit: Matt Lavin via Flickr, CC
Join us for our annual FALL PROGRESSIVE SALE starting September 15! Trees – Shrubs – Houseplants-Japanese Maples – Conifers
Week 1: Sept 15-21st …….. 20% off
Week 2: Sept 22nd-28th ….. 30% off
Week 3: Sept 29th-Oct 7th …40% off
Select Plants and Pottery
Perennials – Red Dot only- 50% off
Roses, Water plants, and Vines – 50% Off
Herbs – Red Dot only – 50% 0ff
Pottery – Red Dot only behind greenhouse – 50% off
And more Autumnal excitement with Maureen’s Fall Container Class:
Join us on September 15 at 1 PM for a Fall/Winter container class –featuring our very own Maureen Murphy! Registration is recommended. Please call 360 321 6789 to RSVP.
Hydrangeas are a Pacific Northwest staple. They simply love our weather! With so many varieties available, it’s easier than ever to create gorgeous, lasting impact in your yard. And, by planting in summer when the garden is in bloom, it’s easier to see how the shrub will fit best in your landscape.
We have many to choose from, here are just a few we like:
Bombshell: This is a superstar of the “mini” variety, reaching only 2-3 feet in height. Flowers open white and mature to a rose-colored pink. This is a perfect hydrangea for a container. To view a growing tips video for Bombshell, visit the Ball Ornamentals YouTube page or watch the embedded video below.
Little Lime™: A new dwarf form of the ever-popular ‘Limelight’ hydrangea, Little Lime sports the same great flowers and coloration as ‘Limelight’ but in a smaller package. Summer flowers open soft green and turn pink and burgundy in fall.
Twist-N-Shout: Twist-n-Shout produces abundant blooms on both old and new wood all summer long. Lacy deep-pink centers are surrounded by gorgeous blossoms of pink or periwinkle blue, depending on soil type. Sturdy red stems and glossy deep green leaves turn red-burgundy in fall to offer year-round interest in the garden.
Little Lime Hydrangea, Proven Winners
Just some thoughts on the Tent caterpillars that are migrating from their nests…We’ve been heading into the upswing of their 7 to 9 (or so) year cycle. It’s amazing how many there can be. Some of us who have lived here a long time have been able to observe these cycles. Remember 1985? Cars were skidding on the streets because of the thickness of their bodies.
I think it helps to know some fun facts about our creepy crawly relatives and the meaningful place they hold in the bio-system. Their host plant is the Red Alder (called “red” because of how they look in the spring when the buds are swelling.) In the years when the Tent caterpillars’ numbers are large, they all but completely defoliate the alders. This opens up the forest floor to sun, rain and air circulation.
If you’d like to know more about tent caterpillars and how to deal with them organically, see our Expert Article on Tent Caterpillars.