Laundry day, checkbook balancing day, go to the grocer’s day, gardening day, well that one is every day, mish mash post day. I love Mondays.
Shown above is one of two blooms this whole year for the pond waterlily, Nymphaea pygmaea ‘Helvola’. The dogwoods and birches have grown so large that what was once quite sunny is now too shady for many watery flowers. The trees got a good pruning recently and a little more sunshine is beaming in. The wild grapevines that had a strangle hold have been removed from the trees to brighten the scene as well. Let it shine on, or in.
One of the redder Asclepias tuberosa seedlings is hosting a honeybee, ants and some little beetle. It is hoped there will be seeds of this one to spread later. So far only the true orange have produced seed pods.
Gaillardias of the late summer seem to have an orange halo rather than the yellow ring. Or is it a different variety? Burgundy and Goblin have been growing here for so long that they have had some combination of genetic material with the seedlings. The unfurled petals look so pristine, like knife blades on edge. But what really has been a success story is the Winterbor kale in the blurry blue tinted background. There is some insect damage, but there will be regrowth after frost kills the chomping chow hounds.
Pink turtlehead, Chelone obliqua is just beginning to bloom. This is its third year and the plant is full of vigor and buds. Not a starlet but a good character actor in the Fairegarden show.
Clematis stans, from Clyde, North Carolina via San Francisco is roaring along with non stop blue flowers. This brings a smile and a bend down to speak sweetly to it with every pass by. This is one of our very favorite plants, for several reasons, not the least is the color and floriferousness.
Free seeds from Baker Creek were sent with our order of this European melon, Petit Gris de Rennes. Never before have melons of any kind been grown by us. We watch the progress of this, the largest fruit, daily for signs of readiness. Can anyone tell when to pick it? When it smells like a melon was one sign mentioned on a web search. Can you be more specific, please?
Most all of the Japanese anemones growing here are A. hupehensis ‘Praecox’. He spreads by seeding and runners and has made a kingdom for himself on the lower path. After seeing his lovely dark pink blooms, some might call them purple but that is a stretch, we added a couple more varieties. One died immediately, Whirlwind I believe it was, and Robustissima, which has had a couple of leaves each year. This may be the year of a robust flower. Or it may be the Prince has usurped its spot where the tag remains faithfully in the ground. I hope we can tell the difference in pinks to be sure whom is sporting the flowers.
Seeds for this Rosa chinensis ‘Angel Wings’ were ordered a couple of years ago from Renee’s Seeds. The thought of growing any rose from seeds seemed preposterous but they germinated quickly in the greenhouse/sunroom and were planted out in the veggie bed for protection. We didn’t plan on the eight ball squash planted nearby growing to mammoth proportions and were surprised to see the three little rose plants still alive under the skeletal leaves of the squash last fall. They have been moved to the long wall behind the main house and have grown several inches taller, still under one foot though. The pale pink petals are most delicate and befit the name, Angel Wings.
Last year I admired the gold foliaged pineapple sage, Salvia elegans possibly S. ‘Golden Delicious’ growing in offspring Brokenbeat’s garden in Asheville. He has been saving a potted cutting of this very fragrant foliaged plant for months and it finally made its way home after our beach trip. It has been planted with some rosemary that was stuck into a reddish pot last fall to protect the pansies from digging devil squirrels. The rosemary rooted and is growing well. This happened in several places, the veggie bed to protect broad beans and the veggie box raised planter to protect seeds that never germinated. We are now awash in rosemary and really did not need anymore. Look out family and visitors, you might be getting some free rosemary whether you want it or not.
We have been
whining wistfully wishing to see the butterflies return to the Fairegarden in decent numbers. Slowly they are showing up. The blooming of the Joe Pye, Eupatorium purpureum ‘Gateway’ is usually when they are more plentiful. Hooray!
As summer winds down there is a flurry of activity outside. The checklist of things needing moved grows exponentially after a season of growth reveals poor placements. Since the blooming of many plants is nearing an end, there is less sadness to disturb the roots and cause the flowers and leaves to wilt a bit in the effort at improved future design. We do it every year at this time without fail for we know it will turn cold fast and the fallen deciduous tree leaves will need processing, bulbs will arrive and need planting, in other words, the gardening chores that need doing will pick up. Until then, we need to lay back and look at the clouds, take deep breaths and be thankful for Monica the Garden Faerie and her crazy good idea of Mish Mash Mondays where anything goes!