Hope you can join us for tonight's (Wednesday, May 19) Yorkton and District Horticultural Meeting! It's at 7 p.m. at the Yorkdale Student Centre, and our special guest speaker will be Glen Tymiak talking to us about growing tomatoes. Glen is an enthusiastic gardener, and is also the president of the Saskatchewan Horticultural Association, and I know he will have lots of practical information to share with us. So plan to be there, at the Yorkdale Student Center, 7 p.m.
And remember, the Spring Plant and Bulb Sale is on Friday, May 21 at the Parkland Mall, from 9:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. I always say, come early, because while there is good selection, there may not be many of what you are looking for. So shop early to avoid disappointment! The time is listed till 5 p.m., but if they run out of plants earlier, the sale will be over! And there will be knowledgeable gardeners on hand to answer your questions, too. Don't miss it!
I was still looking at holiday pictures this week, and I want to tell you about the beautiful crotons that were growing absolutely everywhere in Hawaii. For us, the croton is a houseplant, with interesting multi-colored leaves. But over there, it's a houseplant and also doubles as a hedge, or as filler in flowerbed plantings. I don't know much about crotons, so I did some research.I learned that the croton also has the name "Joseph's Coat", very fitting! While most of the crotons we saw had broad, oval-shaped leaves, I read that crotons can also have thin, oak-leaf shaped, or twisted leaves. There can be assorted colors on the same plant, and if left to their own devices, crotons can grow as high as six feet. Propagation is by cuttings, and I also read that even a leaf will take root.
Crotons like the part sunshine, high humidity, and fresh air around them. I read that their first sign of displeasure is to drop their leaves, so if you have a croton that is "shedding", you know that it is not happy about something!
And here's an interesting little factoid I learned about crotons: back in the 40's and 50's, crotons were more popular in flower arrangements than as a houseplant. The richly-colored leaves were used to make huge flower arrangements for the lobbies of fancy resort hotels. An added bonus was that the leaves used in the flower arrangements often took root, and could then be planted as low foliage arrangements for tables. Talk about a hard-working little plant!
I noticed that the flowerbeds beside the hotels and in the parks seemed to be weed free, and this is probably thanks to the mulch. Rather than wood chips, I noticed that many flowerbeds had crushed lava-rock mulch. It was lovely because it looked like soil, at first glance. I'm sure it provided great drainage, too. You know what a fan I am of mulch; I like it because it's so practical, makes our gardening work easier, and looks nice, too! So if you're looking for a new look for your flowerbeds, try mulch this spring!
What great weather we've been having: enjoy your yard work, don't work too hard, and be sure to wear a hat! Have a nice week!