Snowdrops… need I say more

Well as promised, my new friends are here and I can’t wait to have them naturalize in my garden like the picture above.  I think I might be becoming a Galanthophile (a what?!) in layman’s terms a person who collects snowdrops and has an ardent love of them.

The common name: Snowdrop, botanical name: Galanthus, group: Bulb; a Galanthus nivalis  is a small white end of the winter flower that gives all it’s glory this time of year.  It is a member of the lily family and closely related to the daffodil.  They are a welcome assurance that the bright sunny days of Spring are on their way.

So at the beginning of the month my husband and I made the trip up to the most magical shade garden in Bryn Mawr, PA to pick up my snowdrops given by Carolyn of Carolyn’s Shade Garden.  Last Spring Carolyn invited me to join her snowdrop list, I have always wanted snowdrops in my garden so I thought of course sign me up! And oh boy what a list indeed, she sends a massive snowdrop order list mid December and its on like hot butter popcorn, LOL!!!  Within in minutes specimens sell out I was lucky to be able to  order G. Elwesii – giant snowdrop, G. nivalis- common snowdrop and G. nivalis Flore Pieno-double common snowdrop.  In the end the G. Elwesii was damaged by disease and her whole supply had to be thrown out, a big disappoint since that’s the one I really wanted the most.  But I graciously walked away with G. nivalis IMG_4278and Flore-Pieno which is truly a beauty, I just love double flowers and this one is a keeper for sure.  IMG_4276

Carolyn in her sweetness agreed to a picture with me

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so I could show her off and  ensure you she is real and her garden is real and she laughed when I said I had been singing like a canary about her secret garden.  It truly is worth the trip I have visited it in all seasons and it amazes me every single time, it’s just fabulous!!!

Treat yourself and take a road trip and visit on one of her open houses.Carolyn’s Shade Garden

If you would like to be an enabler of my new addiction and own snowdrops in your garden please do share, the more the merrier and it will also be even more of a blessing to have a piece of your garden in mine; that way I can think of you as I will of Carolyn when my new friends emerge next year. Someday I hope to be the one that shares these little jewels.

So, if you haven’t considered snowdrops give them a try I’m sure they will bring a smile to your face and no doubt be the sweet little reminders that Spring is near and snow days are a thing of the past.

The Philadelphia Flower Show 2016

If you are a true nature lover; this year’s Philadelphia Flower Show was a tribute to honoring 100 years of our nation’s national parks.  “Explore America” was the perfect title for this year’s event, the show captured and recreated quite a few of America’s most visited and beautiful national parks.  It all started at the Big Timber Lodge an amazing arch way leading to the flower show’s acres of trails and exhibits of our nation’s landscapes which included deserts, wildflowers, pine lands, meadows, redwoods and coastal plains.

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Not to mention an abundance of horticulture, which allowed some of our garden club members to explore on sharing their own talents.  For me, it was a joy to enter in the novice horticulture section this year strictly solo. And boy what an experience, which led to me winning my very first blue ribbon in the Philadelphia Flower show!

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Let’s just say I was over the moon with excitement and embraced the pure joy and happiness that came with it.  I said to my youngest son “It’s something about that blue ribbon that makes you instantly think you are an expert”  NOT, LOL, I am NO expert when it comes to this species of plant just a lover of it’s color and unique textures.  It simply grows in my dining room window the only spot in our home that gets special sun rays from the good Lord above; no fancy greenhouse beauty here, just a humble houseplant doing its own thing!  I will say, I could hear Bill Baur in my mind encouraging me to just enter it and after many plant turnings and second hand looks I decided to GO FOR IT!!  Thanks Bill:)  Let me tell you entering is no joke, I felt like I earned another high end college degree reading the rule book, something definitely needs to done about that! But I got thru it and there should also be a video on how to dress and groom your pot (aka hide the original one inside the show pot). There is apparently a science to potting your plant with special top dressings, I ended up with black aquarium gravel from Walmart!  Another humble move that produced a blue ribbon anyway, Classic!  But I will say I met a wonderful woman who shared with me one of the coveted pot dressings that only the fancy-dancy exhibitors use.  She just pulled some out of her stash of grooming supplies and gave me enough to last many many flower shows to come.  The generosity of gardeners at the show can sometimes just make you smile.  In addition to entering my plant I also volunteered in my favorite job as horticulture recorder ( that’s how I met the really nice lady who shared:) this is another wonderful way to be apart of the show.  Getting back to sharing our talents I wasn’t the only garden club winner, Mr. Bill had his share of winner winner chicken dinners too, Bill took home two blues and some other ribbons for his horticulture specimens of succulent, cacti. and trough planters.  Bill this year had his very own grooming table, labeled and all with his name only!  He’s definitely now an experienced veteran of the show.

PFS Blue Ribbon winners 2016 004Tala Graham also entered into the design section of the show with a miniature that gave her a ribbon placement as well.  Other members diligently gave their time in volunteering and Barbara Boyce who volunteered for the first time, shared her experience as being a wonderful one. She learned the ins and outs of getting to the show with other garden club members, seeing the show from behind the scenes and working as a horticultural aide.  In her job; she passed out placement ribbons, planned the routes of the judges and also led them from one entry class to the next.  Barbara was amazed my the displays and how HUGE  they were, she had not attended the show in over 10 years and back then was just a part of the general public.  Her experience this year allowed her to see the show in a different perspective  and her favorite display was a keepsake box made out various seeds and beans!

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If asked would she attend again, she says “In a word, yes.”  Hope you all had a chance to “Explore America” this year at the show and if not there is always next year: Zie je daar!

That’s dutch for “See you there” we are off to Holland in 2017!