Sunday, May 24, 2015

Garden Chit-Chat

Photo-inspired chit-chat, in no particular order...

There's a new rosy addition to the garden, this week!  It was a clearance rose I'd admired earlier in the season-- Apricot Drift, a so-called "groundcover" rose.  Personally, I think "groundcover" may be pushing it, but it's certainly a shorter rose, and I love the apricot/pink flowers.  They even have a scent, which seems to be unusual in these carefree roses. 

The "too-red" (when compared to its neighbors) rose moved yet again.  This time, it's over by the sweet olive, where I hope it can stay for many years to come.  (It's kind of leggy.  Need to decide when to prune.  Late winter?)  The apricot rose took up residence in the newly-vacated spot. 

Apricot Drift Rose

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Marigolds are such fuss-free plants!  They're lacking in subtlety, but I don't mind a little boldness in my flowers.  They come up so easily from seed that I really ought to use them more in the future-- maybe try to get a greater variety of colors next year...  (I have mixed results with seeds, unfortunately, but marigolds never fail.)

Even this bunch (second or third year they've self-seeded) in a pot-- neglected, left to whatever water Nature gives them for the past couple of months-- are still bright and mostly cheerful.


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The gaura is as pretty as ever.  I think the one on the west side of the house ('Whiskers Deep Rose') may be doing a little better than this one ('Little Janie') in the fence bed, but I guess I'll leave it where it is and see what happens. 

Gaura 'Little Janie'

Gaura 'Little Janie'

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The achillea Mom gave me is proving to be very long-blooming.  I think it's already stretching its legs, too.  Some of the achillea I grew from seed has survived, too, though it's still far from blooming.

I've read that achillea (yarrow) can be bully-ish in flower beds, in some parts of the country.  If it seems to be taking over too much, I'll transplant it to its own little corner, somewhere, but so far, I'm happy with it.  I might try putting some in the weed-prone no-plant's-land between the bay window wall and the old-fashioned shrub roses.


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A handful of the morning glories are still around, though I've lost more to rabbits (I guess?) since the last time I wrote about them.  It was particularly frustrating to see the first beautiful 'Heavenly Blue" bloom on one vine the very morning it had been partially eaten.

All the ones remaining (that have bloomed so far, at least) are 'Grandpa Ott':

'Grandpa Ott' Morning Glory

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The KnockOut roses have been putting on another show.  Here's a double red:

Red KnockOut Rose

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The second (I think) flush of bloom on the 'Joseph's Coat' climbing rose has been a thing of beauty!

Now that we have a truck to haul them in, Donald will buy the materials needed for the planned arbor-- the intended support structure for 'Joseph's Coat' and maybe a clematis or two, on the other side. 

'Joseph's Coat' Climbing Rose

'Joseph's Coat' Climbing Rose

"Joseph's Coat" Climbing Rose

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Only a handful of the nasturtiums I transplanted are still around, and I'm not sure any of them look especially healthy.  (Next time, I'll definitely plant in place.  They don't like transplanting.)  Two of them have opened up a first bloom, though-- on the same day, interestingly.  (Well, I think it's interesting when plants seem to be following a very precise schedule like that.)


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'Victoria Blue' sage has begun to bloom. 

'Victoria Blue' Salvia

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A couple other "mark-down" plants came home with us on Friday.  Two clematis vines.

One is 'Fireflame'.  It's a repeat bloomer with stunning dark pink flowers.  The blooms are supposed to be double, but the only flower on the plant is single.  Apparently it's common for double-petaled clematis to start out single, like this.

I thought it was gorgeous as a single-petaled bloom, but the photos of the fully double 'Fireflame' are jaw-dropping.  

While researching the plant after we brought it home, I learned that this variety was developed in Sweden, by a man who has the same first name as my father-in-law (Kjell).  Funny coincidence!

'Fireflame' Clematis

The other new clematis is 'Pink Climador', which has a smaller, more subtle flower.  The only open bloom isn't completely open, but it gives you an idea of what it will look like.  These stay single, and it's a shorter vine, too.  Though the name and descriptions of this clematis insist it is pink, this one bloom looks more like a soft violet to me:

'Pink Climador' Clematis

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I tend to take macro (close-up) photos instead of overview/wider angle pictures.  That's partly because I just enjoy macro photography-- and partly because it's easier to show details with close-ups-- but there's also a certain element of the control-freak editor involved.

Most of my garden looks better (I think) when seen up close.  I can crop out weeds and plants that aren't thriving.  No-one ever has to see the water hose that I couldn't be bothered to coil up neatly (because I'll just have to drag it out again tomorrow morning, anyway) or the ancient plastic lawn chair that has seen better days-- or peeling paint that needs attention.

I need to get over this camera-shyness and make an effort, though.  (A herculean effort, to take off the macro lens and put on another.)  It will be interesting, in five or ten or even twenty years, to look back and see how things have changed.

Hey, things can change a lot in just a month!

Here's a photo I uploaded on April 18th:

Garden Overview

...And here's roughly the same view, taken just a day or two ago:

Part of the Flower Garden

The bamboo is newly-planted, and I'm amazed at how much the night-blooming jasmine has grown (not to mention ginger lily and morning glory).  The yellow flag iris have moved elsewhere, and in their place we have young elephant ears. 

...Yep, more "overview" photos are a must. 

Part of the Flower Garden