Monday, December 26, 2011

Late December Blooms

No snow yet, but the only thing blooming around here is inside.  My Christmas Cactus has been blooming since Thanksgiving, and is looking very pretty now.

Friday, December 2, 2011

December blooms

I was filling the bird feeders yesterday, and came across my flowering quince, which apparently thinks it's spring.

The heather is heading into summer, I think --blooming more than before! 

We woke up this morning to a light dusting of snow, and temps in the low 20's. Maybe that will send these two plants into dormancy!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

November 15th GBBD

Emma officially turned 11 years old today. I think it was a bit anti-climatic, since her party was Saturday and she got her gift from us on Sunday (an iPod Touch). So, about nine more years, and I'm free, huh?  :-)

I did get the final bulbs in today. We've actually had awfully nice weather for mid-November, but I expect winter will kick in any day.

The only blossoms I have in my garden right now are this heather plant. I have four heather plants, and three of them bloomed this spring. I'm pretty sure this was one that bloomed already, so I guess it's just enjoying the rather warm fall weather.

The annuals have all succumbed to the frost, and the garden is ready for winter and the seeds of the perennials are just waiting for the black-eyed juncos and chickadees.

Thursday, November 3, 2011


Well, I've been planting bulbs. In addition to the heirloom bulbs, I've planted most of these:
The only ones I haven't gotten in the ground are the large allium christophii. The weather is getting colder and wetter, and my next two weekends are booked and busy. I sure hope I can find a decent day to dig a hole and throw them in it. Honestly, I'm not even sure where I want to put them. Life is too busy this year.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

October Blooms

There isn't a lot still blooming in my gardens, but here are a few October photos. We were really dry for awhile, but then we got a wonderful soaking rain, and even the plants that are yellowing with the changing light appear to be renewed.

This is a Chihuly Rose that Emma chose earlier this summer, and this is its first new bloom. It's named after the artist Chihuly, who works with blown glass. His work is amazing, and I really recommend googling his name. Emma and I had never heard of him, but we looked him up to figure out why the rose had such a difficult-to-pronounce name and spent a good half hour looking at his work.

The flash went on this photo, but the little spider is so cute.

We also have asters and goldenrod blooming. I'd like to get some dwarf asters, but so far the ones I've purchased have all been tall and gangly.

I have a few garden decorations, mostly "fairies", although of many different types. This one was given to me over five years ago, as a Christmas present, and it's been hanging in this birch tree ever since.  I like it's "wild woman" style.

Rob bought this one, and it stays nestled in the shade garden during the summer, but we put her in the garden shed over the winter. With cold nights and frost coming, she'll soon be finding a place inside.
I am always happy to have the garden season wind down in fall. I really love gardening, and I've been planting bulbs for next spring, but I also get a bit tired, and I'm ready to have time to work on other things over the winter.  I love the cycle of the seasons --as soon as I get tired of one, another one comes along and feels new again.

Sunday, October 9, 2011


I found this impatiens flower in the lawn. I'm not sure where it came from, but it's kind of cute. Of course, it didn't start blooming until late September. It is surrounded by walnut leaves, and that's a walnut up in the top left of the photo.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Fall planting

Well, I got my two new iris, and got them into the ground, both on the west side of the house. I have a few other plants I'd like to divide and spread around, and we're having perfect weather for it. The only difficulty is that you have to dodge falling walnuts, and be careful not to twist your ankle on the ones already on the ground. It's a banner year for walnuts!

Here are the two iris I planted:

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Fall Blooms

This spring, we were the recipients of several pots of asters, the result of thinning by a friend. These are more pink than the asters I already had in the garden, and they're looking beautiful right now.

My other asters are a little slower. They still look like this:

Next to these darker purple asters, I have some goldenrod, which is also just opening.
It's a very lacy goldenrod.

This is a dry well my husband made off the front porch, to take water from a gutter. I love the way this looks, and it works really well. This summer we added some rounded beach rocks from the Lost Coast of California, where we vacationed.  It's surrounded by hostas that are beginning to bloom.

I have a few plants that arrived recently to still put in the ground --some ground cover sedum, some orange yarrow, and a catmint.  It had been very dry, but we got a good soaking rain today, so the ground should be good for planting over the next few days.  There are also a few things I'd like to divide --hopefully I'll get to them before it gets cold.

