A grower’s guide
Wednesday, May 1, 2019
I returned home the other day to discover our chickens had breached the security wall of the vegetable garden and were merrily marauding a row of six-month-old garlic plants. After surveying the damage—which wasn’t as bad as it initially looked—I thanked the garden gods for protecting the edible allium and vowed to better defend the remaining vegetable and fruit starts and other assorted annuals perennials I plan on purchasing at one or more of the many plant sales on the near horizon.
This weekend, I may find what I need when reading material and plants collide at an annual Book and Plant Sale from 10am-5m Sat., May 4 at the Ferndale Library, 2125 Main St. After securing books, I’ll head outside, to find locally grown and donated plants of all kinds—including outdoor shrubs and flowers, berry plants, hanging baskets, and even some indoor plants. Yard art will also be available for additional beautification. I could also head to another Whatcom County book hub from 10am-5pm Fri.-Sat, May 3-4, where a Spring Plant Sale will commence at the Deming Library, 5044 Mt. Bakery Hwy. P.S. Funds raised from the sale of plants and starts for veggie gardens or flower beds will support library programs and building maintenance. Info: http://www.wcls.org
Visiting the annual Native Plant Spring Sale hosted by the Salal Chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society from 10am-12pm Sat., May 4 in Mount Vernon at the Salal Native Plant Garden, 16650 State Route 536, could also result in bringing home a variety of ferns, full-sun flowers, shade flowers, ground covers, shrubs, trees and grasses. And from 9am-12pm that same day, the Birchwood Garden Club’s 27th annual Plant Sale will include a wide variety of shrubs, trees, roses, perennials, annuals, veggie starts, pots, books and choice selection from member’s gardens. Come early for the best selection. Info: http://www.wnps.org/salal or www.birchwoodgardenclub.org
It’ll be difficult to wait to purchase my tomato starts at the Whatcom County Master Gardener Plant Sale taking place from 9am-2pm Sat., May 11 at Ferndale’s Hovander Homestead Park, 5299 Nielsen Ave. But I’ve found this pre-Mother’s Day event is the best time to stock up on unique and heirloom nightshades, as they’re cultivated by guru gardeners who keep our region’s growing season and weather patterns in mind. I typically come home with more than 20 starts, and often can’t resist perusing and purchasing a few more herb and vegetable starts, a native plant or two, flowering beauties and more. Maybe this year, someone will also sell me some chicken wire for backup in the garden. Info: http://www.whatcom.wsu.edu
Ski to Sea
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For lord knows how many years, my longtime snowboarding partner, P.T. Crinkle, has relished basking in the glow that comes from playing a starring role on a local team of outwardly mellow but secretively competitive Ski to Sea racers.
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A passion for plants
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