Saturday, June 12, 2021

April in the Garden in 2021


This is the new spillway added to the waterfall in April of 2021.  It is level and the water fall looks ok.  The surrounding area, that is:  the mountain for the waterfall still needs a lot of work to make it look more natural.  I hope to be adding rock plants to the sides, and make this side a more gradual slope.  The birds use the spill rock  as a drinking place and a bird bath.  All this bird attention seems to have added more nitrogen or whatever to cause a green algae to form.  I have just started putting D-Solv into the pond and does seem to be working to get rid of the algae.  We have also had some very windy days that add more debris to the pond.  
As well as the spillway I have renovated all the edges and the stepping stones.  The edging plants are coming along nicely to fill in.  I have moved the lantern several times, and it now sits at the end of the dry stream, which now ends at the curve in the stream that goes along the deck edge.  This part of the old dry stream has some of my best moss.  It grows over the wood pieces that line this part of the old dry stream.  The little fountain adds more aeration to the water and looks good.
I have been doing a lot of path renovations this Spring.  This is the much improved path that runs from the entry by the little rockery,  along the cedar hedge to the other side of the cut garden where it meets the path that goes between the cut garden and the 5 feet of that side of this area that has Irises, herbs, oak tree, lilac.; and goes into the entry to the pond  by the mermaid side of the waterfall.
This black squirrel, I think is the culpert that has been digging in the garden.  Its a mutation and is bigger that the other squirrels.  I haven't seen it lately, thank heavens.  I haven't seen the nice, smaller red one with the fine big bushy tail, either.
This great big beautiful great blue heron, ate all of the lovely goldfish I had in the pond! So, I have put tomato cages into the pots at the shallow sides of the pond with bamboo stakes through them to act as a fence to keep the heron out, hopefully.  The heron was even standing on the edge of the tub garden on the deck and ate both of the goldfish in there too.  The tub in the woodland had yellow flag water iris, that are invasive.  While emptying the tub I found a little comet gold fish, which got put into the pond, of course.  I have since added 2 white comets and 2 gold comets to the supply of fish.  One gold one in the deck tub.  That happened a couple of weeks ago.  I hope to resupply the sarrosas and the shubunkins. 

I have been renovating the little rockery at the front to add the saxifrages and the 2 small tufa rocks into the little gold wall rockery.  It now looks rather like a trough with 3 sections, (soon to be 4).  It has 3 levels.  The lowest level wraps around the middle levels to the back of the fourth level, and will eventually hold some taller plants.  I have the thyme circle cleaned up and some top dressing added.  It is looking quite good now. It could use 3 or 4 more new thyme plants.    I have to keep all these new renovations watered.  And we are in a drought!  The cutting garden is doing very well with the watering.  I have a very nice lupine showing a bloom now.  And the strawberries produced 2 berries.  We need some hotter weather for them to bloom, I think.   The trilliums all survived.  They are quite messy right now and that magnolia tree bed needs to be cleaned up; as well as all of the boulevard garden.  The woodland, too needs some more work.

Because of  all these renovations I have not taken the time to take any pictures.  The rhodendrons were spectacular.  They are just finishing up now.  The roses are full of blossoms and fragrance now.  The lilac was full of blooms and fragrance earlier, and its blooms have gone brown.  Its time for its dead heading.  The oriental poppies are finished blooming and will need dead heading too.   We have had some cooler weather this week and I got quite a bit of the front garden weeded.  It is looking pretty good too.  The campanula in the little rockery at the back is in bloom!  I must get picture of that one, at least.   We are suppose to have rain tomorrow ... here's hopin'!

Tuesday, October 06, 2020

September in the garden


Pat found he could get a table that moved out of the path to the back from the front seats of the LTV motor home.  He contacted the factory and they sent him the mostly assembled table.  He installed it and it works very well.  We tried it out recently.  We should not have to pack it away under the bed, any more.  It can stay where it is and move around easily for when we are travelling and when we are eating.
I was able to get photos of the fish.  The is a sarasa and the only big shubunkin that I seem to have now.
This is a very unusual tiny fish.  It is older than 2 years as it has gone  to its gold colors.  It seems to be a miniature.  Especially when you see it next to the bigger gold fish..
Here are a number of the ones that are still black with the little shubunkin that has already changed colors.
Here is the bigger shubunkin with the smaller one and some of the smaller black ones.  
The bigger sarasa with the small shubunkin and the small black one.
Now this is another unusual size of a fish.  The big black one is bigger than the older light gold fish.  The black one is not yet 2 years old and I bought the light gold one a couple of years ago,  The big black is beginning to turn gold.  

 The big black one compared to the size of the smaller black ones.  Apparently the fish do not turn colors until they are at least 2 years old.

The two sarasas that I have left from the original purchase of two or three years ago.
This is a Kaffir lily or Schizostylis.  It is a good plant for some color in Autumn.  I am going to try to spread it around the garden a bit more.  It is in the iris family of plants and grows from rhizomes.
The Autumn crocuses are another good plant for Autumn color.  I am slowly getting quite a number of them around the garden.  The leaves show up in Spring and die down, and then the flowers come up and open.

