Monday, August 21, 2017

Winter Gardening

Okay I know it is August and it's still in the 90's here in Florida but...winter is coming. I stumped upon this article from Harper's Bazar, Nov. 1867 and thought I'd share a little bit with all of you.

"And who can sing the songs of spring
In dull and drear December?"

We purpose to give a few easy directions to those who desire to possess at light cost and little trouble a blooming winter garden in their homes, that can be attended to in the worst weather without soiling the hands or wetting the feet.

The hyacinth must rank first in our list as being almost the easiest flower to cultivate.

Hyacinths may be grown in water, in pots, in moss, and in prepared cocoa-fibre and charcoal. The last is the best for hyacinths indoors, in the numerous choices which are used for this purpose. In order to cultivate the hyacinth in the sitting-room in prepared cocoa-fibre and charcoal, place at the bottom or the jardinet, etc., a handful or so of rough charcoal, and fill up with the preparation; plant the hyacinths thickly, associating with them snow-drops, scilla sibirica, early flowering crocus, and, if the space will admit, a few pompon hyacinths; cover the bulbs with the preparation, and neatly cover the surface with nice green carpet moss; the freshness of the moss will be prolonged by occasionally damping it with a wet sponge. Sprinkle the plants overhead with tepid water two or three times a week.

This preparation is free from impurities and possesses a gentle stimulus; the bulbs root freely into it and produce fine spikes of bloom. Another important recommendation the prepared cocoa=fibre and charcoal possesses is its retention of moisture for a long time. Unless in a very hot room two or three good waterings will be sufficient from the time of planting till the bulbs are in bloom, so that the amateur is relieved from the daily anxiety lest his favorite group of forthcoming flowers should suffer from want of water.

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The article continues to point out how to grow hyacinth in water, moss and pots. If you would like to finish the article it can be found here.

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