Plants – Bargains in the Clearance Aisle

Christmas Red Tulips/Longwood Gardens Conservatory-Friday Foto Friends

What is that oddball bag lying beside my carrots in the vegetable bin of my refrigerator?

What looks like small onions or shallots is really a bag of Spring-Flowering bulbs, leftovers from my Autumn plantings.

While you’re looking for Christmas trees and poinsettias in big box stores or garden nurseries, take a moment to check if there are any leftover Autumn bulbs on clearance. Often a business will slash prices of out of season plants to the point of almost giving them away. I mimic frosty cold by storing unplanted bulbs as the Gardening-Know-How site suggests:

The highest chilling temperature is around 40 degrees F. (4 C.), so chilling bulbs in the refrigerator is ideal. Just be sure not to store them near any fruit, as the released ethylene gas reduces bloom. Store the bulbs in the refrigerator in a ventilated mesh bag.
~ Gardening Know How/How to Chill Flowering Bulbs

The article has many fine tips on how to select, chill and plant the bulbs in Spring. I have about three months to come up with good ideas for forcing these beauties. The bright flowers and colors will certainly be an antidote for the doleful greys of late-winter skies.

The glorious red tulips are part of Cee’s Flower of the Day.

Goodbye November!

Photo Challenge – What is That?

On Saturday, during our walk at the Tall Pines State Preserve, a forest filled with beautiful pines and deciduous trees, we came upon a beautiful lake. We noticed a strange bird, or large bug of some kind, hovering over the water. Could it be a late-season hummingbird?

I took out my camera and zoomed in.

And zoomed again even closer…

There it hung, a lure cast too close to the tree branches. It will probably hang for years on the ultra-durable monofilament fishing line. Unless of course someone like me, who doesn’t mind getting wet feet, wades out and cuts it down.

We have quite a collection of washed-up fishing lures collected from beaches we visit. The photo shows our largest find. It is about six inches long and has gigantic hooks. It hangs on our back porch year round, far out of reach and beyond the height of anyone’s head. One day I’m hoping to make it the stationary piece of a ‘found lure’ mobile or wind chime.

I wonder if the Tall Pine’s lure will still be hanging when I visit again.

This post is part of Kammie’s Oddball Challenge.