Sunday, May 25, 2014

Saturday Morning from the Front Porch

I am pleased that it is spring!  I'm loving all of the new growth, blooms, and the insects that visit them.  I stood on the porch Saturday morning, and took some photos.  Later n the day, I took some more, especially with the zoom, and mixed them in.

I've been doing a lot of editing in different areas of the yard, especially in the east front area.  I have removed a number of daylilies and other plants, and put in some of the same native plants as on the west side, across the front sidewalk.  Since native plants grow slowly the first several years, it will take awhile for them to reach the size as the ones across the way.

I cut back a number of plants, such as the Joe pye weed, so they would be bushier, and not flop over as much.  Next to that are a Mountain mint that I don't remember planting, Wild quinine, which I hope will bloom this year, ornamental onions, and Pussytoes all along the sidewalk.

There are two Golden alexanders in this bed, and the other one is smaller, and not yet blooming.  This one blooming is smaller than the ones across the sidewalk, but I'm pleased to see the blooms.

 I've mentioned that in each flower bed, there is at least one plant that is also in another area or more.  Amsonias are one of them, and this is hubrichtii.

I had to get a new camera last fall.  It has a pretty good zoom.  I have given away some of the irises, but am glad I still have some.  (The sedges are in the area next to the curb.)

The orange poppies will be blooming soon.  They didn't bloom for the first year or two, and so I decided to pull them out, but they did not stay pulled.  They are not my favorite plant.  The foliage looks bad after they bloom.

The Narrow leaf coneflowers bloom a little earlier than the other kinds.  The purple and white one is in the east bed.  The yellow ones are in the curb area.

Heading over to the west area, I decided that since the Heuchera richardonii are looking so good, I didn't want to divide them, so I got some at the Nebraska Statewide Arobretum plant sale.  (They also have a mail order site.)  The ones I got are small and spindly, but in a few years, they will be full like these, with the year round good looking foliage.

I look forward to the Golden alexanders across the sidewalk reaching full size like these.  Can you see the false baptisia blooming in the background on the left?

Here's a closer view of it.  I like my zoom!

I like the foliage of the Boltonia, (I think that's what that is, if not, it's Riddell's goldenrod) next to the Rigid goldenrod, which seems to have seeded around the yard a bit.

I sure am enjoying the Shell leaf penstemons.  I got some more at the arboretum Friday.

The Phlox pilosa, 'eco happy traveler' is doing quite well this year.  I have some wire around the base to protect it from the rabbits.  That's a close up of Golden alexanders on the left.

Here's another Penstemon and an Amsonia, this one, either illustris or tabernaemontana.  The Wild senna to the right of the grass, which is either Prairie dropseed or Little bluestem, was one of the last plants to come up, but now that it's up, it is growing quickly.  The other day, I noticed a lot of seedlings that I'm pretty sure are these.  That's exciting, because I've had two of these for 3 or 4 years, and this is the first time I've seen seedlings!

The rudbeckia maxima shoud be sending up the tall bloom stalks soon.  I don't remember what kind of penstemon this is, but it sure is full of blooms.  Just to the right of the penstemon is a clump of Purple milkweed,  I'm pretty sure there are some coming up in the curb area.  I hope so!

This is one of my favorite parts of the yard.  Can you see the strawberry plants under the bench?  We've had a few ripen so far.

Only two of three of my mother-in-law's peonies have been blooming the last few years.  I wonder why the one hasn't been.  I am working to get the area in front of the house filled in.  Larry has been talking abut putting an awning in that area to prevent the rain from getting into the basement in the corner of this bed, so I'm not sure what will grow there, then.

I wish the bloom time for peonies was a little longer.

Donna, my mother-in-law, who planted these peonies died from cancer, mutiple myaloma, in 1992.  Denzel, my father-in-law also died from that as well as melanoma in 1997.  We bought the house from the estate.  I do not get graves visited on Memorial Day, but do think about relatives and friends who have passed away.  Have a safe and peaceful Memorial Day!


