Tuesday, February 19, 2013

A Glimmer of Hope




Over the weekend I ventured out to my first garden shopping trip of the season.  Natureworks, a small independent nursery located in Northford, CT opened for their annual event, Seedy Sunday.  Throughout the growing season I pop down to Natureworks occasionally when in search of some cutting edge perennial or to check out the small but well designed display garden.  Owner Nancy DeBrule is a talented garden designer who has an eye for creative plant combos and tends to stock her nursery accordingly.  Nancy also maintains a blog Natureworks...it's all about the plants.

Due to the blizzard last weekend Seedy Sunday was rescheduled to this past Saturday.  Like most nurseries in the area, Natureworks is closed in the winter but opens just for this sale.  Although growing from seeds is not my thing, Seedy Sunday is also the time when Natureworks closes out garden decor from the previous season.  Last year I scored big at this sale and scooped up a couple of unique glazed blue planters, one in the shape of a foot and the other a fish (seen at the lower left of the third picture).










Although I didn't really need anything, I also was reluctant to take a chance that something I couldn't live without would be on sale.  Sale items (including the rusty tulip sculpture to the left of the sign) were both outside and tucked away in the greenhouse and the shop.





One of the first items to catch my eye was this self contained glazed blue water feature.  For $79 it included the pump.  Cleaning it up would be fairly easy.  But where could I put it?  I already have two fountains in prominent spots.  In order to tuck it into the garden somewhere I would need to have a level surface and a power source.  Hmmm...  





Fairy and miniature gardens seem to be all the rage but they don't float my boat.





A few plants were scattered here and there.  February is way too early for me to think in terms of new plants.  At this point I've barely perused the 2013 catalog offerings.  And let's not forget all the plants on my lists that will need to be dealt with.





The small terracotta planters and plaques were intriguing, especially the piece with the sweet little pair of birds.





A square shallow planter would be perfect to re pot a bowl of mixed succulents I planted last season that have outgrown their current container.





Only a few items were scattered around outside.  No surprise that the Patron Saint of Curmudgeonry was on sale.  For someone who allows or perhaps even encourages scowling in their garden he would be perfect.  Mr. Happy Sun is more my style but he did not appear to be part of the sale.





In the end I decided to pass on the water feature.  To get power where I need it would require the assistance of an electrician.  All of a sudden a $79 fountain becomes a $500 project and I didn't love it enough.  I also passed on the terracotta bird plaque.  In the shop I mulled over a few glazed birdbaths but passed on those as well.  By my standards I walked away relatively unscathed with just the square shallow succulent planter.

When it comes to the garden I find it's easy to fall into a trap of buying things I really don't need (plants included) just because they're on sale under the assumption that I can find a place for them somewhere.  On Saturday I was not in a buying mood but honestly nothing screamed "buy me" either.  Trust me I'll make up for it in May when it comes time to start designing the containers.

So cold zone gardeners, are you anxious for your local nurseries to open?  Thursday marks the start of the Connecticut Flower and Garden Show weekend, another harbinger of spring for us winter weary CT gardeners.  I'll be among the maddening crowd on Saturday morning.  See you there!


Sue~

26 comments:

  1. I very rarely do any gardening - leave that to my husband. I do like blue pottery and I have enjoyed reading about (and seeing) your trip to the garden center. I feel inspired. Maybe I'll trade off some housework for an hour or two in the garden (when it is a bit warmer). Nice post.

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    1. Oh I choose the garden over housework most of the year. Just ask visitors to my house :).

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  2. I don't know how you could ever score a garden find on sale after you got that blue foot last year. That alone is the apex of garden art acquisitions and you'll never find anything else to rival that! (I do love it, just wish I'd gotten one when I saw it there last year).

    I love Natureworks and will be down for a visit in spring. Thanks for a wander through their sale.

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    1. I think you're right, Laurrie. After last year my expectations going into the sale were too high. I wasn't going to go at all but decided to dovetail it in with another errand I had in Wallingford. When it comes to sales you just never know.

