susansflowers

garden ponderings


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White Flowers

There are a variety of white flowers,
all blooming at the same time, now!

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Sweet woodruff is still blooming.
This groundcover at its peak.
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Dutch Iris in above photo,
also, comes in yellow and purple.
Below are ‘bearded’ iris,
which come in a rainbow of solid
or 2- or 3-color blossoms.
Both types of iris seem to be deer-resistant.
Very few plants are truly deer-proof.
When deer get hungry enough,
they eat almost any plant.
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This is the first year my snowball bush has flowered.
I wanted one of these beautiful plants for so long!
The blossoms started out green
before slowly turning white.
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A couple of last tulips.
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First Calla lily bloom.
The plant struggled this year,
as the mild winter gave rise to early leafing out.
Then a later snow
knocked the new growth back to nothing.
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Lilacs and strawberries have both
been blooming for awhile.
The lilacs are fading,
but strawberries will go longer.
Cultivated ever-bearing strawberries bloom until frost.


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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.
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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.
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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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Early Spring

We have had a bumper year for rain,
which after a drought is very welcome.
As soon as the rain lets up,
plants (including weeds) reach for the bits of sunshine.

I have been watching my crocus for years
and observed the various colored flowers bloom in a specific order:
yellow ones first, then the lavenders, next come purple and white striped,
then purples, and the pure white ones last.

Here is a crocus fact that I can vouch for from experience:
If you want to move the bulbs, wait until the blossoms are spent,
but before the leaves have died.
It is a short window of opportunity,
but the bulbs are easy to locate in the ground.
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Bergenia are starting to bloom.
This large-leaved groundcover has such pretty, delicate flowers.
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I know a little about hellebores,
like deer do not eat them and they love shade.
In contrast to the crocus, the white blossoms come first,
while the pink flowers are still budding.
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I have planted and divided and planted hundreds of daffodils around our plot of land.
All I see around the house are emerging leaf blades.
What a surprise to find these flowers near the driveway, closer to the county road.
On a south-facing slope, with little shade from trees,
the micro-climate here must be quite a bit warmer.


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Green on Green

This plant in the papyrus family reproduces itself freely, which leads to
many babies in my flower beds.  I then transplant said seedlings to any place
that tends to get waterlogged in the rainy season.
Nothing scientific, just a sense that papyrus grows near water, and I have areas with bad drainage, so I am trying to make the best use of challenging areas in my garden.

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This Eryngium, or Sea Holly, also reproduces freely – almost too freely for me.
I mean, it grows well, is deer and rodent resistant, and I am still looking for where to move it so it won’t poke me while I weed around it.
I cut some of the ‘flowers’ and laid them in a cool, dark area to dry, just in case they might look good in another season.  Chances do not look good, as I found the stems to be hollow, which is not a characteristic of any other flower that dries well.

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A visitor to my garden recently asked me about this ‘flower’.  These are seedpods of a spring flowering daylily.  No flower here!  When the stems turn brown they pull away easily, so I wait a few months, and it is one less plant to deadhead.


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Black-Eye Susans – Rudbeckia

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While these flowers are not named after me, I like to think they are 😉
Of course, I had to have some in my garden.

Actually, they are quite welcome, since they bloom later in summer and are drought-resistant.  On the down side they do not respect boundaries, and spread easily.  The wandering roots can be a plus if one is trying to fill space in a flower bed, but they just do not know when to stop!

I wish they were deer-resistant, also.
Hey, this is what I can try:  in winter (the rainy season) I will move the invasive individuals outside of a protected area to the hinterlands (what I call the further edges of my yard).  This way I can learn for myself whether local deer find rudbeckia irresistible, somewhat tasty or just leave it alone.
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First Sign of Autumn – A Little Early to Me

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This morning, I noticed the first red leaf on Eonymus ‘Chicago Fire’.
It’s leaves change color way early in the summer, but now I am actually documenting just how early.

Out of curiosity, I googled this plant, and found no information on how early the leaves turn colors.  But I did learn that it is supposed to be deer-resistant.  Therefore, this winter it will be moved outside the fenced-in area.
Now I would like to find a flowering vine to climb the fence.  It is a particularly sunny area, that has honeysuckle farther down the same fence.
Any suggestions?

Pink Alliums

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Pink Alliums

These flower bulbs were planted just this last spring. What a treat for me, that they came up and bloomed so quickly. This is a new color of allium for me, and I truly appreciate them.

I’m already thinking of places to move pink and yellow alliums when they multiply a bit more. As my garden is starting to mature, I like to think of color coordinating flower blossoms. Also, the timing flower beds for successive bloom times.  There are so many things to take into consideration besides full-grown size, as I plan to move plants around, once I learn which plants/flowers can endure my soil and water.

Wild Alliums

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Wild Alliums

These are wild alliums, and they pop up on their own, when and where they feel like it. Of course, they have decided to set up residence in the fenced areas, where the deer can not get to them. But they are deer-resisitant – don’t they know that?

I see these in the fields along with the wild daisies. Now that we are noticing areas that do not get mowed, and can be naturalized as flower meadows, I’m looking to expand the alliums as well as California poppies. Gotta get collecting seeds now.

If I was more computer adept, I could figure out how to post more than one photo at a time. I know it is possible, as I have seen it on other people’s blogs.

Alliums – yellow

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Alliums - yellow

These have been around here for a very long time. More recently, I’ve been dividing the bulbs and spreading them around to new places. The deer avoid all members of the allium – or onion – family.

With a lot of alliums, I have noticed the leaves are insignificant, but these have broader, more visible leaves, than other members of this family. The green is a strong contrast to the bright yellow flowers, and the leaves make a more full appearing bouquet on the ground with the flowers.