Friday, April 27, 2012

East Front Yard

In my last post of this area, things were just peeking up.  A lot has changed since then.

I trimmed back the Joe Pye weed next to the fence a little more than last year, so it may not get as tall.  I'll start at the corner, and go around the bed, showing what's up. 

The dwarf sage has pretty blooms.

I have been planting more and more daylilies in this bed.  Some, I moved here from other places this spring.  The phlox 'Orange Perfection' has been in that spot a number of years.  I just planted the lavender last year or the year before.

I need to thin out the irises.  The amsonia, I'm assuming, hubrichtii, is a bit crowded.

The reblooming iris, 'Immortality' has a good amount of blooms.

The phlox pilosa, 'Eco Happy Traveler' was just planted last year.  I am pleased with the blooms.  The two plants with the sunlight on them are surprise lilies, which will fade, and then later, send up bloom stalks.  There is a petite pink blooming monarda under them.

I forgot the name of the other reblooming irises I planted, but they are looking good, too.

I have been keeping the anemone, 'September Charm' in the space I have for it.  It would like to spread farther.  I have it in two clumps here.  It's almost time to trim back the mums.  I didn't get a close view of the pink blooming primrose that's on the right, but I am also keeping that from spreading too far.

I spent some time last week untangling the clematis stems and tying them to the trellises.

Heidi knows where we are going when she sees me picking up my camera.  We have made it to the front of the flower bed.

For some reason, I never have very many nigellas come up from seed.  This year, I just have one.  I planted more seeds in the area, but they aren't up yet.

The poppies will be opening soon.

The pine leaf penstemon next to the poppy plant will have orange/red blooms.  This has been in the bed for quite a long time, as this area was a circle before the bed was enlarged to its current size.  The helenium on the right has been there awhile, too.

Orange hawkweed is another plant that I need to keep from spreading too far.  The flowers were not open when I took the photo.

Turning the corner, this daylily is 'Wally'.  I saw it on a garden forum, and found a place to order it from a number of years ago.  It sure has grown!

The clump of yellow blooming foxglove is larger than I remember it getting in the past.  The hydrangea, 'pia' in front of it is smaller.  I forgot to include the Dakota vervain, the purple bloomer on the right, in my Wildflower Wednesday post.  It's what is currently in my blog background.  It sure is a spreader!  It was growing right next to the hydrangea and foxglove, until I took some out to give to friends.

I moved the agastache, 'golden jubilee' to this bed because it was going to get crowded in the other bed.  It doesn't seem to mind the move.

I was looking at a list of plants that can be invasive in some areas, and found red hot poker is somewhere, but not here.  There is a clump of it to the left of the bicycle.

The hellebores continue to look good, holding onto their flowers.  I am pleased this delphinium has survived several winters.  In the past, they only lived a season or two in my gardens.  I think that's a verbena bonariensis to the left of the delphinium.  I'm thinking they were on the list of possible invasive plants, too.  They sew themselves far and wide, but are easy to pull out.

Last year, the flowers looked good in the basket until it got hot, and they got dry.  I stuck some sedums and hen and chicks in it, and only watered it a few times to get them going.  I want to find a little big taller and cascading type of sedum to add to it.

This is the southeast corner of the flower bed.  I can't decide if I like all the drumstick alliiums.  They take up quite a bit of space, and don't bloom until after most things are already blooming.  There are coneflowers throughout the bed, too.

This rattlesnake master is in a spot that is moister than it needs, but it has done well.

We've turned the corner and are facing the street.

This is either a white or pink swamp milkweed.  There are a number of annuals coming up in the empty looking space.  I don't think that hellebore bloomed this year.

I love the cheerful irises!

The seedling on the left is kiss me over the garden gate.  The ones on the right are love lies bleeding.  They are going to be competing for space soon.

Do you have any experience thinning drumstick alliums?  I did give a clump to a co-worker.  I need to ask how its doing.  The Joe pye weed is doing well.

We are back where we started.  I have to tie Heidi up these days so she won't run off.  She doesn't mind.  She loves being outside.

I have been under the weather with a sinus infection, and my asthma has kicked in the last few days, so I have not had the energy to garden.  I did go out and take these photos yesterday, so I could have something to do inside that involved sitting.  I missed a plant sale today, and will most likely not go to one I like to go to tomorrow, but I will just be glad to stop coughing and feel better.  Please pardon my whining.  It has been windy and cool today, and we had a good hard rain this evening.  Plants will continue to grow and do their thing.  I hope all is well with you.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Wildflower Wednesday

It's time for Gail's Wildflower Wednesday.  I am excited about all the plants that are up, and how well the natives I planted last year are doing.  Last month a commenter asked me if I consider all native plants to be wild plants.  I meant to answer her, but didn't get to it.  I am thinking that all native plants would be considered wild, but not all wildflowers are native.  Some wildflowers are native from other parts of the U.S. than where one lives, and others, like Queen Anne's Lace, which is invasive many places, is from Europe.  The definitions of wildflowers I found mostly say they are plants that grow without human effort.  Do you have any thoughts on this?  While most of the plants in my post are native, some are not, but I looked up the ones I wasn't sure about, and found that they are wildflowers. 

