Wednesday, June 7, 2023

The Flowers of May

May is the season of bloom in south-central Kentucky. By early June perennials are past their prime, languishing as hot and humid weather begins to announce the arrival of summer.
There were enough chilly nights throughout April and early May to blight buds which had rushed the season. The show of peonies was sparse compared to other years; one of my favorite roses, Hawkeye Belle has blossomed but the petals show the blight of frost.
The stand of self-sown poppies along-side the front door have been spectacular, nearly obliterating the dwarf monarda.
Foxglove persists in the west wall garden along with the edging of 'pinks' raised from seed.
'Queen of Sweden' and 'The Poet's Wife' have supplied fragrant blooms for my collection of small vases. 
I discovered the first of the Japanese beetles lurking yesterday.

My energies have gone into digging up and transplanting coneflowers which are trying to take over the east wall plantings--my own fault as I have allowed the drying seed heads to remain over the winter rather than scrupulously removing them. 
The battle with weeds is never-ending, one I can't possibly win.

I love gardening, but there is no denying that it, along with the usual household chores, leaves me rather witless by the end of the day, too foggy-minded to comment on the blogs I continue to read, much less to order my thoughts into coherent posts.

Thus, a week into the new month, I offer the photos uploaded days ago as a 'draft'--- small record of an all too fleeting season of lovely blooms.

Lauren's Grape poppies at their best.

Poppies are stunning, in bud, in every stage of opening, as seed pods.

Clematis Jackmanii in first flush of bloom.

Samaritan Jo and Edita scrambling for space on the trellis.

Having once planted nigella I will apparently never be without it. The common name, 'Love-in-a Mist,' suits its frothy profusion.

Bees and butterflies enjoy the clumps of nepeta that edge the east wall.

Queen of Sweden.

The nameless late-blooming white clematis, only survivor of Spring Hill's 'bargain assortment.'

This small landscape rose is hardy and non-fussy.

Miniature lily, gift of a friend, which has made several moves with me.

Foxgloves, pinks, and the little rose.



  1. Your garden looks beautiful. I am especially jealous of your Jackmanii - that is one happy Clematis!! My roses are now all springing into bloom, although I notice the American Pillar rose has a sucker flowering with a single petalled white bloom so I need to cut that stem off today. Tess of the D'Urbervilles has rallied from her death-bed and is putting out growth now. Phew. That was a close one.

    I am surprises you have Lilies in the garden as I read the pollen can harm cats. There were some lily-type flowers here but I can't get the roots out of the last one so just chop off the flower buds instead. They are probably not even lilies but I take no chances.

    I have had to put a metal net cover over my planter of Nepeta as the cats lay on it, and nip bits off (Ghengis the other day especially) so it is now a Dwarf variety!!

    Hope you can keep ahead of those wretched Japanese beetles.

    Foxgloves - I have an enormous one and a rival, self sown and flowering their socks off outside the French windows. They are a delight.

    1. Jennie; Lilies as toxic to pets is a fairly new concept for me. I've not noticed the cats to be interested in them other than sometimes sprawling in the foliage of the daylilies when it is hot. I have a big clump of catnip which planted itself by the greenhouse door--I bring in a sprig each time I work in that area. the cats have come to expect it!
      Not quite as many foxgloves in bloom this year, but a nice blending of colors and many smaller plants from last season's dropped seeds.

  2. You have some lovely blooms in your garden. The Clematis Jackmanii is doing so well. It seems so far not one of my Clematises is doing great. So few buds/blooms. It's frustrating to have favourite perennials languish knowing that we have to wait an entire year to (hopefully) see them bloom. I found several tiny Foxgloves growing in dry corners and I've been watering them with the idea of moving them into better (more visible) spots. I'm waiting for a cloudy day though. I think I only have a few Foxgloves blooming this year. I have no idea why so few when other years they have been so abundant. It has been awfully dry.
    Last year a bird gifted me with Nigella which I'd never had before. Of course I let it go to seed and I see lots of baby Nigellas now.
    Granny M

  3. GM; My favorite heirloom clematis always gets frost bitten as it puts out buds very much too early. I'm delighted that jackmanii is a later blooming variety. Our fluctuating weather through April and early May is likely the reason for less than abundant bloom this season.
    Nigella looks so dainty and yet has marvelous staying power!

  4. I would have been thrilled to have had so many beautiful blooms in May. I am taking notes. I love the poppies. And the little rose sounds like one I might enjoy in my garden. I always look forward to zinnias in June. I am hopeful for great colors this year. Hilltop Post

    1. Mary; I welcome each blooming--and it seems they are with me such a short time before this season is done. The poppies are now done, waiting for nasturtiums and coneflowers.