  1. Oh Sue-you're garden is looking so pretty. Love the penstemon--I've not had much luck with mine and have considered tearing them out. And I LOVE the baptisia and peonies.
    Enjoy the day

  2. Hi Sue,
    Everthing looks fantastic. You must be happy with it......all that hard work pays off! You're a little ahead of us in bloom time. I have never seen a Penstemon with so many blossoms and the shell leafed one is lovely. Of course, the Peonies are are the Golden Alexanders. Your sitting area is very inviting.....ah....a cup of coffee and the camera and I might never leave! Happy Gardening!

  3. It is always a treat to see your lovely gardens. They are filled with so many different, beautiful plants.

    Have a great week ~ FlowerLady


  4. Sue, what a difference just one month makes. Your garden areas have sprang to life with vigor. My tulips and daffodils are done and the Iris are in full bloom. The peonies are close to bloom but not quite opened the buds yet. I agree with you on wanting the peonies to last longer. I not too much into flowers as you know but would like incorporate more into my gardening. I'd like to blend the two together.

    I am in the process of buying another foreclosed property from the city which will be more like your garden. It's in a neighborhood area on a corner lot. It's relatively level and clear of brush and weeds. My thoughts are to take inspiration from your posts and make it a neighborhood beautification corner with landscaping, flowers, and maybe a vegetable or two mixed in with the rest of the vegetation. That will be a couple years down the road as I've learned to get the bones of the garden complete first before planting. Well, then there's the EPA lead in the soil testing that has to happen before too much work begins. It's all a learning process to become an urban farmer.

    Have a great Memorial Day enjoying the blooming garden.

  5. Looking Great! I really like those pasque flowers in your header photo, too.

  6. Your false baptisia looks good. I like the deep purple colour, and the elongated stalks. The yellow and purple irises make a nice combination together. They really stand out by the curb, and must catch the eye of passers-by. The pink Phlox pilosa gets a lot of flowers packed together. Although my peonies haven't started yet, I too always wished that they bloomed for longer. I have a pink double, like yours, and have to walk by and sniff it everyday during its short bloom time.

  7. Sue, I need to do some editing too! Everything is looking beautiful; I love the header picture of the whole front. My poor peonies barely got bloomed out when heavy rains hit! I didn't even get pictures of some of them this year.

  8. Sue, I wanted to thank you for posting about the shell leaf penstemon. I visited the website and actually purchased the plant. I also got a Dalea and a Geum trifolium. I've never purchased plants from so far away so hopefully they'll arrive in good condition. Love all your blooming goodies.

    1. Cool, Grace! Just so you know, all three of those plants will probably be small and take around 3 years to grow to full size. I got some more Geum from there, and the plants were only a couple inches wide. They are doing fine, but not growing much yet. Oh, and the rabbits here love the Daleas. I put a basket, like those you put liners in for hanging plants over mine when they are young.

  9. Sue, your garden looks better every time I visit your blog, and I can't figure out how that's possible because it always looks great. What a wonderful habitat for pollinators and wildlife! My Peonies and Irises are just about to bloom. They make a great combination in a floral bouquet. I'm glad you had a nice Memorial Day weekend.

  10. I like this post. This is really an informative post.

  11. Sue your garden is just beautiful. Everything seems to be growing so fast now. We are always changing and moving things.LOL! I always enjoy looking at your garden and all of the many natives you have in it. Have a wonderful week.

  12. Sue, Your garden is looking amazing! I can almost smell those peonies! I have several peonies; so far only one has bloomed. Enjoy your summer! I look forward to seeing how your garden progresses over the coming weeks and months.

  13. I SO admire the fullness of your front yard :) Flowers in OUR yard seem slow....peonies about to bloom, iris showing off quite finely, some "daisies" (?) blooming furiously, and columbine popping up all over. The fern are gigantic; hosta and sedum doing well as usual. My March hip replacement is hindering my work in the flower beds but not my pleasure in seeing them...


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