Thursday, April 29, 2010

Sun After Rain

There are numerous iris dotted about the dooryard in clumps.  I have wondered if all would blossom in the classic dark purple with lighter "falls."  The first to open [out by the clothesline] unfolded deep burgandy petals, still dewey.  Today there are two, fully open, and one in gingery shades ready to show off in a day or so. Anyone who remembers the woman who lived here for many years has mentioned her love of flowers. I like to imagine that she spent hours with a plant catalog making her selections. Perhaps the iris were ordered as an un-named mixed "collection."

Another look at the burgandy iris. I moved a clump of iris last Sunday in the rain, transplanting them to my new strip of flower bed.  They were in a bit of a planting that seemed awkwardly placed near the track that leads to the barns. They took the move well and one is budded.  The same weedy tangle presented a hollyhock.  I dug it up as well, though knowing that hollyhocks resent being uprooted and asked to re-establish. Sure enough, it sulked and flopped.  I pruned off the limp leaves and it is obligingly putting up new growth from the center.

One of the inherited peonies which promises to be pink.  Maybe the old variety Sarah Bernhardt?

Surely this one will be bright red!  This is the clump which J. unwittingly ran over with his truck while I screamed from the sidelines.

This little clump of feathers was lying on the wet grass near the  crab apple tree.  I didn't see a dead bird, though surely this is an unhealthy amount of feathers to lose and still fly away?

The clemetis continues to bloom all in a tumble at the bottom of the trellis. It wants tieing up so it can grow up the wires. That task is on the "to-do" list.

So many things "want done" all at once that I know a daily frustration at my own lack of efficiency.  J. has done wonders. The flooring is down in living room, dining area, hall, and master bedroom.  Together we finished the painting of the kitchen and dining room before he installed the kitchen cabinets. The accent wall in the living room was painted first of all.
I tackled the painting of the woodwork in the bedroom on Tuesday while J. finished the edges of the floor.
Oh dear.  The folding closet doors look nice as does the main door.  Even the baseboards look good, although "cutting in" along the edges with a highly contrasting paint color is a nightmare.
I set to work on the window casings and the cunning little interior shutters yesterday. I knew the shutters wouldn't be easy.  Several hours later I had to concede that it wasn't going well. Painting old window sashes is never as nice as finishing new ones.  Charlie the Cat [who isn't bright] jumped on a freshly painted window sill. The louvers of the shutters dripped and dribbled paint.  I developed a kink in my neck and aching shoulders and felt rather like throwing a tantrum. [Which would have taken more energy than I possessed!]
I woke this morning and cautiously peered at the paint--which is called "Cinnamon Swirl." It is meant to be a buffy-peachy color.  Some of the time it is.  With the eastern sun pouring in I managed to convince myself that it looks more like an over ripe cantalope--or maybe a melting orange popsicle.
I creaked out of bed and tip-toed to the kitchen, aching in every bone.
J. emerged when the scent of fresh coffee drifted down the hall.
I began to moan about the shutters. I took my mug of coffee and two heated back warmers and crippled to my lair in the corner of the loveseat.
J. remained non-committal re the shutters, but announced that "we" needed to "go see about fencing."
He furthermore decided we should go to the Lowes in Glasgow, KY rather than the one in Campbellsville where we have been buying supplies.
I believe the man has decided that it is judicious to remove both of us from the scene of our labors and take an "outing" every few days.
I grumbled a bit about going--shouldn't I stay home and GET SOMETHING DONE?
I went along--and the sunshine on green fields, the shrubbery and flowers in bloom in every dooryard were beautiful to see. [Although I do think that azaleas in screeching colors are a bit much!]
Having nothing to do while J. made his price comparisions on various fencing materials I wandered into the adjoining garden center.
I usually am not excited about the quality or variety of plants in such places, but found a good display of perennials in good condition--and on sale!
When J. reappeared I had loaded a cart with pots of nepeta [Walkers' Low] a dark red aquilegia and a bi-colored one in scarlet and honey yellow, several Cheddar Pinks, a red dianthus.
Before dark this evening all had been tucked into the ground, as well as several plants which had been languishing on the side porch while rain made it too muddy to plant.
The matter of the wretched shutters remains.  The problem of creaky old bones is here to stay.
But--the flower border is beginning to be a reality.


  1. What a lovely post - I am so glad you have inherited a garden which is well-stocked and by someone who knew her plants. As for painting shutters - I am complaining about walls here!!! Is it permitted to send seeds from UK to US? If so, I have umpteen bags of Aquilegia seeds I can dip into and send?

    We had a much-needed day off yesterday when it rained (so no builder). Tomorrow we are off to the Antiques Fair at Builth Wells. I agree with J, that you need a day off now and then or you will go MAD!

  2. I love the peonies! They are my favortie by far! I love reading the posts, Sharon, you have been so busy! Isn't it so nice to see the greenery after all the snow of winter?

  3. I love peonies but never have any luck growing them. I planted 3 different colours of plants, 4 years ago keeled over almost imeadiately ..the following year only one sprouted growth but no sign of flowers and again the next year. This year there are shoots, but I wonder if there will be a flower.

    With all the hard work you really do need days off.xx