In this, our third year in the new house, both the humans and the garden are getting settled in. It feels like home. Plants that were brought with us, some of them, have done very well, enough to be divided and spread about. Among those is Spiraea ‘Magic Carpet’. It was selected for the Asian Garden that is located in the oddly shaped back corner inside the fence. Hyacinthoides hispanica ‘Excelsior’ planted around the granite koi bowl birdbath complements the shrub’s colorful foliage. This area is the view from our dining room window. It is especially pleasing at the moment.
Evergreen azaleas were chosen for the fresh, dark green leaves and flowers of red and white. Rhododendron ‘Snow White’ is the first to open. I do adore white flowers, they allow their neighbors to shine brighter. I read that Asian gardens use red flowers rather than white, which is more often used in memorials. That’s okay, I have never been a traditionalist.
The main garden beds within the fenced back yard include the nursery, and the lower nursery. The nursery was formed when a dump truck carrying six yards of planting mix deposited the precious stuff in a large pile in the crabgrass lawn in August of 2014. Plants potted and those simply tossed into black plastic trash bags were planted into the smoothed out pile. Included in those were the yellow flowering Primula veris, grown from seed in the old greenhouse and Phlox divaricata that was tagged Blue Moon. It is closer to white than blue, but it came from Walmart so you take what you get. It’s still pretty. Polygonum odoratum ‘Variegata’ was one of many plants shared with us by neighbors Mae and Mickey after we had moved into the old house we originally bought for our daughters to live in while they attended college. Let’s just say that we were welcomed with open arms as residents after the girls moved on with their lives and the house was renovated several times. The garden also improved. We moved to the current house from there.
Many seeds were scatted into the new beds, including various Aquilegia ssp. This little one looks like a descendant of A. ‘Magpie’, which has proven to have very dominant genes. Last year Gardoctor built a wooden walkway to replace the trio of rotting bench tops that had been spread between the upper and lower nurseries to provide a dry tootsie means of transport. It looks quite nice and is much appreciated, thank you, dear son.
Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Little Honey’ has made itself at home in the shady environs of the lower nursery. Ferns, geraniums, ajuga, among many others, are filling in the space and make a colorful, contrasting chaos.
Little Honey is really a fine shrub. It needs partial to full shade and enough moisture to keep the roots from going bone dry. Highly recommended. In the distance is a budded but not blooming yet Baptisia alba and a sunny swath of Salvia ‘May Night’ in the upper nursery.
Here are more seed grown columbines, Aquilegia ssp. with a new native azalea. Three unnamed seedlings were purchased at the University of Tennessee Arboretum spring plant sale in 2016. So far, none of these types of azaleas, which grew to perfection at the old garden, are what I would call thriving. The soil is less acidic here and summers have been droughty. I am giving them extra water and have gone so far as to plant a couple in large containers to see if that helps. I won’t give them up without a fight.
Figuring out the best times to take photos here has been a challenge. Too much light, not enough light, no slope to get that exquisite backlighting, too tired, too hungry, nothing looks good, maybe I need a new camera (or new body to do contortions on the ground) have dampened my image capturing enthusiasm. I still love to garden, though, and still love to try and share the beauty of it through blogging. Buds just ready to burst, like these chives are still one of my favorite subjects.
Kitty remains ever helful, snoozing on top of emerging flowers and foliage. He especially likes to pretend he is on the Savannah in tall grasses and has done a number on a stand of Carex ‘Red Rooster’ in the lower nursery, jumping and kicking imaginary interlopers. I like having him around. Onward.