Saturday, April 11, 2015

East Curb Area

I am so tickled that spring is here!  I am having so much fun going out each day to see what is up, and what is growing.  It's time to start posting about what's going on in the different parts of the yard like I've done in the past.  I am going to start with the curb area by the fire hydrant.  The first three photos are from a few days ago, after one of the two city workers who were cleaning out the water area of the fire hydrant walked into the planting area, stepping on a couple plants.

When I went out to see what the guys were doing, only the one who was stepping on plants talked to me.  When I politely pointed to some plants I didn't want stepped on, the guy told me that it is the city's right of way, and if there is an emergency, people won't care what they step on.  I told him I realized that, then he also said that some people plant right around hydrants, and that is illegal.  I told him I realized that as well, and that I knew what I had planted was not illegal.  I told him the guy who inspected the paint on the hydrant had told me the plants were fine.  They were about done when I got out there, so left after we talked.  I think the quiet guy was not pleased with the other one, but I'm not sure.


The cover for the water is between the fire hydrant and the flower bed.  I decided to take out the irises and perennial geraniums to make a path for the workers.  There are a couple or three butterfly milkweed plants in the bare looking spots that have not come up yet.  Milkweeds are always one of the last plants to come up in the spring, but once up, grow pretty quickly.


Here is one of the two clumps of Fremont's clematis that I had divided from an old clump that had to be moved from the bed it was in at church I go to last summer.  I am thankful that he just broke part of it off, and the rest of the plant is OK.


After putting in the little path, taking the slabs from another flower bed, I decided to add some deterrents to walking on the plants in the form of little stakes and things.


I was thinking about removing the perennial geranium from the end, but haven't so far.  This area used to have day lilies and irises, but I wanted to put native plants in here.  I am glad I did, because they are doing quite well.


I like how early the sedges green up.  The 3 ground plum milkvetch plants I just planted last year are each a different size.  I am pleased to see them blooming. 


Moving to the west, I still have some of the irises.  Rabbits have been munching on some of the purple poppy mallows, but have not eaten them all down so far.  I should probably get more cages made.


The liatrises are coming up.  This may be aspera.


It seems like most of the spring blooms in the yard are not native.  I don't remember what these are.  The other Fremont's clematis clump is in the upper left in the photo.


I may change some of the "decorations" if I find some things I like better.


I hope this works to keep any future workers off of the flowers.  Really, we have not had problems in the past, so hopefully we won't in the future.  The clump on the left is catmint.  The small clump near the flower stake is heuchera richardsonii, native coral bells.  I am pleased to see the several small plants I added last year have grown some.  I have larger clumps in other parts of the yard getting ready to bloom. 


Looking back toward the east, there is a clump of a native coneflower of some kind growing right next to one of the clumps of daffodils.  I may remove that clump after they bloom.  It takes so long for the foliage to die back, and I think I have too many daffodils.


I am thinking this is the verbena stricta plant a local friend gave me last year, coming up in the bare looking area in the previous photo.


I wonder if I should put more stakes and things in this part of the bed for consistency.  LOL


I think I'll risk being a bit tacky in order to hopefully keep the plants from being stepped on, and I do realize this all will be stepped on if there is a fire emergency.


I thought it fitting to bring this over from another bed, hoping anyone wanting to work on the fire hydrant would use the path.  :-)


I hope all is well with you, wherever you garden.  I know some of you are in full garden mode, and others are still waiting for spring to arrive.  Take heart, it is on the way!  (I've said this before, but I hope to start spending a bit less time on FaceBook, so I can get back to more blog reading.)

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Some Wildflowers are Making their Appearance

I have already shown the one wildflower that I have blooming so far, but will post it again, as well as some of the plants that are coming up.   There are a few I'm not including, because I am not sure what they are yet, or their names were not in my memory at the time I saw them.  I figured this may help others who have these plants coming up, but don't remember what they are.  (I also showed some of the plants that are coming up in my last post.)  This will be my different kind of post for Wildflower Wednesday, hosted by Gail, from Clay and Limestone.  I hope you read hers and the other posts, and are inspired to plant more natives from your areas.

