susansflowers

garden ponderings


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Springing Fast

The rain stopped and the sun came out.
Many flowers are going through their short lives quickly.
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Camellia blossoms are always beautiful,
but short-lived.
It is a good thing the glossy leaves stay green all year.
* * *

This azalea bush will be covered in red
at peak bloom.
The deck is scheduled to be repaired this summer,
I am afraid I will have to prune this plant severely:(
* * *
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Reliably, this is the first rhododendron
to flower every year.
When I took this photo yesterday morning,
there was only one other open bud.
This afternoon, half the plant was abloom.
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Blue Bells, Cockle Shells . . .
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Bleeding heart is a newer addition to my garden.
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Sweet woodruff is one of my favorite groundcovers.
Besides the delicate flowers, the leaves are evergreen.

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Scent of a Hyacinth

I love the scent of a hyacinth flower!
Some people actually complain the aroma is too ‘heady’ for them:(
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I got a good whiff just walking along the brick path.
It smelled so good, I walked back and forth a few times!
Made me smile on an overcast day:)
* * *
Long ago, I made and sold porcelain hyacinth vases,
which were used to ‘force’ a bulb to bloom indoors.
There were always extra bulbs at the end of the season,
which I planted under bushes within deer-fences.
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White hyacinth live at the base of this budding lilac bush.
Because deer ignore daffodils,
those bulbs get to live outside the protective fence.
* * *
Lots of hyacinths live below this rhododendron.
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Did you know that blue, white and purple hyacinths
are the best color of these flowers to force?
I can’t say for sure if I bought the bi-color flower bulbs,
or they hybridized naturally.


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Fun with a Fish Eye (camera lens, that is :)

I have spent an extraordinary amount of time this last month, weeding.
The flower beds are not near perfect, but have never looked so good.

Above are two views of the same flower bed.
Foreground is Shasta daisies, bearded Iris and lavenders.
Foxglove, daffodils, and iris live further back.
A couple of canna lilies are the recent additions.

There is a fence (we call it a ‘flower jail’) along the edge of the deck.
Inside live an azalea, peony, hosta, calla lilies, camellia,
tulips, tree peony, stock, rhododendron and a few others.
* * * * *

If this bed were planned before planting,
the Japanese maples would be at each end with the
contorted filbert (aka Harry Lauder’s Walking Stick
– where that name came from, must be a good story)
in the middle instead of on the left end.

Santolina, teucrium (germander), hyssop, more bearded iris (they multiply!)
with lots of Greek oregano as groundcover are the main plants here.

I had read in a novel that daylilies could hold a hillside in place,
so I planted and re-planted them behind.
California poppies are multiplying slowly, and the weeds here are prolific.
Specially after our wet winter.

Anyway – above are some views of the front & back of my yard.
You are introduced to some of what I care take.
Isn’t the fish eye lens cool?  What a view!


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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.
* * * * *

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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Changeable Weather

We had a few days of record heat, then rain, and cooler.  The plants are dealing with this variable weather better than I am.  At least I don’t have to water anything myself!

New flowers are blooming nearly every day.
So much to do, and only so many hours of agreeable weather.

Not a lot of blossoms on this tree peony, so I savor every one.
These photos are of the same flower, on the same day.   They open fast in the sunshine.
I did cut a couple of these flowers, just as they began to open.
They are hanging in a closet, clothes-pinned upside-down from a hanger.
If my experiment works, I’ll have some peonies all summer – or maybe even longer!
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Lots of white Dutch iris, I like these a lot.
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Rhododendron flowers open in the same order every year.
These are some earlier bloomers.* * * * *
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Weigela is an old-time shrub, and new to my garden.
This particular spot can get very wet during rainy season, and I’ve lost a few plants here.
Upon investigation, I determined that this is a prime candidate to like this location.
It sure looks good now, I do hope it stays around.


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Springing Spring ?!

We have had glorious weather:  some rain, some clouds and some sun.
Rain alleviates any thoughts of irrigation, clouds encourage the flowers to stay around much longer than usual, and the sun,
well the sun encourages everything to bloom and grow!

The first rhodies are blooming, and my one azalea is so covered with flowers
that is all you can see of it.

* * * * *

Even though I cut rhubarb flowers, it keeps putting out more of them.
At least, they are unusual looking.
Blueberry and strawberry plants are booming with flowers.  We can only hope the weather stays favorable, and the bird nets keep the pilfering in check.
Last photo above is rosemary, which I see in flower around town.
Such a sturdy and aromatic plant, how can one not love it?

* * * * *

This has been one of the best tulip years I can remember.  I like to think it is because I separated some of the larger ones and planted them all around the house.  We have enjoyed tulips out of most every window.
White lilacs open their blossoms before the lavender or purple ones do.
These are my favorites, I love the sweet scent and only wish they lasted longer indoors.