Summer temperatures are finally here. In the mid-nineties most days. No rain for a week but I’m not complaining…yet. I’ve been pressure washing the house a side a day with the loan of equipment from my neighbor. I’m wet by the time I finish, but with the heat I don’t mind. There’s lots of color in the garden this time of year and I enjoy my early morning walk to check on everything. Saw the first Japanese beetle last week so will start carrying a container of soapy water on my walks around the garden to drown them in. Easier than squishing the beetles.
This clematis just keeps blooming when the others have stopped. I lost the tag for this one when the lattice was replace but I thought it was Arabella. When I googled clematis Arabella it said it was non-vining. This doesn’t get very tall but I have tucked it into the lattice and it seems happy. I’m sticking with Arabella.
2. The Vitex tree (aka Chaste tree) at the end of the driveway is now in full bloom. I didn’t get around to cutting it back this spring so it is now taller than I want it to be. It blooms on new wood so will need to be trimmed aggressively next spring.
3. I planted a packet of zinnia seeds that I found in my seed box. This first bloom has wonky petals but I love the color. Some other zinnias I planted from seed are too tall and get floppy. Next year I’ll pay more attention to plant height but I will certainly save seed from this beauty.
4. Getting more sun with last year’s removal of a river birch has benefited this clump of purple coneflower.
5. I have shasta daisies several places in the garden. They are descendents of a clump at the house when we moved here 13 years ago. There wasn’t much here. The daisies were planted in a small circle in the middle of the backyard ringed with a variety of odd stones the family must have brought home from trips.
6. Coreopsis Moonbeam spreads and I now have it multiple places in the garden and in some pots. If sheared back by a third, it will bloom again late summer and fall. Wikipedia tells me: “Coreopsis verticillata is a North American species of tickseed in the sunflower family.” I am a sucker for anything with yellow flowers. I love the pop in shaded parts of my garden.
We’ve been having intermitent rains so the lawn and gardens are lush. The weekend is predicted to be dry so we may get the grass mowed. Here are my six on the second day of summer.
The monarda is in bloom. This one was called Raspberry Wine. It is prone to mildew but I love the color of the blooms.
2. I experimented with agapantha last winter. Some were in the ground and some were in a pot outside. The potted plant froze to mush and went into the compost. The plants in the ground froze to the ground but came back and I have three stalks getting ready to bloom.
3. My self-seeding cleomes are beginning to bloom in a garden in front of the house. Some are still growing in the gravel drive next to this bed and may get transplanted if I find the time. The volunteers required thinning and moving some to bare areas. I love that these come back every year.
4. Some vegetables in large pots are thriving. Several baby zuchinnis are visible as are Tiren paste tomatoes — a new variety I raised from seed. I have one whole bed at the local community garden devoted to tomatoes. Last year’s crop was a bust so I am hoping for a better yield this year. I always lose my zuchinni’s to borers so maybe the plant in a pot will fare better.
5. I have seven pots of red twig dogwoods growing roots for fall planting in my “wet” garden. They had been rooting in water since I cut the dogwoods back in March.
6. A flowering stalk on a Bottlebrush Buckeye. This one is going to be planted in my friend and writing partner’s garden. It will colonize and I have no room for it.
I’m in a hurry this morning, so here are six quick pictures from the garden. It’s been cooler than normal for June and no rain for the last few days so great to be out in the garden. But first a trip to the hardware store for more bags of potting soil. The redtwig dogwoods I’ve had rooting in a bucket for months are ready to be potted.
Several of my daylilies are beginning to bloom.
2. The hostas are sending up blooming stalks. This is from some variety with huge leaves, but I have no idea what its name is. I had to stoop to get the bloom which was under a leaf.
3. A clump of butterfly weed. Lots of baby seedlings coming up around it. This photo was from yesterday afternoon and the sun was on the blooms which is why some of them look yellow.
4. Bell flowers come back every year. This campanula was given to me by a friend and I don’t know the cultivar.
5. Staking this sweet hollyhock is on the list of gardening chores for today. It was all in bud last week.
6. The day lilies I call ditch lilies are blooming. A favorite of mine, they often grow in the ditches on the sides of roads. Others call them tiger lilies.
The first flush of spring blooms are waning, but when I walked through the garden early this morning I noticed many perennials covered with buds. Another week or two and the early summer blooms will be at their peak.
A (soon to be) red zinna. They make great cut flowers.
2. This monarda has raspberry colored flowers. It will be in bloom soon.
3. This is a yellow day lily. My Stella d’oro are already flowering as well as a burgundy red day lily, but the yellow one is a little later.
4. This coneflower is tucked in among some other plants that now get more sun because I removed a river birch. This one seems happy. I’ll see if it likes more sun.
5. Someone gave me this lily but I don’t know what kind it is. It has large yellow orange flowers.
6. I have no success with hollyhocks. They never flower before I lose them to rust. This one volunteered in one of my raised beds last year. I almost pulled it out last fall but am glad I didn’t. The pink flowers are a surprise and no hint of rust as yet.