What’s Bloomin’ on Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day?

What’s bloomin’? Spring stuff!

This past winter was difficult for me. The cold seeped deeper this year. Or perhaps it just seemed that way because I had to go out into it more often. I adopted a second Standard Poodle that I wasn’t prepared for. She needed a place to live and I needed to give that to her. But, my yard wasn’t fenced in so I couldn’t just send the dogs out the door and stay in my warm house.  I had to go out into the cold, too.   The fence still isn’t finished because not enough materials were ordered. I’m dealing with some stylish panels of decorative aluminum fencing and less stylish propped-up chain link. At least the dogs can run through the garden and not the neighborhood.

But enough of that. Here’s what’s blooming today.

Ain’t this just the grandest of magnolia trees!
I hope the scattering of frost that showed up in some places in Grand Rapids did not hit the cherry tree. Its blossoms are beginning to fade and tiny little baby cherries are showing up, so it might be a good year for these sour cherries. I let friends pick them since I don’t really care for cherry pie or preserves. But last year’s late freeze made for few cherries.

The lilacs!

Sometimes called “false forgetmenots,” these hardy brunnera bring a true blue to early spring gardens.
Today’s sun and warmth is just what the Bleeding Heart needed.
I bought this trillium years ago at Wildflowers in Glen Arbor, Michigan. I think this is Trillium Cuneatum. I had hoped it would spread, but each year I only get this one.
Some of the allium are starting to show their color. In a couple weeks there will be huge globes of pink and purple. I love the “architectural-ness” they bring to my more cottage-y gardens.
I wish I could say this lilac was loaded with buds, but it isn’t. Still, this lilac is doing better than the other two. It might be time to pull these out and give them to someone who might be able to get more cooperation from them.
I hope I’m not too eager to put the annuals in. But, it’s so tempting to get buy marigolds and I think they will do quite well with the purple salvia.
Someday this redbud will be a graceful tree. I’m content to wait.

 

June 15: Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day

The corner nook where a few bleeding heart blooms are hanging on, the old climbing rose is trying to come back after a hard winter, and the hidcote lavender have been thinned.  In the foreground are to blue salvia annuals waiting to be planted.
The corner nook where a few bleeding heart blooms are hanging on, the old climbing rose is trying to come back after a hard winter, and the hidcote lavender have been thinned. In the foreground are to blue salvia annuals waiting to be planted. The red is Sweet William.

Thank you again to May Dreams Gardens for creating the Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day meme.  Check out her website for links to gardens all over the world.  Scroll down to see what is blooming in mine.

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The Walkers’ Low catmint is putting on a wonderful show. I have it growing in several spots. Here it is at the entrance to the Secret Garden.

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Here the Walker’s Low catmint surrounds the cat statue in the front garden.

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The Kousa dogwood is an explosion of blooms.

 

Here is another view of Kousa.  In the foreground are white snapdragons that self-seeded.
Here is another view of Kousa. In the foreground are white snapdragons that self-seeded.

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Sorry for the blurriness. This David Austin rose continues to struggle. It is the sole survivor after gallant efforts to keep the fragrant roses healthy.

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More catmint!! The red is Sweet William gracing the corner nook garden. The rain has knocked down the catmint.

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This entrance to the Secret Garden features a potted geranium and white clematis winding its way through the dutchman’s pipe.

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This is a nice shot of the Lower Garden. The blue in the middle is some sort of hardy geranium that is a bit unruly. As soon as the blooms are finish, I lop it off and get a few flowers for the rest of the season. Those are the hansa roses to the left. The White Dome hydrangeas are full of buds. These are doing so well this year!! I was tempted to yank them all out.

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These hansa roses are so wonderfully fragrant.

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This is the last of the poppies in the Secret Garden. I wish they lasted longer.

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I’ve moved the heuchers so often I’ve lost track of them. This could be Palace Purple.

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The little seating area in the Entrance Garden gives a pop of color against the Dwarf Albert Spruces.

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This view of the Secret Garden includes Alchemilla in the foreground, Blue Ice Amsonia, and Euphorbia Perkineses. Some of the daylilies are already producing scapes.

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A closer shot of Euphorbia Perkineses

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I did a hard prune of James McFarlan lilacs as soon as they were finished blooming so that I could enjoy the mock orange.

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The Francis Williams hostas are starting to bloom. Again, this seems early. The White Dome hydrangeas are a titch ahead of the ones in the Lower Garden.

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Another shot of Francis Williams,

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White Dome Hydrangea.

