Thursday, June 6, 2019

Early Darkness

It was dark this evening at a bit past 8, the sky covered in thick grey rain clouds. 
Since Wednesday morning the air has been thick with damp, a heaviness that changes sounds.

I have worked, between showers, at transplanting.  Most of the nursery plants have found a place in the strips along the retaining walls or in large pots placed near the newly completed side entry porch.

The most robust of the seedlings [an heirloom tomato, Jupiter's beard, small coneflowers] have been transferred to grow on in larger quarters.

The dwarf Oriental lilies are blooming in the tub where they over-wintered, waiting til I can make a more permanent place for them. 
Neighbor Fred has entrusted two amaryllis into my care; they, along with one that he nurtured for me last season, have been interred in a large tub for the summer.

Concrete was poured Tuesday in the main bay of the barn, creating a decent workplace.
The men have put their efforts toward mechanical work on the big 4 wheel drive truck and several tractors that needed some tinkering.

It was decided to paint the rustic porch railings with the same dark red mixture used for the exterior doors.  Howard accomplished this, leaning over the rails to paint the outer areas.
[Not a job I would have relished!]

On the lower right are Maiden Pinks--seeds sprinkled from the packet like finely ground pepper.
I don't think I can separate and save all of the pinks, much as I love them.
I will have enough for all my needs and plenty to offer to friends.
The pots in the upper right are foxgloves--'Spanish Peaks' and 'Sutton's Apricot'. In other years when I have sown foxglove the rate of germination has been poor. 
The vigor of the seeds this year has been astonishing.
Second from lower left are Jupiter's Beard which are already enjoying a larger pot.
Less enthusiastic, but emerging, are Balloon Flower, Lady's Mantle, Pale Coneflower, and a few Lavender.

The nasturtiums from a mixed packet, are spindly with some yellowing leaves, but have started blooming.

My usual preference is for dark red nasturtiums but I'm liking this delicately pale yellow.

It seemed that I accomplished quite a bit yesterday--what a decade ago would have felt like an ordinary day's work.
Today, predictably, I've been tried and rather witless!


  1. It's great when you can get on out in the garden. You have sown WAY more seeds than I have - I will confess to most of my flower seeds still languishing in the box to be sown . . . Work on the house has truly mucked up my gardening plans.

    Love the deep red Nasturtium and the pale cream. I had some lovely almost mahogany colour ones one year but they didn't set much seed and were an extortionate price to buy as they were Thomson and Morgan seeds. I've just been transplanting lots from my onion bed (it has long been a Nasturtium plot) in time for today's all-day rain which should get them settled in and growing in their new homes.

    I've never tried growing Pinks from seed, but have several boughten ones about the place in big planters.

    The deep red of the porch paintwork really compliments the grey walls.

    Lovely butterflies - they look like Fritillaries of some sort.

    1. Jennie; I expected from the description on the nasturtium packet that the darker ones would be more of a mahogany hue. They are always untidy plants, have worked best in a raised planter where they could cascade over the edges.
      I used to peruse T and M for more unusual seeds, but their online offering in the US has become rather mundane.
      We are liking the red trim!

  2. The most annoying aspect of ageing is the lack of stamina and energy. I can cope with most other changes but I get so annoyed with the low energy levels.

    1. Briony; That is so true. The desire to do things hasn't diminished, but the energy for the doing is so lacking. Aging seems to be all about the need for constantly finding a new 'normal.'

  3. I love seeing what you have growing there at your new place.

    I agree with Briony about lack of energy. My desire to garden I still have, but the energy just isn't the same as even a few years ago.

    Of course, becoming a widow has had a lot to do with my lack of everything. But, each day is a gift, and I do the best I can. God is my strength and I am thankful for all that He does in my life.

    Have a lovely weekend ~ FlowerLady

    1. Rainey; I am often frustrated that I cannot start [pull cord] or manage a rototiller. I'm truly dependent on husband --or this year, my son--to do that chore. Once ground has been worked I grub about with garden fork and trowel. In fact, I'm not good with power tools at all, so mowing and weed-whacking wouldn't get done without help.
      Age--and other unforeseen circumstances surely alter how we do things!

  4. Well I for one think that you have ‘crossed the Alps’ in your gardening endeavors! And, that you’ve done it in the heat and humidity earns extra marks. After you told me about starting Digitalis from seed I went on a bit of a search for a packet but came a cropper. I’ll order some this winter and start them early so that they’ll be ready to plant come May. Yesterday I planted two more deciduous azaleas, a Klondike and a Flame. The later being a native plant....both the color of a winter sunset. Today I waited for the sun to dip behind the mountain before I set out to mulch the newly weeded and composted azalea beds. Everything looks so much tidier when well mulched. Oh, you will be pleased to know that I seem to be winning the Mugwort war. Well maybe not the war but surely the most recent battle. I concur that being an aging gardener is the pits. It takes me longer to do everything.

    1. Mundi; I hope you can continue to keep the mugwort under control; each time I thought I had conquered it, back it came, often with astonishing speed. Could it be that the warmer more humid climate here encouraged it?
      I have bought my foxglove seed from Select Seeds. The Camelot strain is the one which gave me this season's sturdy plants. Spanish Peaks it a good perennial variety.
      I have bought what seems like a ton of mulch this spring, but still not enough. A wet summer can promote moldy mulch [of the bark type] which then becomes a danger to the plants it is meant to protect.
      Azaleas blaze in many yards here--I wouldn't have thought of them as hardy in Vermont.

  5. The porch railing looks good! And so do all the seedlings. Phil

  6. Phil' Thank you! Affirmation of our efforts always appreciated. I hope gardening is off to a good start in your northern realm--and that you will be sharing some photos.