Cultivating a Culture of Gardening™

Monday, January 3, 2011

Winter Wandering Land

A garden is half-made when it is well planned. The best gardener is the one who does the most gardening by the winter fire.
Liberty Hyde Bailey

This is one of my favorite times of the year for gardening. Everyday I eagerly walk to my mailbox, return to a nice roaring fire, and curl up with the richly embellished plant and seed catalogs that arrive in January. Then the mental wanderings begin. "Would these plants work together?" "Where do I need more red?" "Is this the right height to replace that shrub that died?" "How would this plant look in that green planter in the middle of the garden?" Some call this plant lust. I call this the Wise planning process.
So what are the magazines that are demanding so much of my attention?
Plant Delights Catalog, Klehm's Song Sparrow, Seed Savers Exchange, and I'm still waiting on my Baker's Creek Catalog.
There are also a few books that stay close by my side when I'm doing my planning. For years I've relied on Month-by-Month Gardening in Kentucky and Tennessee, Southern Plants for Tough Places, the Southern Gardeners Book of Lists, and my gardening bible - Southern Living Gardening Book to guide me through the planning period of gardens that I design. A new book that was earned a spot on my shelf is Proven Plants: Southern Gardens.
Month-by-Month Gardening offers detailed information on what you should be doing for everything from annuals to trees concerning planting and maintenance. The other books are valuable resources for helping you find the right plant for the right location, if you live in a southern state! You can find all of these books on the links at the bottom of this blog page.
Start your garden now, in the warmth of your own living room, with a pad and pencil handy to start making notes of what your landscape can't live without. This is also a great time to visit botanical gardens and trial gardens to see what what you'd want to add that looks good in the winter time.

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