Wednesday, May 24, 2017


It keeps falling. Water.

Everything is wet.

Wet is good for growing things. Wet is unpleasant for editing things.

I would like some dry for Sunday.

Before the Lush has a chance to cover things, I want to give the planted plants some elbow room.

Sunshine and your own space to grow makes a world of difference in who lives or fades away.

The planted plants do better with some help. The Lush has no mercy for the short or the meek.

Even baby trees need elbow room when they are small to grow big and strong.

On a drier Sunday I will dive in there.

Elbow room is on the way.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Wet Lush

Sister #2's visit is going to be wet. We got two and a quarter inches of rain on Sunday. More is on the way.

The gardener likes rain. It was actually getting a bit on the dry side with eighty plus degree sun shiny days. And the gardener has been busy planting things hither and yon and can't be watering all that stuff. Relying on others to do it is always an iffy prospect.

Rain makes happy flowers that bloom.

This is the lone poppy in the wild cultivated gardens. There might be more coming. A packet of seeds found their way to me. I gave them prime territory in the dung filled roadside vegetable garden. Success. They germinated and are growing. All my other attempts failed. Seems poppy seeds are fussy and pretty much need bare ground free of competition. That is in short supply around here.

The first of the Flame Azaleas is in bloom.

The Lady got soaking wet.

 I went out there during a pause because I know it will be midnight soon and the Lady will disappear.

Grass grows.

It wasn't raining after dinner so I went out to see what I might see. The Carrion Flower, Smilax herbacea, is reaching the time to fall over stage.

At the very end, my Trillium gets some luteum.

The purple nature of the Black Iris is revealed.

Aralia cordata 'Sun King'. It takes big foliage to stand out in the Lush.

The Chinese Rhubarb in the big yellow pots is settling in and growing quite nicely. So far I am very pleased. It will be interesting to see how this tableau changes when the Mayapples are gone.

I may have been feeling over worked and a wee bit stressed of late. That means I had to buy myself a plant. So I did. One more Persicaria polymorpha would be nice. Repetition in the garden gives it more legibility. Two of them is now three.

Is the Great Lawn in danger? I wanted to give this one more sun than the first two. One I had planted in another garden in full sun at the same time as mine was already much bigger. This is where it could go, get full sun and have the room to grow to full size.

In time this open space between plants would close anyway.

I'd better be careful. The iris of the rotten log are already in the Great Lawn. There is a random crinum by the new Persicaria. I mow around ferns and Jack-in-the Pulpits. There are good things in my lawn.

Empty space, full sun, an acquisitive need for the new, I need to be ruthless not careful. The Great Lawn is an important visual lure and destination into the garden. No more plants In the Great Lawn. I'm sure I can find room around the edges.

Friday, May 19, 2017

It Was Time

The Great Lawn was making every effort to rejoin the Tall Flower Meadow. I put off the first haircut long enough. Sister #2 is also arriving for a visit tomorrow. It was time.

So it was whacked when I got home this evening. Now maybe I wanted it to look good for Sister #2, but I also know there will be more visiting and less chore time while she is here. Best to do it now. In another week it would be beyond shaggy.

Fresh mowed lawns are nice. Walking among big bold foliage is better.

The Darmera peltata is reaching for full size. Unlike the Mayapples which are already beginning to fade, the Darmera will last all season.

The paths are mowed. The gardens are in full bloom. The week ahead is looking much cooler.

There will be much fine garden strolling.

One more bit of tidy was tended to. I am not fond of the hairball of sticks. It mars the view. It gets burned before it piles up too high.

The Great Lawn is ready for business, all forty foot diameter of its sort of circular self.

The lower shrub and grass border is also kept cleared. This bit of mowing adds a defining line between the real wild and the garden. I am making good progress on changing that wild. Visually it is the back wall of the garden. Hence it needs to be properly curated.

I truly love how the garden is evolving into something unique and outside the norm.

It's a dance. My partner in nature is half responsible.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Next Door Gardens

Two gardens grow nearly side by side, separated by an acre of sunny utility meadow and a stream valley of the deep forest. They have much in common yet are defiantly independent. The sunny utility meadow acts very much like a buffer zone between them.

Both have dogwood trees off the front porch. My Kousa Dogwood blooms a month later.

Both have bearded iris.

I am a little more selective, not needing one of every kind. The Black Iris is worth having.

When blooms fail, the foliage can be used to great textural effect by choosing a less fancy kind iris.

Bearded iris don't do this. A good bloom year which we are having this year is a bonus to great texture.

Strong repetition of color and form helps bring some design coherence to the underlying wildness.

The color palette also leans heavily in one direction. Green is a color you know.

Seeds of the False Solomon's Seal, Maianthemum racemosum, that were flung years ago are big blooming clumps today.

One fern won't do. Four have a much bigger visual impact.

From the start, attention was paid to the overall design of my new garden. The results are becoming quite evident.

Then there is the garden next door.

That's where The Lady lives.

One stem is now three, but for the last two years some damn bug has eaten one of the flowers. I sure wish the number of stems would increase again.

It's also where the Phacelia purshii runs wild.

This single dominant blue element gives a great deal of cohesion to the underlying wildness of this garden.

Mow a path through it and all is well with the world.

This garden has its own kind of magic.

One of each seems to work.

There is a Black Iris there too. That is where it was first discovered. I took some next door and made more.