Emailed October 14, 2010. To subscribe, click here.
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Friends of Old Bulbs Gazette
Old House Gardens, 536 Third St., Ann Arbor, MI 48103, (734) 995-1486
“At the heart of gardening there is a belief in the miraculous.”
-- Mirabel Osler, British author of A Gentle Plea for Chaos, etc.
Shipping Has Begun!
We're still waiting for a couple of tardy lilies, but shipping started last week and orders are flying out the barn doors. We fast-track orders to the coldest zones where winter is looming, but don't worry – wherever you live, you WILL have your bulbs by the end of October.
Plant Now to Enjoy Dreams of Spring All Winter!
It's not too late! We still have plenty of fabulous bulbs looking for a happy home like yours. Join the fall ritual of hope and renewal and give yourself something special to look forward to all winter long. Rita, LaDonna, and our easy website are standing by, eager to serve you.
Hyacinth Fields Forever: A Snapshot of Paradise
This past spring our friend Alan Shipp, the former potato farmer who supplies us with our rarest hyacinths, emailed us a special photo we thought you'd enjoy, especially now that it's hyacinth-planting season. He wrote, "This photo by Tim Upson, Curator of the Cambridge University Botanic Garden, shows my hyacinth field after a small shower of rain. Isn't it stunning?"
Support Breast Cancer Awareness Month with Our Pink Ribbon Sampler
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month which means NOW is the perfect time to order and plant one of our new Pink Ribbon samplers. We're donating $3 from each sampler to the Live Strong Foundation to celebrate the successful recovery of our Shipping Manager and good friend Kelly who last October had just been diagnosed with breast cancer and today is stronger than ever.
From North to South, Experts Say "Plant This Peony!"
For a peony that never flops and blooms happily from zone 4 to 8 (yes, 8!), experts recommend the 1920s classic, 'Krinkled White'. Elizabeth Lawrence, patron saint of Southern gardening, called it "the king of the singles." Tony Avent of Plant Delights Nursery in zone-8a North Carolina says it's "one of the finest, especially for gardeners in the South," explaining that it's "proven to be one of the top low-chill, heat-tolerant, deer-resistant peonies in our trials." And Joan Severa of zone-4 Wisconsin, Master Gardener and author of Creating a Perennial Garden in the Midwest, says she prefers single peonies because they "hold themselves up and stay fresh-looking better," adding that "last year I counted 75 blooms on . . . 'Krinkled White' which has gorgeous yellow centers and parchment-white petals, charmingly wrinkled." Why not order one to plant in your garden right now?
Book of the Month: Laughing and Learning with Greg Grant
For about 11 cents a piece, you can enjoy 54 essays by one of the smartest -- and funniest -- gardeners I know, Greg Grant. If you've ever heard Greg speak, or read his modern classic The Southern Heirloom Garden (co-authored with Bill Welch), you know how laugh-out-loud funny he can be. But he's a world-class horticulturist, too. His new book, In Greg's Garden: A Pineywoods Perspective on Gardening, Nature and Family gathers together the first nine years of his columns from Texas Gardener magazine. Topics range from "Heirloom Bulbs" and "The Lure of Nocturnal Flowers" to "Confessions of a Plant Rustler" and "White Trash Gardening." Most are engagingly personal, and though they're Texas focused I think any gardener anywhere will find them well worth reading.
The price is amazing, too: $5.95. But here's the wrinkle: the book is only being published electronically. Don't panic, though. If -- like Greg and I -- you don't own an e-book reader, it's easy to download the book to your computer at Amazon. Our easy instructions will guide you.
Made in Michigan: Historic Pewabic Pottery
This is the third in our ongoing series introducing you to some of our favorite Michigan businesses. We hope you'll love their products, tell your friends, and help give our home state's battered economy a boost. (Though Michigan's unemployment rate is still the country's second worst at 13.1%, since May it's dropped .1% -- hooray!)
One of the iconic potteries of the Arts and Crafts era, Detroit's Pewabic Pottery was founded in 1903 by a young artist named Mary Chase Stratton. It soon gained acclaim for its simple designs and earthy, often iridescent glazes. Today, skilled artisans are still turning clay into small, affordable works of art in Pewabic's 1907 studio, now a National Historic Landmark. Among our favorites are the graceful daffodil tile in Pewabic blue, the replica of Stratton's 1903 Snowdrop Vase, and the irresistible little frog paperweight for just $19.95 -- but there are many, many more to choose from. We hope you'll be inspired to add one to your Christmas list!
Did You Miss Our Last Newsletter? Read It Online!
September's articles included chipmunk-proof lilies, Southern Living's Top 10, Tulipa clusiana in Houston, the first double hyacinths, canna virus FAQ, and customer raves for 'April Queen', 'Carlton', and our milk-and-wine crinum in Colorado. You can read all of our back-issues -- by date or by topic -- at oldhousegardens.com/NewsletterArchives.asp .
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