susansflowers

garden ponderings


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Let the Sun Shine

My favorite tv weatherman predicts seven days of no rain.
He said it had been seven months since there were so many days in a row without rain!
Now the sun is shining, and the flowers are exploding:

Rhododendron are some of my favorite shrubs.
The leaves are evergreen, and in spring, the entire plant is covered with blooms.
* * * * *

My iris are not irrigated, and thus bloomed sporadically these last few years.
They loved our wet spring and are coming into full flower.
These are quite deer-resistant plants, slowly moving out of protected beds.
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In my basement,  half a dozen peony buds
are hanging upside down to dry .
The pair I tested last year still look good, so I am trying more.

All of these flowers live in my ‘flower cages’
to protect them from deer.
Various colored poppies live in separate beds
so the colors will stay true.
Red-hot pokers do not fare as cut flowers,
their nectar is extremely sticky and fluid – a big mess indoors.
* * * * *

When scabiosa was re-located last winter,
I discovered it was really tons of baby plants.
Ten, or so, were replanted and the rest given to friends.

Columbine is a native plant, and reseeds freely.

First rose from this particular mini-rose plant.
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Promises, Promises

If there is anything a wet spring has to offer
is the promise of blooms to come.

Even though the rhododendron bud appears dark pink,
its flower is pale pink.
Upper right corner is a yellow geum bud.
Great expectations of gorgeous (imho) white Dutch iris.
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Yarrow, Rugosa and a dwarf Ginko.
* * * * *

Daylilies, foxglove and
California poppies which refuse to open in the rain.
* * * * *

Droopy flower buds are a trademark of poppies.
Chives and peonies follow in the row.
* * * * *
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A botanical oddity:  Rudbekia trying to bloom way out of season.
Black-eye Susans are fall-bloomers, and this flower did not get the genetic message!


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Wildflower Hike

We went for a hike up the mountains yesterday to see waterfalls,
and I found some cool wildflowers.

I have never seen this ‘flower’ before.
The first photo is to show its location in a very wet location.

Wild iris are popping up all over – it is their time.
Trillium is not the state flower of Oregon, but many think so.
It is against the law to pick any specimens!
There are a number of wild orchids that can be found in the woods,
I feel I was lucky to spot this one.

Rhododendron grow tall and leggy in the forest,
this is a baby with one stem.
I believe the ground cover is Oregon Grape leaves around it.
Right photo is one of many wild berry flowers.

Here are some waterfalls we visited:

Tokatee Falls and Watson Falls up the North Umpqua River in Oregon.


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An Early Bounce from Spring

We took a two week trip to visit grandboys,
missing a snowstorm, cold and rain while gone.

Upon our return home, I took my camera
around the house to see what had bloomed in my absence.

These hyacinth bulbs are in the same bed.
Photos confirm that white hyacinth flower before the blue ones.
I love the scent from hyacinth, even though it can be strong.
* * * * *

In the same bed as the hyacinth above are these bloomers.

The windflower anemones shown are in various stages of bloom.
They have self-multiplied all through this bed,
and will flower for at least another month.

Our local weather has sun and cold rain in spurts (significantly less sun),
which has extended the bloom time of early spring flowers.
Tons of daffodils are planted in front of the house.
They are starting to bloom at not-exactly-the-same-time.
I am not sure if this is the soil or the particular micro-climate.
Those are clumps of bluebells coming up near the daffodils.
* * * * *

More purple flowers!
Just a small bunch of miniature iris here.
Up close, they show some weather damage, but are still pretty.

Anemones are short, but sweet, flowering.
There is a bud behind and to the left of this blossom.
* * * * *

I have shown this batch of flowers already this year, but am doing so again.
Bergenia are blooming in many places – they were easy to divide.

Pink hellebore are finally blooming, much later than the white.
There are still buds on the pink-flowered plant, and
the weather forecast has enough cool rain to keep these around for awhile.


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Milkweed & Monarchs

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Last summer, I attended a workshop on attracting Monarch butterflies to your garden.
I purchased these seed packets of Milkweed seeds to plant in the dormant season.

Today, I planted my seeds along fence lines in 3 separate areas.
This is to insure the seeds will come up in at least one bed.

I have since read that Milkweed grows ‘like a weed’ in certain areas.
I truly hope I have not gone over the line,
and introduced any more invasive plants in my locale.


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National Botanical Gardens

While in Washington DC, we visited the Smithsonian, which is great,
but the National Botanical Gardens were just amazing!

Maybe they strive to put the blooming plants on display,
or maybe we just got lucky to see so many flowers.

I am amazed that spiny plants and succulents
can produce such beautiful flowers.

Some of the flowers looked ordinary,
while others were quite exotic appearing.

The orchid greenhouse is always one of my favorite places to visit.
Again, quite insignificant plants and spectacular flowers.

I don’t think it is weird to be captivated by carnivorous plants – they are cool!
I have seen Pitcher plants growing wild in Oregon – in a marsh at the coast.

Outdoor plants were as interesting as the indoor plants.
Do you see the flowers hidden in the grapefruit-size, prickly ‘balloons’?