Ranunculus notes!

Foy practices piano two hours everyday. This is a little idiosyncrasy that might slip through the cracks after having other musical little boys in my house. But Foy is different. He’s determined. He is persistent. He actually puts his mind to something and does it—not as an expression of natural talent, but grit. I love it about him! And he is sounding amazing.
(He was inspired by the last composition contest…He begins real lessons this summer. He’s already blown through one music book. We really cannot handle listening to Ode to Joy at 500mph anymore.)

The ranunculus I’ve been babying for five months now have bloomed as of this second week of May. The first to pop were the white ones in a container by my door. It’s been so hard not to cut every single one as they open because they are so gorgeous. I’ve taken a couple bunches in to school for teachers and two dozen makes a perfect bouquet.

Notes to self on ranunculus:

The bigger the corm, the bigger the flower. My tiny ranunculus are precious but for a nice stem with a good head you’ll have to start with a larger corm. If you just order a bag of mixed bulbs off Amazon you will probably get a handful of tiny little corms. And you’ll have to separate them all out and give them special treatment. (Joe did this and I haven’t had luck with a single corm from that batch.)

I sprouted all my corms in a damp tray of potting soil, allowing corms to touch. Even the tiniest sprout went in the ground in early Spring and has been successful. They love being in the cool ground.

I am glad I didn’t plant them last fall. In my area (6a), another gardener had her blooms overwinter in a covered flower bed and she did a lot of covering, uncovering, leaf-layering and eventually even installed some Christmas lights to keep them warm-ish. Hers came up a couple weeks before mine, but she sure went to a lot of work to keep the babies alive. I only put mine in the ground in January-February because I didn’t sprout them till after Christmas. And now it feels like the perfect time for them to bloom is beginning to middle of May. We’ve had some hot, dry days but they are doing beautifully. They are a nice bloom post-tulip season and pre-zinnia/aster/cosmo/summer flowers.

When I put them in the ground in Jan/Feb, I cozied them right up with mulch and covered them with black weed barrier until end of March. Then I tried to keep them uncovered as much as possible to keep them healthy and have sun exposure. I only had to recover once or twice overnight.

I planted ranunculus in the ground a good 8-12 inches apart, but I think I could get them much, much closer. I never once watered them and we had a super dry spring.
Last, they did great in a 5 gallon container! I was shocked because I don’t have great luck with containers.

Some are tecolote (cafe) and some are a mixed bag.

I’ve had so much fun with ranunculus! I wish I’d tried them in Colorado because I think they’d love the climate. Better late than never, I guess.

The chamomile in my veggie garden is popping back up and I’m debating whether to take it out. I love it so much but I hear it can kind of become a nuisance once it is established. But it’s good for insects, no? Kind of like a trap flower. Maybe I’ll just dry a ton of it for tea.

Very few April showers still resulted in May flowers! Turn that into a tune…

School is out! No one is happier than this teacher right here. I packed up the ukuleles and xylophones and loaded my car with all the junk I need to sort out. But for now we are watching Jeopardy and eating ice cream.

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