Monday, 13 August 2018

Tall Tales & Naughty Ideas

Late summer has drifted in .. plants are exchanging "shifts" in the garden, and signals that Autumn will be threading it's way through, are more evident.
One sure sign for me is "Miscanthis Giganteus" .. it is a stunner.
I sometimes wonder though, "did I plant it in the right location ?" by the shed door?
It can be tricky navigating close to it with those sharp grass leaves .. so I do some selective trimming.
But  ... wow .... talk about a hide and seek type of plant to play with ?
A compact grass that is rather cute to mix and match with is pennisetum alopecuroides Piglet
It is trying to hold it's own here against a persistent Ostrich fern group.
Another grass .. I have a few, but love adding more ... is one I can't locate the name for, rats !
It is a wonderful contrast grass with tight seed like flower heads that wave in the breeze.
The prime subject here though is the TALL late blooming Japanese anemone.
The grass heads are almost like  bokeh in this shot .. I like the affect.
An anemone for late summer, Elfin Swan, is a gorgeous, smaller version, in bright white for shadier sections of the garden.
Lush dark green foliage covered in buds
Joe Pye is proud of it's height .. drawing in so many pollinators as it opens itself up to the world.
Speaking of opening up ... the last of my oriental lilies has finished but it was a nice bright surprise this year .. Venezuela, was a new one and I am not quite sure of it, but pretty all the same.
Another new plant is hydrangea macrophylla "Early Blue" and I have to say it is actually adapting to what ever element it needs (acidic) in the soil and turning blue, bit by bit.
I am not a fan of mopheads, this was an impulse buy .. but I have to say it is a blooming machine !
I have to mention my first, and oldest hydrangea (they seem to have such a long life span!)
Little Lamb has been with me since the beginning of this garden.
One more TALL .. and then the tale.
I have two very tall thalictrum .. this one I would call tiny bubbles but it is probably eleven feet tall almost dwarfing my eight foot fence ... hundreds of bubbles that become tiny flowers.
The Royal Purple Smoke Bush helps to support it thank heavens !
OK .. I started with "tall" and now for the naughty ..
Have you ever thought about getting a tatoo ? .. I know .. totally off topic, who knew ?
Garden PA and I decided we would like to try a small one each .. BUT ... just a semi permanent one to see how it would look .. bawk bawk .. yes we are a little chicken to fully commit .
This is a fun way of trying it out, from a site called "inkbox" .."for now, not forever" is their motto.
So .. which one do you think I am choosing ? LOL

Monday, 6 August 2018

Suddenly Sunrise

I was awake at 5 this morning .. couldn't get back to sleep.
So at 6 , I finally caught a red sunrise that I haven't in years .
If it seems repetitious .. forgive my enthusiasm ? I fell in love with it !

Sunday, 29 July 2018

Bits'n Pieces

Can you believe it is the end of July ? .... I know I said I can't wait until Autumn, but was I in some sort of time machine or something ... most likely in hibernation mode I think .. from the heat and drought, and a sad event.
My magical chrysalis STOPPED evolving ...
We have no idea what caused the transformation to hault.
It really got to me ... I was so happy to see this little miracle happening and it just STOPPED
You can see where the top part cracked .. Garden PA said he thought it was the heat.
But I can't reconcile myself to that .. I just don't understand it .. a little heart broken in fact.
I have to move on though ... the drought has been BAD .. but we have the sprinklers going and the gardens seem to be fine.
We do have loads of bees and beneficial insects hovering around and I saw a gorgeous Monarch fluttering from the flowers, of course too fast for a photo.

Little Lamb hydrangea is BURSTING with flowers as usual .. it was my first hydrangea over 17 years ago !
Casa Blanca shimmers in the shade
The Tiger Moon lilies have escaped most of the Lily beetle attacks ...
A white rose lily has also evaded the lily beetle, I think because it has no scent but it GLOWS in the shade and I am smitten with it .. will have to order more in the Spring !
Sun King aralia is happy .. so happy it is GROWING like a weed .. I have to trim it up a bit so the epimedium "Purple Pixie" can breath .. but my shady side is smiling.
A little hydrangea I picked up at Costco is amazing .. it is supposed to be blue but my soil isn't quite right for that color choice ? .. still it catches the eye and a tiny little spider as well.
At Last rose had this look I couldn't resist ... I know switching from pink to apricot ? is a shock but they both share that come hither look ?

I don't usually have pictures of the front garden .. just keep forgetting .. or working too hard to remember? .. that sounds better, right? wink wink
It is in the shadows when I took these pictures, so the colors don't pop as much.
Usually the gold barberry really shines between the Japanese maple (Bloodgood) and Spilled Wine weigela .. plus Amber Moon astilbe emphasizes that gold .. but, since losing my big Crimson King maple from the front plants that had a bit more shade are exhausted from so much sun and heat.
On a happy note .. the second batch of baby robins have been leaving the nest .. this was the last one I could catch before he/she decided it was time to leave home.
I will miss that incredible chatter they made when the parents came to feed them .. it was sweet to hear so much life going on in our back garden.

Friday, 13 July 2018

Baby Bunting ?

Well .. long story short ... a few days ago I missed watering my big dill pot (yes the wrapped one with all my butterfly cats) .. Garden PA noticed it one evening as it had been tipped by the wind .. he put it right again .. watered .. but wasn't too sure about the cats .
Next day I went through a huge guilt trip .. unwrapped it .. cats were gone .. but I am sure they wiggled away to make their cocoons .. however this one stayed and we have a chrysalis !!
Sadly I read that Black Swallowtail butterflies have such a small life span .. 12 to 14 days .. there have been some recorded longer but how sad is that ?
Unwrapped again .. I hope to draw in more butterflies and go through the process again .. this time I swear I will be more vigilant about the watering !

Other garden scenes
I am having a terrible year with lily beetles .. it makes you think why bother with lilies.
However the Eyeliner lilies are trying so hard .. a few others are too ... so I also try to hang on ?

Shade garden
At first I wasn't sure about Banana Boat "grass" but it has been a few years and it does look beautiful in the shade next to the Dogwood
Speaking of grass .. this smaller striped one (name escapes me at the moment) looks great as a foil against one of the Sunsparkler sedums, maybe Dazzleberry ? in the Fall it is spectacular.
The pink and blue hot spot
The Giant Grass Miscanthus Gianganteus (easy to remember right ?) is looking good even with me constantly trimming it back so we don't get poked in the eyes when going in and out of the shed.
I under plant everything .. I love layers .. ferns, gooseneck loosestrife and there is actually a mini grass on the other side .. I have to relocate .. too much going on for it to shine amongst them.
The morning sun was too bright but you get the idea
This was one of my favorite photos of the day .. gives me a serene feeling some how.
We are so very dry here .. the sprinkler system SAVES my gardens and I am grateful for that !