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December 2009
Cold Tolerant Garden Annuals

Click on December link to the right to see photos.

Cerinthe lives with snow and ice cover, although not well. Perhaps it is semi-evergreen here. It bears more thought on its usefulness. Its tiny purple flower is, as one grand dame put it, insipid, but maybe in the right place, wherever that is, it’s worth growing.

Rainbow Swiss chard is beautiful. For that I am grateful.

Cerinthe may be a hardy perennial or annual. Today it blooms in the garden despite being mid-November. Its pale aqua foliage appears in prime condition.

Swiss chard is happy after being released from the grip of pumpkins and tomatoes and Florence fennel bulbs appears firm and perhaps larger.

While pulling soggy thunbergia vines off the wrought iron fence and yanking the first “dead” plant out of the soil, I discover the plant has begun to send out new vines at soil level or just below. I cut top growth off the rest to see if the plants will make it through winter and send out new shoots next spring.

All this after several hard frosts and quite a few lesser ones.

by Mary Jasch

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Mary's Garden Blog photos to enlarge

Cerinthe in the snow

Rainbow Swiss chard in the snow

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