April 25th, 2010
Well, here in Melbourne, the bulb season – the planting bulb season, is almost at an end! Rushed up to my favourite bulb farm only to find that they had almost sold out! There is a little debate between gardeners from whom I seek advice about final dates but they all agree I had better hurry and plant these bulbs I have just bought before it is too late! It is kind of like a final exam! The lady at the bulb farm fixed me with a steely eye and advised that I should definately plant before Mothers Day. She had that sort of look that said, ‘Can I trust you with these bulbs? Will they be going to a good home where they will be cared for and properly treated?’ I paid my money and brought my treasures home.
Other high authorities, the man at the end of the street my very own gardening guru, said I had better get my skates on and those bulbs need to be in the ground by Monday or the end of the month at the latest! Otherwise, he said, I was just wasting my money. A thing he has come to be used to with me and my gardening efforts. So, this afternoon, armed with potting mix, pots and bulbs of course, I will head out into the garden. My mission? To put my little charges under the ground! How deep? Well, about twice the depth of the bulb itself. I have heard different stories from different people but it all becomes a little confused and this basic bit of advice also came from my gardening guru, he also muttered that ‘I am 85 years old, but I have never seen anything like it’ – He was referring to my holding one of my smaller bulbs against my finger to see where double the bulb was measured against the lines on my fingers….my little finger is just right for freesias and my thumb, amazingly, is just right for hyacinths. By this time my gardening guru had disappeared down his garden path. A little habit he has.
I have planted some bulbs already of course, I did my layer bulb pot and I put a single hyacinth in a vase in a cupboard to do its thing and promptly forgot all about it! Got a huge suprise the other day when I went to look for some undercoat to put on my kitchen window and there it was, having filled its little vase with roots, god bless it! Well, I said to my little plant, look at you! I shall call you Blossom, and you shall be mine! It was a touching moment for us both! So, you see, bulbs are magic!
Well, I am off out into the garden to indulge in a little bulb madness in a madcap, fun filled afternoon, just me and the ducks and my magic bulbs!