HELEN LANG: Sprouts and blooms of the season

The Hoya plant beside them, but facing South west and in front of a nylon curtained window, is also in bud.

By Helen Lang

The edible peas I put in wet paper towelling inside a thick piece of newspaper have sprouted. Now to find an empty pot to put them in … not easy.

Most of these  pots are in use, so it means something has got to go. I hate the idea of up-rooting still flowering bulbs but I’ll have to harden my heart and shift the bulbs into a smaller pot to allow them to finish blooming and die back in their own time.

Last week I cried for help in finding a way to prop up the pea plants and a clever gardener suggested using an upside down tomato cage inside the five-gallon pot to keep the plants upright. Now why didn’t I think of that? Thank you.

No sign of potato foliage from those chunks of potato (containing sprouts) that I tucked into a large pot a week ago. I hope they are just reluctant and not dead but I guess I’ll just have to wait and see what happens.

There are eight (why eight — bulbs are usually sold in uneven numbers?) magnificent orange-red tulips blooming in a five gallon pot. The flower cups are four inches deep and the stems are about 18 inches tall and very sturdy. What a joy they are! I believe they are Darwin hybrids but wouldn’t swear I’m right, although I started my gardening career selling bulbs.

My darling husband considered my behavior as almost grounds for divorce. I repeat, it’s a disease but it doesn’t seem to be contagious, as he never got even a slight fever when spring rolled around, whereas I go into orbit.

The hibiscus in the west window is in bloom again, one flower at a time, but several more buds of varying sizes are still to come. It is a marvel, that mad plant.

Beside it is the orange tree, once again bearing fruit and also coming into flower. They all seem to love that west window.

The Hoya plant beside them, but facing South west and in front of a nylon curtained window, is also in bud. That plant is now over 40 years old — younger than I am by several years. I hate to admit how many, so please don’t ask

Helen Lang has been the Peninsula News Review’s garden columnist for more than 30 years.