Everybody that knows Miss MoneyPenny is aware of her aversion to going outside in the cold and rain and mucking about in the mud. I don't want you to think that I am outside throwing up cold frames or anything, but there are a few things that get tended to. Last weekend we finally got the veggie garden put to bed and we just about froze to death, but it is done.
Keeping with the idea that I started with last summer, I picked up some gorgeous bulbs that they had on sale at QFC. You will remember that almost my whole gardening effort last summer came from the QFC parking lot. And everything did very well!! Anyway, the mums that I planted in the pot on the front porch were beautiful this fall, but they froze up and look really bad. I'm going to remove them to the compost pile where they will live again later as black gold and put the bulbs in their place. When they come up in the spring, it will be a stunner of white and purple.
Are your Christmas cactuses blooming? Both of mine are and I have no idea what I did right, but there you have it, and on time, to boot.
Speaking of Christmas flowers, last year was very embarrassing for Miss MoneyPenny. I bought several Smith & Hawken amaryllis bulbs and gaily gave them out to friends and family, and one for myself, of course. They all either died outright or never bulbed. Mine just had leaves. They were healthy but who wants long green leaves? Naturally Miss SmartyPant's amaryllis was the only one that bloomed, but that girl could get a Boston fern to bloom, so that doesn't count.
This summer I noticed that plant in the guest room, so I cut it back to the bulb and put it out in a corner of the deck and never paid any attention to it, thinking that I would dump it into the compost, which I never did. I noticed it a couple of weeks ago and thought I saw a touch of green still, so I put it under the sink in the bathroom. I remembered it a few days ago and... ta da!!
The guy from Seattle asked me what color my phallic symbol is going to be. I have no idea. It never bloomed but I will keep you updated. I now know how to grow one of these babies. Cut them to the bulb. Throw them out on the hot deck all summer, never water or fertilize them, and then let them freeze to death. A few weeks before Christmas, put them under the sink in the bathroom. When you remember, take them out and water and fertilize. Works like a charm.