Just Another Adventure: Absolved of my Resolve;

Gardeners Grabbed by Life-Altering Even

Blue Heron watching the water for lunch.

Absolved of my Resolve



Oh No!

I cannot (but actually I can) believe my behavior this morning. After a long period of the illusion of control I succumbed to temptation. I had hoped, I had almost believed in my resolve not to purchase any more plants until my health questions were settled. I needed to know more of my possibilities for future gardening before planning more activities. All the most noble of intentions, a sense of resolution truly profound. Now I probably need a twelve step meeting after placing a plant order this morning, for my resolve dissolved.


Reasons (Excuses)

Mertensia virginica, or Virginia Bluebells

I do have explanations for the way I acted. There is a reason I did what I did. It is spring and hormones have been released in my system that compel me to order plants for my garden. I was pushed beyond my human limitations. I feel sure I will find empathy, sympathy, and understanding from fellow gardeners, along with forgiveness for my failure.

Surely there is not a gardener among you who would not absolve me from my resolve.


The Past

For a minimum of fifteen years I have had intentions of building a bog garden. I have read articles and website pages, attended symposiums and kept a file. At one point I did attempt a small bog garden with a child’s wading pool but it was not all that successful. The bog remains, but the original plants passed away due to mishandling and misunderstanding. Ever since I have made notes on small bog plants, where to construct the next one along with what size works best, construction materials, etc. There are so many native and non-native bog plants the possibilities are almost endless. An exciting gardening adventure beckoning, another project, another goal, another fascination (addiction?) You can see how I came to lose control when I saw photos of some new hybrid Pitcher Plants (Sarracenia).

I will have to find some way to regain a modicum of control for my lust list of bog plants is long. It also stands to reason that if one orders pitcher plants then they must have companions such as bog orchids and relatives.



Each evening I like to take time to see what my family and friends have to say on Facebook. Last evening I saw where my friend Brian Williams of Brian’s Botanicals had constructed a bog for his new line of picture plants. I am sure other species will be added to those I first saw, so it is a web page to watch carefully for future tips from an expert in his field. While viewing Brian’s new bog in Facebook photos , temptation sneaked up on me and pushed me to go to his website “just to see what else is new this spring” That can be interrupted as “lets go find some plants to order”. Well, Satan stood behind me and used his fork pushing me to begin clicking. Before you can say “road to hell is paved with good intentions” there I was selecting plants for a shopping cart.



The fascinating, the intriguing, the refuge from Little Shop of Horrors. The plant that eats bugs. So much breeding has happened over the past few years, that foliage and “pitchers” are as colorful as any well-drained perennial bloom. Our natives are again escaping the wild and coming to our gardens in new forms.

The prices were so reasonable I was tempted to order one of each, but managed to hold myself to the three I liked best.

Sarracenia ‘Scarlett Belle’ “a beautiful hardy pitcher plant with very unusual leaves. Each leaf is shaped like a tube with odd hooded top. These leaves act as traps for eating insects. The leaves green at the base with red hoods and white spotting and held in a rosette shape.”

Sarracenia purpurea Venosa’ is one of the hardiest and tough varieties of pitcher plant to grow. This form called Venosa is a solid red type. In full sun the foliage will turn bright red. Growing large pitchers up to over 1 foot tall with some odd markings.

Sarracenia ‘Yellow Jacket’ “is a northern pitcher plant that was selected for its yellow to chartreuse coloring. An easy and fun pitcher plant.  Mature plants reach around 1 foot tall traps and 2 foot tall red flowers.”


What I Do Know

Container with Japanese Maple, Meadow Rue (Thalictrum), Heuchera, at foot of water feature.

I am aware that as things presently stand there is no way I can construct a bog garden in my garden. The project would require digging, framing, carrying stone, mixing and filling with a special mix of peat and sand. If that one happens it will have to be hired out. I attempting to skirt around that obstacle by inserting a container into the bottom falls of my water feature. The new plants will be small and it will take some time before they mature and outgrow the container. Perhaps by that time I will be in better health and/or find someone to hire. Meanwhile, I get my bog along with new plants and plans for a future in gardening.

Time to book Gene for your next garden event is growing short. Email now to arrange your preferred date