March 29, 2014

"Garden muses" is 3 years old!


Thank you for reading this


Well, not only this post but perhaps some of the other 100 or so entries I've written over  the past three years about gardening (most of the times) in and about Toronto and other places.


Garden muses-not another Toronto gardening blog celebration cake with three candles
Getting older, not necessarily wiser...

I'll strive to write/muse more about "gardeny" related topics.

Maybe, just maybe, even one post about urban veggie farming.

No guarantees though!

Onward and upward in 2014-2015, my fellow garden muses!

March 25, 2014

Kousa dogwood (Cornus kousa var. chinensis): garden muses plant profile

Chinese dogwood: why you need to plant it


Looking for a medium sized deciduous tree that offers interest throughout the seasons? Look no further than Kousa (aka Chinese) dogwood! Hardy in zones 5-8, Cornus kousa var. chinensis is not native to North America (originally from China, Japan and Korea) but offers the following ornamental characteristics:

a) White/cream coloured bracts that can cover the tree. It's a wonderful sight to see a Kousa dogwood laden with these white bracts in May-June. Here's my tree covered with bracts in spring:

Cornus kousa Chinese dogwood bract by garden muses-not another Toronto gardening blog
Cornus kousa (Chinese dogwood) bract 

March 21, 2014

The Royal Botanical Gardens: a spring visit

Tulips, peonies, and wisteria from a warmer time...



Well, not this spring (yet) but from 2009. Going through my archives, I realized I never posted about my visit with Linda (my better half) to the RBG about five years ago. For the currently flower-deprived readers out there, I'm sure you'll appreciate the following pictures of spring blooms from warmer days in the past. (Who knows, we might even see similar sights around town in May but I wouldn't bet the farm on this given the severity of winter 2013-2014.)



Royal Botanical Gardens pale pink tulips by garden muses-not another Toronto gardening blog
Royal Botanical Gardens pale pink tulips 



March 15, 2014

Allan Gardens Conservatory Spring Flower Show 2014: primulas, cinerarias, grape hyacinths

Toronto blooms (without the distracting home renovation booths)


Canada Blooms, I guess our country's national flower show, kicked off yesterday. I may join the hordes of flower-deprived gardeners but given the garden show simultaneously shares the same facilities with the "National Home Show", I haven't enjoyed myself. I found previous visits very commercial and there are only so many ways you can look at concrete pavers and retaining walls as aesthetically pleasing.

But I've been promised free tickets so we'll see...

My previous two posts displayed spring blooms at a local public conservatory's Spring flower show. With very few visitors during my visit (before last week's student spring break!), it was a quiet and peaceful experience.

I can guarantee that the same adjectives won't apply to Canada Blooms this weekend!



Muscari armeniacum Allan Gardens Conservatory Spring Flower Show 2014 by garden muses-not another Toronto gardening blog
Muscari armeniacum  and
blue and pink cineraria
Allan Gardens Conservatory
Spring Flower Show 2014 


March 05, 2014

Allan Gardens Conservatory Spring Flower Show 2014: part two

It's official: This Toronto winter sucks!


Well, as official as can be (and since I'm writing this post, that makes it very official!) I mean, going into four months of continuously sub-zero weather is maddening. Maybe a few readers like you are going a wee stir-crazy dealing with the snow, wind-chill and our fair city's mayor. Some "floricultural therapy" is in order. As I promised in an earlier post, here are more updated pictures from the Conservatory's Spring Flower Show. (I'll break up the close to 30 pictures in two posts to keep the colour flowing.)

Warning: heavy primula and cineraria content to follow, but there you have it.

Allan Gardens Conservatory Spring Flower Show 2014 container by garden muses-not another Toronto gardening blog
Allan Gardens Conservatory
Spring Flower Show 2014 container 




March 03, 2014

Centennial Park Conservatory Desert Garden

Desert dreams....


I have to give credit to fellow Toronto gardening blogger, Helen, for the title of this post. (The words were from a Facebook comment.) Taking pictures of desert plantings at the Centennial Park Conservatory took on a strange dream-like quality indeed, given the nightmarish polar winds and temperatures outside the glass panes. 

Cacti succulents Centennial Park Conservatory Etobicoke desert garden by garden muses-not another Toronto gardening blog
Cacti and succulents at the Centennial Park
Conservatory,  Etobicoke desert garden