Verbena bonariensis is a tall and slender-stemmed perennial. It can grow to 6 ft (180 cm) tall and can spread to 3 ft (90 cm) wide. At maturity, it will develop a woody base. Fragrant lavender to rose-purple flowers are in tight clusters located on terminal and axillary stems, blooming from mid-summer until fall frost.   It is self seeding around my garden.  The bees and butterflies love it.  This one arrived in one of the pots on the deck.  
July was very dry and I was watering quite a lot.  We were away for about 3 weeks in August and the garden did not get any rain.  It was very dry and most of the plants dried up.  We had some rain a couple of weeks ago and I did manage to get some time to water a bit.  I see that one of the gentians I thought was dead seems to be getting new little leaves.  It was a transplant from the back little rockery to the little rockery at the front.  The established rock/alpine garden plants all seem to be doing ok.  I won't be doing any more transplants to the little rockery at the front until after the leaves fall.  And then they can have the winter to put down some roots, and not be raked up when I collect the leaves.  The trees are just now starting to turn colors.    The garden needs weeding, as it got away on me in August and has not had any attention since then.  The apples are not quite ready, yet.  We did get a few grapes earlier.  There were only a couple of plums and no figs.  Hopefully, next year will be a better year.

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Some of the plants in the boulevard, the driveway and the inner front garden rooms, in June

The crocosmia buds on June 19th.  These are some rather aggressive bulbs.  They are attractive to humming birds and easy maintenance so I have clumps of them everywhere in my garden
This little geranium or it might be called an erodium grows next to the stone path with the golden oregano on the other side.  In fact it is being overgrown by the oregano.
I have campanulas of various kinds around the garden.  This one grows in a fairly shaded area in the magnolia tree bed, next to the cedar hedge.
I have a few of these Sedum, autumn joy, around the garden, also.  This one grows in the same area as the above campanula.  They both like more sun than they are getting, but they survive.  They bloom at different times and so provide some color in this garden room for a longer period of time.
This is the cleaned up clump of black bamboo.  When I took out the dried canes it makes the black canes more visible.  I like the look of the clump thinned out.  I will be doing more of this when I get the time.  The black canes look good with the build up of the leaves that turn white.
This is the rectangle bed on the west side of the boulevard garden room.  The lovely big white veronica grows too close to the cedar hedge, with the little erodium beneath its feet.  It is being crowed by the crosmias on the other side of it.  So, I need to get in there and dig out some of the crocosmias.
This is the, approximately 6 feet by 25 foot strip that runs across the front of the boulevard garden.  The French lavender is the star of the show for 2 or 3 months.  I have cut it back now and hope it produces more bloom in the next little while.  There are various other perennials in this area: lupines, foxgloves, achillea, irises, the blue grasses, pinks, all underplanted with thyme.The daisies keep coming back and so I have daisy boquets in May or June, until I get them all pulled out.  There is another strip in front of this one that is about 10 feet deep by the length of the boulevard from our driveway across to the neighbors driveway.  It is about 35 feet long, making the bottom 'green frame' around my front garden.
The blue grass, the pinks and the tall bearded irises.  To the right side of the photo there is a tall bridal veil spirea shrub that I keep pruned to a globe shape.
To the right of the Spirea shrub is another rectangular bed.  The front strip is quite nice with the lychnis, some more pinks, the self seeding verbena bodinaires, and the plum tree to the right (out of the picture).  Behind these plants the little rectangle became over grown with blue bells.  I put leaves on them in the autumn to try and control them.  I have transplanted some orange daylillies  in there.  They are in quite a lot of shade.  The orange colors brighten up the corner.  I need to clean cut back a tree that has been there since the beginning of the time the house was built.  It has got away from me over the last couple of years and needs to be taken down to ground level again.  
The virginia creeper goes up the telephone pole in the 5 foot deep strip between the neighbors driveway and our driveway.  It turns marvelous colors in the autumn.  It has st. john's worte planted beneath it.  I have some fairly aggresive plants growing in the driveway strip. 
The torch lily:  Gardeners should be diligent with watering during hot and dry spells. Provide a 2- to 3-inch (5-7.6 cm.) layer of mulch to help with water retention and for protection during cold winters. Cut foliage off at the base of the plant in late fall and remove spent flower spike to encourage more blooms

Kniphofia, also called tritoma, red hot poker, torch lily, knofflers or poker plant. 

The striking red hot poker plant (Kniphofia uvaria) is in the Liliaceae family and is also known as poker plant and torch lily. This plant thrives in USDA zones 5 through 9 and is an upright evergreen perennial with a clumping habit. Over 70 known species exist of this South African native plant.

As you can see I am not taking very good care of this plant.  I did not realize that it should be cut back to ground level in the Fall.  Nevertheless, this torch lily is a fairly tough plant.  It grows in front of the mountain ash tree, with a tall rose, volunteer oregon grape, nasty black berries and bind weed for competition.  

a close up of the torch lily blossoms.
 This is the Yucca, next to the Virginia creeper, with the st. John's warte and an Autumn Joy sedum.  The sedum and the Yucca are forming buds.

Yucca is a genus of perennial shrubs and trees in the family Asparagaceae, subfamily Agavoideae. Its 40–50 species are notable for their rosettes of evergreen, tough, sword-shaped leaves and large terminal panicles of white or whitish flowers. 

Yucca glauca is native to central North America: occurring from the Canadian Prairies of Alberta and Saskatchewan in Canada; south through the Great Plains to Texas and New Mexico in the United States.

This finishes the posting for my garden in June.  I have been away for 3 weeks, so I do not know if there will be a July in the garden posted, as I have a lot of catching up to do in the garden.

Blogger has been making some changes.  I guess any further photos will need to be much smaller to fit in the space provided.  It always annoys me why they have to fix things that aren't broken.  😞