Archive for July 2008

Windowbox Take 2   2 comments

I don’t know, it seemed like a good idea at the time, but I don’t like my summer windowbox this year.  I tried to get all the same color, but different sizes and textures.  I think it’s that the shades of pink don’t match, and I tried really hard not to mix a salmon pink with a purple pink, but somehow they are not from the same family and I don’t like the way it looks.  That’s the best thing about gardening – you never have a chance to get bored, there’s always something to do better next year. Here’s whats in there: pink supertunia, pink verbena, diamond euphorbia, pink polka dot plant, and Acapulco ivy geranium

Posted July 23, 2008 by cindyeo in color combination, garden, petunia, verbena, windowbox

Hummingbird Don’t Fly Away   1 comment

I can’t believe I got this photo today of the elusive hummingbird.  He never stays long enough for me to get my camera.  Today, I happened to have just walked out my back door with camera in hand, and there he (she?) was on my bee balm.  I couldn’t possibly get the camera turned on and up to my face in time, and he flew away.  But he only flew to the other side of my yard, where he found a nicotiana in bloom.  I ran, as stealthly as I could, over to him, snapping shots as I got closer.  I was able to get this one, cropped of course, and I’m just thrilled.  I think it was the longest I’ve seen him stay on one plant, I was very lucky, he must have found some good nectar in that nicotiana.

Posted July 18, 2008 by cindyeo in garden, hummingbird, nicotiana

Peaches   3 comments

I tried an experiment last spring.  I purchased 2 small peach trees, and planted them right by my back patio.  I put a cedar 4×4 post on either side of them, strung galvanized wire between the posts, and I’m planning to grow them as espalier.  This spring I had many blossoms and in June I had peaches.  This photo was taken a couple weeks ago.  I’ve lost one so far to someone eating it, must have been a bird because it was big bites.  If anyone has any tips for growing peaches organically, please leave me a comment.

Posted July 17, 2008 by cindyeo in garden, peach tree

The Payoff   1 comment

After weeks of hard work, the garden finally rewards you.  This is a view of my gardens taken along the back of my house.  This photo was taken on July 1 and I’d probably say this is peak, although I do have annuals and some late blooming perenials still to come.  In the foreground on the left side is a clematis, Huldine.  Then there are blue delphiniums and gold daylilies.  Behind that is a pot of fushia on a pedestal, red bee balm (monarda) and magenta rose campion (lychnis coronaria).  To the right of the cat is my greens garden, mostly all you can see is the bush basil that I grow around the edge and the arugula patch right next to the cat.  To the left of the cat I have 2 tomato plants growing on either side of that ladder trellis.  Not the most effective system to grow tomatoes, but I needed something attractive since this is also a flower garden.  Behind the cat are some deep orange/red lilies, I think the variety had the word fire in it, and the rose garden behind that.  Always some notes for next year – I think I’ll move the red bee balm and the blue delphinium closer together and make sure I have some white nicotiana (there’s one behind the chair) started early enough to be blooming for the 4th of July!

Blue and Gold   1 comment

Nothing is more striking than the brilliant blue of delphiniums.  I picked this plant up last year at the garden club plant sale in my town.  This is the first time it has bloomed for me, and it’s fantastic!  I just hope I can keep it through another winter, I have a tough time with delphiniums.  Behind it is Stella d’Oro day lily.

Posted July 6, 2008 by cindyeo in color combination, daylily, delphinium

Happy 4th of July   Leave a comment

This is bee balm, and it blooms at just the right time for me every year – the 4th of July.  Looks like little firecrackers!

Posted July 3, 2008 by cindyeo in garden

Calling All Volunteers   2 comments

Just like schools and hospitals depend upon their volunteers, a gardener does as well. Some take a while to show up, but volunteers can save you a lot of time, and space under the grow lights. Most can be moved to where you want them, just wait until late in the day, when the sun has gone down, or they are in the shade. Transplant, water well, give them overnight to recover before the sun beats down on them again, and they should be fine. Here are the ones that I use:
COSMOS

I planted cosmos in this area from seed for about 2 summers, now for the past 3 summers, I rely entirely on volunteers. I’d say I move about 50% of them into better spots, and 50% of them come up exactly where I want them. I use this group to compliment my asparagus plants during the summer, give some color, and the leaf textures are similar and blend together nicely.  Here is a view of the whole row, today (asparagus on left, cosmos on right):

And here are cosmos from last summer, in full bloom:

CREEPING ZINNIA

This is a late starter. This photo was just taken yesterday.  There are 4 creeping zinnia plants in this photo, as well as some small volunteer portulaca.  It’s very easy to pull these out as weeds, so you have to remember to look for them in the same spot as last year’s plants.  Here’s another one that is a volunteer and is much further along.  This is just one plant:

Here’s a photo of creeping zinnia from last summer, in case you don’t know what it looks like.  It’s a great little plant to hang over walkways and baskets.  It’s the one that looks like little black eyed susans:

NICOTIANA

Nicotiana, or flowering tobacco, comes back easily the next year, and early.  The leaves are a little fuzzy, so it’s pretty easy to differeniate them from weeds.  Here were the size of mine yesterday:

AGERATUM

This was a surprise this year.  I had started some inside, but only ended up with 2 plants.  And I meant to buy a 6 pack, but hadn’t gotten around to it, then I noticed a couple days ago some “weeds” right near where I planted the ageratum last year that look very similar to the leaves of the 2 ageratum that I had already planted there.  Here are the volunteers, taken yesterday:

And here is one that I had started in a pot from seed this spring (it’s sandwiched in between 2 veronica plants):

TALL VERBENA

I planted this for the first time last summer, and had read that it self-seeded.  But to be sure, I planted some plants indoors again this spring.  Sure enough, as I was planting the seedlings I started, I noticed some volunteers.  This is what they look like:

And this is what they look like in bloom (photo from last summer), also called verbena bonariensis:

Posted July 2, 2008 by cindyeo in ageratum, cosmos, garden, nicotiana, verbena, zinnia