Oh, and when I posted about the golden alexanders, I said they get up to 2.5 feet.  The decimal point didn't show up very well.  It is 2 1/2 feet, not 25 feet.  ;o)  I sure am enjoying them!

I showed the heuchera richardsonii in my last WW post.  They have been blooming awhile.  I sure like them!

Gail, my phlox pilosa is looking a bit bedraggled.  I had it protected in some wire, so maybe it wasn't getting enough sun.  The other clump of it was eaten down to the stubs by the rabbits.  I moved the wire to it, and it looks like it is sending up some new growth.

The helenium hoopesii is a wildflower that is not native to my area, but I sure am loving it!

I am enjoying my one blue eyed grass plant, and may plant some more.

I went to a brief talk on planting native plants Sunday evening, where we were told people with small yards should not grow grey headed coneflowers.  Well, I have 6 clumps of it, 2 of which have been in the back yard a number of years.  I love them!

The native columbines sure have had a nice bloom season, and are still going strong.  Last month, I mentioned that there were no new ones in the yard.   I was wrong.  There are a few growing on the east side of the house.

 The allysum wulfenianom, new ones for me, were just starting to bloom last month.  They are cute little things.

I have a couple of these phlox pilosa 'Eco Happy Traveler' plants that I was pleased to find, until I got ahold of some wild ones.  Gail, do the phlox pilosas come up from seed?  Should I keep these if the pilosas start doing well?  They sure are pretty, but even though I will never be able to be a purist, I don't want to be irresponsible, either.

The amsonias are near their peak.  This is hubrictii.

I keep the Virginia waterleaf deadheaded so it won't seed all over, like I've heard it can. 

The first time I saw amsonia tabernaemontana was in my sister-in-law's alley.  It was love at first sight, and I kept looking until I found out what it was, and was able to find one.  Then, when I discovered there were other kinds, I had to have them, too.  How cool to find out they are wildflowers, some native to our area, and others close by.

I looked up gas plant to make sure it is a wildflower, and found it is.  One has to be careful not to touch it, but I sure think it is a beauty!

Woodland phlox is one of my favorite spring flowers.  The larger leaves belong to a salvia.

The geum prairie smoke was blooming a month ago.  Soon, there will be fluffy seedheads that are as attractive as the blooms.

Money plant is another wildflower that I'm thinking I read is not native to Nebraska.  Can you see the round green seedheads?  When they mature, they can be dried and used in dried flower arrangements.  They are a biennial.  I have a large patch of them in my garden across the street that are taller than this clump.

My friend Janet has a huge double lot to garden, and she grows lots of spready plants that I usually don't have room for when she offers me divisions.  Orange hawkweed is officially invasive in some places, but it is one I accepted a number of years ago.  It is native to some of our neighboring states, but not Nebraska.  I have it on the edge of a bed, and have been able to keep it within the area I have for it.

One of the baptisias is blooming, and the other couple will soon.  There is a purple iris blooming in this clump, which I am pretty sure was a volunteer a number of years ago.

My heart goes out to those in the east who have had snow.  I haven't heard any reports today, so don't know how much fell, or what damage was done.  It got up to 90 degrees here.  In a few days, the high is supposed to be in the 50s.  Yes, we are having wacky weather!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Front Yard, Area Where Tree used to be

There has been some growth since I last posted on the area where the tree used to be.  When I posted, I said I was going to show the area on the south side of the fence in another post, but I forgot to.  I will do both in this post.

I always like to include a photo of the view from our front door. The bed on the left has been there a few years.  The area to the right is where the tree used to be, and most of these plants were planted last year, with some additions this year.

This is the area I've tried to mostly plant native plants in.  Some of the plants I thought were native when I bought them aren't, but so far, I am keeping them there to see how I like them.  In a month or so, a number of the plants will be much taller than what they are now, and much less dirt will be showing.

Some of the plants in this area are, alliums that I moved from the side yard, switchgrass, 'northwind', wild quinine, and clematis, hexapetala, 'Mongolian Snowflakes', which I thought was native, but is not.

Farther west, are giant fleeceflower, a couple varieties of liatris, prairie clover and mallow covered to protect them from rabbits, and the two large clumps are grey headed coneflowers.

Larry and I put mulch on the path and in the sitting area.  We are trying to decide whether to put some in the planting areas.  I think I'll skip it, because I am gardening on the cheap this year in order to get the home equity loan we took out when we had our kitchen remodeled paid off.

I am looking forward to seeing how tall the culver's root and other plants will get this summer.

