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LUECL3's Photo LUECL3 SparkPoints: (0)
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7/26/10 10:25 A

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Coneflowers are so beautiful. Saw prime examples in Branson. I think I'm too far west to have good luck with them.

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Coneflowers are so beautiful. Saw prime examples in Branson. I think I'm too far west to have good luck with them.

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6/29/10 8:49 P

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July's Flower of the Month .....

Coneflowers

I flower I never used to like but have grown to love as I’ve gotten older is the Cone Flower. I used to think they were kinda plain but now understand their importance in the garden. They not only add a wild beauty to the garden they are a great resource of food for many birds. Unfortunately I can’t seem to get them to grow in my yard but I sure enjoy the ones in my neighbor’s yard.

The photo I have used for the team photo is a picture I took of my neighbor’s coneflowers.

Here is what I’ve learned about cone flowers in my research:

This is a hardy drought resistant plant which is native to the prairie states of America. They can grow to over 39” tall and make a great addition to the perennial border because they bloom over a long period of time. It’s best to plant them in masses to get the best effect.

They do prefer full sunlight and can tolerate windy conditions. If you need to divide your plants do so in early spring or fall then replant them 8 to 10 “ apart. Planting from seeds in early spring can result in color variations. Please make sure they are watered regularly. The coneflower makes a great cutting for indoor enjoyment.


~~ Gail ~~
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5/2/10 8:59 P

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May Flower of the Month is ….

Peony

Beautiful to look at and fragrant, too, peonies are among the aristocrats of the plant world, and although there are only 33 wild species, there are many hundreds of cultivars. Peonies were prized by the Chinese for many hundreds of years, and by the early 18th century they had developed the garden peonies from which the forms P. Lactiflora (often referred to as Chinese peonies) are generally descended. Peonies were first introduced into Europe at the end of the 18th century. Peonies are divided into two groups: the tree peonies, which are shrubby, and the herbaceous peonies. Although the name “tree peony” is used, this is an exaggeration – they rarely grow more than 6-1/2 feet tall. Herbaceous peonies grow about 39 inches high and wide. Plants are long lived.

Flowers may be single or double and come in every shade of pink, red, purple, white and cream, many with a delicious light perfume. Some flowers have a large central boss of golden stamens, and some have fringed or crimped edges on the petals. Among the categories of flowers recognized are; small, 2-4 in across; medium, 4-6 in across; large, 6-8 in across; and very large, over 8 in across. Tree peonies are generally 2-12 in. Other categories have been developed in the United States where a great deal of hybridizing is practiced.

September is the month for dividing peonies and most other perennial flowers. Each fleshy root division should have at least 3 to 5 "eyes." The "eyes" actually look more like pink noses and are the shoots for the next season. The "eyes" should be planted about one to two inches deep. If planted too deeply, the plant will produce foliage and no flowers. Plants should be spaced about 2 to 3 feet apart. Mulch with shredded bark or pine needles in early winter.


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3/30/10 9:02 P

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April flower of the month:

Helipterum, Everlasting Daisy

An important group of more than 60 species of garden everlastings from South Africa and Australia, widely grown for dried bouquets.

Leaves alternate, often white-felty, without marginal teeth. Flowerheads wholly of disk flowers, generally yellow, chaffy, and maintaining their color for long periods. Bracts of the involucre below the flowerhead are green or petal-like and white, yellow, or rose-pink.

Sow seeds in late spring, but where summers are short, start indoors 6-8 weeks before last frost. Transplant outdoors when the soil is warm. Grows best in full sun and sandy soil. Prefers warm weather.



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2/2/10 12:05 P

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Way to go, Gail. 4 days without power. So glad to have it now.

Quit stuffing your face and face your stuff.

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2/2/10 7:19 A

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Nice!

“Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else” ~ Alison Boulter

www.flickr.com/photos/36569004@N06/

ktalley.blogspot.com/


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2/1/10 8:01 P

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February Month of the Flower is ......

Nemesia

No varieties of Nemisia Strumosa grow more than 12in high making them ideal for beds and containers. Grown as half-hardy annual, flowers can be single colors or bright and varied mixtures. Good as edging for troughs and windowboxes. Very easy to grow.

Must have full sun to grow successfully.

