22 September 2010
Where are the violas?
I learned my lesson. Pansies and violas, like tulips and daffodils, really ought to be planted in the fall so they can get established, overwinter, and start pumping out blooms while everything else is still underground. So why, of why, doesn't anyone have them for sale? I stopped at a local independent garden center last week. It had been overrun with pansies and violas in the spring, so I expected to find a good selection -- but no such luck... not a single one to be seen. I stopped at a big box store for another errand and found a measly selection of pansies. I bought a few even though I prefer the smaller flowers of violas better, and even though they were a mix of colors half of which I didn't want, because something is better than nothing. Once in they were in the ground, I knew I needed something better, so I trekked out to the good garden center, the one that is a good 30 minute drive away and has all sorts of cool stuff, confident they would have the cute, tough, smaller flowered violas I want in a wide range of colors. Ha. They had just a few pansies too, even less selection than the big box store. I was devastated and had to comfort myself by browsing through the discounted perennials and buying a dozen Digitalis thapsi for only a $1.50 each. This put me in a better mood, and I did end up buying a few trays of their pansies.
So I had to settle for pansies. Pansies which are pretty, of course, but I wanted violas. I was ready to spend vast amounts of money on violas to ensure that I would have a knock-out show next spring and... no luck. Independant garden center owners, if you are listening, this is why I end up spending less and less money every year at your stores, and more and more on mail order seeds. Now I know that if I want violas in the fall, I'm going to have to order seeds and grow them myself. Unless anyone knows of somewhere selling violas right now in Michigan?