I am thankful we had 1/2 to 3/4 an inch of rain yesterday, while it was 35 degrees.  It's a good thing it wasn't a few degrees colder.  We could still get some snow in the next few weeks, though. 

The clumps of pasque flowers are blooming at different times than each other this year.  We had a few drops of rain this morning, and I like how the drops of water show up on some of the plants.



I am going to try to cut back the cup plant a couple or three times this year to see if it sprawls a bit less, since it is right by the sidewalk going up to our porch.


I hope to see more Golden alexander seedlings come up to share with local people.  This clump is several years old.


I am hoping this is the year the white blooming baptisia blooms.  I moved the stump away, and was pleased to see there is another shoot coming up next to this one.


 I don't remember the rudbeckia maxima looking smooth at this stage.


I am tickled to see the Virginia bluebells are coming up, as they weren't last week when I looked.


The Virginia waterleaf is doing well.


I showed the older, larger clump of Prairie smoke geum in my last post. This is one of the ones I planted last year.


I am please to see a number of self sown Mexican hat plants coming up. It looks like I will have some thinning to do.


I should probably clip some of the dried leaves off of the heuchera richardsonii. 


Now that it has rained, there should be lots more plants popping up, including the lettuce, spinach, kale, radishes, peas, onions, and potatoes that I planted.  I don't remember when the asparagus comes up, but I also planted some across the street that I hope grows well with the challenges of the evergreen trees.  Hopefully, they are far enough away from the walnut tree.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Let the 2015 Garden Season Begin!

After such a cold spell in February, with more snow than usual, I am so excited that the weather has warmed up into the 60s and 70s the last couple of weeks.  Next week, I heard something about highs in the 50s, but that's better than the 20s.  Spring is almost here, and I have lettuce, spinach, radishes, carrots, potatoes, and a row of asparagus planted.  If it does well across the street, I'll plant more next year.

I took some photos of the yard Saturday evening to make note of what's going on.  I have taken the top layer of leaves off the flower beds, and taken down most of last year's plants.  I have some piles across the street where I put them in case there are insects inside the stems overwintering, and so the birds can continue to eat the seeds.


It's so good to see some green on the plants that come up this time of year.  This is prairie smoke geum.


I decided to leave these coneflowers for the birds for awhile.


I like the fuzziness of the newly emerging pasque flowers.


The golden alexanders are up.


A couple clumps of pasqueflower in a different spot are blooming.


As I was cutting plants back, I chopped some of the stems and threw them around for mulch. In this area, the mulch we had was chips from the silver maple that had to be cut down a few years ago.  They are pretty much decomposed.  I put the grasses I cut back in the path.  I wonder if it will be slick when it's wet.


Phlox pilosa:


Zig-zag goldenrod:


This is the east side of the house.


I think this is an agastache or catmint, but I'm not sure because of the color.


Phlox divaricata


I don't know the names of the hellebores that I have, but I discovered them from others' blogs.  They are such a welcome early spring bloomer!



Short-toothed mountain mint:


I actually have been doing the garden clean up over a few days.   At first, I was propping some of the seedheads here and there for the birds, until I decided not to take down the ones in the curb area quite yet.


Looking toward the south, I am so excited to see what things will look like in a month!


The weather sure has been off lately, with us in SE Nebraska having warmer temps than some of you in the south.  Still, the spring season will still probably come for you sooner, and we will get to see the progression of it heading our way and north, as we find the time to look at others' blogs instead of spending so much time on Facebook.  (Maybe I should be speaking for myself.  Am I the only one who has been spending less time blogging?)  Oh, and there will be more time spent outdoors as the season progresses!  Yippee for spring!