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At least hopefully.

Why?

Well, while I know it is a bit early to do any planting (even stuff that one starts indoors, though some of that I will be starting next month) it is about the time to start thinking about it and plotting.

I got a pretty decent start on my gardens last year, but I knew that I was no where near finished.
A. I didn't order enough of a certain thing because I wasn't sure how much I'd need.
B. Some of the stuff I ordered didn't take for various reasons.
(Plants arriving DOA was a big problem - slightly less than half of what I mail ordered last season arrived DOA, but not all was DOA, some just ended up eaten or damaged by rabbits/deers, or in three cases ants. And, okay, I'll confess in at least two cases it was bad planting/caring on my part.)
C. But even if everything had taken, I knew there would be some blank spaces which would need filling in. There just happens to be a bit more blank than I was originally planning on. ;)

Some may remember that last year I tried to start such things as Purple Winter Creeper and Creeping Red Thyme - neither of which took. Although I wasn't really hopeful about the Creeping Red Thyme because all six of those looked DOA. However, I thought the Purple Winter Creeper would do okay, because two of three reached me alive - just in a dead looking state. Then several months later one was damaged by something, but I wasn't worried because one was still alive and I could always spread manually... I honestly have no idea what happened to that last one, because the last time I checked on it in mid-July it was alive - though even after four months it wasn't leafing or spreading, it was still alive, though I suppose now it was alive but dying, because by the end of September it was gone.


Anyway, because of that I was leery of trying again even though I REALLY want some Purple Winter Creeper in my garden. YAY and SQUEE because I finally found a company online with pretty great customer reviews (reviews off-site) and even better said company ships live plants. Yes, I know live plants are more expensive, but in this case it is worth it, because generally if I get a plant alive (even if it don't look so good upon arrival), I can plant and water and it will be fine. And as I mentioned, I really want Purple Winter Creeper.

So I've ordered some of the two mentioned above, along with a shade loving plant and a shade tolerant plant. Hopefully this year I will get Purple Winter Creeper going. Now I really need to focus more on stuff for spots in the shade (both for porches and gardens), but I can't seem to stop looking at all the pretty sun needing stuff. And I do still need one or two sun lovers, but I already know what I'm buying on that score - so the sun stuff is covered if not exactly purchased yet. I've got to stop looking at all the pretty pretty sun lovers and focus on the shade lovers now.

I'm also looking for some stuff that will still be colorful even in winter. For example there's this one bush that has red branches which because of that might actually be prettier in winter than summer. But again got that covered, mostly.

I'll probably be going with mostly Hostas and Ferns for the shade, though I've tried two years with Ferns and haven't had much luck. However, in that case I discovered I was actually giving my Ferns too much sun and not enough water, so hopefully this year I'll have better luck with Ferns.

The Hostas might be a problem, because I picked out hybrid Hostas last year at a local greenhouse and I'm finding it to be a pain trying to find a company that has ones that will match the ones I already have.

*sigh* If I can't match them, I'll have to rearrange the garden, or at least the largeish section of the garden which I've dubbed Hosta Corner - I hate moving plants because it's a 50/50 kind of thing, especially if a plant is delicate. On the other hand, those big blue Hostas look real pretty, but then I'd have to move every Hosta, not just a few. I actually have eight - two of one kind that I was using for a base, but the blue one would be even bigger than those two and therefore better as a base. So, I'd have to rearrange every Hosta if I do that, I'd also probably have to buy one more of the other hybrid (which is proving almost as hard to find) just to have a better row in front of big blue.
 
 
 
 
 
 
My knowledge of plants and the like starts and ends with the fake plastic Christmas tree we have.. ;)
Well, I admit that I'm not the green thumb my mom was, which is why I suspect I had some rather bad luck this past year. But I want to make the gardens pretty again, especially the one out front that everyone can see - I'm tired of it being half pretty and half weedy.

But this is why I need plants that don't need lots of care, because I'm not that great with them.

I think I also may be insane, because I'm thinking about having a small garden with tomatoes, potatoes, and cucumbers. I've planted tomatoes for the past three years, but I actually plant them in pots rather than a garden, I'm thinking about doing the thing properly this year. I know I will be planting cucumbers, as well, but after looking at the time and effort that is/will be involved with planting tators... Well, I'm not sure I'll be doing that.