The Outdoors Guy: first days of Spring-steen

Local columnist and outdoorsman Ron Larson talks about getting ready for Spring.

  • Mar. 25, 2015 9:00 a.m.

Sooke is a majestic paradise for those of us who love an early spring, those of us who love to play in the garden.

Bruce Springsteen has a Nebraska album and on this collection is a song called Atlantic City. It was covered by singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran and the chorus goes, “everything dies baby that’s a fact but maybe everything that dies someday comes back”. Pretty fitting for spring in Sooke and pretty ironic that Sheeran, a rookie singer songwriter has brought out the cardiac paddles for a song that was long forgotten. But crank up the tunes, grab something cold to wet your whistle and I’m going to tell you how to make a flower pot lasagna that you just might tell your buddies about.

First thing first, you need a pot, the larger the pot, the greater the protection it provides. Terracotta pots, wooden half-barrels, wicker baskets, ceramic pots, old wooden wagons, wheelbarrows all make for useful decorative containers. If you have more than one pot, group them together for greater visual effect and to make watering more convenient.

The thing is you have to make sure the pot will drain properly so make sure there are holes in the bottom; I use my cougar knife and an old shark tooth to add some extra holes. If the drainage is suspect then put some gravel in the bottom.  Layering, or planting “lasagna-style,” is a technique that lets you enjoy successive waves of bloom in a single container by overlapping the bloom times of early, mid and late-blooming spring bulbs. Any early-mid-late combo will work and one excellent combination is to use crocus, daffodils, grape hyacinths and tulips as the early, mid and late blooming bulbs. In this particular scheme, it’s the blue grape hyacinths with their extremely long bloom season that holds everything together.

In the first layer of dirt I would suggest dropping some Snowdrops, crocus or grape hyacinths. Throw in some more dirt plant the largest bulbs 8-inches deep and smaller bulbs 5-inches deep with layers of soil under, over and in-between the bulbs. Start by filling the base of the container with potting soil. Measuring from the top rim, allow 2-3 inches for mulch and watering then measure an additional 8 inches to position the first layer of bulbs. At 11 inches below the pot rim, place the tulips and daffodils pointy ends up. Mix up the bulbs so tulips and daffodils are evenly distributed and position them close together. Add 3 inches of soil around and above the first layer.

Sit back and enjoy the show as three waves of colorful bulb flowers come up, bloom and move on. Pots planted with spring-flowering bulbs can tolerate a certain amount of freezing weather, but will need some protection in moderate to severe periods of frost. Cover them with burlap or an old Maple Leafs jersey to insulate.

Ron Larson, The Outdoors Guy

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sooke Mayor Maja Tait was elected president of the Union of B.C. Municipalitiesin September 2019. She helped guide the 190-member organization through the coronavirus pandemic. (UBCM photo)
Sooke mayor front-line commander of the coronavirus pandemic

Maja Tait played pivotal role during COVID-19 crisis

HarbourCats players celebrate winning the North Division Championship Series in 2019. (Christian J. Stewart/File Photo)
Victoria HarbourCats locked out of team Facebook page

Management hires legal team to solve issue

Sooke School District No. 62 superintendent Scott Stinson explains that most block classes at Belmont Secondary will be halved. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
Sooke School District opens conversation on catchment boundary changes

Feedback solicited at virtual town hall Oct. 28

Leila Bui with her parents Tuan Bui (left) and Kairry Nguyen at the end of the trial that found Tanessa Nikirk guilty of dangerous driving causing bodily harm. Nikirk is back in court for her sentencing hearing. (Black Press file photo)
UPDATED: Court hears letter from driver convicted of hitting Saanich girl

Leila Bui has been in a non-responsive state since she was hit in 2017

VicPD and B.C. Conservation Officer Service teamed up to free two bucks who were entangled in a fishing net and dragging a wheelbarrow sized piece of driftwood behind them. (VicPD)
VIDEO: Victoria police, B.C. Conservation help two bucks caught in one fishing net

Bucks were also dragging a wheelbarrow sized piece of driftwood behind them

FILE – Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry provides the latest update on the COVID-19 pandemic in the province during a press conference in the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Thursday, October 22, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. shatters COVID-19 records with 817 weekend cases; masks now expected indoors

Three people have died over the past three reporting periods

RCMP have released more details regarding what led up to an arrest caught on video in Williams Lake Sunday, Oct. 26. (Facebook video screenshot)
Review launched after ‘high-risk, multi-jurisdictional’ chase, arrest in Williams Lake

RCMP launching a full review and code of conduct investigation

Freighter drags anchor towards Boulder Point Oct. 22. It came within 730 metres of the shore, according to maps from the Port of Nanaimo. (Photo submitted)
MacGregor introduces bill to address freighter anchorages along the South Coast

Concerns about the environment, noise, pollution and safety abundant

(Pxfuel)
B.C. limits events in private homes to household, plus ‘safe six’ amid COVID-19 surge

Henry issued a public health order limiting private gatherings to one household, plus a group of ‘safe six’ only

B.C. Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson speaks during a drive-in car rally campaign stop at a tour bus operator, in Delta, Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Andrew Wilkinson stepping down as B.C. Liberal leader

Will stay on until the next party leader is chosen

Harvesters participating in the extended commercial halibut season will need to land their catch in either Prince Rupert (pictured), Vancouver, or Port Hardy by Dec. 14. (File photo)
B.C.’s commercial halibut season extended three weeks

COVID-19 market disruptions at the root of DFO’s decision

Campbell River's new hospital, July 2018
Nurse diverts opiates and falsifies records at Campbell River Hospital

Nurse facing disciplinary action for moving opiates out of the hospital

SIG
Sooke U15 squad blast past Comox

Rylan Sokolosky records hat trick

Most Read