~~ Gail ~~
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12/31/09 3:21 P

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I love Cale. (My grandson). But I like the kale as well. I am sure enjoying my kale in the army boots.
Great job, Gail. emoticon

Edited by: LUECL3 at: 12/31/2009 (15:22)
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12/31/09 12:20 P

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Great choice! Very nice picture.

“Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else” ~ Alison Boulter

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12/30/09 5:25 P

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Since you’ve been talking about kale I thought I would make it the flower of the month for January. Also, I’m posting early as I will be gone on New Year ’s Day.

Ornamental Kale

Ornamental kales are grown for colorful fall and winter foliage, growing 12-18 in tall and wide. Use for bedding or large pots. Leaf color is pink, rose, or white, and improves with temperatures below 50F. Damage is caused by severe frost.

Plants are at their best in the fall and early winter. Any surviving the winter will produce tall clusters of yellow flowers during spring. Whole heads makes a striking, unusual element in winter flower arrangements.


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12/1/09 10:13 A

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Thank you.

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12/1/09 9:15 A

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Gail, this is such an interesting flower. Thanks so much.

Quit stuffing your face and face your stuff.

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Cool flower!

“Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else” ~ Alison Boulter

www.flickr.com/photos/36569004@N06/

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11/30/09 6:58 P

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December's Flower of the Month:

Clivia Miniata (Kaffer lily)

This evergreen forms a striking house or conservatory plant, with long deep green, strap-shaped leaves that overlap at the base rather like a leek. In spring or summer, a stout stem pushes between the leaf bases and grows to about 18”, carrying a head of 20 or so bright orange, bell-shaped flowers. These are marked with yellow in the throat and have prominent golden antlers.

Selected hybrids have larger flowers in various rich orange shades: a beautiful yellow-flowered variety, C. Miniata citrine, has been developed but to date these plants are scarce and expensive, as are cultivators with cream-striped foliage.

Clivia prefers a reasonably bright position in the home, but not one in direct sun, which will scorch the foliage. Provide shading in a greenhouse or conservatory.

Grow as a room plant while it is flowering; during the summer the container can be placed in the sheltered position outdoors. Use a loam-based or soil-less potting compost.

Flowers may be carried any time between winter and early summer.


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10/7/09 12:03 P

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Gail is good to us.

“Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else” ~ Alison Boulter

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10/7/09 11:00 A

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Mums=Fall!
No apologies are needed, Gail.
Love you.

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Hello team! I'm sorry I'm late again with the flower of the month. I am repeating one here and choosing the Mum again. I took a wonderful picture of my neighbor's mum and wanted to use it for the team photo.

There are many forms of Chrysanthemums and they have been classified by specialist societies and nurseries according to floral type. Some of the types are decorative, anemone centered, spider, pompom, single, exhibition, and Korean spray. There is virtually a shape for every taste.

Their color range is wide, covering white, cream, yellow, many shades of pink and lilac, burgandy, pale apricot and deep mahogany.

Mums grow best in full sun with protection from strong winds.

* Information taken from "The Garden Flower Book".

~~ Gail ~~
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9/11/09 9:27 A

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Great flower, Gail. They turn up in unusual places. Have one lonely glory blooming in the rocks under our carport.

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9/10/09 9:21 A

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Thanks Fin!

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9/10/09 8:40 A

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Hi Gail! You did a good job on the picture, again! I remember a neighbor from when I was a kid, who had a morning glory that had vined way up his antenna.

“Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else” ~ Alison Boulter

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9/8/09 8:26 P

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Sorry I'm late team! My only excuse is we were camping with no internet.

September's Flower of the Month is ....

Ipomoea, the Morning Glory

This is a picture I took of my neighbor's Morning Glory. Interstingly enough, everytime I was ready with my camera, the flowers were closed up and would open up the next morning. This of course makes sense since they are called Morning Glories. As you can see, I finally got a shot.

Look under ipomoea or morning glory in seed catalogs to find varieties of this stunning climber. Most familiar is sky-blue flowered "Heavenly Blue," others are red, pink, white, mauve, chocolate, one is striped, and "Muraski Jishi" is double-flowered. Average height is 10-12 ft. Plants will climb fences and other plants. For patios grow 3-4 plants in a 12in pot up a wigwam of 5ft canes. A half-hardy annual with flowers mostly 3in across. Seeds are poisonous.

