My favorite rose started blooming in late May, bloomed right through the dryness of August, and will continue for a while yet. At this point, I’m leaving the hips on to ripen, as they turn a very nice orange. It’s a David Austin rose called Windrush, which has a fabulous scent.
The fruit on my pawpaws is not particularly large this year, but there seems to be quite a bit of it.
I have a soft spot for Solomon’s seal. I love the way it arches, the coolness of the leaves, the flowers, and the berries. They bloomed well this year, and two of the species I have set fruit very well. Continue reading “Solomon’s Seal, Flower to Seed”
A relaxing garden has both restful places for your eyes and focal points to enjoy. Green is restful, but it can get monotonous if it’s all identical, as in a yard with a well-kept lawn, but nothing else. Texture is a good way to add interest without losing the restfulness of green. Massing, an application of the design principles of repetition and proximity, is a great way to develop texture that is sufficiently interesting to lead your eyes to an interesting larger plant or something in bloom. Continue reading “Texture in the Summer Garden”
I mentioned rearranging plants in my last post. This is the best time to rearrange your irises. They are dormant, and they are happier to remain dry this time of year, which makes post-planting attention simple.
I moved blue-eyed grass last week. It seeds where it wants to, but the plants are very easy to move. They are small enough to be a trowel job, even when they have reached blooming size.
There is a lot of purple in May and early June. Here are four purple-flowered plants, two natives and two not, that have done very well. They will all take light shade, although the geranium would probably be happiest with more sun than the others.
False Indigo, Baptisia australis
This native plant erupts from the ground the second week of May, and is blooming by the end of the month! It is very popular with our bumblebees.
Somehow, it’s August. Not only that, l spent last week, one of two between-semester weeks off, cooking, paying bills, catching up with my accountant, weeding, mowing, rearranging a few plants, and having meetings with mixed success. I did get a few things done towards a drawing that is, so far, a year in the making.
I knew that my garden was fraying, but it really didn’t sink in fully until I realized that I had completely forgotten about an empty spot right by the back door that I
would have to deal should have dealt with in the spring—of 2020. Last week I realized that spot had taken care of itself. It’s not subtle in bloom.
I am using the term ‘bugs’ loosely.
I was trying get pictures of the little flower buds on the arrow-leaved asters, when this little character brought me to a full stop. Sometimes you just end up laughing out loud, even in the garden.
My neighbor’s pear tree drops fruit at the end of August and into September right outside my back door every year. I pick up the fruit every morning, very carefully, so that I don’t inadvertently step on a yellow jacket—the largest number of visitors to these pears has always been yellow jackets, and the only thing crankier than a yellow jacket is a yellow jacket in August, but I have seen only one or two in the last couple of weeks. However, when I stepped out after lunch to toss my compostables into the bin, I noticed a pear covered in insects. Before my eyes even focussed, I was thinking, “Oh no! Bald-face hornets!”—the only hymenopteran I have run into that is meaner than a yellow jacket. Thankfully, I was wrong.
My best guess is that these are eastern bumblebees. They susurrate their way through the grape hyacinths in the spring, which is very joyful to listen to and to watch. They buzz and bustle at each flower, and move around very busily, a completely different behavior than their calm approach to the pear in the photograph above, or to Echinacea. The bustling activity turns to be buzz pollination, a critical thing if you like tomatoes, blueberries, or cranberries, to name a few crops.
I will be putting some of the fruit where it cannot get stepped on for the bumblebees. They are clearly hungry, and probably thirsty. We have very little rain this month. Fortunately, rain is in the forecast for the next couple of days.
Somehow it is looking like August out there, I think in part due to the roadside weeds that are at least a foot taller now than they usually are in July, undoubtedly due to the rain.