African Garden + winter

When the Plants are Shipped Too Early

I was all hepped up and excited when I ordered my two new Clematis this winter. I requested a ship date in March. This was a silly thing to do, as I usually don't start planting in my garden until April at the earliest. Yet request I did, and the company dutifully fulfilled my request. Two beautiful, healthy plants arrived the first week of March, Clematis 'Aotearoa' and 'Trikatrei', both pruning group 3, meaning they should be hard pruned each year.

I asked myself, what am I going to do with them? Back when I used to order from the old Heronswood Nursery and I'd request delivery for March, I'd keep the plants in the garage near the window until it was planting time, but this year I had trouble getting out to the garage because of my foot. Instead, I kept them near the patio door by the overwintering plants, where I'd remember to water them. I did that for about a week, by which time, they looked like this.

The circles show how long the vines had grown. I cut them back to a node,

and then moved them to larger containers.

I've started putting them outside in the shade. I leave them out overnight when the temperature remains above freezing. On nights when the temperature is forecasted to go below freezing, I bring them inside. Next week, I'll plant them in the garden.

art, Clematis, garden, mail order plants, plant, plants, time, water, and more:

When the Plants are Shipped Too Early + winter