This flowers season is the summer and they are not suitable for cutting.

I obtained this information from my garden book "The Garden Flower Book."

~~ Gail ~~
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8/7/09 11:46 A

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Love the coneflower, Gail. Thanks so much.

Quit stuffing your face and face your stuff.

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8/3/09 1:11 P

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Nice one, Gail!

“Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else” ~ Alison Boulter

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8/2/09 10:20 P

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Love that flower, Gail. Very pretty picture!

I have some of these in my yard.



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8/2/09 8:22 P

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August flower of the month .....

Coneflower

Native to the prairie States of America, the coneflower is a hardy, drought-resistant plant. Its dark, cone-shaped center is surrounded by rich pink ray petals, and there are cultivars available in shades of pink-purple and white. They make excellent cut flowers. Coneflowers often grown over 39in tall, and are great addition to a perennial border becasue they bloom over a long period, from mid-summer into late fall, when many other plants have finished. Coneflowers should be mass-planted to get the best effect.

P.S. The team photo is one I took myself.

Edited by: GRALLEN at: 8/2/2009 (20:27)
~~ Gail ~~
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7/8/09 10:48 A

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Thanks!

~~ Gail ~~
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7/8/09 10:46 A

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Beautiful flowers!



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7/1/09 12:39 P

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No it isn't. I pulled this off the web. I do have the bell flowers but they don't look as good as this picture does.

~~ Gail ~~
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7/1/09 12:33 P

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Nice picture! Is this one of your flowers? I'll have to look them up.

“Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else” ~ Alison Boulter

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7/1/09 12:21 P

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Love your pick this month, but then I love all your picks, also nice looking dog.

Free food will be paid for later.
Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure. Don Wilder
Waste not, lose not.


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6/30/09 9:26 P

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July Flower of the month is .......

Campanula

Also known as the bellflower, campanula contains abut 300 species of annuals, biennials, and perennials. Generally easy to grow in either full sunlight or dappled shade, on walls, banks and in borders, it has a wide range of flowers, from the tubular to the saucer-shaped.

There are three broad types of campanula, each requiring different conditions: well-drained, fertile soil for border plants; moist, fast-draining ground for the rock garden species; and a gritty scree bed for the alpines that dislike being wet over winter.

The long lasting flowers appear from midwinter to the spring.

Makes an excellent display of cut flowers especially the taller plants.

After flowering, cut back to the ground in late fall.

~~ Gail ~~
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6/9/09 1:18 P

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Oh, that's a neat idea.

~~ Gail ~~
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6/9/09 12:52 P

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A group I belong too would spray paint them for center pieces at luncheons.

Love this months pick

Free food will be paid for later.
Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure. Don Wilder
Waste not, lose not.


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6/8/09 2:40 P

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My sister used to collect these and dry them.

I saw some on my walk today.

Edited by: FINFIN2 at: 6/8/2009 (14:41)
“Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else” ~ Alison Boulter

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6/8/09 10:38 A

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Thanks! I saw a lot of these on our trip these past two weeks. I thought they were a neat flower.

~~ Gail ~~
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6/8/09 10:33 A

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Divine! We have a lot growing wild around here.

Quit stuffing your face and face your stuff.

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6/8/09 9:23 A

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June’s Flower of the Month is ……

Queen Anne’s Lace

Queen Anne's Lace, also called "Wild Carrot," is a common plant in dry fields, ditches, and open areas. It was introduced from Europe, and the carrots that we eat today were once cultivated from this plant.

Queen Anne's Lace grows up to four feet tall. Its leaves are two to eight inches long and fern-like. This plant is best known for its flowers, which are tiny and white, blooming in lacy, flat-topped clusters. Each little flower has a dark, purplish center.

The fruits of Queen Anne's Lace are spiky, and they curl inward to build a "birds' nest" shape.

This plant blooms from May to October. It is a biennial plant, which means it lives for two years. It will spend the first year growing bigger, and then bloom the second year.

Since Queen Anne's Lace was introduced to this country, many people consider it an invasive weed. It will sometimes crowd and compete with native plants.


~~ Gail ~~
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6/8/09 8:46 A

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I grow a lot of hostas. The hardiest was from some that I got from a friend. the ones I bought don't do nearly as well. We try not to let ours bloom because DW doesn't like the blooms. We divide them once in a while and just do it with a shovel. They do great in our shady yard.

“Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else” ~ Alison Boulter

www.flickr.com/photos/36569004@N06/

ktalley.blogspot.com/


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6/7/09 9:42 P

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Sorry ladies. I've been on vacation and only returned just today. I will change up the picture soon.

~~ Gail ~~
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6/1/09 5:46 P

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June 1st and Gail is late (ha ha)

Free food will be paid for later.
Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure. Don Wilder
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5/5/09 9:57 A

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So do I, Gail. I have divided some, but, still have more to do. I've scattered them around in different places in my yard.



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5/5/09 9:44 A

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I've got some that need to be split.

~~ Gail ~~
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5/5/09 9:25 A

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Love hostas. They do so well when transplanted. They do tend to multiply a little too well.

Thanks, Gail.

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5/2/09 10:20 A

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Great pick this month.

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5/1/09 8:20 A

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Hostas can be a beautiful addition to landscaping. I really like them!



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5/1/09 8:17 A

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May's flower of the month is .....

** Hostas **

Hostas are extremely popular, hardy herbaceous perennials grown primarily for their beautiful foliage. They are easy to grow, shade-tolerant plants. Leaves come in a wide range of shapes, colors, sizes, and textures and may be solid in color or variegated in different combinations of blue, green, white, and gold. The plants are low maintenance and are widely available in nurseries and garden centers. Many catalogs also offer a large selection of hosta plants, with more than 2,500 different cultivars on the market.

Hostas originally came from Japan, China, and Korea. They were first introduced to Europe in the late 1700s and then came to the United States in the middle 1800s.

All hostas bloom in summer with spikes of lavender to white, lily-like flowers, which can be quite showy. New cultivars of hosta plants are also being bred to produce larger and even more attractive flowers. Some newer plants may have 50 to 75 blooms on each flower scape. All fragrant hosta flowers are hybridized from Hosta plantaginea, which has 6-inch long, beautiful, white fragrant flowers.

Hostas will grow best in rich organic soil. A loamy soil type may not need the addition of organic matter, but few of us are so lucky to garden in ideal soil and will need to add organic amendments. The recommended soil is well drained, has a slightly acidic pH, and is enriched both with nutrients and organic matter.

Division should be done when no shoots are growing from the center of the mature clump and this bare area detracts from the appearance of the plant. Division of the clump will improve the plant's appearance. Lift the entire hosta clump and wash the soil from the roots, if possible, to make it easier to see where to cut to divide the clump. Cut with a sharp knife to make the divisions. Spring is the easiest time to divide plants because new shoots are only a few inches high and the leaves have not expanded.


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4/28/09 2:22 P

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OMG!! I just realized I didn't put up a flower for April. I guess I really liked the Iris so much, I just kept it there. Oh well, I've been thinking already of a flower for May so you be seeing the photo change here soon.

Sorry bout that.

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4/2/09 3:01 P

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Love Iris's

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4/2/09 10:16 A

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Thanks Lucy. For some reason I thought it was April 2. I guess I'm just ready for this week to be over.

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4/2/09 10:10 A

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Blackheart,
April 1 is not late. Quit beating yourself up for nothing.

I love iris and this one is exceptional. Thanks.
Lucy

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4/1/09 10:16 P

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Sorry I'm late with this.

April Flower of the Month is ......

Iris

With hundreds of varieties in several different colors and combinations, Irises are popular and easy to grow perennial. The most common larger varieties are great at the back of the flower bed or as a cutting. For flower growers, there is a place in your garden for one, or several groups. But, be careful, as they spread quickly and can overcome other flowers.

Varieties of Irises:
There are hundreds of varieties of this easy to grow perennial flower. Regular Irises come in several colors. Bearded Iris are very popular. There are many beardless Iris. Regular Irises make great cut flowers, with their tall, sturdy stalks. Dwarf varieties grow much smaller, less than eight inches tall. They are good in flower beds and around rock gardens.

Propagation:
Irises are grown from both seed and root separation. The roots, or Rhizomes, are easily separated and replanted. The Rhizome looks like a long, thin potato with roots underneath. When transplanting, separate the Rhizome. Make sure to have some root and a leaf or two in each section. Plant the Rhizomes near the surface with the roots below. Space them a foot or so apart . They will fill in the spaces quickly.

