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 !

Monday, 2 July 2018

Not too impressed and other thoughts ...

I waited quite a while for Princess Kate clematis to bloom .. I was so sure I was going to love it .. maybe I have to give it more time ... but for now ? I am not all that impressed
Other small objects of my affection are making me smile big time though
Garden PA actually counted two of these big beauties and four more of the earlier instar ones for a total of 6 potential amazing Black Swallowtail butterflies .. I would be over the moon !
So ? in order to keep them safe I went a little overboard and wrapped my dill plant in cheesecloth.
I know ... but I would do anything to keep them safe and help them through their journey.
Cheesecloth is extremely breathable yet it will protect them  .. I sleep better at night believe me !
Another wonderful surprise was a second batch of baby robins but this time the parents decided to nest in our big maple tree instead of the deck corner .. they are cooler and safer there in the tree.
I have fallen in love with my euphorbia all over again .. even in complete shade it is a sparkler in the garden ... I can't wait to see how it turns out in the Fall.
Rozanne at the foot of my Chinese Fringe tree looks amazing this year ..
Can you see it peeking out behind the striped grass ?

A little respite from our intense heat wave is this shady nook .. thank heavens for shade in the garden!

Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Unexpected Beauties

Funny how some what tiny things can make you smile .. give you something to look forward to in an unexpected way (even though you may have hoped for it) .. no, none of my lottery tickets have paid off big time yet ... but that is another hope ? wink wink

Black Swallowtail butterflies .. a tiny miracle happened for us about 8 years ago when I was able to hold and transfer a caterpillar/ chrysalis over winter in my fridge ... a WHOLE WINTER.
Then I followed instructions to bring it out gradually in the Spring time to see if it would break through and become that promised butterfly ... it truly was a natural miracle to us when it did.
How beautiful can it get ?
Today we have at least one instar Black Swallowtail caterpillar on the deck dill plant
 They are so tiny .. so many things can happen to them ... but we are crossing our fingers that this one will survive and make it to the chrysalis stage and then become that miracle of a butterfly/
Other garden events ?
Just a few pictures before the forecasted oppressive heat/humidity from hell strikes us
The Kent Beauty oregano is coloring up
It does well in terra cotta planters I find.
I have two different very large thalictrim growing beside each other .. the awaited sprays of tiny violet flowers will look amazing.
Long view of one side of the gardens .. patches of dark and light play off each other.
A wall of clematis .. Warsaw Nike

Another unexpected smile came from a chance purchase of a little echinacea .. just on a whim
Butterfly Kisses (a recurring theme some how ?)
I love how it plays off Pinot Gris heauchera with the same tones .. they were meant to be buddies ?
A pretty pink clematis climbing onto the willow
Indian Pinks waiting their turn in the shade
Something for the late summer early Fall ... a blast of RED from a lobelia .. for now the foliage is a dramatic burgundy nestled in green foliage
So there is waiting to be done .. waiting for new life from the caterpillar ... new flowers from later bloomers ... waiting to see if the world will keep spinning with all that keeps happening.
I hope so !

Thursday, 21 June 2018

Garden of Summer Solstice

I always mean to post on Summer Solstice every year but some how mange to miss it .. this time even though this is very much an on the fly post (I have errands to run SOON!) ..I thought I would just post a few pictures to celebrate that my garden is alive .. and has a few creatures, caught having some fun in it as well ?

I call her ? Ms. Chips mostly .. she is part of a generation of chipmunks that have lived in the back garden for years.
It was complicated this Spring when the new patio was put in .. she had to move temporarily .. and we did worry about her a lot .. but Garden PA saw she had her family in our neighbor's rather neglected back yard (neglected being a good thing because she and her babies were safe there)
The babies have long gone .. like the babies of the Robin .. but Ms. Chips has stubbornly made a new home in our new patio .. who could kick this little soul out ?

I know .. a rather odd ? picture .. chickadees are so quick it is extremely hard to get a picture of them .. especially since our Goldfinches usually drive them away from the feeder .. but I just couldn't resist. Their song is so sweet to hear as is the House wren .. which now I can't find that picture.
They are so hard to photograph .. so quick .. never settling for more than an instant.
In any case .. there are two little creatures that enjoy our back garden !

Of course more allium .. these bloom later than most
Gladiator is a tall one  .. needs a bit of help standing.

A smaller cat mint ..
Baptisia leaning out
A wall of clematis
My new bush clematis
One of my Japanese maples that survived that harsh winter thankfully !
Amur is a pretty one in the corner of the garden
Autumn Brilliance serviceberry .. before it usually gets a hit of "rust" which seems inevitable each year ... the birds love the berries of course !
I am thinking of Fall already with the bulb catalogs arriving ...