Thursday, March 31, 2011


   Tonight   Mar 31  Fri Apr 1           Sat 2               Sun 3                         Mon 4
Rain / Snow Rain / Snow Showers Mostly Cloudy Rain / Snow Showers Snow Shower
Rain / Snow Rain / Snow Showers Mostly Cloudy Rain / Snow Showers Snow Shower
-- 43° 46° 40° 35°
High High High High High
30° 29° 29° 31° 23°
Low Low Low Low Low

I wish I could get excited about spring, but you can clearly see that there isn't much to get excited about.  We still have snow on the ground, but hopefully the coming rain will get rid of the remaining snow, at least until Monday's snow shower.


Saturday, March 26, 2011

Cruel, cruel winter

Oh, cruel, cruel winter of 10-11, when will you release your death grip on us?!  In an act of self-torture, I decided to re-read my posts from last March, and discovered that I had the following peeking out of the ground on March 21:

creeping yellow sedum
pink mallow
bee balm
evening primrose
jacobs ladder
Autumn Joy sedum
bachelor button

Now we still have at least 10 inches of snow on the ground thanks to the storm earlier in the week, and it's snowing again today.

Thanks to all of this late season snow, instead of spending my day outdoors cleaning out gardens and expanding my front yard foundation planting as planned, I'm spending it reading my newest addition to my gardening library, Edible Front YardThe Mow-Less, Grow-More Plan for a Beautiful, Bountiful Garden, by Ivette Soler.  I purchased this after reading about it on the Garden Rant blog.  It's a fast, easy read, and is giving me some glorious ideas!  The longer this snow is on the ground, the more grandiose my plans become.  While a lot of the plants in this book will not work in my northern garden, the book was still a worthwhile read.

Friday, March 25, 2011


Here's a snapshot of the Johnny's Seed Disks that we planted a few weeks ago.  The sweet marjoram didn't do much, but the rest looks like it's coming along.  I'm not sure what happened with the marigolds - may have to replant. 

The seedlings in the trays in front are a few varieties of cosmos, two varieties of zinnias, a packet of morning glory and a packet of sunflowers.  Here's a close up of the cosmos:

 It's nice to see something green growing since you'll notice the view out the window is still snowy and depressing!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Mourning Dove

This mourning dove, spotted off our deck, is probably thinking it should have waited a little longer before heading back north.  I'm sure many of the other Minnesota "snow birds" feel the same way today!

Sorry the picture is blurry - iphones are lovely devices, but they do not take very good pictures, especially through a window.

Spring in Minnesota

Well, my wishes for a snow day came true!  Here are a couple of shots of the view from the deck at 10:00 this morning.

Though it's hard to tell, it is still snowing and blowing, and we have several inches of snow on the ground.

I guess it was a little overly optimistic of me to put out lawn chairs already.  Spring in Minnesota is so unpredictable.  While others around the country are posting pictures of lovely flowers in bloom, I'm just getting excited about perennials finally waking from their winter slumber.   I try to rationalize living here by believing that the long, cold winter only makes the spring and summer that much more sweet, but in reality, I'd love to be sitting outside in 70 degree weather in March.  Heck, I'd even take 50!  C'est la vie.  Another day to stay inside and dream of spring flowers to come.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


I can't believe I'm actually cheering for a blizzard in March, but I am!  I'm lucky enough to work in a school district that I love, which is incredibly stressful, difficult, yet rewarding work.  But I can't help but feel like a little kid at the prospect of a "SNOW DAY!"  For those of you not working in education, remember the sweet victory you felt when listening on the radio just to hear your school called out as one that is closed for the day?  And suddenly, a little gift from heaven above, a day where you don't have any obligations, where you don't have to deal with the bully on the bus or science homework.  As an adult, I appreciate those days even more - a day without meetings, without appointments, without stress.  A gift of a day that I can do whatever I want with.  If we have a snow day tomorrow (which looks pretty good at this point) after our 10+ inches of snow prediction and blizzard warning, then I will spend the day lounging around with my kiddos, playing games, maybe watching a movie, and definitely dreaming of the gardening season to come!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Signs of Spring

Today, the mercury rose to an absolutely gorgeous 52 F.  It was wonderful to come home from work and see that all the snow had melted off of the lakeside hill.  Although we still have a few inches of snow in the yard, the unseasonably warm weather prompted a quick garden tour.  Most of the snow in the gardens has melted, and I was able to pull away some of the dead sedum stalks to unveil the earliest emerging sedum buds.  I love the optimism of these plants - they usually emerge very early and are early harbingers of the gardening season to come.  It's nice to finally feel that spring may actually come to the great northwoods!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Glorified Weeds

Kathy Wieditz truly has the most beautiful home garden on the planet, in my opinion.  She propagates plants from her gardens in northern Minnesota to sell as well, calling her business Glorified Weeds.  I'm just as excited to see her gardens in bloom as I am my own!  Here is a link to her garden gallery to enjoy.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Sidewalk Garden

Lacking software for garden planning, I used Better Homes and Gardens online garden planner to plot out a "sidewalk garden" to make the path to the house a little more interesting.  Everything shifted a little after I saved it but it gives the general idea.  The plan involves the following plants:  Endless Summer hydrangea, nepeta (the three bluish looking mounds), pansies, hardy geranium (in blues or purples, not the pink as is indicated), bearded iris (the larger looking ornamental grasses) and a gold sedum I'm ordering from Bluestone Perennials titled "Sedum Angelina"(the shorter looking ornamental grasses).  I'm hoping the Iris will do something in this location - I have had NO LUCK at all with bearded irises at this house despite being able to grow them just fine at our previous home a mile away as the crow flies.

The Catmint and Geranium (Jolly Bee variety) I plan to get from my favorite gardener, Kathy, at Glorified Weeds ( The Iris plants will be moved from another location in my yard, the pansies will come from Young's Greenhouse in Sturgeon Lake, and I'll pick up the hydrangeas at Spring Fresh Garden Center in town.