Water Those Potted Plants

It is mid-July, time to catch up on some little things before they slip through the cracks. First and foremost, I want to talk about you and your health. Sure, gardening is fun. It is great to be out of doors weeding and hoeing and even enjoying the flowers. But it is hot. Don’t overdo the exercise and drink water, a lot of it.

Blueberry Sparkler Canna Lily

Blueberry Sparkler Canna Lily

After you have seen to yourself, look at your potted plants. Different varieties, plants in different size pots and those with different amounts of foliage will require different amounts of water. The soil in the pot will make a difference, too. When it comes to keeping plants moist, watering all of them the same amount of water at the same time each day, rain or shine, is a recipe for disaster. When you have a plant in a 6-inch pot know what the soil is. With a sandy mix the water will run through quickly when water is applied; some will stick to the granules of sand and to the rootlets. But these plants need more water and they need it more frequently. A heavier soil, one with more loam will retain water and need to be cared for less frequently. And remember that potting in a heavily clay soil could be courting disaster. These soil particles are tiny and hang on to the water for a long time, but when they dry too much they grow very close to each other, making it hard for the rootlets to get to the water. Continue reading

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Fascinating Roses

Over the past several months I have become fascinated with roses; garden roses. While cut roses are my favorite flower in the whole world I have not had a lot to do with any in my garden. And, since I was the 91st person in line, I got to the gardening book section first, before anyone else got into the shelf of books about roses. There were about 24 of them. So, I spent much of Sunday learning about my new “favorite plant.”

garden-rosesLet me backtrack for a few moments. I do know a lot about roses –  after they have been harvested in Ecuador. I know the varieties that last longest and those that open largest and fullest because they have the largest petal count. I know the best growers, in Colombia and Ecuador and how to get them here and run through the processes we use to make them last the longest for the consumer. But I now realize, after the weekend of study, that I know very little about how to grow roses in Auburn, New York. As a matter of fact, I know very little about growing garden roses. Continue reading

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What’s the Difference?

Here we are, in mid-March again. Those dozens of seed catalogs are in and it seems that you can’t go anywhere without running into racks of Ferry Morse or Burpee seeds, to mention but two of the many seed companies. And then there are all of those packaged bulbs and dried out perennials that we see.

The choices for starting are unreal. Along these lines, we have a garden 24 x 100 feet where an old greenhouse stood and I have decided to grow some summer flowers for the shop. As I began putting a plan on paper, I was faced with a lot of questions about choices. Would I grow perennials? If I went the seed route it would take two years before any substantial crop. Or, I could buy plants in 4 or 6 inch pots and get some blooms this summer and then more next summer. Since I have decided to put everything in pots, winter storage could be a problem with perennials. Continue reading

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The Canadian Garden Show, Canada Blooms

Last week I had a long and wonderful conversation with Terry Caddo, the Managing Director of the Canadian garden show, Canada Blooms
This is the 20th anniversary of Canada BFG17-031414-03-1Vaughan-280x280looms. It Runs from March 11th through the 20th.The event has, in the past couple of years, been moved from the Convention Centre in downtown Toronto to the Enercare Centre at the Exhibition Grounds, just west of the City. There is ample parking and if you are going to go to Toronto for a couple of days there is a streetcar that goes right to the back door of Canada Blooms.
The main draw, of course, would be the magnificent gardens that will be created. It is amazing to see them, some as large as 40 x 30 feet, that is 1200 square feet, the size of a nice Auburn backyard. Of course there are smaller gardens. All are fullygarden9-280x280 landscaped, not only with lawn and flowers, but with magnificent trees, many in full bloom and certainly in full leaf. There are completely constructed patios and verandas. Terry said that this year there is an emphasis on lighting. The garden areas are on a schedule to have the overhead lights dimmed at times to get the full effect of the lighting of the gardens. I assumed, and he agreed, that as the last time I visited, there would be water features. Continue reading

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Valentine’s Day 2016

Valentine’s Day is always an exciting day for all of us at Cosentino’s.
Actually it began for us in October when Jessica was in Bogota, Colombia. She met the folks that we would be buying our roses from for this holiday. They have been talking to each other.
Then, the day after Christmas the emails from our various area Blog Feb5wholesaler’s started. It was an never ending wave of them with special offers, price changes and deals. It does become very confusing. Then, all orders have to be finalized some time in the middle of January. It takes a lot of time, but it is important because we want to bring the very best quality at the best price to you, our customer.
Yes, Valentine’s Day is just a little over a week away. We know that we have sourced the very best flowers and designed the perfect arrangement for you to say exactly what you want. We go from “Red Hot and Romantic” all the way to the “Big Daddy Bouquet.” that one has roses, a fudge heart, a balloon, cookies and more. Take a look at our website http://www.cosentinosflorist.com to get the whole picture.

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Valentine’s Day almost here

So it is nearly over with. Staff is exhausted. But, all of us will be on deck Saturday and half of us on Sunday to be of service to all the guys who forgot.logo
So far, it has been a wild week., an exciting week. We are all glad to see it come and are somewhat thankful that it comes but once a year.
And, just in case you forgot— Call us right now. It is not too late.

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Getting Ready For Valentine’s Day

A whole lot has been happening at Cosentino’s over the past few days, boxes alogond boxes of flowers have arrived and had to be unpacked.
At Cosentino’s we do not just open them up and pop them into water as so many other vendors do.
Once the box is opened we take the temperature to be sure that it hasn’t overheated indicating possible problems.
Then we take each bunch over to our “mechanical stripper” where we remove any leaves that would be under the water line. That takes away breeding ground for bacteria and mold. We also blunt the thorns so they do not stick our designers or recipients.
Then the flowers are taken over to our “underwater cutter.” Here we cut off about an inch of the stem. You see, in the 4 or 5 days in transit the leaves have given off water and the stem end is crusted over leaving about a half inch vacuum. By cutting under water, we eliminate a potential air bubble preceding the water up the stem and causing problems.
Then flowers are put into sanitized buckets that hold warm (110 degree) water and the proper amount of flower food. In the case of roses, they go into a black plastic bag and into the cooler. This last process adds days to their life.

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