Get Ready, Get Set, Get Gardening!
The official start to Prairie gardening is finally, or suddenly upon us depending if you’re ready to get growing or not. In Calgary and area, we have approximately 115 growing days, which is calculated from average last frost dates in spring to first frost dates in fall. At Zone 3, pushing to Zone 4 we do have a challenging growing climate, throw in a few winter chinooks and variable temperatures and the challenge grows. Gardeners here are a hardy and determined lot and work hard to show off their gardens in our short 4 months of opportunity.
You’ll find that most of our perennials, shrubs and trees that we stock for your gardening pleasure are hardy to our area. Their will be some that may push the limits, but the reward when you’re successful growing outside of our zone is immense…it’s the little things. Creating ideal soil conditions, water and food resources and a protected zone or microclimate will aid in pushing those limits. You still want to buy a plant that is defined as a perennial, hardy shrub or tree to expect it to overwinter; annuals are a one-time show for this season only.
Choose annuals for each of your specific locations, divide them by full sun, part sun, part shade and full shade. Plants that prefer sun like 6-8 hours of sunlight per day. Part sun and part shade plants should be provided 4-6 hours of direct sun each day, with part sun plants preferring more sun and part shade less.
Full shade is less than four hours of direct sun per day. These parameters are also identified on perennials, shrubs and trees. Read the labels or check in with our staff for best options for specific sun conditions.
Remember to also enjoy the weekend, looks like those variable weather conditions are hitting us again for the May Long. Our Garden Centre, Greenhouse, Nursery and Landscape Lots are full staffed and stocked, ready to meet your garden needs along with all the rest of your neighbouring gardeners. Let’s have fun, have patience and get to gardening!