Wednesday, May 18, 2011

A Prairie Gardener Has Got To Love Bergenia!


Hens and Chicks
In the Spring, the first thing a Prairie gardener asks is 'What's still alive?'.  No, really!  It can be so hard to keep plant material from one season to the next, especially if you've taken a gamble on some of the new introductions that are 'rated' to Zone 3.  I kind of figure that the plant developers never tested them in Manitobam but they should!  Much heartbreak ensues.  So, taking a walk around the ornamental gardens this week I've decided I just love Bergenia.  It's one of the few things for us that comes through every year and actually looks alive as soon as its leaf mulch is swept away!  Hens and Chicks, as well, are very heartening!  For us, mid-May, buds are just starting to swell, species tulips are just starting to bloom and we're still assessing the damage.  The big questions for me:  is the 'Blue Moon' wisteria alive?  It looks like it started to bud when we warmed up in April but may have gotten killed off during our late snow storm.  Only time will tell!

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