The big lesson so far this season has been to think ahead when planning the annual beds and match the trellis to the plant. So in the first group of pictures, it all looks kind of sweet and under control. The beans and peas have been staked and the carrots have lots of room to spread out in the rest of the bed. (click the pics for larger images; mouse over for caption.)
This is a new daylily, the ‘Niki Jabbour’, named after local gardener, Niki Jabbour. It was grown by Harbour Breezes in Jeddore, Nova Scotia. Shown here are 8 different blooms from 8 different days from July 28-August 12. There appears to still be 2-3 buds to go.
Then there’s the ubiquitous Echinacea purpurea, also known as Purple Coneflower. The bees go crazy for these, sometimes just sleeping in them (or so it seems to me). Butterflies and hummingbirds also love them and they’re a good herb for humans as well.
And speaking of hummingbirds, their favourite actually seems to be the scarlet Bee Balm. At this point, they’re nearly finished but both the bees and the hummers are still visiting.
A bit of a wilder view below… that tall white flower in the back (L) is Yucca and the tall pink flower in the back (R) is filipendula. Monarda, aka bee balm, and some kind of daisy in front.
I’m all about the food growing but what I love about the flowers is not only their beauty but the fact that they’re food for the pollinators. Whatever feeds the pollinators ultimately feeds us.
Top left to right: Iris, ‘Oscar Peterson’ Rose, pink tubular flower (?), a bee hugs a bean, lupins, dahlia, hops.
September is my favourite month for a lot of reasons … the weather is gorgeous, tourists have gone home (nothing against tourists, it’s just quiet again, enough to hear the crickets day and night alike), the garden continues to do its own thing while us gardeners continue to help it along and happily harvest the food it offers up.
In the middle of the worst winter in a bazillion years, my partner and I decided we had to partake in an introductory insanely cheap flight to Scotland. Problem is we could only get tickets for July, prime gardening time. But winter will do crazy things to you and we bought the tickets. Now having just returned, the garden overflows and I have done nothing but weed for the past week. Oh, and harvest.
And speaking of pollinators, what would a garden be without flowers…
Someone asked me about the process I went through to replace the front lawn with different kinds of ground cover. How did I choose the plants? The truth is the plants really chose me. All I knew was that I wanted something that I wouldn’t have to mow all the time. Suddenly other gardeners started gifting me with plants. I took everything with great excitement and gratitude. Then I started frequenting fundraisers and yard sales and bought plants there. I would come home with plants, hide them in a shady corner somewhere with lots of water while I did some basic research to find out what each plant liked. The most difficult part was digging the holes and preparing the soil since the “soil” was pretty much big rocks, roots from the street-side maple, and dirt. Initially I went for plants that literally hugged the ground or had a reputation for spreading quickly. Bonus if they had flowers.
But then I realized there were lots of different kinds of plants that would add height and texture… That’s where the hostas and lilies came in, not to mention irises, teasel, and violas closer to the ground again.
When the posts slow down here (or stop altogether), that usually means one of two things: I’m either busy planting or it’s winter and I’m hibernating. In this case, it’s the former. I’ve been too busy planting to document what the heck I’m doing. This is my attempt to try and catch up.
The last time I was here I wrote about the pulmonaria, how I was digging it out from under winter’s mulchy mess and the first few blossoms were slowly showing their shy little selves. If you don’t remember, here’s a quick refresher:
And now to show how Mother Nature ignores the follies of humans and continues creating her magic, here is that same plant today:
The daffodils have pretty much come and gone, same with the tulips. Still, there are a few hangers-on…
And now it’s the irises turn…
And speaking of neighbours, be very careful about what it is you’re accepting to plant in your garden. Last spring a friend gave me a Himalayan Balsam seedling which I eagerly and gratefully planted since I was told bees liked it. And while they do, indeed, seem to like it (though not as much as the bee balm), it is an invasive little bugger. I had one plant last spring and this year there were seedlings everywhere. It is said that the seed head of this plant can eject seeds up to 7 metres away!!
Back in a bit with the veggies.