Heaving lessons for those in mild climates

totototo@telus.net totototo@telus.net
Thu, 20 Mar 2008 10:02:54 PDT
On 18 Mar 08, at 19:46, P. C. Andrews wrote:

> > 	Is there something comparable in mild climates?  Do mild 
> > climates have heaving too?
> No heaving in Zone 11, but at least heaving lays your labels gently
> near their origin. Hurricanes, over-enthusiastic raking, and the
> neighbor's terriers (& chickens) mean that I have resorted to burying
> the labels with the bulbs and dig them up if I want to refresh my
> memory (which is increasingly often).  My GPS doesn't give fine enough
> resolution and the grid system I set up years ago was just too much
> trouble (the dogs got most of the stakes).  Still looking for
> ideas...........

The system I've used for years (and have probably described before on 
this mailing list) involves using Dymo embossed stick-on labels 
affixed to lengths of aluminum strip.

I use 12" lengths of 1/2" × 1/8" aluminum. The backing of the 
embossed label is peeled off and the label applied to an area 
previously coated with contact cement.


1. Even when the label fades, the embossing remains readable. 

2. Too heavy for birds, raccoons, and rodents to mess around with.

3. The contact cement means the labels *never* peel off. In the 
twenty or so years I've used this system, the embossed label has come 
loose in less than half a dozen cases.

4. The aluminum can be re-used by paring off the old label with a 
sharp edge and putting on a new one.

5. If you bang these into the ground so only an inch or two shows, 
they're immovable by any force of nature barring major erosion by 


1. The garden looks ugly as sin with strips of aluminum sticking up 
out of the beds all over the place.

2. If you use, as I do, a bolt cutter to cut the aluminum strips to 
length, you end up with sharp corners that can (and do) cut when you 
step on them with bare feet.

For some time I have been contemplating removing all the garden 
labels. My garden is, after all, a private pleasure garden, not a 
botanical garden nor a plant conservation garden, and if I lose track 
of which bulb is where, what difference does it make to the way the 
garden looks?

The bulbs can be their own labels, iow.

Rodger Whitlock
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Maritime Zone 8, a cool Mediterranean climate

on beautiful Vancouver Island

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