11 July 2008
A Walk through my Garden
Where does the time go??? Well, it disappears when you're sick AGAIN with diverticu-frakkin-itis and have to spend time in bed. Yuck. I'm cranky about this but also know I'm facing surgery in the not-too-distant future as a result of too many sessions of this in recent months. And as a result of being sick, I'm once again behind in my reading, behind in my work, behind in posting...ever try to write on a laptop when you're flat in bed? Not recommended.
However, I did get some nice photos today, when I did go out and walk around the yard for a little while. Despite my neglecting it, the garden is galloping along quite nicely without me. Everything is profusely, profoundly lush, which works well at shading out some of the weeds. And some of my interesting and less common plants are blooming. Like the yellow digitalis, which aren't as tall as their common relatives, but are striking nevertheless.
Valerian grows free-range in our yard, both in gardens and in wild areas. At the moment, it is crazily in bloom, and looks like a pale version of Verbena bonariensis--and is equally beloved by butterflies.
One of my favourite peonies is just opening: 'Primavera' is white with gorgeous yellow centre.
This is a common, oldfashioned peony, possibly 'Rubra Plena'; it was here when we came, and continues to flower joyously every early July. The blue corydalis behind it adds an equally fine fragrance to the air, so walking to our door is always pleasant.
One of the nicest and most stalwart roses we have is 'Robusta', a single, dark red shrub rose that flowers until frost. It gets a few aphids on it, but I occasionally hose it off and that handles them sufficiently.
Alliums are just so cool! This is 'Star of Persia' (Allium christophii), a real stunner. The only problem is that it's not as tall as I thought it was, and where everything is having a robust growing season, it's behind some plants. I don't want to try moving them, so I may just prune other things so the stars will show up better.
The swallowtails are around, and it was fun to finally have camera in hand when I saw one in an easy-to-access spot. These are among my favourite butterflies, next to my beloved monarhs, of course.
Blue-star is one of those under-used perennials, and I just love it. I did get my hands on another variety this year, with slightly bluer, wider-petalled flowers; it's not planted yet because i have to find out how tall it grows and then make a spot in the jungle for it to grow and bloom properly!
Ah, my gas plant. A slow growing perennial but such a beautiful thing. Fragrance like lemon in the evening especially, and wonderful seedheads when it finishes its bloom. This is a plant that you have to determine the right spot for, then plant it and leave it! Because it hates being moved, and will pout and die if you try such tactics.
I've long had a love for sea hollies, and this Eryngium alpinum is a particular favourite. I'm hoping it will seed itself the way E. planum does, because I now have LOTS of the latter, in wonderful swathes of blue later in the summer.
Nishiki willow is a favourite plant for its graceful shape and of course the dappled colours of its foliage. I pruned ours this year to give it a bit better shape, and it's really taking off.
Another plant for the butterflies--orange butterfly-weed (Asclepias tuberosa). I have yellow variant here somewhere too, but it's not flowering yet. I hope that doesn't mean I weeded it in a fit of absent-mindedness. It seems to me it's a bit later, though, so I won't worry about it yet.
Well, I've been up long enough now...more tomorrow or Sunday, depending on how I feel. If I've not been by and left a comment lately...you know why. "I'm getting better", though, in the words of Monty Python..."I'm not dead YET!"