Monday, June 10, 2013

Garden, First Week of June

Days seem to fly by.  Not enough hours [or perhaps not enough energy?] to do the many  tasks
 that 'want done'--let alone to tackle projects that intrigue me.
The abundant rains have made June weather, thus far, a bit cooler than the past three seasons--a welcome change, though surely the sweltering hot and humid days must arrive.

The orange tree lilies proudly withstood several pounding torrents.  Now the topmost buds are open and petals from the first blooms are falling, hot splashes of color.

I ruthlessly tore out some of the mint which was choking this patch of nigella and dianthus.
These were sown in place the first summer we were here.
The stripey seed pods of the nigella are almost as appealing as the lacy flowers.

Elder flowers, foamy green and white, are beginning to open.

I'm puzzled why all but a few poppies this season are this coloration.
Lovely as they are I miss the deep red frilly ones and the powder pink 'peony' type.

This coneflower stem was apparently bent when the plant emerged from dormancy in the spring.
I've enjoyed watching it stretch.

I have lost a lavender at the bottom edge of the herb garden, and the purple sage [behind the tri-color sage] has a strange wilt. This bit of ground is 'gritty' which should provide good drainage for herbs which don't appreciate wet feet.

Nellie is good garden company.

Poppies, and below them squash and potatoes in the veg strips.

Asclepias aka Butterfly Weed.
I spotted this growing wild in our north pasture. Now in its 4th season in the perennial strip it is making a respectable clump.  I've seen a yellow variant growing along roadsides--but never when I had a trowel with me!

A single pale poppy.

It has been so wet that 'seed wings' which lodged in a crevice of the box elder have rooted into the bark.

Weird 'toadstools' crop up in shady moist corners, crouching there for a day and disappearing overnight.

The former owners of our farm planted garlic in the oddest places.
Several stalks of it poke through violets and weeds under the grape arbor.
I am fascinated by the papery  husks which split to uncover the flower buds.

Garlic in bloom.
I expect that my posts and my opportunity to blog-hop and comment will be limited during the
next two weeks.
We are preparing for company and I'm attempting to plan ahead regarding food, as well as doing the cleaning and tidying which will make loved ones feel especially welcomed.
The 'guest room' also serves as my desk space, so it will be 'off-limits.'
My laptop is at the repair shop for cleaning and service--perhaps I'll be able to steal a few moments to post a line or two, but I don't have my photo program installed on it.
Perhaps you should brace for a barrage of photos during the final week of June!


  1. Love the poppy photos. Aren't they gorgeous. I hope your feral cat has been around and is doing ok. It must be so hard for them when they are alone. We'll look forward to your posts coming up. Have fun with company. Deb

    1. Hi Deb; We haven't seen the feral cat again, although I've tip-toed up to the barn several times and left extra food. I'm assuming it is a male and if so, he would likely be a roaming Tom at this point. Feral cats tug at my heart--even though almost daily I wonder how we've gotten so many cats to take care of on a retirement budget. I have to admit these last three 'boys' have made life very interesting! And I've just had Bobby on my keyboard--go Bobby!

  2. Love to see all thedifferent kinds of plants and flowers in your neighborhood. So different from ours. Nellie has such a perfect black --grey-- nose!

    1. Chris; I've been briefly in CA several times, but probably not in your area. In San Diego I was charmed by rosemary bushes which reached above my head.
      Nellie and his brothers have such distinctive funny faces, don't they!

  3. What a wonderful wander through your garden say you are lacking in energy ...that is relative to what you are used to I know but if I had a quarter of your stamina I would be a very happy person. I hope you dont exhaust your self preparing for your visitors and you have an amazing time when they arrive. xx

    1. Angie; I think that, sadly, you and I have both reached an era in our lives when comparison to our younger selves is inevitable. I think I will enjoy the folks who are coming to visit. Its the preparation that is exhausting! As you likely know, when one dwells with cats, cleaning has to be very up to the minute. [Hairballs, anyone?]

  4. The butterfly weed looks an interesting plant. I have noticed that opium poppies often seem to revert to shades of purple when they self seed and "go feral".

    Enjoy your summer visitors and your break from blogging. This is such a busy time of year!

    1. Ann; Thank you for that bit of information re opium poppies. It must be that the purple coloring is a dominant characteristic. I'll need to buy a pkt of other varieties to ensure continuation of the other colors. Poppy seed here has to be scattred in earliest spring. Many of mine are self-sown and the tiny plants poke up in December and shiver through the rest of the winter.

  5. yes I lost a lavender during last years wet weather and a sage practically dessicated by the wind out back. I have moved it to the sunny front- fingers crossed!

    1. Kath, I haven't thought of your area as being wind-swept. Now that I consider it, I can imagine how there are few natural obstacles of trees and hills on the 'levels' to deflect any wind coming, I'd guess, from the sea?
      Gardening is never static, always some new quirk of weather and seasons to change our 'layout.'

  6. Several years ago I found a purple poppy - we had no other poppies in the garden at all. I concluded that it was a 'gift' from the blue-tits, which I had allowed to nest in the electrical box that spring, as it grew directly below 'their' box.

    Nowadays they pop up everywhere and remind me of that little family.

  7. Hope you enjoy your company and will look forward to the barrage of pictures.

  8. Great post. I love your pretty poppies. You have such interesting plants and flowers.

    It is thundering as I type. The ground is still very soggy here from three weeks of rain. It didn't rain Sun or yesterday, so I was able to get some laundry washed and hung out to dry Sunday, and mowed yesterday and this morning did some of the weedwacking that needed doing. The rest will have to wait for another time, I was bushed.

    Enjoy your company and I look forward to seeing photos and reading all about life there on your farm when you return.

    Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

  9. What gorgeous garden pictures. I'm preparing one of my own but it's looking a bit boring compared with yours!

  10. We have had the wonderful sunshine, now we're back to grey skies and rain again - and indoor jobs.

    I see your garden has some gaps, as mine does - not everything survived the winter - and many of my Aquilegias have "gone pink" on one side of the garden. In another bed they are all William Guinness or very very dark colours.

    Glad to see you have Elder nearly out (more nearly than ours), and "cat-gardeners" just like I do!

    Your planting of pinks and nigella remind me of our childhood garden, and a favourite planting of my mum's.