Tuesday, August 27, 2013

I can't believe it's late August Wildflower Wednesday

I am not ready for August to be over, but since I don't have a say in it, I'll try to make the best of it, upper 90s to 100s and all.  Gail from Clay and Limestone hosts Wildflower Wednesday the 4th Wednesday of each month.  I am showing blooms from different parts of the yard this time.

Starting at the front porch, we see the lovely foliage of Illinois bundleflower.  It's not blooming, but has lovely seedpods, which are turning brown.

See?  I love it!

Here's a closer view of the Sweet black-eyed susan, Liatris pycnostachya 'Eureka', and Gray-headed coneflowers.

Wild quinine continues to be one of my favorites.  Normally, there are bees and wasps on it, but these photos were taken in the evening, when there aren't as many around.

Whorled milkweed is another favorite of mine and the bees and wasps.  I've mentioned that I dug some up from our church property, where I'm pretty sure they were growing on their own, so these are closer to being native than the other plants which do grow naturally at least in my part of the country.

The Stiff, or Rigid goldenrod, Solidago rigida, is just starting to bloom.

I think this Liatris is aspera.  It is just opening its flowers this week.

The Pitcher sage, which I got from our Community Crops plant sale, is a local native.  I'm thinking this is the kind found north of Lincoln that a cultivar was bred from.  I'm pretty sure it is not the cultivar.  I'll have to ask about that.

This Clematis pitcheri may be a cultivar, but I couldn't find the name of it online.  When I did a search of images, I found a number of photos of this plant.  LOL

The bees are continuing to enjoy the Joe pye weed.

The Cup plant is still blooming!

I have tried growing Flowering spurge, Euphorbia corollata several times, and am glad I tried again, because this one is doing pretty well.  I hope it seeds itself around.  Do you know if it will?

The Mexican hats seeded around, and I was able to give some of these away.  I wonder how many there will be next year.  At least, when pulled, they stay pulled.

I think this Goldenrod is a cultivar of some kind.  It looks more similar to the native kind than some of the others I have.

The butterfly milkweed is still blooming and I think this is a hoverfly enjoying some nectar.

This is Zig zag goldenrod, a native I just discovered a couple or three years ago.  I like it.

There are some Brown eyed susans invading the space of the Short toothed mountain mint.  If it they spread more, I will have to pull some out.  I have to pull extras out from the vegetable garden, where they grow on the north side of the garage.

I've had this Helenium autumnale for a long time, and don't remember if it's a cultivar or the native kind.  There is also Blue mist spirea, another Brown eyed susan, and a mystery Goldenrod.

This is a volunteer.  I wonder if it's Cut leaf coneflower.  What do you think?  It also reminds me of Grayheaded coneflower, but the bloom color seems to be a little lighter.

I have deadheaded the False sunflower once, and will continue to, because the blooms get dark and ratty looking when they are finished.

I have not counted how many favorite native/wild flowers I have, but Rattlesnake master is another one I love.  It, too, is normally loaded with pollinators.

Back to the porch, here's the view of the east side of the yard, facing southish.

Heading west:

Further west:

Too soon, these things will be brown, and providing food and cover for a number of critters.  Then, in the spring, I'll clean it up, putting whatever I can on a compost pile, and will wait for the new growth to begin.  Now that I'm working fewer hours, I will be able to enjoy fall more, and not feel as rushed to get the vegetable garden picked and taken care of.

I am helping a local Rotary Club plant a butterfly garden at a Girl Scout Day Camp at the edge of town, or at least, it used to be, and since the land, complete with prairie grasses was donated to a foundation, it will remain undeveloped, even though the city has expanded beyond it.  I will show some photos.  I forgot to take some while we were planting, but will remember Friday evening, when we go plant some more.

I was told the person who used to live on the property planted this area in native grasses quite awhile ago, and some non native plants have grown in the area as well.  There were not many flowers, but I took photos of the few I saw.  I'm not sure which thistles are native here.  I think the "turkey" looking blooms are Big bluestem.  I loved the fallen tree in the background.  It is in the next photo as well.

I was told they cut and bale the "praire" in the fall.

I asked people on FB to identify some of these grasses.  Big bluestem is in the background, and I think, someone said the golden blooms are Indian grass.

I was excited to see a few clumps of ironweed.   Greg guessed at a name for the fluffy flowered grass, but I don't remember what he said.  Maybe I'll get a chance to look tomorrow.

Thanks again, Gail, for hosting Wildflower Wednesday!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Blooms and Foliage

I am going to do a post for Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day and Foliage Follow Up by doing a side yard update.  Things have grown since the last post in June.  Some plants are finished blooming, and others have taken over to provide color.

