Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Monday, June 26, 2017

Before and After

Do you realize the impact fresh mulch makes on a garden's appearance? And it's only like $3.50 a bag! Perhaps my garden budget is roomier this year, but that seems like money WELL spent.



I've yet to feel like any of my garden areas are completely finished-- not that the goal is to ever be truly finished, but still, sometimes you get to that place of feeling that something requires only maintenance instead of massive amounts of improvement. This week, Mike leaned this trellis here that we just bought to go elsewhere, and I suddenly had a vision, that this little area right here, is finished. I mean, once I plant something for that trellis.



And lest we forget where we have come from since purchasing the place 5 years ago:


Yes, I'd say that is an improvement.

So what else is going on in the garden?

The sunflower house I'm making for the kids is taking shape. Just planted morning glory seeds between the sunflowers today. We will see how this turns out!

And as far as my perennials, this is the bed overall right now:


a week or so ago when penstemon 'husker red' was in bloom
a week or two before that, before things were dead-headed

 It went through a quiet time of less bloom after the big Spring show, after the peonies and irises, but before the lilies and coneflowers. I did purchase a new kind of penstemon and a foxglove for an open area in the middle, which should help bring some bloom to this down time.

I also have been learning a bit about lilies. I was a little surprised to see my lilies even taller this year. I have a few different types, and I can tell they're different, but never figured out what was what. Here is what I've learned.

Asiatic Lilies
  • no fragrance
  • multiply quickly
  • bloom first

Oriental Lilies
  • grow taller each year (!)
  • bloom second
  • don't multiply fast
  • scented

And maybe even more importantly, don't trust that the bulb packages at the home improvement store are labeled correctly. Because these were most definitely supposed to be a beautiful light pink lily:

I decided the red ones could fit in, but the orange ones were relocated to a different bed containing its color family. 

Food garden-wise, we haven't done much this year in the big garden. My tomatoes are growing, I planted the cherry tomato plant just today, and we've all but given up on the peppers Mike started, and instead planted over 2 dozen, with more to be planted, of mystery peppers we found on sale. So that's exciting. Bell peppers? Jalapenos? We will find out! I do have giant pumpkins and squash plants growing. The strawberries have been a huge letdown. They are diseased and need to be ripped out, and we only got a few good strawberries before they went downhill. But the raspberries have started, blueberries are ripening as I type, the blackberries look very promising, and there are just starting to be RIPE cherries on some of Mike's trees, as well as young plum and peach fruit. So that's all great!  

The first couple Japanese beetles have been sighted, and Mike sprayed clay on the squash plants for squash bugs, on the fruit plants for fruit pests, whatever. The clay is supposed to help.

I will close with a few images of my beloved perennials from this week:

catmint and coneflower

clockwise starting at 6 o'clock: mum, new penstemon, allium, coneflower in the left corner, daisy, peony, catmint. In the center, new foxglove.

catmint, phlox, heuchera

penstemon 'husker red' in the center

my favorite heuchera with catmint

It's all such a happy sight! Happy June!


About Me

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I'm a flower enthusiast married to a man with organic farming dreams. We're enjoying developing our own outdoor paradise in our first home, with 3 little gardening girls by our side. When not spending my free time gardening, I'm recording our memories in my pocket page scrapbooks.