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Wildberry Breeze Hansa rose.

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The charming climbing rose in the corner nook.

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Red Knockout rose in the rose medallion. Too bad it isn’t fragrant

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Inexpensive basket in the corner nook.

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Just a few bleeding hearts left.

 

H. Abiqua Drinking Gourd is blooming.  This is a bit early.
H. Abiqua Drinking Gourd is blooming. This is a bit early, too.

 

October Bloom Day

Marigolds
Marigolds

My attempts at creating a stone mosaic in the Secret Garden.
My attempts at creating a stone mosaic in the Secret Garden.

And the middle of the month is upon us.  The garden is winding down but I’m celebrating my new brick pathways.  I’m gradually replacing the rocks that used to line the crushed limestone paths, but were used in some of the stone mosaics in the pathways.

The new brick and field stone entrance to the Secret Garden. Note the single white clematis bloom a the lower left.
The new brick and field stone entrance to the Secret Garden. Note the single white clematis bloom a the lower left.

Where the two paths diverge, a stone and brick flower...
Where the two paths diverge, a stone and brick flower…

The marigolds are the true champions of October.  Though the ones in front of the boxwood hedge did poorly this year, the marigolds I planted near the back door and in front of the Secret Garden are lush.  And, the Honorine Jobert anemones are still blooming.  The nameless pink anemones are done and I’ll be cutting them back soon.

The fruit from the kousa dogwood is ripe and falling onto my new brick paths.  The flies and bees are thick around the smashed fruit.  I’m surprised I don’t see more birds and squirrels in the tree.  The fruit is sweet and edible and I keep thinking I should try making a jam out of it.  I wonder why more people don’t harvest and eat the fruit.

Do scroll down to earlier posts to see more pictures of the pathways.  And please click on the video I made using stills of the garden.

Honorine Joubert anemone
Honorine Joubert anemone

The weird and edible Kousa dogwood fruit.
The weird and edible Kousa dogwood fruit.

Thinking Ahead And Thinking Back

I stumbled on this picture when I was searching through images on an old computer.  It’s a wonder the thing will still boot up!  I think I took it during the second summer I lived here at 337.  I’d just planned out most of what I call The Lower Garden, the section of the back yard that is closest to the house.  I had cleared the “brush” from the “Upper Garden,” and didn’t know yet what I was going to do with it.  I was wishing for brick pathways but knew I couldn’t afford that.  Good friend and voice teacher Dale came to the rescue and suggested crushed limestone paths and added the magic words “I’ll help you.”  But this is what that space looked like before the paths went in.  I see a couple of lime stones that at one time formed a patio.  I pried those up and used them to line the beds in the Lower Garden, but this picture shows that I still had a couple of stones to place.  Actually, from time to time I discover another flat limestone piece when I’m digging deep.  That “upper garden” become the Secret Garden, by the way.

Secret Garden "Before"

View from above

From the balcony

I took this photo from the balcony this morning.  It indicates that I forgot to put the perennial spade in the garage last night, and I left a container out, too.  Sigh.  But it also shows the lines of the lower garden and the Secret Garden.  I can barely see the new rose I bought Saturday–a floribunda named Rhapsody in Blue.  I transplanted two of the carpet roses to the border across the way and put Rhapsody in where they were.

I also dug up the pygmy barberries for perhaps the fourth time.  They were in the “false garden.”  But I stumbled on lamiastrum galeobdolon (false lamium, Herman’s Pride) at a garden center on Saturday.  So I took the barberry out and will put the lamiastrum there.  I’m really struggling with the false garden.  I don’t know whether I need to abandon the idea or tough it out.  The false indigo isn’t as big as I thought I would be.  And I can’t tell whether the false lupine survived.  I think it didn’t, but there is one plant I can’t identify.  I’m hoping I wrote it down in the garden book, but…

I also bought two peonies and put those in last night.  One is white.  The other is red.  The white one went over near the Rose of Sharon. The red one went near the entrance to the Secret Garden.  There was a space there that needed filling.  I also planted a Striptease hosta that for some reason never got planted last fall.  It survived in its pot all winter, so I gave it a better home in the Secret Garden with some other hostas.

I dug the holes for the next four arborvitae last night.  I wonder if I can wrestle them into place by myself.  A friend helped with the first four.  Stay tuned.  We’ll have to see what I get accomplished today. I’m going to get some red petunias for the front yard and perhaps some other annuals to put in containers.

I wonder when the shredded bark will arrive….