Rain gauges are so functional and nice to have around, to see how much it's rained in any given day, week or month. If you don't have one handy, you can always use the 'five gallon bucket' method. The ones I left in the garden two weeks ago when we had that one dry day to do some weeding, are approaching the half way mark - filled with 2 1/2 gallons of rain water.
It's been a cool, wet spring here in the Willamette Valley of Oregon. I spy 3, maybe 4 rain free days coming up in the next 2 weeks' forecast. I shall remain hopeful that it will shift toward drier.
There is a large tulip farm a few miles from here and they report this is the slowest bloom season they've had since 1983 - running weeks behind when they opened up their tulip festival in March. They are seeing some nice bloom this week; but, just the other day, they posted a photo of a row boat in their field to highlight the rains we've been having. Hopefully drier weather arrives for the next month of their bloom season. Rain or shine, put your boots on, get tickets online and go visit the Wooden Shoe Tulip Festival.
Peony season follows tulip season and it remains to be seen how many flowers we'll have blooming in early May. Some peony plants are over 2 feet tall, later varieties are barely popping up. A few early varieties are nicely budded. The weather can change in a minute and spring things forth. One of our slowest starts for peony flowers was 2011, when we had few blooms before the third week of May (3 weeks behind usual). The plants grew nicely that February and March; but, came to a standstill in growth, for weeks, in the very cool days from mid-April to mid-May. It finally warmed up and things went crazy - doing their thing until late June.
Right now we plan to be open April 29th with an abundance of potted peonies for sale. Check our home page for open dates/times.
Mother's Day is just a month away - Sunday, May 14, 2023. Thankfully for us Oregon peony farmers, it falls later on the calendar this year. We'll see how it shapes up - whether we'll have plenty of flowers by then or be wishing we did. Time will tell.