Gardeners get a MULLIGAN
Although I’m not a golfer (I’ve played twice in my lifetime) I love the concept of a golfer’s mulligan, or do-over without consequence, and how it applies to gardening in the Pacific Northwest. Our distinct seasons and constant weather changes allow us to redo our yards and gardens when we aren’t satisfied with them or when we just need a little change. If something in your yard doesn’t look the way you’d like, or you tried something new and it just didn’t work out how you wanted, now is the perfect time to take a mulligan and try another shot.
Last year was a tough one for gardeners. The combination of the cool, wet spring and short summer created some real challenges for us all. I’ve been gardening for 50 years and my garden just didn’t produce the way it has in the past. My cantaloupe nearly failed, my tomatoes were puny, and my potatoes produced ½ of the crop I normally harvest. But I’m not discouraged because I know that gardeners get mulligans -- I get to get out there and try again. If your yard or garden isn’t exactly how you want it to be, we can help you be successful.
Get started now by thinking about last year and what you loved (or didn’t love) about your outside living space and how you can change it to make it better. Was your patio area too hot in the August heat? Do you need more shade in certain areas or more sun in others? Or, maybe there wasn’t quite enough room for the family soccer game or batting practice so you need more open space. Did you harvest enough fruit and vegetables for your entire neighborhood or was your garden not quite big enough? Think about all the changes you want to make, and then read “Landscaping Tips for Success” (pg. 16) by some of Al’s Preferred Designers for some great ideas you might not have thought of. They give some great tips on things to think about while working on a new design for your yard.
For a quick and easy change to brighten up your flowerbeds and pots, learn about the different and interesting Primula in our Head Annuals Grower’s article “Prime Time for Primrose” (pg.12). These little splashes of color will add brightness to any corner of your yard. Or, for a more subtle change, check out Judy’s article “The Fantastic Foliage of Ferns” (pg. 14) about Ferns. They are tough plants that can add interest and excitement with very little effort.
For more extensive changes, ask a Purple Person at Al’s how to move and transplant existing plants around your yard to achieve a different look. Now is a perfect time in the Pacific Northwest for rearranging existing plants. We can grow one of the widest spectrums of plants anywhere, and with our rich soil and relatively mild (comparatively speaking) climate, we can move things around with a lot less stress than people gardening in other parts of the country.
So if your yard or garden isn’t exactly how you want it to be, think about what you need to make it the oasis you want. We can help you be successful whether you’re trying something new or reinventing the old. Remember - it’s okay to make mistakes, just take a mulligan.
Owner of Al's Garden Centers and Greenhouse