I think it was the clump of Outhouse flower, Rudbeckia laciniata 'Hortensia' that I dug a clump of to plant near the house here.  It is not as tall as the others, but should get taller next year.

The clump of comfrey in front of the meter needs to be cut back after the first blooms because it flops over.  As usual, it grew back quickly and is on its second flush of blooms.  The foliage is very good for the compost pile.  Some put it in a bucket of water for a few weeks and use the liquid for fertilizer, but I'm afraid I'd forget about it or spill it.

I think this Liatris is a volunteer of some kind, maybe 'Kobold'.  The foliage of the Amsonia tabernaemontana looks pretty good all season, but I trim it back a time or two to keep it bushy.  Oh, and the foliage of the Baptisia on the left is looking good, and does not seem to have the caterpillars like the one down the way does.

I'm pretty sure this is Salvia nemerosa Plumosa.  I don't know why it flops so, and doesn't stand up straight.  I guess the flowers are too heavy for the stems.  Do you grow these?  Do they do this for you?

The Short tooth mountain mint normally has a number of bees and wasps on it.  I'm thinking that Black eyed Susan got planted by the birds.

I normally trim back the Rudbeckia 'herbstonne' and Helenium, I hope, autumnale, so they will be fuller and less floppy, but didn't get that done this year.  I loosened the string that I wrapped around the Rudbeckia today, but it still looks awkward.   The blooms on the lower right are Black-eyed Susans, which self sow prolifically. 

The Blue mist spirea blooms are welcome this time of year, when a lot of blooms are finished for the season, or soon will be.

That's the Black-eyed Susan on the left, and I don't remember what kind of Goldenrod this is, but I'm not ready for the Goldenrods to be blooming.  It seems like they should wait until closer to September.  Oh, well, I guess they have their own timing.

Here's another volunteer clump of Black-eyed Susans.

This is a volunteer growing into the Amsonia hubrichtii, which is noted for its lovely foliage all season, but especially in the fall.  I'm not sure if they are Gray-head coneflowers, or something else. 

This is the Rudbeckia 'Goldquelle' that I knocked on the door of a woman I didn't know a couple years ago to ask for a start of.  I told her to stop over and see what I may have that she'd like a start of, but she didn't.  Next year, I plant to cut it back before it's time for it to bloom so it will have stronger stems.

I forgot what kind of coreopsis this is.

I don't remember which blogger recently asked me if this clump of False sunflower is one of the original plants or not.  In looking around for the names of other plants, I found a post where I mentioned I had dug this clump as a seedling out of the vegetable garden.

Do you deadhead your native plants?  I am trying to figure out which ones will bloom again if I do.  I think the faded blooms of the False sunflowers are too ratty looking, and am glad they do bloom again when I cut the old ones off.  (This one is still looking good.)

The bees are enjoying the anise hyssop.

The bees are still feeding on the Globe thistles, but they are about finished, and I cut most of them off today, because I needed to get into the poor Baptisia to cut the stems back because they were full of Genesta Broom Moth caterpillars. 

Here's the original Outhouse Flower that a gardening friend of mine gave me a few years ago.  I'm pretty sure she said this is from the clump that had been in her family awhile.   It looks a lot like the 'Goldquelle' but is a little different.  I cut these back today, so they aren't leaning as much as in this photo.

Now, here's some lovely foliage!  This Lead plant was a tiny slow growing thing when I first got it for free from the Nebraska Statewide Arboretum at some kind of event they were participating in.  I love this thing, and have purchased a few others to plant in other spots.  I hope to remember to take some leaves off to dry and use for tea this winter.

I deadheaded this Goldenrod today.  I want to see if it will bloom again.

Most of the Coneflowers are finished blooming.  I moved these when the plants were small, so they bloomed a little later than the others.  I did have to pull a bunch today, though, because I saw that they had aster yellows.  I hope the rest are safe.

I wanted to show the foliage of the Buttonbush I planted a few weeks ago.  It was in a small pot.  I hope it's OK.  I read that the leaves turn yellow in the fall and fall off.  These seem to be turning reddish, and it's not fall yet.  I forgot what the purple blooms are, some kind of Salvia, I think.  Oh, and I see some parsley foliage.  I planted a couple in this area to see if the swallowtails would find them to lay eggs on.  I think they are used to the ones up by the house.  I've been seeing quite a few little caterpillars.

Love lies bleeding usually does well in the front yard, but this year, they aren't so much.  This one, near the garbage cans took awhile to grow, but is doing better than the others.

I don't remember what kind of mint this is, but the flowers sure look pretty to me.

In case you didn't know what a genista broom moth caterpillar looks like, here's a photo.

I hope you have lots of blooms and foliage to enjoy, and that the rest of the season doesn't fly by too quickly.