Over the winter when we were developing our new website, we all thought it was a terrific idea if I wrote a blog each week.   Now that it’s June and the site is up and running and I can write each week, I still totally agree.  Not to pretend to put forth invaluable horticultural nuggets of information-I will leave that task to lots of other folks at Extension and the superb botanical gardens in our area-but to share nursery history and activity, and ideas and thoughts about the season, weather, random gardening tidbits, and practical info we have accrued over the decades.  It also provides a space to chat about what we actually do.

As growers we are obsessive observers.  We watch weather. Is it going to rain? How much is it going to rain?  Do we keep the irrigation on or shut it off? Are the newly planted trees in the field wet or dry?  Is it cloudy? Is it sunny?  Is it going to be cold? How cold? Frost? Do we need to cover? Too sunny—need shade cloth? You get the gist-moisture and temperature are constantly monitored for each kind of crop.  The newly planted trees are loving the cool days and every other day rain, and the Beebalm and Brunnera are needing  help to not grow interesting fungi.  The hot crop grasses are pouting in the chilly tempratures and the woodland ferns have never looked better.

We watch sprinkler patterns, wind flow, air movement in greenhouses, shade areas and sunny corners, deer tracks and vole tunnels, and looking for any evidence of ANY problem-and then have to figure out what is causing it.  And the most infinitely interesting aspect of all this watching is that the combination of variables changes EVERY year.   So, while some years, in your veggie garden it’s a great year for cukes and not so great for parsley, we can tell you why.  Through constant observation,  essentially plant detective investigation work, we grow a myriad of crops-from flowering crabs to petunias, sugar maples to native ferns- and each year accrue another nugget of knowledge to apply when similar conditions or problems appear another year.  So much more than “sticking a plant in a pot!”.  I could also add-helps to have a long memory and a lot of years growing!

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