Plant Purchases at the New England Wildflower Society – April 2011

I’ve been feeling a bit blue this April, a time of year when we often go on some kind of family adventure, but it’s not in the cards for this year.  So my husband suggested a consolation prize: a plant-buying expedition at the New England Wildflower Society.  The Garden in the Woods only opened on April 14, and I wasn’t sure if we’d find many plants for sale, but we did!  To be sure, they were light on the shrubs which are still mostly bare twigs and therefore not very attractive to potential buyers.  On the other hand, there were many beautiful small plants and early wildflowers that are inspiring at this time of year.  I love going to NEWFS at different times of the year, and being able to see both a different selection and different phases of familiar plants.  You can tell how good my experience with their plants have been – I bought two “plants” that actually haven’t emerged.  We joked that they could have a great business just selling potting soil with plant labels (not really).

So here’s what I got:

Two more bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi ‘Massachusetts’)  plants, another one for the front sloping bed, where I hope to start taking out the Stella D’Oro lillies, and one to try on the deck.  This is obvious – why haven’t I planted bearberry on the deck so far?  It is perfectly suited to the deck conditions, and should be a fantastic addition year-round.  It does mean I have to move around some plants to make room for it (but that’s one of my favorite pastimes).

Mayapple (Podophyllum peltatum) for the shady bed under the kiwi vine and dogwood tree in the side garden.  The NEWFS staff warned me this may be a bit of a thug, and this is an area that needs kind of a thuggy shade loving plant, even the heuchera have been slow here, and it is bounded on all sides by the stone wall, brick path or lumber steps.

Trailing Arbutus (epigaea repens).  This is the Massachusetts state flower, and I’ve never even heard of it!

Canadian windflower (Anemone canadensis L.).  This is another shade-loving plant with a reputation for being aggressive.  I’m planning to put it in the dogleg with the Mayapple, and under the dwarf plum on the deck (in a container).  I’m hoping it will help to fill in these areas.


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