Saturday, May 15, 2010

Fishing? Better yet, flowers and foliage

The benches and aisles were jampacked at Byrn's Greenhouse two weekends ago.

Forget about today's fishing opener -- who cares about walleye when there are way-cool plants to be had? The forecast sounds like it will be perfect weather for buying plants and getting out in the garden this weekend. But don't go crazy and set out all your tender stuff -- we're not done with the possibility of frosts/freezes yet.

I've been out and about a little bit the past couple of weeks. Here are scouting reports from a few of the places I visited.

Byrn's Greenhouse in Zim: Fantastic selection of bedding plants and probably the best prices of any place I've visited so far this year. I picked up small pots of white heliotrope for $1.55 each. Really nice selection of herbs. The flowers and veggies were all healthy and robust and really, really hard to resist. Go. Get directions here.

Swanson's Greenhouse in Eveleth: Another winner for bedding plants, although prices seemed a tad higher than Bryn's. Swanson's also has a good selection of trellises, pots and garden do-dads.

Burchfiel's Greenhouse north of Duluth: Swooned over nice pots of antique shades of petunias (pastel pink with yellow in center, find a photo from Burpee here). I was going to buy some, but they don't take credit cards so I came home empty-handed.

The Garden House, Solon Springs, Wis.:  Always a fun, inspirational place to visit. Lots of purple perilla. I snapped up a six-pack of bells of Ireland -- you don't often find these flowers for sale. Learn more about the greenhouse here.

Holly keeps notes on plant combinations she likes in a journal that she carries with her when she shops. That way she can check varieties quickly without having to depend on her memory.

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