Sunday, June 27, 2021

A Good Mowing

A two day weekend in the gardening season is not that common. I needed one. To do whatever I felt like doing and nothing more. I did it outside.

Wandering quietly for hours.

There was no pressing need. The paths were fine. I just felt a desire for some tidy in the rapidly expanding Lush of early summer.

So I mowed a bit over the course of two days that saw countless other odds and ends attended to in the garden.

There was time

To experience my own garden.

How did I get to this wild place?

When I think of all the maintenance that needs doing in the gardens I tend, to wander outside slowly, to edit a bit should a thought arise, to let everything else just be, feels liberating.

I am not in charge. How did I get to this wild place?

Where freshly mowed paths are all the tidy it takes to wander out there undistracted from an amazing garden bursting with life. How did I get to this wild place in the in-between time?

Saturday, June 26, 2021

An Excursion To Bullington Gardens

A day trip to Hendersonville took us to Bullington Gardens, the former residence and nursery of Bob Bullington. The gardens are now a horticultural education center in partnership with NC cooperative extension and the Henderson County public schools. It is also public garden open to everyone.

While not a large garden, it is home to a good many mature Japanese maples and a number of unusual mature ornamental trees.

The layout of the front perennial beds looked like some of the original design was still in use.

In it was the third one of this unknown plant I have seen this year. What is it? I like the foliage and they are all about to bloom.

A large Stewartia pseudocamellia was in full bloom. Mine got froze. I noticed yesterday evening mine was still going to have a few blooms.

A more recent introduction, the pink Hydrangea arborescens led into a pollinator garden.

What every gardener should want, a few big piles of arborist wood chips.

This is one very large weeping Japanese maple. There is a person on the left.

A look inside.

The therapy garden was a big paved courtyard with a covered seating area and a vat of pond scum.

Raised beds in a formal layout hosted a colorful annual display.

There is a native woodland garden, a fairy garden for the kids and a large collection of azalea both deciduous and evergreen. Bullington Gardens is definitely worth a visit when in Hendersonville.

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Feral Parsnips In The Summertime

Sister #2 arrived on summer's eve which may be why it took a few more days for me to realize it was officially summer.

The Lush is here and it is looking mighty fine. There are more summer blooms in the meadows by the day.

Feral Parsnips stand tall in the roadside vegetable garden.

The next peak bloom begins around the 4th of July. I have come to expect a flower show in July. That is when the daylilies go off.

Two nights without the Peckerheads trashing the garden. First it was thunder and lightning and falling water that drove them away, then it got cold, fifty four for the low.

Okra likes hot. Now they all have about seventy five days to get some fine produce on. Time to get busy and grow.

Friday, June 18, 2021

Vegetable Assault

Everything was perfect until it wasn't. Hot pepper water seemed to work the first night. The next night there was payback.

The Peckerheads rooted holes in the roadside vegetable garden from one end to the other. It must have been a team effort.

It's the mulch. It makes for a perfect worm factory. The Peckerheads are gorging themselves on worms. I need to rethink the mulch. The vegetables are just collateral damage. Germinating seeds don't fare well.

All pecked up and at least half a dozen fresh piles of scat left in the walkways on a hot summer night.

Next up was some store bought granular critter repellant. It's the garlic, clove and putrid egg concoction.

It's the raccoons as suspected. There is photographic evidence,. Peckerheads! There was a little less pecking in the vegetables with the rotten eggs. So they moved down to the Great Lawn.

Up along the scenic byway, the beets, parsnips and cucumber are struggling under the assault. I keep putting out seeds.

Then wander off in the Lush in the in between time.

Wild grasses are in bloom.

Thermopsis spears into the last rays of the sun. 

Louisiana iris opens in the heat.

It's a jungle out there. The lights blink in the night.

All kind Peckerheads are out wandering the paths.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Steamy June Bloom Day

It has been most warm and quite steamy for the last week. We are having okra weather. The Lush is responding. This is what makes plants GROW. There are ever more new blooms about to go with all this expanding green biomass. Thermopsis caroliniana is showing yellow.

What is blooming in my garden on this June Bloom Day you may want to know. This is but a sampling. The weed flowers are too numerous to count. The Kousa Dogwood is now shedding petals. It has had a good showing this year.

Spirea japonica has flowers. They make seed and self sow. Quite a bit more than I like. I wouldn't mind if they were easier to pull. The seedlings go for instant tap root.

Up by the roadside

The Meidiland Rose is in full bloom. I don't like roses. They have thorns. This is a rose you can completely ignore. I like that.

Up by the roadside, the feral Parsnips are in bloom, in a vegetable garden that was assaulted by the digger last night. There was a minor loss of beet seedlings. Damn varmints! I sowed more. If the Peckerhead comes back, it will be to a snoot full of hot pepper.

This picture of flowering parsnips should help make all the others look more in focus.

The last poppy in the patch. Cool seed heads. Looks like you could milk them.

I planted a rooted stem piece of the Meidiland Rose on the other side of my driveway because you can completely ignore them and balance in the landscape is a good thing. I hate roses. They have thorns. I had to whack a patch of Goldenrod so you could see the rose. I found a liatris in there and left it. A garden thought for this space bubbled up.

There are a variety of wild orchids that bloom in my garden.

In the hot and steamy, the shade of the forest feels a good ten degrees cooler.

A Japanese iris, the first to open.

I planted Milkweed many years ago. It promptly wandered off. Not a problem in my garden. I let it be. This is the first year it will be doing a real bloom. Nothing is eating my milkweed though. I'm not on the route.

Persicaria polymorpha frames the Great Lawn.

And the first to open Louisiana iris, 'Black Gamecock'.

And for a little of the wild side, Carrion Flower, Smilax herbacea. It stinks.

And in the deep shade of the forest, the plant that dare not speak its name. That is some of what is blooming in my garden in the steam heat of June. By the way, the fireflies are out.