Saturday, April 30, 2011

Gardening With Friends

It was a cold and rainy day when my three long time friends and I decided to do some plant shopping, a little antiquing and of course lunch.  These plans had been in place for awhile so we did not want a little bad weather to put us off.  However, the wind was bitter and I should have worn gloves and dressed more for winter rather than spring.

Heucherella Stoplight
I spotted this plant right away in the shade section, although it will take part sun.  I only bought one because I have had Heucherella several years ago and they were not as long lived as the Villosa Heucheras.  I thought I would try this new variety, expensive.

Geranium Blue Sunrise
Again, I think it was the leaf color that caught my eye, starting out orange and turning to lime green.  This is one of the long blooming geraniums that is recommended for growing under roses, similar to Rozanne with a much more vibrant leaf color.

Shasta Daisy Banana Cream
I saw this variety last year at Home Depot but did not purchase it because it reminded me of Broadway Lights which twice has not come back for me.  I read about it and decided it was worth a try because of the color.

I finally decided to pull out the Rhus Aromatica that I have spent so much time trimming and treating over the past several years.

Ninebark Summer Wine
This is supposedly carefree and drought resistant with lots of seasonal interest.

The four of us had worked together for over three decades so we many times do more talking about all of our memories rather than shopping.  It was more than once that salespeople approached us asking if we needed help selecting a plant or a vintage item.  No, we said, we're just talking!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Flight Delayed

This is a common flash on the screen at the airport, but no one lets us know this in regard to the seasons.  In my part of the country, the flight into spring has been delayed by approximately two weeks.  How do I know this?  Well, as bloggers we have photos throughout the year that are dated so it is a great way to keep track of blooming times throughout the seasons.

PJM Rhododendrons
Bloomed at least two weeks earlier last year

Believe me, I am not happy about this delay and everything is on hold in regard to planting annuals, even the garden centers are a hold this year with barely anything that would entice us to believe that summer is coming.

Front Concrete Containers
Not a good year for pansies with the rain and cold weather.  I will be putting in summer plantings before these even take off.  Pansies do not hold up in our summer heat, if we ever get summer heat!

Even my daughter-in-law's planter would look better if the pansies would fill out.

The Star Magnolia looks great this year even after quite a clipping last spring and fall to keep the branches off the adjoining path.  Only the bottom branches were trimmed in the fall, next year blooms will be lost if trimmed too late after blooming.

Kathy's Garden (my daughter-in-law)
Orange Emperor and Albert Heijn Emperor Tulips
Her Orange Emperors came back, mine did not - don't know if the squirrels found mine.

Gatsby planned an eclectic look for a house that has children and pets, not so formal!

I have Ice Follies in the back garden, last a long time and definitely pop being mostly white.

Monte Carlo is a great double tulip and the squirrels seem to leave it alone in the fall, even the rabbits avoid this one.  They are planted on the parkway around the Accolade Elm.  We had to have the parkway dug up by the gas company to repair a very old pipe.  They were very careful about the tulips, but I am concerned about the root loss of the tree.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

A Reversal Of Fortune

I never thought we would have a situation where spring was taken away in an instant.  The winds picked up, rain began and it all ended with snow on the ground.  We were down in the low 30's again with a high in the low 40's for the day.  It has been quite a week!

The Chanticleer Pear is ready to flower if only the weather will cooperate.

Luckily, I had moved some David Phlox the day before and planted some new clematis and Bleeding Hearts.

Snow Queen (which will take some shade) Type I and Dr, Ruppel Type II both from Home Depot

They all seemed to have survived the ice and snow.  I have been hardening off my Silver Tidal Wave Petunias because they are less susceptible to the cold than my other seedlings and the zinnias Zahara Double Orange and Highlight.

The hardening off usually takes a couple of weeks, not time for impatiens yet and the snapdragons and amaranthus are still too small.  I will bring them into the garage each night.

