HELEN LANG: It’s fun to grow a surprise or two in the garden

Today I want to mention the adorable dwarf daffodils, all seven of them. Why seven I wonder?

The balcony is beginning to look quite festive.

There are two ancient geraniums that have bloomed all winter and are still looking reasonably fresh. (Good old fashioned geraniums, bless ‘em!)

I’ve mentioned the scilla and the dwarf blue iris, but today I want to mention the adorable dwarf daffodils, all seven of them. Why seven I wonder?

Oh well, they are lovely and I hadn’t ever seen dwarf daffodils before and have no idea where I got the bulbs.

It’s fun to get a surprise like this, isn’t it?

There are also two blue hyacinths flowering … their perfume is so lovely. Although it is small my garden is still a delight to me.

Do you think it’s time to take down the Christmas lights still strung across the railing? I don’t put them on at night, just haven’t yet got around to taking them down and putting them away.

It might be fun to turn them on for July 1, to mark that important occasion. I may even get a flag and drape it down the side of the building to celebrate our Premier’s birthday. When did you say it was? Oh, sorry, I didn’t realize you voted for someone else.

My friend Anni brought me a bouquet of daffodils and narcissus and because they were so fresh, they still look, and smell, wonderful! Three years ago it was my garden, but she has been adding to it and I am reaping the benefit! Thanks, Anni.

I loved that garden with something akin to passion and still dream of those generous raised beds where I grew everything possible including, one summer, cantelope. They were few, and small, but very sweet.

It’s fun to try something different, just to see if you can ripen something semi-tropical — and that depends on whether or not we have a warmer than usual summer.

Most times you fail — but on the rare occasion you may succeed. Long-term gardeners are tempted to challenge the rules, out of boredom.

Everyone grows carrots but you — you attempt to grow Sweet Potatoes. I did one year, but they looked more like some sort of ugly growths on the long under-ground vines.

No one would sample them but of course, I did. The store-bought ones were more attractive and had more taste, but I just had to try it once.

Another “crop failure.”

Helen Lang has been the Peninsula News Review’s garden columnist for more than 30 years.

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