susansflowers

garden ponderings


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A Cloudy Morning

An overcast morning,
so I grabbed my camera for a walk around the house.
This is some of what was in bloom:

French cooking thyme, an essential garden herb (for me).
These stock plants were rescued from a nursery.
Barely alive, they cost 25 cents, now they are thriving (yay!)
Foxglove, which neither deer nor rabbit bother, is in full bloom.
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Yellow allium flowers, a later blooming variety.
This was one of the first bulbs I planted here over 30 years ago.
It keeps coming back, no matter how much I neglect it.
One of my favorite colors of bearded iris,
this dark purple is almost black.
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Red-hot pokers start out orange then the yellow part below
grows to the top as the flower matures.
These are real hummingbird magnets!
Perennial cranesbill geraniums flower and multiply profusely.
Yellow is my early blooming color of daylily.
It is always a shot of sunshine for my disposition.

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

Sometimes a thought or a photo strikes me.
Not enough for a full blog, but sticks in my head.
I think, wonder and philosophize.  So much to ponder in nature.
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Secondary Colors

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Purple (foxglove), orange (California poppies) and green (leaves) are secondary colors, they are painting mixtures of the primary colors of blue, yellow and red.

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How do you photograph the scent of a particularly aromatic flower?
You cannot.
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Plant and nursery catalogs, as well as winemakers,
go to great lengths to describe the smell and taste of their product.
But words can never do justice to what the nose senses and our brain feels.
Aromatics also stir memories, positive and negative.
While the lilies pictured above may bring fond memories and smiles,
Rue, pictured below, would probably more often bring on negative thoughts.
Thus, it is aptly named!
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Passionate Purple & Pink

Both of these wildflowers found my garden.
They are seasonal and have multiplied.
Sometimes you just get lucky!
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Here are eggplant and potato flowers
from the vegetable garden.
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Lupine and Foxglove reseed freely.
I never know where they will appear year-to-year.
They are always welcome additions.
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Years ago, I planted Garlic in my flower beds to fight bugs,
I think it will come up forever.
Agastache, or Giant Hyssop, is supposed to be deer resistant,
but I don’t trust those animals.  Some of the plants are fenced,
some are not, so far all are surviving.
* * * * *

Short and tall exemplars.
Bellflower is peeking out between Bergenia leaves.
Its own leaves are the serrated ones in the back of the photo.
These Hollyhock blossoms are ‘doubles’ with extra petals.
A neighbor gave me these plants a number of years ago,
and they are finally blooming.


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Obsessed – Compulsed

Gardening can be an addiction.
There is immediate gratification in a freshly weeded bed.
Waiting for seedlings to emerge, then watching them grow can be an exercise in patience.
The expectation of seeing flowers bloom in a regular succession satisfies a need for order in the universe.

I have been caught up in bringing order to my gardens.  It brings peace and contentment to my life.  In the meantime, the colorful show of spring flowers is slipping by.  The blossoms have encouraged my madness, as I try to whip the yard into shape before the rains end and weeds are cemented into the hard ground.

Gardening is also a learning process, not an end product.  I have sympathy for those who feel they must purchase a finished garden, and do not get to endure the trials and tribulations of the learn-by-the-seat-of-their-pants, passionate dirt person.

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Foxglove can be found in the wilds, but I brought it to my gardens on purpose.
They are so easy to care for and flower prolifically.  But … they can be invasive.  Darn 🙂
I actually transplanted many (over 100) to the not-irrigated, outlying areas.  Not realizing how many little ones I left behind in the more carefully tended beds.
Yesterday, I noticed a few stalks that deer had carefully de-flowered.  Although the wildlife will clear-cut tulips and roses as though they were chocolate, they merely prune a few foxglove.  Unfortunately, I will have to dead-head soon, and again, and again to curtail millions more unwanted seedlings.

* * * * *

I finally found the dirt in the foreground of these beds, while the weeds still proliferate in the back.  Perhaps people who ready-order landscaping are not so stupid after all.  Maybe it is me who insists on doing things the slow way.  Lucky for me, rainy days are still here, and the ground is still soft enough to pull unwanted plants.


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Home Again

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We came home to thigh-high grass in the fields and the back yard.  I am so looking forward to planting my vegetable garden.  So much to do . . . .

The flowers are blooming, it is always interesting to see which ones are doing great, and who is faltering.  In the top photo, small, pink Armeria fronts pale pink chive blossoms, yellow day-lilies in the back.  Dark purple Dutch iris on the side.  Bottom shot is a Foxglove with bearded iris, and a California poppy in the background.
We arrived home in a slight drizzle, but the ground is hard, so it is time for the irrigation to be set up.

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The alliums have multiplied, look great and will keep the deer from this bed (for awhile, at least).
I don’t know if it is the weather, or the fact I finally weeded around these iris, but this is the best they have looked ever!

On another positive note, our sugar maple tree leafed out while we were gone.  We really thought it had given up the ghost and was a goner, it should have come back to life before we left.  We must be getting old and totally mis-judged when it springs back to life.