I received my bare root David Austin roses Mary Rose and soaked them in a bucket of water.  I have very good luck with bare root roses, just as good as the potted roses, but there is a short window of planting with bare root, like now!

I had to order these direct from David Austin.  Mary Rose is not available locally even though I think I purchased the first three I had from Home Depot - go figure!

Hyacinth Harlem will last another week or so if the temperatures remain cool.  The shriveled flower stalks can be cut but the green leaves need to remain to make food for next years flowers.  I have grasses planted in this area which will hide the hyacinth leaves.

The containers have been a bit of a disappointment because of the cold weather.  Hopefully, I will be able to show some flowers next week.

Muscari Blue Spike

Muscari Valerie Finnis
Thought this was Valerie but it looks a little light, maybe will change as it opens up!

Emperor White and Yellow

Daffodil Salome
The cup will become pink as it ages

Euonymus Wintercreeper looks great as it leafs out but it has had scale problems, used a dormant spray about a month ago and will use a systemic in May.  I would hate to have to pull this out!

Heuchera Plum Pudding

Heuchera Georgia Peach
I lost one of these and overall they don't seem as hardy as my other Villosas.

Heuchera Southern Comfort
This huechera seems to be the hardiest and keeps its color all year, even under the snow.

I replaced my yew in the middle and it is as close in size as was possible, planted up a little higher this time.

Pachysandra Green Sheen
It looks great this year and is even flowering more than usual.

Have a great weekend and visit Tootsie for Fertilizer Friday!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Around The Garden

Finally, there is something to show in the garden!  I spent part of a day staining the back arbor, not finished yet, but I thought I had better get going before the clematis began climbing.  It had begun to weather after a few years and definitely needed the stain this year.  I use a semi-permanent Sherwin Williams Oil Base Deckscape stain because it holds up better on those flat horizontal areas that face the sun.

Doesn't look too bad, but there are some weathered areas.  I don't mind weathered, my fence is weathered, but I want some contrast in my garden.

Daffodil Ice Follies

Tulip Red Emperor
Most tulips are annuals in zone 5, but if not grabbed by the squirrels, the Emperors have a good chance of coming back, third year for these.

The Star Magnolia

Forsythia Greenstem
I put this in last fall, will grow three feet tall and three feet wide.

Daffodil Itzim and Tete-A-Tete
They are mostly Itzim, very similar but Itzim lasts longer.

Daffodil Marieke and Mount Hood

Hyacinth Delft Blue
This hyacinth has not split apart into florets like many do.  It gets plenty of moisture and sun.

Hyacinth City of Harlem
I am actually glad that this long border grouping of hyacinths split into florets, look less like soldiers.  They are growing in a drier full sun area.

Daffodil Fortissimo

Daffodil Sagitta

These were the pre-potted hyacinths that many of the big box stores and nurseries display.  After they were done blooming last year in my containers, I planted them in the border.  They are a little smaller than they were originally.

The Alley Garden
This is the last area I wanted to show you today, bedded in river rock, slower to start but it is beginning.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

What A Difference A Day Makes

This saying has never been so true as today with above eighty degree temperatures from temps in the forties and fifties.  Spring is exploding all over the place, grass growing, buds swelling, daffodils and tulips opening and the promise of things to come is everywhere.

Hyacinth City of Harlem

Hyacinth Pink Pearl

Hyacinth L'Innocence

It is almost too warm for all of these early spring bloomers.  The temperatures are expected to drop to more normal spring weather after some heavy thunderstorms.

Early Sensation is a large cupped daffodil that blooms earlier than all the others.

Daffodil Marieke

Myrtle Blue Dart
Blooming close to foundation where it is warmer

Daffodil Itzim

Daffodil Tete-A-Tete

This is a mystery plant, I did not plant this but I am on a hundred year plus property so this may be a plant of the past.  Before it opened, it looked like some sort of hyacinth or scilla.

Tulip Early Harvest

My new plant for the spring garden
Rockfoil Neon Rose