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Sunday, April 10, 2016

Oh, Snap!

Confession (repeated often) #123: I’m not known for gardening. My Nana Leighton was a gifted gardener! Me? Not so much. I have my usuals: geraniums, periwinkles, impatiens, caladiums.

As I’ve aged, in Texas, I’ve become a big fan of native plants and flowers. Lantana is one of my most very favourite flowering plants. And I adore cacti.

At the end of this past October, our Landscape Artist Extraordinaire, Arlon (he comes to help us out twice a year in the Spring/Summer and Fall), stopped by to see us after leaving some property he leases for cattle just North of here.  He brought us a flat of snapdragons! I’d completely forgotten about the snapdragons My Nana Leighton used to always grow in her gardens. Snaps, honeysuckle, and Morning Glories were a few of her specialties.

Since we will ALWAYS have MAJOR issues with armadillos digging up everything planted in the ground around our home, Arlon said it’d be fine to put them in pots. And told us they should bloom all winter long. Like pansies!

We haven’t potted pansies in several years. Lazy, I guess. We do have to unhook our hoses once we start having freezing weather and that makes it harder to water pots outside. You have to take off the faucet covers, hook the hoses back up, then put the faucet covers back on. The alternative is to fill watering cans inside and cart them out. Which we've done. It all makes me pooped. (Of course, I can always use the exercise. Sigh.)

My Sweet Hubby (MSH), without either of us Googling snapdragons to find out how he should pot them and where we should put them, once potted, filled these pots with too many of the pretty, healthy looking green plants. (Live and Learn, don'tchaknow...) They really didn’t do much for two to three months. They survived some harsh, freezing days and nights. Overall, however, we'd call it a fairly mild winter.

Towards the end of January, we started seeing buds on the plants and they’d grown quite a bit taller since they’d first been planted. We learned they like lots of sun. We have some in the garden at our front door—they get morning light but nothing past 10:30 a.m. We can’t move one of the pots—it’s actually in the ground. We’ve not taken the time to move the other. (Plan to do that soon as I locate MSH. He's out there somewhere.)

Bottom Line: WE LOVE SNAPDRAGONS! At first we thought we had yellow and pink snaps only. Then some white bloomed. This past week, out popped red! It’s been truly fun to watch them thrive. Despite being crowded in their little homes.

After (finally) doing a small bit of  research, I've learned that, in ancient times, people believed snapdragons had supernatural powers, offered protection from witchcraft, and could restore beauty and youthfulness to women. Wwhhhaaaattttt? Hey, I’ll take all three of those perks! (I thought I was looking more like 59 than 62 lately! Ha!)

They aren't going to like the hideous heat we'll soon have. Until that comes, or these pretty flowers play out, we're enjoying them every single day! They literally make me smile.

TLC and I plan to share a flat of snaps and a flat of pansies next Fall! (They do, apparently, self-sow in gardens. Not sure if they’re doing that from our pots. If that's happening, they won’t last long in the ground. Damn armadillos.)

Have a Wonderful Week, Dearest Friends! Plant some flowers! They're good for our souls.