Six On Saturday — March 2

A new month has begun, and it’s time to share another six things from the garden. Garden bloggers around the world join in and deliver beauty each Saturday, thanks to The Propagator who started it all from his corner of the U.K. Links in the comment section of his post will take you to all kinds of late winter wonders.

ONE – Coppertop plants other than trees and large shrubs are still slumbering beneath the snow blanket that fell in mid-February. The snow level is down to roughly a foot in most areas. It’ll be quite a while before I’m digging in the soil again and a while until we see crocuses, snowdrops, daffodils, hyacinths, and the like. I’m very thankful to have plenty of jobs to do in the greenhouse and garden shed while I attempt to keep my green thumb in shape.

TWO – Crystal-clear days in the snowy garden have graced us with this beautiful view across the water toward Mount Baker, Washington. The mountain’s Native American name is Koma Kulshan, and he’s a beauty at 10,781′ elevation.

THREE – Delphiniums ‘Black Knight’ and ‘Galahad’ from the Pacific Giants series are the only two delphs I’m growing this year. I’m happy with their progress, having transplanted dozens of seedlings into 4″ pots.

FOUR– Of five varieties of perennial salvias I’ve seeded for the new rose bed, Salvia transsylvanica ‘Blue Cloud’ is the most mature as this new month begins. Salvia patens (Gentian sage) is also coming along nicely. Other salvias I’ve seeded are Salvia nemorosa ‘New Dimension Rose’, Salvia nemorosa ‘Adora Blue’, and the half-hardy Salvia farinaceae ‘Seascape.’ 

FIVEDigitalis ‘Camelot White’ will be gleaming from shady spots in the garden before we know it. I’ll add these to other areas of foxgloves that already feature some purple and peach blooms.

SIX – The big melt is underway, which means sap is flowing in our Western bigleaf maples, Acer macrophyllum. I’ve written about these trees many times, including here and here. Yesterday, Hubby and I drilled and placed about a dozen taps with spiles and tubing. The sap was flowing immediately! Once I collect a few gallons I’ll begin the process of boiling down the sap on our wood stove to make yummy maple syrup.

33 thoughts on “Six On Saturday — March 2

  1. Breathtaking views of the mountains and the snow! However, I am pleased we have not had a repeat of last year – we don’t know how to cope with heavy snowfall here. My foxglove seedlings are staying very small. I think I will pot them out again, yours look very healthy.

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  2. Gorgeous view of Mount Baker that I didn’t know. Is there a winter sports resort? (I had to convert to 3286m meters: nice for skiing!)
    About the maple sap, here in France it’s the birch sap that is harvested right now … purifying virtues, antioxidants … Never done but with all the birches I have in my garden, I should try

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  3. So many of my colleagues did not believe that the bigleaf maple is the sugaring maple of the West, or more specifically, of the Pacific Northwest. I had to get a small bit of syrup from two of my trees to make the point. Otherwise, we do no sugaring here because there is no sugaring season. Buds start to pop almost as soon as the sap starts to flow.

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      • Someone else wrote about sugaring box elders. They are more abundant here than bigleaf maples, but like I say, we have no sugaring season. If we did, I think I would still prefer the bigleaf maple. Box elders just do not seem all that appetizing.

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  4. So impressed with all the plants you’ve started already. Anything green gives us hope for spring. That’s still a lot of snow on the ground. I guess I should be thankful I can see the ground even if it’s too cold for anything to grow. It gets hard to be patient at this time of year.
    Your maples fascinate me. Do all varieties give off sap? Obviously it doesn’t hurt the tree to drill into it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your comment, Cindy. Yes, this month will require our patience! All trees produce sap, their lifeblood. It is delicious straight from the tree as maple water or sap, and is loaded with minerals. I know syrup can be made from maples and birches, but have learned that even alders and sycamores can be tapped if one wants to try. Keep in mind with maples it takes 40 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of syrup! Yes, the tree heals itself in a few months.

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  5. What a beautiful plot you have!
    I love delphiniums but so do my snails and slugs so they don’t last I’m afraid. I would love white foxgloves this year too and I have a neighbour who will swap some with me for some cosmos so everyone’s a winner!

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    • Thank you, Jude! The North Olympic Peninsula is our home. About tapping, it sometimes feels odd “adorning” our beautiful maples with the tacky plastic for a few weeks. Wouldn’t a classic setup of metal spiles and buckets be classier? But, alas, these are readily available and very inexpensive.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I have only seen the Peninsula from across the water from Vancouver Island. Mount Olympus looked most impressive. Hoped to visit Seattle and the area a few years ago, but we had an Australian trip the same year so couldn’t afford it. Looks like an amazing place to live.

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