Garden Diary - March 2019

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Tohickon Garden Club at Linden Hill Gardens

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

The Tohickon Garden Club tries to find a balance between lectures and garden outings. January and February have uncertain weather for outdoor garden events. Thus lectures are a given as we start the new year. March is iffy, and only the earlier bulbs are waking up. Linden Hill Gardens in Ottsville, Pennsylvania opened just last weekend. Jerry Fritz, the amiable owner, designer, raconteur, will welcome us with a talk about his background and the nursery's background, then take us around for a look at some of his display gardens, a pruning demonstration, dividing a clump of snowdrops, etcetera.

There was an excellent turnout. Members kept turning up and coming in
to the greenhouse. Jerry and Joe were kept busy setting up more chairs.

Of course a meeting is not possible without refreshments. We "made do"
with a diversity of cookies and simple, plain cakes, and cold beverages.

A mini-design display of flowers from our gardens.
A respectable selection, don't you agree?

I brought one small vase with dark hellebores and also this jam jar with
several different snowdrops, spring snowflakes, and Helleborus niger.

When I was here for the Horticultural Chat Room a week and a half ago
the decor was an urn full of pussy willow, witch hazel, hydrangea branches.

It's still here today, but now the greenhouse is bursting with plants.

The other garden club ladies troop off after Jerry for the garden tour and
demonstrations. I sneak off on my own to photograph, absent people
walking into the image or otherwise fracturing my contemplative efforts.

Stone house, stone wall, bare branches of metasequoia and evergreen shrubs.

Stone barn, stone walls, characteristic of the landscape. When Jerry bought
the property the barn was so ramshackled it had no roof. Quite a transformation.

Something more exotic than snowdrops. Here
and there, a clump of Iris 'Katharine Hodgkin'.

I go around to the back end of the greenhouse. Jerry was up at
the crackers of dawn, unloading hellebores. Three benches full.
Other plants here and there and up above, and clay flower pots.

Beautiful hellebores. They had been in a 35° Fahrenheit greenhouse
so almost hardened off for outdoor planting. Just another day or two.

I'm especially fond of the darker colors, like these wine reddish purple
petals, with ivory stamens that set them off. Just perfectly elegant.

Or perhaps you prefer the double form, like this.

Given how full the benches are packed there should be something for everyone.

Let me remind you that the next Linden Hill Gardens event will be
the 17th annual hellebore festival on Saturday and Sunday, April 6 and 7
with benches filled with hellebores for sale and Barry Glick as speaker.

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