Sunday, April 22

Bay & Marjoram: Zonal Denial in a Good Way!

We've been officially moved up to zone 6 here in my part of Northeast Ohio, but I've been pushing my zone boundaries for years now. I grow agastache, a few marginally hardy penstemons, and eucomis with relative ease (knock on wood)--which is partially due to my very well-draining soil.

And yet, in all the time I've been gardening here, I have never been able to successfully overwinter marjoram. Until now:


Any other year, I would be super excited about this. But this year... this year, the marjoram has been eclipsed by something even more miraculous:


Yup, those are baby leaves sprouting up from my bay laurel plant! According to the page on laurus nobilis on Davesgarden, bay laurel is hardy to zone 8a, or 10 degrees Farenheit. Zone 8! I kept forgetting to dig it back up last year after its disappointing summer in the ground, and almost yanked the whole plant up this spring before I noticed the new leaves.

I'm especially glad to see this, because I was very disappointed in this plant last year. I had read that planting bay laurel in the ground would give you many more leaves and a better plant to dig up and overwinter... and this guy barely exceeded its size at purchase by the end of the fall.  Maybe this head start will give me plenty of bay leaves to harves this year?  I really hope so, because store-bought bay leaves just don't have the same flavor that fresh or self-dried leaves have!

Anyone else have some miraculous overwinterings this year?

11 comments:

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Black and Blue Salvia overwintered here this year. The first time ever. It just proves to me that we had an exceptionally warm winter. My area is zoned 6 now too. I know your area gets a whole lot colder longer than mine. This must be 6a your area must be a 6b. It was fun to find that B&B salvia comeing up. A big bonus is that it reproduced too. The original plants will be huge this year. Yay!!

Blackswamp_Girl said...

Greenbow Lisa, OOOH... I'm back to being jealous! Pretty sure that my Black & Blue (in the front garden) is NOT going to be miraculous here. And I love them so. :-) YAY for yours!!!

Leslie said...

No unusual overwinterings that come to mind so I will celebrate yours...I so agree about the excellence of home grown bay. And may your tree have a wonderful summer and be ready for the big move!

Annie in Austin said...

My marjoram has had to be replanted at least half of the years in this garden so I was pleased that it survived last winter along with a bay tree that was a replacement for one lost the previous year. It's way more amazing that both your bay tree & marjoram survived in Ohio! The one I lost had survived in a container for more than 15 years so it can be done, Kim!

Unprecedented survivals were 2 pepper plants (tags lost but think they were a 'Gypsy' & a'Sweet Banana'). They're making new blossoms and tiny peppers.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Blackswamp_Girl said...

Thanks, Leslie--I'm certainly celebrating my overwinterings here, too! And I hope that the bay does have a good summer--and move. :-)

Austin Annie, WOW! It makes me even more excited about my little miracles, to hear that bay and marjoram don't always overwinter for you. And I'm excited on your behalf for the pepper plants. YAY! :-)

I wonder if those two varieties are just generally hardier and sturdier, by the way? They're two of the plants that actually gave me a good yield last year, when most of the rest of the peppers were completely miserable with the conditions. Hmm...

Angela said...

Excellent blog and chice of plantings!

Robin Ripley said...

It has been crazy here too in my zone 7 garden. Zone 9 cannas--including ones I didn't pull out of pots--overwintered and are growing! The Swiss chard I planted last summer never stopped growing all winter long. And we saw fireflies at the beginning of April! Weird.

Entangled said...

What a strange winter it was. I didn't have any marjoram last year, darn it, but most of my lemongrass plants have new shoots.

Blackswamp_Girl said...

Thanks, Angela!

Robin, really? Zone 9 cannas?!!! That would be lovely... maybe I can shoot for that this coming year. :-D

Entangled, I would be happy with some lemongrass overwintering here, too. Frankly, I'd love it if I could manage to overwinter it in the house, even... I thought that once I was in a cat-less home, it would be smooth sailing for me with the lemongrass. Sadly, Coco loves to eat it, too. *sigh*

randall031 said...

I know this is way after the fact -- just discovered your blog. But I've been dying to tell someone. I overwintered a wandering Jew in my garden this year -- I'm officially zone 6b but it was an easy, easy winter. How cool is that!!!

Blackswamp_Girl said...

Whaaaat? That's awesome, randall031! I would love to have a houseplant like that overwinter--it would certainly save me some space in the house. :-D

Post a Comment

One of my favorite things about blogging is the interaction--posts are often simply the beginning of an interesting conversation! So thanks for taking the time to join the discussion, and please know that I enjoy reading each and every comment left here. I try to answer as many as I can.