Friday, January 05, 2007

Catmint Freed

The Winter Solstice was just over two weeks ago, and I haven’t done a scrap of winter sowing. I’ve done but a few hours of gardening chores: I reraked the leaves onto the established and new beds and I FREED THE CATMINT!

I caged my first-year-from-seed catmint last May with Plant Defenders to save them from being uprooted by my felines. Over the course of the summer, the plants happily grew through the bars and even bloomed. I’ve been waiting for the foliage to die back, so I could cut it and remove the protection, but our mild winter has made the process slow. Last week (on another mild day!), I finally trimmed off the mostly dead stems and removed all 18 cages. (That is Yoda in the photo.)

Can you guess what Mr. Tibbs and I found at the base? Fresh, green catmint nubbins. The cage and dried foliage created a cozy nest for new growth. It will probably be blasted by the winter that I still believe is coming, but that shouldn’t keep the plants from resprouting in the spring. In the meantime, Tibbs is enjoying the fresh greens!