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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Michelias

Well I gotta say, even though I don't like winter in general, I do like the progression of the garden as we approach spring. Just walking through the garden is a delight for the senses. The Michelia doltsopa has been in bloom for at least a month now, although it seems early. The smell is wonderful, the flowers so elegant. It's about 9 years old now, is 12' tall, conical in shape and I can see it from my kitchen window. 

It's funny how so much of the winter garden can I enjoy  from inside the house. I've always been very consience  of views from the inside of the home. Even the night garden is so important. The front yard has great lighting and never fails to make me feel good. 
I just got a few 1-gal Magnolia grandiflora that I'm going to use as rootstock to graft some michelias onto, I think I'll do an approch graft. That type of graft just splices to cuts together while they both are still connected to their own roots. I've had bad luck before using tradition grafting techniques, I'm told they do better in the summer in a humid greenhouse. I also picked up some 1-gal jacaranda to graft some of the dark purple form called 'Midnight' I have by the office, grafting in Febuary has worked before with that one. 
The hybrid Michelia x Jack Foggi 'Allspice' is also just starting to bloom and the fragrace is amazinig, sweet with a hint of banana. Near it is a Lonicera fragrantisima also in bloom, not  avery pretty plant, kind of gangly with dull foliage, but the super sweet frangrace always gets me. 
The spring flowering trees haev also begun. My low chill cherry Prunus 'Pink Cloud' is almost in full bloom (non-fruiting) in  a super showy light pink. Across the road from it, down by the aviaries, the Red Baron peach is in full bloom. That one has brillent double fuchsia pink flowers and also has great yellow peachs, definately a winner. And once again I can look down on both trees from the back deck.
Well that's it for now, I have to go weed the garden below the vegetable bed and mulch it. Too many weeds popping up! -tom