Sunday, April 30, 2017

End of Month View

Lets start at the top of the garden looking down the hill for the End of Month View hosted by the The Patient Gardener.  Most of the green in the middle are daylilies which will be an explosion of orange in another month or so.  Probably sooner since we are already having 90 degree days here in Williamsburg, Virginia.  It's going to be a long, hot summer!  Verbena 'Homestead Purple' and iris are blooming close to the bird bath. The tree to the right is a cherry blossom.
Below, behind the bird bath is a peony 'Festiva Maxima'. Funny story, my husband dumped ashes from the fire pit on this particular peony sometime this past winter.  Apparently, the minerals in the ash were just what the peony was looking for because this one is ahead of the others in bloom time as well as being more prolific.  I'll have to try that trick next winter on the others!

Peony 'Festiva Maxima'

Toward the bottom of the garden, catmint is coming in to full bloom along with more peonies.  This one's name escapes me at the moment. The willowy,chartreuse shrub surrounding the bird house in the background is Spirea 'Ogon'.
A look toward the woods includes newly planted spiderwort 'Sweet Kate' as well as a renovated paver path that I just finished. The pavers go down to the vegetable garden which was just planted with tomatoes, Japanese eggplant, squash, cucumbers, and green beans. (I forgot to take pictures of the vegetable garden.)
Inside the fence, deutzia 'Yuki Snowflake' continues to show off it's dainty white blooms. The garden is on the outside of the fenced in the backyard.  Why you ask? We have two very mischievous beagles who dig and tear up most everything. 
Beagles, looking very inconspicuous.  Don't be fooled! They can dig twenty holes in about thirty minutes when they are on the hunt for a vole!

My favorite pot so far this year, this time on a sunny day.  Canna, million bells and sweet potato vine make up the pot in orange, hot pink and chartreuse colors.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

The Sixth Day of Rain...

On our 6th day in a row of rain and gloomy skies, here is my first summer pot all planted and ready for the sun!  Orange seems to be the new "it" color for plants this year.  It started with orange pots being the rage two years ago and has carried over in to flowers.  The tangerines, apricots, and oranges are everywhere in the nurseries (and I don't mean the fruit). 

Monday, April 24, 2017

In a Vase on Monday - "Purple Rain"

It was a dreary, cold, drizzling weekend with no sign of the sun. Monday has continued in this fashion. This is very unusual for spring in Williamsburg, Virginia!  My flowers are soggy and droopy, but no matter.  The show must go on!  Here is my In a Vase on Monday edition, a garden meme every Monday hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden. You can visit her blog to see more In a Vase on Monday selections from fellow garden bloggers.
What's in the vase?
Columbine 'Blue Barlow'
Verbena 'Homestead Purple'
Deutzia 'Yuki Snowflake'
Catmint 'Walkers Low'
Dianthus from the Scent First series

Saturday, April 22, 2017

The Toughest Plants Around

In my previous post, I mentioned that I was going to write on plants in my garden that made it through three and a half years of complete neglect.  If you recall, I had my third child three years ago and from the time I became pregnant in 2013 until 2017, I just could not tend my garden.  While pregnant, it was the outdoor smells that would make me sick and then toward the end, it was sheer exhaustion.  Once baby #3 came in to this world, it was the lack of time and still sheer exhaustion.  Now he is old enough to play in the garden while I work away.  So which plants survived without watering, pruning, top dressing, Liquid Fence and fussing that all gardeners do?  Well, here is my list of the toughest plants around. Plants with an asterisk denote my all time favorites due to longevity of bloom time, interesting year round foliage or just, well, because!

Bearded Iris



Torch Lily

Sun Drops



*Shasta Daisy 'Becky'


Green headed coneflower
 Bee Balm ('Jacob Cline' did not make it.)

Other Perennials:
Rose 'Don Juan'
Sedum 'Autumn Joy'
Sedum 'Angelina'
Columbine 'Blue Barlow'
Obedient Plant

Beauty Berry
Spirea 'Ogon'

Here is what didn't make it - verbena 'Homestead Purple', chrysanthumum 'Sheffields Pink', butterfly bushes, hydrangeas (both mopheads and oakleaf), blue salvia, Japanese iris, lambs ear, astilbe, and rudbeckia, pink coneflower.

So if you are looking for new plants that require little fuss, please feel free to use this list as a reference, as none of us know when we will have to stop gardening for a little while or perhaps a long while!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

A Walk Around the Garden in April

My garden is in such disarray from being completely neglected for the last three and a half years! After having my third child, gardening just had to take a back seat for a couple of years, but now I'm back! I appreciate the time I have to garden all the more.  I have been working at a feverish pace the last six weeks to get it back in shape and I am almost there. I have one large area that has not been tended, however the rest of the garden has either been weeded and mulched or given a complete overhaul with new plants and designs.  I will be adding a post later this month on plants that can survive complete neglect. We all need those don't we? As we never know what curveball life will throw us around the corner from today!  Anyway enough talk, let's take a walk and see what's blooming right now...
 Catmint is just coming in to bloom. Note the toad on the bottom left corner of the picture.  I love toads in the garden because they usually mean I don't have any snakes (for the time being).

 'Little Pixie' Japanese Maple is in the pot.  A completely neglected tree in a pot for three years and it has come through okay.  Newly planted around the base of the pot is Heuchera 'Caramel' and Guem 'Tequila Sunrise'.  I am working to provide more foliage color/contrast in my renovated garden.  The heuchera leaves match the color of the flowers on the guem.  The maple and heuchera leaves also play nicely off each other.
 Heuchera 'Caramel'

 Guem 'Tequila Sunrise'

 'Little Pixie' Japanese Maple

 Decidous azalea that has been here longer than me.

 Azalea whose name I don't know!
 What do you do with an urn that has broken off from it's pedestal?  Turn it on its side and place it on the ground, of course! Multi colored violas are planted in the urn.

 'Homestead Purple' Verbena that is newly planted. I did have the same verbena planted here prior to the third child, however this is NOT a plant that could stand the neglect.
 Sweet Jonquils with verbena in the background.

Unknown bearded iris with an under planting of sedum that has stood a few years of neglect.
 Newly planted area of dianthus from the Scent First series and spiderwort 'Sweet Kate'.  Again, I'm working more on foliage color this year and not just flowers with bland green leaves.
 Deutzia 'Yuki Snowflake'
 Violas, salvia and creeping jenny.
Back on the porch - an inexpensive hydrangea from Trader Joes that I purchased for Easter this year.  I hope you enjoyed the walk!