Sunday, June 14, 2009

This Eastern Tiger Swallowtail has been hanging around here for about a month. My little 6 year old neighbor calls it the "Big yellow butterfly" she's tried to catch it but it's pretty elusive. I'm not sure what kind of bush it's sitting on, it was planted by the previous owners it has tiny pink flowers in the spring.

Heritage bloomed yesterday, Eden will go any day now. Something keeps nibbling off my Captain Sam buds but seems to be steering clear of Eden and Clotilde Soupert. Winchester Cathedral is still going strong despite being noshed on by rose slugs. Same with the Fairy blooming despite the rose slugs.

I finished planting the garden today. Starting seeds for the cukes and squash was a disaster. I dropped the tray and ended up with a lot of soil mixed with seeds. I have one questionable plant: cucumber, zucchini, yellow squash? I guess we'll have to wait and see. I decided to direct sow instead of buying plants. I also ds bush beans. The pole beans I planted last week are starting to poke throught the soil. The cosmos seeds I scattered around are also coming up.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


I've been a lame blogger but a busy gardener lately. I guess it's better to garden than to blog about it and not actually do it. I caught Winter Sowing fever and have planted a ton of containers. I have planted out most of the annuals. I am still starting new containers of perennials.
Most of the veggie garden is in, I still have 1 quadrant to go-squash and cucumbers. The pea fence is totally jacked up and the peas are grabbing onto the garden fence making the pea fence swing at an almost 45' angle. Nice. The lettuce is looking really good. Not a lot of slugs this year (knock on wood) I don't know if it's because I've been so ruthless with them in the past or if it's just too early. I've caught a few so far this year- maybe 4 or 5. The squirrels got my early tomato-I'm pissed! I rescued a tomato plant last fall that I had found growing up between a crack in the sidewalk and a wall downtown. I nursed it through the winter and it rewarded me with flowers a few weeks ago. I came home yesterday and something had ripped the top of the plant off. I stuck it in water and left it outside. Today something took a huge bite out of the tomato. Damn squirrels. What's left of the plant seems to be doing fine. My Silvery Fir Tree plants that I started from seed have buds on them. I'm very excited!
My first rose bloomed this week: Winchester Cathedral (6/7) it beat out Eden, Heritage and Sweet Promise. Some weren't included in the race: Captain Sam got moved so he had a set back, Gruss an Aachen got clobbered first by me then by my nephew before I put a cage around it. Distant Drums got clobbered by the dog before it got a cage. Capain Sam was moved to outside the fence so Bodie can't disturb him anymore-unfortunately now, the deer can- some buds are mysteriously missing....hmm.... Eden and Heritage will probably pop within the next day or two. I planted out all the roses I rooted from cuttings last year except Thor. Thor got clobbered (in the pot) too by my DH, Bodie and me. Poor thing! I put it in a dappled shady area hoping it will recover and will grow more roots and I will plant it out later or even next year if it makes it. The Fairy that I started from cuttings is blooming too. I didn't count that in the race because it spent a nice cushy winter indoors. I've had a problem with sawfly larvae (I think) little green worms skeletonizing my leaves. I'll have to remember next year to be more vigilant and try to pick them off early. It's hard- they're sneaky. I heard wrens like to eat them so I think I'll get a wren house too. I also have to remember to put cages around the smaller roses to keep them from being clobbered.
I scored big time free plants this week- free always makes me happy. Co-worker Cathy invited me over to her house for U-dig ferns, blackeyed susan and daylillies. I got a bunch and she told me to come back anytime for more. She bought a house previously owned by a master gardener. With 2 active teenagers she doesn't have time to keep up with the gardens so she shares with everybody she can think of. Nice!
I need to move the Allium mollis from the front of the house (in the shade- not happy- previous owners put it there) I think I'll put them in the new rose bed with Russelliana, Clotilde Soupert and Capt. Sam. I also have some dwarf sage planted there, ws nigella and candy tuft from my sister's "garden"(she gardens like my mom-what ever survives is her garden). Other new garden bed needs more topsoil. Garden store is having a sale this weekend- 40# bags for $2. Once I get that straightened out I'll put in some of the blackeyed susan and some of the ws stuff- clarkia, sweet william, bells of ireland. I think my ws lupines would be ok going in too- they grew like gang busters-they won't bloom this year but it gives me something to look forward too! She said the daylilies are orange so I think I'll put them in the bed by the deck-I'm not loving the mental picture of Eden roses and orange daylilies-yuck. I pulled almost everything out of the deck bed but the roses and the monarda and re plateded it in other places. We need to come up with a Bodie barrier for the underside of the deck, level the area off (lot's of Bodie pot holes) then replant stuff. The ferns are going where the alliums are being dug up. I need to make sure they don't crowd out the columbine. My columbine isn't blooming, I don't know if it's too early or the spot is too shady.
The clematis on the mailbox looks great this year. I'll have to look at my notes, I can't remember the name. I meant to take a picture but didn't get around to it and the petals are starting to blow off. The one on the light post looks gorgeous too-kind of. I get confused about pruning and I didn't prune that one last year and now it's all straggly-skinny on the bottom and top heavy with blooms and leaves. It looks drunk. I can't remember what kind that one is either. I have it written down somewhere.
What's blooming now: Roses, allium mollis, tradescantia, Peonies, chives, Salvia, yarrow, clematis, bleeding heart, weigala, thyme