Tag Archives: spring

OK, that took a while…

The last post was a bit optimistic.  The rest of March was really cold, and the snow didn’t melt completely off the Tundra Garden until a few days ago.  Now it is bare, but still pretty brown.

Tundra Garden, June 2012


The TG gets some visitors (or so I hear)

The TundraGarden has really greened-up in the past couple of weeks.  It went from this:

Snow in the TG on June 15.

to this:

June 20

in the space of five days, while I was on a quick trip to upstate New York taking my daughter to spend part of the summer with her grandmother!  The willows are green and the dwarf and Arctic buttercups are in full bloom.

Iridescent buttercups

And a good thing, too.  There were a number of people who had been attending the Arctic Imperatives conference and were now touring the Arctic.  They flew into Barrow and were given a bus tour.  My husband was acting as tour guide, and must have mentioned the TG, since the participants demanded that the bus be detoured so they could see it.  Apparently people were enthusiastic and many pictures were taken.

A bit of clean up

The last bits of snow from last winter

The garden is finally snow-free.  The snowbirds (snow buntings, but everyone here calls them snowbirds) & other small birds have been snacking on the seeds in the pods as they emerged through the snow.  We feed the birds commercial seed, but it seems like they should be able to eat their normal diet.  They seem to have finished what there was to eat, so it was time for clean-up.  I spent a while this afternoon trimming dead stalks from Artemisias, Potentillas and Ranunculi, and things look much better.  I put one of the pinwheels out again, too.

I also picked up the new plant markers project where I left it last fall.  I’d written on markers with a Sharpie, and was then using a label maker to make tapes to put on that would be easier to read.  The new markers are aluminum, and the ones that were out over the winter already had signs of corrosion from the salt air here.  I had to use steel wool to smooth them before putting the labels on.  We will have to see how long they last.


We had a lot of snow this past winter, and it has taken forever to melt.  The drifting over the TG was different than usual, with a storm that cut a tunnel near the windows, so this year the main part of the garden is melting out before the pond.

The TundraGarden makes its appearance.

The dried grass & willow branches have been showing for a week or so, but now they are out and signs of green are starting to show up.  The Artemisia arctica is just starting to send up shoots.

Artemisia arctica shoots.