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Bluebirds, Daffodils and Orchids, Oh My!


The weather outside is still a tad frightful, but the sunshine and the longer daylight this past week seem to have triggered Mother Nature. A pair of bluebirds showed up Saturday morning in our backyard where they explored one of our birdhouses. More bluebirds on Sunday morning flying from another nest box in our front garden, into the woods across the street. But indoors, spring has already arrived. Since my last post, Hope Springs Eternal, where you saw the bulbs in a window box, those daffodils emerged very quickly. Once the plants finish blooming, I’ll let the leaves turn yellow but will keep them barely moist. And when the ground thaws, they’ll go into one of the garden beds.

It’s still too early for that, so I suggest a great late winter fix — a trip to the Chicago Botanic Garden for the awesome Orchid Show. The show runs from February 15 through March 16. Click here for more info.

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questions

I thought that purple coneflowers were insect proof, but now I see some aphids at the bud and tiny flies. What is wrong?

What are your three favorite “all-but-forgotten” perennials that every garden should include? Why do you like them?

I plan on saving my amaryllis bulbs that I kept outside over summer, but I noticed red streaks on the inner side of the leaves. What caused that? Will I be able to save my bulbs?

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