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Moving Schipka Laurel for Rhododendron 'Loderi King George'

Picture it - a 6 ft. tall Schipka Laurel used to stand here (I forgot to take a "before" shot and don't feel like searching for one).  I knew when I planted it that it was probably a bad idea but thought it would be good for a fast-growing screen along the back fence-row. I'm sure all gardeners do this, especially if you have a new garden and are eager for greenery. In all fairness to the laurel, it is a useful plant and I would argue even a beautiful one when nicely maintained. Before I dug this one up, I stood back and admired it and felt the guilt pangs stabbing at my heart.  I removed a much larger laurel than this a few years ago and they are not the easiest plant to dig out. I was determined to save this one and I believe I was successful.  Here is a thought and you can take this to the bank - the pot you choose to hold a plant that you dig up will ALWAYS be too small. Always!  So, after finding the largest pot I could, here it is, after being cut back pretty dr

The Little Amaryllis That Could

On my recent report on the three amaryllis, you may recall there was one dud - "Red Peacock". I was ready to toss it in the garbage when I noticed that there was growth emerging. Sure enough, it continued to grow and now there is a big beautiful bloom and at least three more waiting to open. Apparently, some take more time than others. Or, perhaps it was the threat of eviction? I'm a firm believer of that. There are many plants in the garden that have improved after I threatened them with a shovel prune.

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy


  1. Gorgeous! I guess I should hold onto 'Estella' to see if she comes through, although threatening to toss her into the green recycle bin hasn't worked so far.

  2. It was worth waiting for. I agree with you about the threats. They sometimes work. :)

  3. What a beauty! Worth the wait?

    Mine will be late this year because of our cooler winter, but they seem to be starting to wake up with the increasing daylight.


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