Green Thumb Newsletter: Spring 2023

Green Thumb Newsletter Spring 2023  

We are late with our newsletter this year. We are open and ready to help you with your gardens, notwithstanding our continued and continuing unpredictable weather. A mild winter – no skating for our canal enthusiasts – however it was pretty windy with late snow coverage. All of these weather conditions offer new challenges to our gardening…some early bulbs didn’t seem as prolific this year, and Minnie Mouse and Peter Rabbit seem to have done their fair share of feasting over the winter.

This Spring, we have gone from ice storm to summer to the land of Noah’s Ark. These weather fluctuations are as tough on our plants as they are on us. Please be patient with your gardens…if our plants think it’s Spring and then get shut down by so much rain, they need to recover…especially those that really like the sun and heat e.g., lavender, Russian sage and so on.

Even with COVID-19 still being part of everyday life, public notifications confirm that the risks to our health for the most part are less than in the peak of the pandemic. We will be open to the public – yippee – please come during our ‘open’ hours. You may come masked or not – either way, please retain the 2 metre distance between you and others that are not from your bubble. If you don’t feel comfortable coming during our ‘open’ hours, you may make an appointment in advance for another time that works for you. We will still offer curbside pickup – if that works better for you. We will need advanced notice so that we can have your cart of goodies waiting outside our gates during non-shopping hours.

Plants and gardening supplies are more available than in the past few years, which is great news. The flip side is that the prices continue to skyrocket – shortage of supplies (e.g., fertilizer and seed), increased labour and freight charges etc. are causing this.…and of course, weather events that take their toll on our growers need to be factored in, too.

Our gardening services are back up and running at full capacity this year. The demand for our happy gardeners helping you out is huge – thank you for your business.

Hope to see you soon, however you feel comfortable visiting.

Mary Shearman Reid

Owner, Green Thumb Garden Centre

The Plant Search on our website includes more plants than in previous years. Plants are sorted in the same categories as in our display areas and the photos will give you an idea of how the plants will look when they are all grown up. We carry all plants that are listed, or we can readily get them.  The perennial ones are hardy for Ottawa (zone 5a). In view of our curbside pickup, we hope to add some of the many annuals and herbs that we offer. If you can’t find the ones you want, please ask.

Remember that you can find us on Facebook or follow us on Instagram. Whether on our website or on Facebook, you’ll find out about our goings-on. We have Tuesday’s Tidbits on Facebook and Friday’s Fun Facts on Instagram. Please tell your friends and family about us!

Perennial of the year

The Perennial Plant Association is a North American group of growers, garden designers, nursery and garden centre owners who vote for the Perennial of the Year. The winners are usually known for their year-round interest, their ease of care, their ability to thrive in a wide range of zones and varying growing conditions.

This year’s selection is a black eyed susan ‘American Gold Rush’. It is on the cusp of hardiness for Ottawa, however 2023 has also been named the Year of the Rudbeckia by the National Garden Bureau – so here are some varieties you might want to try:

  • Goldsturm
  • Little Suzy
  • Herbstsonne (Autumn Sun)
  • Prairie Sun

Rudbeckias love the heat and look very nice planted with ornamental grasses and purple coneflower. They are fine in full sun or partial shade and are not particular about soil conditions or pH. Butterflies tend to visit black eyed susans, so do birds, as the birds enjoy the seeds even once the flowers are finished blooming.
Why not check them out on our website under our Plant search:

Green Thumb Membership

Your Green Thumb membership continues from year to year — it’s our way of thanking you for your business.  No matter what level of discount you had last year, your membership is automatically renewed with your first purchase; just remind us that you’re a member.  Your membership entitles you to discounts that increase, depending on your total yearly purchases. Just save your receipts and bring them in. 

Level Annual purchases Most items Trees, shrubs, perennials
Green $100 10% 15%
Silver $150 12% 17%
Gold $300 15% 20%

Please note: the only reason we have your name, address/email address and phone number on file is to be able to share these discounts with you and to send you our newsletter or other Green Thumb information — we do not sell our customer list to anybody.  If you do not want to be a Green Thumb member and receive these benefits, please let us know.