Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Week To Remember

I can't recall a week when so many things seemed to be going on at one time.  It began last Saturday when I volunteered for the University of Illinois Extension at a demonstration farm where the food grown is donated to a local food pantry.

While I share my saga I am going to show you a few things that are in bloom in my garden.

Allium Purple Sensation has deepened in color each day with the cooler weather.

Heucherella Stoplight
I love the airy blooms on this one and it really pops in the garden.

Well, I am certainly not like I used to be out in the misting rain, temps in the high forties and just garden gloves for my hands.  We were doing square foot plantings with both plants and seeds.  Three and one half hours later I was like a frozen speciman of a person.  It took hours to get rid of the shivers and the tingling in my hands only to begin cleaning my house for the fifty-six people who showed up for my Garden Study Group that I was hosting on Monday.

Dicentra Spectablis Alba

Oh, I forgot to mention that on Saturday and Sunday the temperatures dipped into the high thirties with thirty to forty mile per hour winds.  By the time I looked outside some of my more tender annuals had been beat into submission.  In the meantime, my computer also crashed and I didn't have it hooked up to a back-up drive (I thought because it was fairly new I didn't need one - wrong).  On Monday morning I was outside with my Felco pruners cutting away all of the shriveled leaves.

Halcyon Blue Hosta
At one time the Bleeding Heart was the same height as the hosta.

Impatiens Wild Thing
This is one of the plants I began under lights, only eight out of the twenty-five seeds germinated.  I heard from many of you that this is not uncommon with impatiens.

The Garden Club presentation on Body Fitness was like a checklist of all the things I didn't do but wish I did.

Hosta Unknown Name
I purchased this last year to go out in front under my Chanticleer Pear but it began to burn up even with light sun so I moved it to the back garden where it is shaded by many other plantings.  August Moon Hosta which is also a lighter green will take some sun so I put that one in it's place out front.

Pulmonaria Raspberry Splash

Green Sheen Pachysandra

Variegated Solomon's Seal

Hosta Paul's Glory

Hosta Patriot

We got through everything, new computer, with back up drive attached (they are as small as a wallet now).  Everyone loved the garden, put in a few replacement plants today, completed the baskets and containers, mossed most of the containers and am now sitting with an ice pack on my back!

This one is supposed to do well in heat with minimum water requirements.  I am using it in my hayracks on the little garden shed.

I think it will do well with Verbena Imagination and Zahara Zinnia Highlight which I started from seed (not blooming yet).

Azalea Karen
I like how the flowers have become lighter inside as they age.

Hydrangea Let's Dance Starlight
I planted three of these last year in blue, color determined by soil or fertilizer.  I hope they will end up looking the same or it is going to be a little strange with pink on one side of the walk and blue on the other!

Have a great weekend everyone!


Jim Groble said...

We have the same bright green hosta. With a little luck, the tag is still next to it. if not, I'll look in by books. Your yard looks great!

Sissy said...

Oh! I have never heard of Let's Dance Starlight. I have Let's Dance Moonlight which I adore!!! I will have to look for Starlight too! Mine do turn from blue to purple to pink all on one plant and although it sounds strange, its stunning...!

Lily said...

I am always delighted everytime you have a new post. Such beautiful flowers and that little piggy adds a little bit of whimsical touch to the Allium Purple Sensation photo.

Zoey said...

Your hard, hard work is paying off, Eileen. Everything looks wonderful.

My eye caught the rusty bench with the owl in the allium photo. . . great accent piece!

Hosta Patriot always looks good. I think it's one of my favorites (though I don't have one).

Did you tell me last year that you bought the moss filler on line? It sure finishes off the containers nicely.

Indoor Fountains said...

Your garden looks magnificent. Thank God the cold weather didn't destroy anything..

Bonnie said...

Love all the flowers. I'm hoping to visit a local nursery this weekend that I have 2 gift certificates to. I'll be like a kid in a candy store!

Gatsbys Gardens said...


Thanks I am trying to get better about keeping the names of the hostas and the ferns.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Sissy,

Moonlight and Starlight are from the same series, one a lacecap and the other a full head type. I just planted three more Starlights today.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Lily,

It is an owl but difficult to tell, got at Planters Palette in WInfield.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Zoey,

That rusty bench, amazed that it has held up through the years, sometimes I am afraid to sit on it!


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Thanks Indoor Fountains,

I did have some cold and wind damage last weekend.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Thanks BOnnie,

I love those gift cerificates but they go fast don't they?


MrBrownThumb said...

Lovely collection of blooms. I have to agree with you on the observation of the allium blooms. The cool weather sure helped make the color bolder.

Grace said...

Gorgeous photos. I love that yellow hosta with its surrounding plants and the variegated Solomon's Seal is to die for.

Bernie said...

Oooh, you poor thing. That was indeed a full week. I'm hoping you've recovered a little now. Everything is looking fabulous out in your garden. Especially loved Azalaea Karen and your white Dicentra.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Thanks MBT,

I haven't grown allium in several years. It is certainly a stunner in the garden this year!


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Thanks Grace,

I wish I could find out the name of that yellow hosta.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Bernie,

I have avoided azaleas for many years because of my previous experience with them. Karen is a very hardy variety for our area so I hope it works out.


Anonymous said...

Eileen, seeing your gardens and the posts I've missed lately, has certainly been a day brightener this morning. Absolutely gorgeous day brightener!

Tatyana@MySecretGarden said...

It's a beautiful time of the year in your garden, Eileen! Alliums is especially gorgeous. Mine are just starting to bloom.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Thanks Pat,

I am trying to enjoy the day-by-day surprises in the garden especially after our recent winter.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Tatyana,

I still have another variety that has not bloomed yet.


leavesnbloom said...

Oh what a week you had! Oh if only I had space for more coloured leafed hostas like the one beside your dicentra. The two planted side by side are such a lovely combination.

I also like the metal art work you have hung on your fencing aswell.
Have you a post just on that? as I would love to see more of it.

Gloria, Dakota Garden said...

Eileen, your flowers are spectacular! So beautiful!

Lona said...

Hi Eileen. Your Purple Sensation alliums are so pretty. Mine are finished now and I hate to see them gone but they do have wonderful seed heads yet. That owl is so cute sitting on your bench. Your verbena and zinnia plants did very well. The Sanvitalia is so pretty. I love the dark stems and leaves with the yellow blooms.Looks like another week of rain here but at least warmer.

CanadianGardenJoy said...

Eileen girl my goodness you have been through the mill ! I wish my Purple Sensation looked as good as yours .. we share so many plants it is a hoot!
August Moon hosta is one of my favorites along with Halcyon .. any "day" I spend in my garden between rain showers I over spend myself and it takes days to even walk straight .. it can be so frustrating when we love being in the garden so much.
I have Let's Dance Starlight as well and I am waiting to see how it will do too ! Fingers crossed : )

Gatsbys Gardens said...


That is a great hosta, blue and tought leaved so the slugs do not bother it, and it stays this color throughout the seasons.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Thanks Gloria,

Love your spring garden with everything just bursting through.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Joy, I am waiting in anticipation to see what Hydrangea Starlight color blooms on the ones I put in last year. I cut them way back this fall so I could plant bulbs in between. They are growing but not as big as the new ones I just put in.


garden girl said...

Very pretty Eileen! I really love that variegated Solomon's seal.

I had no problem with impatiens sprouting under the lights, but oddly enough a bunch of them rotted this year. I've never had that happen before. I'm beginning to suspect the soil I used, as I'm having issues with some other things started from seed - problems I've never had before, like cucumber seeds not sprouting even after multiple tries.