Wednesday, April 29, 2015

More daffodils, more of everything!

Inspired by the daffodil show this year, I have been dividing daffodils and planting them all over the big bed. Next to the front sidewalk too. It'll probably be a couple of years before those divisions size up enough to make the kind of display I want, but I didn't feel like waiting to order more bulbs in the fall. I've already been waiting *15 years* to fill the bed with daffodil bulbs. Perhaps the fall rush of garden and fall work makes me tired, but I almost never remember to order bulbs in time. Enough with the delays! Daffodils need to be everywhere.

I've been planting divisions Geranium maculatum from the farm too. There was a big clump
at the back of the big bed and suddenly I realized that I needed a lot more of this everywhere too.

I have been slow to clear the garden this year but I am still enjoying it. Problems with fibro have returned with a vengeance and I have missed a lot of days working outside. I am hoping that a return to a brand name of medication does the trick.

Speaking of bulbs, years ago I transplanted Atamasco lilies into the ditch in front of the big bed. I envisioned a swath of snowy white blooms, like I had seen next to the slough on our farm in past years (in openings created when trees were felled during storms) and next to the dirt roads that wind through Howell Woods. Instead I have ended up with exactly two flowers.

Two is better than zero but I had envisioned the ditch being paved with them
by now. The lilies by the old pond site are doing well though and have even
spread, so I divided a clump and added a couple of bulbs in front of the big bed.

I have thought of letting marsh marigold take over the ditch in front of the big bed. It's
taken over the bottom part of our neighbor's pasture (and part of our shelter paddock as well).

That would be OK if they'd play nice with the Amsonia, although they probably would overrun
the violets. I have GOT to get more groundcovers going though. The blue violets are doing a
good job east of the house and part of the big bed, but I'm not sure how they'd fare in a dry year.

The rugosas have started blooming. I have all but eliminated them in the big bed but have many many others. (Now that I have gardens all around the house I've wanted to replace the rugosas there with natives.) I love their fragrance.

The iris and baptisia are blooming. I look forward to this time all year.

Jesse's Song

'Purple Smoke'

Monday, April 13, 2015

A Wild Turkey Sighting, Daffodils and Violets

Look at what DH saw when he looked out the window on Easter Sunday afternoon!

He called downstairs to tell me there was a turkey in front of the garden, and we managed to get the window open and the screen removed without scaring her off. I think the noise of the camera made her a little nervous though; soon she headed across the driveway

and into the neighbor's pasture.

The redbud was at its peak Easter weekend. As you can
see I still have a lot of clearing from last year to do!

I like how the redbud looks with the nearby red maple, nicknamed the
apricot maple due to the color of its spring flowers and fall leaves.

This has been the best year so far for daffodils.

DH's grandmother's daffodils finished up in early April

On March 28th

and then Quail, Curlew , and Thalia took over the show.


There is still plenty of space for more daffodil bulbs
so I have been dividing them as they finish blooming.

'Thalia' has a unique sort of grace. I love the way it nods. To me the blooms smell like vanilla.

Curlew (the little white daffodil with the custard yellow cup) is also very sweet.

This time of year weeds are as important to the bees as garden flowers. This is the year of the field pansy. I don't recall ever seeing so many. They covered the neighbors' lawns.

Many are white

but I found some growing near the front yard that are pink and lavender, the loveliest of all.

Thanks to a couple of wet years blue violets have formed a nice carpet in several of the garden beds. I know some people regard them as weeds, but they are native and I desperately need a ground cover that can handle moisture and part shade. Besides, they are purple and I have always wanted violets in my garden.

Incidentally, blue violets were not growing wild on the farm when we moved here. Instead, there were 3 other species. One, the early blue violet, which looks much like a unicolor bird's foot violet. Two, what I believe is a marsh violet, with smaller leaves and flowers than the blue violet. It's very floriferous and typically grows in wet places.

The flowers range from blue to lavender. Three, a lilliputian
white violet, which I think is a bog white violet.

My quest to get lamium growing somewhere other than in the garden is succeeding! Now it's growing all over the front yard. This is a bee *favorite*. Once the clover starts blooming that will be a bee favorite too.

The bee looks like she is saying that this lamium is the best thing ever.
I predict there will be arguments with DH about when to move the lawn. lol

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