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Good morning fellow gardeners!  I hope your weather is treating you better than mine is. The days are getting shorter but it's not looking too much like Christmas around here. True, the Christmas lights are strung downtown, and there are several houses that rival the Griswald's. (No, this is not my house. My house is a pitiful second to this one).

However, it's been warm during the day and not that cold at night. It's dipped down into the mid-30's some mornings, and I've had to scrape frost maybe 4 mornings so far. I finally got out my heavy coat the other day, because it was actually trying to snow. Thanksgiving can be a warm week, but with the warmth stretching into December 8, this is getting a little old.  The weather forecast for the weekend is snow, but if it's anything like Friday was, it's going to be a big disappointment!

I was browsing my photos in preparation for this diary and came upon a photo I took on December 8, 2009.


I know that year was a fairly normal year, and although I did not realize it at the time, it was the last normal year we had.  In 2010 we had 150% or so of normal, and the effects of the spring runoff are still apparent.  The banks of the streams and rivers hereabouts are severely eroded and there are still branches lodged in high former eddy areas.  Last year was a total bust, and this year is shaping up to be the same. As a gardener, it's a blessing and a curse. A blessing, because I can spend more time in the fall getting ready for cold weather and transplanting/bulb planting. A curse, because I'm not supposed to have to water in December!

With the trees cut down and the discovery of a mountain behind the house (thanks to some sharp-eyed SMGB'ers), it was time to put things back.  I had gotten behind, but it worked out. I went ahead and ordered Narcissus Gold Medal Mix, some Scilla Siberica Alba and Fritillaria Michailovskyi from John Scheepers, which were delivered in the first part of November. I also ordered an Anemone Blanda mixture, purple and white, which I planted in my strip garden by the driveway.

I replanted all the bulbs I had dug up from around the trees along with the new ones, and put the perennials in. I scattered the bulbs and pretty much planted them where they fell.

I had a few crocus in there from before, and some siberian iris. I hope it all looks good next spring! Then I mulched it with some straw. And then, I watered! On December 1. Unheard of.

With the bulbs planted and the perennials mostly placed, I then turned to the front garden, where I plan on a "purple garden" in memory of Jessica Ridgeway, the 10 year old little girl who was murdered in Westminster, Colorado.  I've gotten inspiration from the park where she loved to play and which was just renamed the Jessica Ridgeway Memorial Park.

I've already got some purple asters planted in this front garden,
and I planted purple mums this fall.

 I've moved a pincushion flower from the back garden up, which is a beautiful dark maroon purple,

and some pretty purple speedwell. I plan on waiting to see which iris are purple, and then I'll transplant those. Throw in a little white for contrast, and I hope it looks good come next summer.

In the meantime, I'm going to do some snow dancing. Since we wanted to put up more Christmas lights on the roof this weekend and I've still got some ceramic pots to put in the shed before it gets really cold, I expect it may actually snow and rain this weekend. Hopefully it's going to amount to something and become a norm for the season. We need it!

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