Northern Exposure

Triumphs and failures on a window ledge.

Weekend Work December 1, 2008

Filed under: Autumn,Weather,Winter — northernwindowgardener @ 12:17 pm
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HollingAfter spending quite a bit of time last weekend tidying things up and generally pruning every last bit of brown foliage back to the root there wasn’t much to do this weekend. As you can see from the picture the Cyclamen continue to flower and bring some colour to the late Autumn days. These ones look a bit scrappy and perhaps next year they’ll have some companions mixed in to fill the space. Right now though it feels too late to plant anything and expect it to grow. The garden centres around here are also a bit short of any instant fix so they’ll stay like this into Winter and we’ll see how they cope.

I’m still not sure that I didn’t go too far last week with the trimming as nothing seems to have changed or grown since. It’s only a week though and weather wise it was quite mixed and generally pretty cold so it’s unlikely that there would be great amounts of growth. I’m a bit worried about a couple of the pansies though which my indelicate touch might have badly affected. Fingers crossed that they’ll come back but the initial signs don’t look promising.

On the positive side the first flowers on the winter pansies are slowly unfurling and although they look yellow at the moment I’m positive they will be orange once they open up. As pretty as the cyclamen are it’ll be nice to see some other flowers to provide a bit of contrast.

The weekend heralded the first deep frosts of the season with Saturday in particular having an all day freezing fog which left the trees sparkling in the filtered light. It’ll be interesting to see what affect that has on the boxes as this is the longest period of really cold and sub-zero temperatures that I’ve seen while gardening. I guess I’ll discover how hardy those cyclamen and winter pansies really are.


Zinnia November 20, 2008

Filed under: Colour,Flower,Summer,Uncategorized — northernwindowgardener @ 11:43 am
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Not knowing anything about gardening, plants or planting meant that I went for a scattergun approach to flowers. In hindsight it was a good way to start because I picked up a lot of knowledge about a wide range of plants in a short space of time.

The Zinnia was just one of those flowers that looked good on the garden centre shelf and in the absence of any other information, or even an understanding of where it was going to be planted, back it came with me.

A couple were planted in a spot that gets morning sun and although they took a while the first flowers were worth the wait, a deep yellow colour and about the size of my palm. That first one lasted well but once the next flowers came they were smaller and got a little more wind battered.



Dahlia & Impatiens November 18, 2008

Filed under: Colour,Flower,Summer — northernwindowgardener @ 10:41 am
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Orange Dahlia

Orange Dahlia

The picture doesn’t really do it justice as this Dahlia was much brighter and a deeper shade of orange. The dahlias were all planted together in one box (Shelly) along with Impatiens except for this one which was planted in the box next to it (Holling) and finally flowered when all the others had just about given up.

Shelly did really well with both the dahlias and the impatiens growing lots of lush green foliage. However flowering was sporadic and there were only ever four or five flowers on the go at any one time. The wind played its part here although the strong growth protected them from from the worst of it so that’s something to think about for next year. The impatiens didn’t really last as they took the brunt of the wind but their delicate white flowers were nice while they lasted and filled the front of the box well.


Weather November 17, 2008

Filed under: Autumn,Colour,Weather — northernwindowgardener @ 11:53 am
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The weather has been mixed this week – but then when isn’t it! Generally the mild temperatures have helped but a couple of stormy days continue to wreak havoc on the more delicate flowers with the Cyclamen and Pansies getting knocked about a bit.

Holling here (in the pic) had lush Impatiens and Dahlias over the summer which grew and flowered well despite strong winds causing a problem in this box’s position. They finally got straggly in mid September and so these Cyclamen were planted in their place, with the idea that the shorter flowers wouldn’t get battered around so much. In general that’s been successful and they are continually flowering despite the conditions.

The uniformly purple colour is nice but a contrast with a white plant might have been nicer. However there will be plenty of time to talk about colour choices in other posts.