Gardener’s Log – March 2023

The awful winter spreads into spring as we continue with well below average temperatures. The only good thing I can say is that we have been spared what California has been suffering through this year. It is typical for us to get a handful of atmospheric rivers during winter, but I think California has had a dozen this year. While this will certainly help alleviate their drought conditions, that much rain, that quickly is not good for anyone.

I have heard that several of the gardens that I visit down there have suffered damage this year. Trees downed or broken, plants that do not like winter wet conditions have suffered, as they do here and even plants being wrapped in insulation in Los Angeles to protect against extremely cold conditions for them, with frost happening on a few occasions.

As for me, I am under orders from my physical therapist not to do any gardening at the moment. Setbacks in my back and leg happened at the beginning of the month and also thanks to the weather, I have obeyed (this is not a habit that I expect to continue for too long.)

What’s in Bloom

While the bulbs continue to make the biggest splash, it has transitioned from the minor bulbs, like the crocus and iris to the majors – primarily the Daffodils. They are all over the garden right now and will continue for at least 6 weeks. The first of the perennials have joined with the Hellebores to provide an additional layer of color.

One that is particularly valuable at this time of year are the Pulmonaria because they provide a touch of blue. Pulmonaria ‘Trevi Fountain’ is doing particularly nicely at the moment and the silver blotched leaves add another level to the charm.

Pulmonaria 'Trevi Fountain'
Pulmonaria ‘Trevi Fountain’

The Grevillea also are putting on a show.

Grevillea 'Poorinda Constance'
Grevillea ‘Poorinda Constance’

Weather Summary

Nobody would be surprised at how cold it has been this month, but to be almost 4.3 degrees colder on average is a huge amount. The high this year was just 61.7, the low 30 and the average 42.6. This compares to a high of 64.8, low of 36 and average of 46.9 last year.

Weather March 2023
Weather March 2023

Hardly a dry day all month, even though the total this year (8.17″) was less than last year (10.35″. Nighttime lows have hardly left the 30s and only a few days have nudged above 50 Most of the rain last year fell in the first few days and the rest of the month was reasonably dry. Each week saw a useful amount of rain, but many dry days when work could be done.

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