Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Last Calendula Glimmers

Here it is, almost Thanksgiving and this post should be, by all rights, about the Sage plants we have in the herb bed behind the house. But due to significant work demands these past few weeks --plus the return of Standard "Dreary" Time-- I've barely been able to get outdoors during the day (if there's even sun!) except on weekends, thus no photos. To be honest, I think it also has something to do with a subliminal fear of fully comprehending the ever expanding browning die back of most of the plants. Of course, the Hollies still (and always) look smashingly green and healthy with their red berries. If I had dared venture out last Saturday when it was snowing lightly, I might have even been able to capture a bit of it against the holly, but no, it was too chilly and I didn't want to take my slippers off and have to put shoes and a jacket on.... Sloth won. No matter, there will be plenty of opportunities later this winter for just such occasions, I'm sure! Not that I'm looking forward to that, but I guess a garden photographer has to take the opportunities he has, not the ones he'd like to have.... (NO apologies to Donald Rumsfeld, but that was a particularly ridiculous turn of phrase that has always stuck in my mind!)
Anyway, this will be my final propagandistic plug for the humble Calendula officinalis for this year. I've repeatedly sung its praises far too long, but in case you missed those or can endure one more shameless plug, this is an annual that every gardener should grow somewhere in a sunny spot of the garden! And now is prime time to plant them so you'll have them up in the spring (if you live in an area where the ground is seriously starting to cool down now). Just lightly rake up an area where you get at least 4-5 hours of sun a day (soil is not a huge issue), toss the seeds around and cover them lightly with dirt and forget about them. They come up steadily over the early spring to summer months, and at first will look almost like lettuce seedlings, only more substantial and a bit hairy. Once you've identified the seedlings (thin if necessary), just let Nature take her course and prepare for early summer blooms that continue to last well after frost! Then you get the bonus of even more seeds for the following year, either to share with friends or let them run wild in your garden. As Ina Gartner would say, How easy is that? You can always pull them (*gasp*) if they're horning in on a favorite or you can dig and transplant them while they're still fairly small and they won't mind. Planting Calendula is a very small investment to make in the garden (especially if you get free seeds from a friend) that, if you're pleased with the results, will pay off handsomely in future years. Nuff said. No more Calendula till next year, I promise.

As the High Holidays bear down upon us (is Thanksgiving the feast before the frenzy or famine? This year, I'm not so sure.), so I'm not sure what direction this blog will take in the next few months, save for my annual Ornament Blogging features. Of course there will be snow ... and toward spring, the emergence of the courageous early bulbs, but in the interim, I'm always at a loss for pertinent subjects after the Holiday Blitz has concluded. So ... what would you loyal readers be interested in seeing here over the winter months? I love to post film reviews and commentary on politics and current events, but I'm never sure whether people find these posts interesting or informative, so I'm certainly open to suggestions. Let me know what you think in comments here and in future posts. Of course, when we get particularly great shots to post, they'll be appearing here, that's for certain. If random musings on something that captures my attention on a given day are something you'd like to see, I have plenty of those, lol.

As always, thanks for stopping by and reading! And a very Happy Thanksgiving to you all, if I don't manage to get that Sage up in time!

Jeff (aka IVG)


Family Man said...


Lovely shots as usual.

I think what kind of posts depends on what you want to do. I've always liked your gardening post just because I don't know anything about it. I guess the posts I like the best are just ordinary post that tells how you and the family are doing, and what's going on with ya'll. In this group of friends we have, to me just to know the day to day things that are happening to them, I think means more.

Then again, if you want to become one of those high powered world read blogs, well that would take a little bit of thinking. :)

I hope you and Fernymoss have a great Thanksgiving.


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