|Goodwin Creek Gray Lavender|
|Barbara Pierson with a rosemary plant.|
|Streptocarpus "Grape Ice"|
|Convallaria (Lily-of-the-Valley) pips|
|Convallaria pip, close up|
|Convallaria pips after five days|
I am a tad late in writing this post about last weekend, but there you are.
I don't know about you, but I was badly in need of a break, a respite, an interlude. From what? From the contentious internet, from the string of worrying news, from being indoors too much. I had read about a workshop to be held last Saturday at the Berkshire Botanical Garden in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, and thought that might be just the antidote I needed.
The two-hour program, "Growing Fragrant Plants Indoors" was offered by Barbara Pierson of White Flower Farm and it didn't disappoint. I confess, I already know a fair amount about growing plants, so I didn't have to go, but there are always things to learn anew, to be reminded about.
Barbara Pierson turned out to be a charming instructor, chatting about growing jasmine, citrus, lavender, culinary herbs, and forced bulbs indoors in winter. She shared her expertise for keeping these plants looking their best from fertilization and winter care to pest control and trade secrets for keeping plants healthy. She also brought along a selection of specimen plants and offered some for purchase from White Flower Farm.
I sat among eighteen or so folks of a very similar demographic and enjoyed the talk. At the end, I bought a reasonably priced pot of Lily-of-the-Valley (Convallaria) pips, nicely pre-chilled by White Flower Farm. The pot looked dry and unpromising but I knew it wouldn't disappoint. The last photo above shows the plants' progress after only five days and one watering. It won't be long before we will have blossoms and a lovely scent to enjoy before "real" spring arrives.
And, quelle surprise, this turned out to be my lucky day. Guess who won the door prize? Why, c'est moi! And a rather nice one, it was: a $50 gift certificate from White Flower Farm. What fun.
After the talk, I zipped down Interstate 90 to Schenectady for their Second Annual Soup Stroll and by pre-arrangement, met my Handsome Husband there. We enjoyed sampling some delicious soups and ended up in Schenectady's Little Italy neighborhood. Continuing my lucky streak, I was able to nab the very last loaf of bread for sale at Perreca's. Gotta love that old world bread. Just four ingredients and absolute heaven. Unfortunately, it went home in the HH's car and you can see what was left of it after his drive home. Well, I did get my share in the end.
Now, I could insert a heart-felt diatribe here about how the legacy of humble immigrants greatly enriches life here in America. I mean, that wonderful Perreca's bread! The amazing lemony lentil soup we had at the Indian place!
Oh, dear. So much for the respite from politics. It's a good thing that Saratoga's Chowderfest is coming up this weekend. I feel the need for another midwinter antidote.
Saratoga Chowderfest runs from 11 to 4, this Saturday, February 4, throughout Saratoga Springs with a few stops on the outskirts.