Greenhouse blooms to make you smile :)

It’s nice to be able to see garden blooms in late November. Anybody can go to the flower market and buy seasonal blooms, but growing flowers has always been more appealing to me. I want to learn more about varieties I can grow in a cool greenhouse and enjoy over the winter. Do you have any suggestions or experience with this?




Late Bloomers During a Welcome Dry Spell

The weather here in the Pacific Northwest USA never ceases to amaze me. Statistically, November is the rainiest month but we are currently in a very welcome dry period. Dry but rather cold at night (26* F so far in my garden.) I am amazed at the plants that are still healthy and blooming!
Camelias naturally bloom at this time of year, but it is still fun to share. Recently I moved the tiny chrysanthemum into the greenhouse. I thought Bacopa was an annual but it is still hanging on. The hardy fuchsias are the stars. I have only known the annual fuchsias in my previous gardens.

Greenhouse problem solving

I keep what is referred to as a “”cool greenhouse,” meaning no winter heating. That works and is common in this maritime climate of the Pacific Northwest, but is not without potential problems. Last winter I had some stored, potted plants and a few winter vegetables slowly growing, for winter harvest. I also had a fungal attack within the greenhouse, probably something that came in with the potted plants and bloomed in the humid air of our rainy season. This is where the book I referred to yesterday became enormously helpful. Since the greenhouse is such a small in closed space, there is generally no air movement, making a prime environment for insects and fungi. One of the early chapters in “Greenhouse Gardener’s Companion” showed a simple fan set up to provide circulation needed for two reasons: first to foil insects and dry out the area and second to move around CO2 and O2 for improved plant health. Last summer as part of purchasing supplies to repair the greenhouse roof, I did a trip to Charlie’s Greenhouse in Mount Vernon, WA and saw a small fan for $37.00 for greenhouse use. I have been running it for a few hours during the day.




Every time I enter my little greenhouse my nose goes directly to the Meyer Lemon tree. The fragrance alone is worth the effort to keep it healthy. I think this would also be a successful plant in a sunroom within your home.

The little greenhouse is my refuge.I think I need more flowers to get me through the fall and winter. By midday the oxygen level inside that space must increase and makes it a very pleasant stop.



Herbs and spices

My cooking habits shift in the fall from “go out into the garden and see what’s ready,” to fall comfort food like scalloped potatoes and ham or split pea soup or banana bread. (I know, too many calorie dense foods.)

It is also the time of year I begin to use more dried herbs and spices and this month my favorite grocery store is having 20% off bulk dried herbs and spices. I have been purchasing them this way since the mid 1970’s. My feeling is ” if I only need a teaspoon of xyz herb or spice, why should I spend $6.00 for a bottle that will sit and get stale?”


If you look closely, you will notice my vintage 1980’s Tupperware container that is still in use. I don’t recall the suggested use this container was sold for, but it has always been my spice container that I store in the frig.