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  3. I've driven by that place countless times, intrigued from the road, but I never stopped. Now, maybe I will. Hey, Sue, your blue pieces, including Big Foot, are cuttin' up. Nice and eye-catching.

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    1. Natureworks is worth a stop. Sometimes I take a long lunch and run down from New Britain just to scout around. Everywhere I go I'm on the lookout for glazed blue pieces for the garden but I also buy other bright colors like red and orange as well.

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  4. How fun! Great inflow of cash for the business owner, and a great boost before spring for the gardener. I love all the blue pots you have, and am a little sad you didn't get the blue fountain. It would have gone perfectly! But, I understand. You have to take into consideration the entire cost of the project, not just the initial outlay.

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    1. Occasionally I try to be practical but you never know when the blue fountain and I may cross paths again :).

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  5. I didn't realize that there was a Patron Saint of Curmudgeonry. Too funny! Your restraint is laudable. It must be nice to be in a nursery again after they've all been closed!

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    1. You learn something new every day :). It will still be over a month before most nurseries around here open and start bringing in plants. In the meantime I'll just keep reading all the southern and west coast garden blogs and hope Curmudgeonry doesn't strike.

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  6. Sue, I was too busy getting ready for the UCONN basketball game, so the compromise was to send Les at the start of the sale. He came home with a medium sized rusty metal daisy (similar to the tulip), a large rusty sunflower and a large metal leaf. Can't wait to place them in the garden in the spring.

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    1. I wasn't feeling it with the rusty stuff. Of course when I see it in your garden this year I'll no doubt wish I had.

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    2. Great post Sue. Natureworks is one of my favorite spots, and Nancy is delightful and an amazing wealth of garden information. Too funny Monique, I bought a medium sized rusty metal daisy too!

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    3. Oh great-now two gardens this summer to remind me that I missed out on the rusty flower at the Natureworks sale :).

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  7. Good stuff! Wish I'd been there but it would probably have cost me way too much money

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    1. No big pots so you probably would have gotten out cheap.

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  8. Another blue foot fan here. Love it! Hope you got your tickets to the CT Flower and Garden Show while you were there. $2.00 off per ticket!

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    1. No I didn't even think to pick up a ticket. The store was fairly busy. A couple of years ago I won one through Country Flower Farms Facebook page. This year I'll just spring for full price-a small price to pay to see things blooming and smell fresh bark mulch in February.

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    2. I recommend joining the American Horticultural Society. With an AHS membership, you can get in free to the CT Flower show as well as many botanical gardens across the country. The bi-monthly magazine they produce is informative also.

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  9. I like the foot planter, nice catch. I haven't been to the nursery yet but I did actually do some work in the yard, it was about 40 degrees and sunny. Today is 20 degrees and snowing, with a storm warning for Thursday. Oh, well.

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    1. My garden is still under snow from the blizzard a couple of weeks ago with another storm predicted for Saturday. Oh well is right-there's not much you can do. Better days are coming though-they always do.

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  10. I admire your restraint Sue; temptation is constant when you live in a year-round gardening climate. Spending one day a week in a garden center where I have an attractive employee discount is such overload I usually don't buy anything for fear I will buy everything ! I want to buy a fountain this year but I am hampered by indecision...which one ?? Really like that square pot ..what a great succulent container..

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  11. I really like the eclectic nature of the items you highlighted. The photos were superb and I really enjoyed them. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. You're welcome Charlie. Glad you enjoyed.

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  12. I've had to tell myself "Don't buy that!" a few times already just because I was excited to get new garden stuff/art/etc. I'm limiting my impulses to seeds. Anything above $25 requires more than a 30 second thought process. I'd love love love a fountain or bubbler but don't have the power hook up. I'd pass on the fairy gardens, too, now that my kids are almost 18 and 21. I'd probably just squish stuff on accident, anyway. :o)

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  13. Looks like quite an operation there!

    I can think of a gardening and nursery operation that doesn't quite close in winter, but it does go into a phased back operation for the winter months. Some of the same material in these pics would likely turn up there.

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