How to Grow Iris Plants:
If you want a low maintenance, easy to grow flower, you have come to the right plant. Irises like full sun, but tolerate partial shade well. Their only demand is well draining soil to avoid root rot. The soil does not need to be the richest in your yard. Nor, does it demand heavy fertilizer feeding.
Mulching around the plants will help to keep out the weeds. Once established, you will need to water them only in the driest part of the year. Fertilize occasionally. Do not apply heavy doses of Nitrogen.
When planting, make sure to put it in a spot where it can grow and thrive for years. It will spread quickly and will need to be thinned or divided regularly. To divide them, simply pull up some of the Rhizomes. The remaining plants will reward you with healthier plants and bigger blooms. As for what to do with the Rhizomes you have culled from your garden....give them to friends!



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3/3/09 8:32 A

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Have to check out peoples gardens in town and see if theirs are growning.

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3/2/09 11:06 A

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beautiful!



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3/2/09 9:26 A

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Absolutely perfect as usual, Gail.

Thanks.

Quit stuffing your face and face your stuff.

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3/2/09 8:06 A

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Thanks, I got the idea from Lucy when she was talking about them on another thread.

~~ Gail ~~
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3/2/09 7:44 A

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The trumpet of spring

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3/1/09 9:45 A

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I love them, should be seeing them real soon around here.

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Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure. Don Wilder
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3/1/09 12:05 A

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March's Flower of the month is ........

Daffodils

Daffodils, the flowers symbolising friendship, are one of the most popular flowers exclusively due to their unmatched beauty. Daffodils belong to the genus Narcissus. Daffodil flowers have a trumpet-shaped structure set against a star-shaped background.

Often the trumpet is in a contrasting color from the background. The name Daffodils includes the cluster-flowered yellow Jonquils and the White Narcissi , as well as the include as the more common trumpet shaped flowers (right), members of the genus Narcissus.

Growing Daffodils
Daffodils grow perennially from bulbs. In temperate climates they flower among the earliest blooms in spring. Daffodils often grow in large clusters, covering lawns and even entire hillsides with yellow.

Depth, as a general rule, needs to be thrice the height. This means large bulbs should have depth of 6 to 8 inches, medium size 3-6 inches and smaller size 2-3 inches. Always remember that the load of soil prove helpful to protect the bulbs from breaking too easily and keep them upright for a longer duration.

If this fact is ignored and enough depth is not given then the Daffodil will bend down very soon. Though Daffodil blooms will come in bigger clumps, the bulbs and flowers will be scant. Steps to grow Daffodils.

• Choose a well-drained, sunny place, with slightly acidic soil.
• Plant your Daffodils so that their top (pointed end) is at least two times as deep as the bulb is high (top of a 2" bulb is 4" deep).
• Plant bulbs deeper in sandy soil than in clay.
• High-nitrogen fertilizer should be avoided.
• Daffodils need lots of water while they are growing.
• After blooming, never cut the foliage until it begins to yellow (usually late May or June).
• Then is the time to dig them. Wash the bulbs thoroughly and let them dry completely (at least a week).
• Put them in onion sacks (or panty hose) and hang them in the coolest place you can find until ready to plant. Good air circulation will keep storage rot at a minimum.



~~ Gail ~~
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2/28/09 10:27 A

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It's a pretty one too.

~~ Gail ~~
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2/28/09 8:08 A

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Tomorrow's the day, tomorrow's the day.

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Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure. Don Wilder
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2/26/09 8:23 A

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Looking forward to it, your such a tease.

Free food will be paid for later.
Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure. Don Wilder
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2/25/09 8:30 P

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Well, it just so happens I have the flower picked out so we'll just have to wait and see.

lol

~~ Gail ~~
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2/25/09 12:03 P

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I wonder what our flower or plant will be Sunday.

Free food will be paid for later.
Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure. Don Wilder
Waste not, lose not.


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2/2/09 8:09 P

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Thanks!

~~ Gail ~~
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2/2/09 7:24 P

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Beautiful flower!



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2/2/09 10:59 A

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Thank you Lucy!!

~~ Gail ~~
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2/2/09 10:56 A

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Another winner, Gail. You are such an asset to our team.

Quit stuffing your face and face your stuff.

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