Thursday, September 8, 2011


 The little red bugs on the milkweed pods have turned into larger orange and black beetles. I don't know what kind of beetle they are, but the contrast between the orange and black is kind of cool. I hope the birds are filling up for their journey south.

The Autumn Joy sedum is just beginning to open its buds.

The gardens look mostly green, but if you look closely there are still a few things blooming. An overblown rose with beautiful color:

Some dianthus in the pot, mostly smothered by the sweet potato vine:

Isn't this guy a monster? Of course, that's why we planted him.

And the dark red sweet potato vine in the other barrel is actually blooming! I didn't even know it could bloom. It's pretty, although the blossoms stay hidden inside the leaves.

The bachelor's buttons are still blooming, and I hope they're dropping lots of seed for next year. I love the blue, and I have too little blue in my gardens.

And finally, I walked down to the edge of our property, along the road that I drive up each day to turn in the driveway. I really enjoy this view, but I don't usually have a camera with me when I see it. The building in the background on the left is the barn, and the house is completely masked by the trees. The trees in the foreground are locust, and we call them our Dr. Seuss trees because of the way the branches have grown -they're old and gnarly. When they bloom in the spring, before the leaves come out, they look amazing.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Expecting Beneficials

 Someone has taken up residence in one of the fairy houses . . . and we're expecting more.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Goodies from the garden

We planted some carrots this year.  A mix of orange, white, yellow and red, grated for muffins:

Carrot-walnut muffins --very yummy!

And tonight's dinner, with tomatoes and basil from the garden:

Friday, August 26, 2011

End of August

Some things I found wandering through the garden this afternoon.

Baby caterpillars --who knows what they will be?

Maybe this guy? It's a Milkweed Tussock Caterpillar. I think he's cute.

Also came across these bugs on one of the pods. Hmm . . . .

Luckily, there were also some nice things to see. A rose coming back --the Japanese Beetles didn't affect the roses as much this year, don't know why.

My butterfly weed is having second wind.

And this self-seeded cleome has really outdone itself.

And, of course, the grass really needs mowing this weekend!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Coneflower conundrum

So, a couple of years ago I planted an orange coneflower (sunset was in the name). This year, here is a stem from it:

Yes, it now has orange and purple flowers on the same stem.

Some questions for my more experienced gardening friends:  There is a purple coneflower planted fairly close. Would this color change have happened anyway, or is it something about having the purple one so close?  And will it always have both colors, or will it eventually become all purple?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Fairy Gardens

Well, I have not been doing much in the garden except pulling a weed or dead-heading a flower here and there.  However, my daughter got inspired by a Fairy Houses book we have, and started building.  These pictures are of her first house --there are others sprouting up all over, but I don't have pictures of those.

This is a far-shot, looking at the whole house, nestled into some nice rocks we have in our garden.

Here is the garden, with a fairy she made sitting on a bench watching, and a resin fairy we bought several years ago working on the garden.

This is a close-up of the fairy she made (the basics come from a Klutz book for making fairies). The two snail shells are from the garden of the bungalow we stayed in while in California this summer.

This is a close up of the dining area, nestled between the rocks and under the ladder. The sand dollars are also from our trip, picked up on Somoa Beach.  She has had a lot of fun creating both the houses and some fairies to populate them.

Friday, July 29, 2011


My garden is looking rather colorless!  The daylilies are down to their last few blooms, and the asters and goldenrod won't start for a month.  Rudbeckia is blooming, but the shasta daisy and bee balm are finished.  What do you all have in your gardens that blooms in August (in zone 4 or northern 5)?


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Saturday, July 23, 2011


Daylilies are one of my favorite flowers --even drought doesn't seem to affect the flowers.  While almost all of my Asian and Oriental lilies are finished, the daylilies are still giving the garden quite a bit of color.

I rarely remember the names of the daylilies I plant, but the first one in this series of close-ups is "Tuscarilla Tigress" --just stuck with me for some reason.

These next two colors just glow in the garden --they're amazing.

This one has colors similar to the Tigress above, but more of a spider form.

This one is called "Straberry Candy", and was one of my first hybrid daylilies.  It has multiplied slowly (I only bought one corm) but it now makes two beautiful clumps.