I love the golden alexander plants and flowers, which should be growing to be 2 and a half feet tall.

This is a different kind of allium that I moved from the side yard.  Do you know what they are?

I moved the baptisia on the left from the side yard last spring.  It must have been an OK size to move, because they are not supposed to like to be moved.  There are a variety of liatris and rudbeckias here.  The clump on the right that is cut off, is rigid goldenrod, I'm pretty sure. 

Here is a close-up of the helenium hoopesii, which I had never heard of until last year.  It's a perennial, but I hope it also reseeds.

This is phlox pilosa,' Eco Happy Traveler'.  I took the cage off this evening to put it on something else the rabbits have been eating.  I hope this is large enough they won't be interested in it anymore.

The fluffy looking plants are larkspur, an annual that reseeds.  That's a closer view of a grey headed coneflower on the right.  I am seeing phlox, clematis, and little bluestem grass close by.

The agastache plants survived our mild winter.  I hope the hummingbirds come back and enjoy them like at least two of them did last year.  It was awesome seeing one multiple times a day for a few weeks.  The rudbecia maxima could get 5 to 7 feet tall, and 3 feet wide.  There are also coneflowers, geum 'Prairie Smoke', wild columbine, aster, and a purple milkweed in this area.

I took the next couple of photos a different day from the others because I hadn't shown the pot of gooseneck loosestrife on the bench trellis, or the straight on view of the bench with the strawberries growing underneath.

Earlier this spring, I pruned back the honeysuckle vine that a neighbor lady gave me when we first moved in, but it looks like it could use another trimming back.

On the other side of the bench trellis, are the senna I got from Ben, who blogs at The Deep Middle, a switchgrass, yarrow, 'Paprika', and on the right, helenium autumnale.  The lamb's ears and coreopsis were already planted before the tree came down.

This is the west edge of the area.  The grass is in our neighbors' yard.  Under the basket is a leadplant.  The beautyberry bush was already planted a few years ago.  I moved some joe pye weed from the east front bed next to it.  I have volunteers coming up in the tubs, but have also moved some marigolds that self sowed in our garden last year to some of the tubs. 

Here's the view back to the east.  The plant in the right lower corner is one of the two black and blue salvias that also survived winter, and were enjoyed by the hummingbirds last summer.

I zoomed in to see the amsonia, maybe tabernaemontana and the phlox.  I'm trying to remember whether I purchased the amsonia, or moved it from another part of the yard.

I see Culver's root, inulas, switchgrass, 'Heavy Metal', pasque flowers, little bluestem, and euphorbia.

I planted several nodding ladies' tresses this year.  I hope they do well.

Here's a closer view of the euphrobia, growing around a pasque flower, little bluestem, liatris, narrow leaf coneflowers, phlox, and some plants I can't remember the names of.  I haven't decided if I'm going to keep the irises in this area. 

The little silver plants are pussytoes, which I'm looking forward to seeing spread around. The phlox are doing well for this being their second season here.

I have mentioned that I am not a landscaper, and am not good at making plans.  I tend to get a bunch of plants, set them around until I like how they look, and then plant them.  One thing I kind of did here, was to put some plants in diagonal rows with lots of space for other plants between them.  The grey headed coneflower behind the red hot poker plant is kind of in a row with the other two on the other side of the fence.  I am looking forward to seeing if I like that when they bloom.  I also see prairie clover, sedum, 'Black Jack', amorpha nana, and more liatris, which is weaving its way through this whole area.

I love this little mullein.  I hope the tag turns up.

I don't remember if this is from last year or this.  Do you know what it is?

I don't remember what the big leaved plant on the left is.  The scraggly plants near the sun stake are agastaches.  Hopefully, they will grow and fill in the spaces here like they did last year.

I was in a bit of a hurry to get this area planted last year, because the guy who tilled said we needed to put in a retaining wall, or all of the dirt was going to wash out of the yard.  I did some looking into it, and found that if we got it planted right away, it should be OK.  Some of the plants, like iris, may end up not staying.  I already moved the daylilies out of the area.  Still, the iris looks like it will be color coordinated with the euphorbia.  The little plant on the left is a dahlia that didn't get dug up, yet survived due to our mild winter.

The liver leaf plants that were in between the phlox have all gone dormant except this one.

I had lots of annuals in these beds last year, but am trying to fill in the spaces with more perennials this year.    I moved a goldenrod next to the spireas Larry requested a number of years ago, and were already growing next to what used to be grass.  I am also seeing foxglove, asters, pasque flowers, and a thin leaved coneflower of some kind. 

I am going to need to trim the spireas, because they are growing over the chyrsanthemums that I may decide to take out.

We are finished with the tour, and I have spent too much time on it.  I know folks are always patient and forgiving when I have typos or other mistakes in my posts, plus, I am having trouble staying awake, to I am going to publish this and hope for the best.

Happy Spring!