"Things I'd like to paint in 2012" is a post on "The Blackbird Sings", one of my favorite blogs. It's written by English artist Natasha Newton, who paints birds, trees, houses, and landscapes, and I was charmed by her list of "want to paint" in the new year. And it got me dreaming, only three weeks into winter, of what I'd like to plant this spring.
I'd love to hear what you hope to plant in 2012. As an inducement for you to post your list here as a comment on the blog, Plant Talk is teaming up with Renee's Garden Seeds for a free giveaway of brand new seed varieties. Send in a short list of your dream plants for the new year, and Renee will send you a seed packet or two. Please include a brief description of the plants on your list so we can salivate over them too.
Here's my short list:
- A hedge of 'Sunshine Blue' blueberries - I love the idea of an edible, evergreen hedge of these handsome little shrubs (3-4 feet high). The foliage looks good all year, with hot pink flowers in springtime followed by tasty berries from early August through September. Available in local nurseries and from Raintree Nursery near Morton.
Lots of lettuces, for no other crop produced over a longer season, saved me so much money at the grocery store, and livened up our family meals last year. It was such a shock to go back to store-bought lettuce in October! I love the various special blends of cut-and-come again lettuce seeds from Renee's Garden, like "Farmer's Market Blend". No lettuces are more beautiful than Renee's "Monet's Garden Mesclun", an inspired blend of textures and colors. Purple, chartreuse, ruffled, scalloped, delicious and fresh. And I can't wait to try some of Renee's new varieties - see my post later in the week for a description of new-to-2012 varieties.
Flower Carpet Amber Roses - I'm determined to find space for these hardworking, easy-care, knee-high roses in my favorite color. They bloom all summer and put on quite a show, even in less-than-perfect conditions that most roses wouldn't tolerate. I'm wondering if I can grow them planted right into gravel at the base of round feed trough planters to form apricot ruffles up against the galvanized metal. Now that would be a real test of carpet rose vigor and adaptability.
I love strawberries, but they're taking over my little garden - I'm afraid I have to face up to ripping most of them out before the entire place is shrouded in strawberry runners. I'll replace some with the smaller-leafed, much-less aggressive alpine strawberries (fraises des bois) with tiny berries that taste of champagne. I'll edge some of my raised beds with the yellow-leafed variety 'Golden Alexandria'.
It's only January...I'd better stop...please let us know what plants you're dreaming about...and see my next post for a list of the brand new, multi-colored and flavored lettuces and greens that Renee will be sending out to Plant Talk readers ....