What a beautiful morning! At first, I thought it had rained overnight as flowers and leaves wore speckled water jewels and steps in the grass showed my progress through the garden from one blossom to another. Then I realized it was Wednesday, and my sprinkling system soaks everything in a 4 AM mist. Did I lose a day? In a way, I guess I did, as yesterday I devoted my time to house sitting for my daughter instead of combatting Japanese Beetles and plucking spent blooms off yesterday’s Day Lilies.
The beetles are still here waiting for me to urge them off the cliff of a rose petal into a sudsy mixture where Beetle heaven awaits. No aphids, no mealies, a little blackspot on the roses, no leaf-rollers on the Canna. All things considered it’s a good morning!
Even though we are enjoying early summer with hot, sunny afternoons, and scattered showers each evening, I have to start thinking of Fall. Neighbors have requested a few of my extra hybrid Day Lilies which are starting to wind down their blooming cycle of orange, red, yellow, and pink daily surprises. I will need to move more of the Hosta from afternoon sun to the shade garden and I have to get the rescued azaleas in a permanent location. My eight or so Hosta varieties will have to be subdivided and excess given to friends who have promised to care for the leafy blues, yellows, and greens.
Back to now and let’s stroll together and see what’s new, what’s old, what’s red, what’s gold. What is green is easy as the summer stampede of Elephant Ears is crashing and jumping over azaleas and Hosta. They have dominated the front yard sidewalk garden each of the past two summers and this year will be no exception. Thankfully, they provide a sun shield to both azalea and Hosta. Even though the garden faces the northwest, the late afternoon sun skald can be brutal. They have plenty of moisture as they have captured a sprinkler nozzle and made it their own. Note to myself – look into getting a four foot high sprinkler extension so water can be shared instead of “ear” hoarded.
Roses are in their second blooming cycle of the season and I actually trimmed them over the past week and vibrant regrowth is promising a mid-summer flush of red, pink, and white fireworks. I just spotted a deer across the street and so far, fingers crossed, Hosta have been spared. Soon, this week I hope, a bright glow of Black-eyed Susans will burst in summer glory. They dominate a whole terrace in the sunny backyard and buds have been developing for weeks. Lavender Crepe Myrtle that I have raised from “sticks” are beginning their first summer show. Have you ever looked closely at a Myrtle bloom? Fascinating detail and complexity!
If you have followed past articles, you know one of my favorite Spring plants is the St. John’s Wort which blessed us with hundreds of fuzzy, bright yellow blossoms in April followed by clusters of small brilliant red “fruit”. The fruit or seed capsules are fading to a dull red and the lime green new leaves of Spring are a much darker green now BUT — new growth has emerged and new buds and flowers are sprinkled across the bushy growth and a second summer bloom is afoot!
Another pleasant and expected surprise is a second growth cycle on my purple Butterfly Bush. I clipped the dozens of spent panicles from the June bloom and from each clipped end, two new shoots have appeared with two or four tiny buds promising a mid-summer treat for both me and the butterfly nation.
I added two Red Lobelia or Cardinal Flowers to my front yard garden – planted one and left one in the pot as an experiment. The Lobelia are water needy and the earth bound member is doing fine but the potted twin demands moisture on a daily basis. Experiment done – put them both in the ground and mulch.
The orange “Ditch Lily” started blooming the last week in May and were done with their hundreds of blooming spikes by mid-June whereas the hybrid Day Lilies didn’t start until the first week in June and are still dancing in the afternoon sun in robes of red, purple, creamy white, pink and lavender. As soon as they finish blooming, I will start separating and sharing with neighbors. Speaking of Lavender, I planted three Lavender (plant) sprouts two Springs ago. Two didn’t survive the sunny location but one did and this year it dominates the edge of the wildflower garden with hundreds of fragrant spikes enjoyed by all passer-byes including a buzz of native bumble bees which work constantly gathering and sharing pollen embracing the lingering fragrance. Would their honey be a shade of purple? Do bumble bees even make honey? Such mysteries!!
Enough talk and way too many words – let’s finish our stroll and thanks for visiting! You are welcome anytime.
4 thoughts on “Around The Garden – July 8th, 2020”
Love seeing your garden, George!
A lovely tour! Do note that the hybrid St. Johnswort you grow is NOT the medicinal herb St. Johnswort, just in case you start feeling depressed and are tempted to try it…..
Thank you! I wasn’t tempted but now I know!