Tag Archives: tulips

The first tour of my garden in 2017

Daffodils in bloom

Some of the Narcissus (Daffodils) are in bloom now, no doubt pushed by the 80 degree temps we had here in New Jersey yesterday.

 

 

 

 

 

Flowers soon to arrive

Viburnum carlesii.

 

 

The tiny Muscari.

 

Golden ragwort (Packera aurea).

 

Daffodils that will hide the recently cut down ornamental grass.

 

More daffodils, ‘Kokopelli’, on the way.

 

New foliage growth, almost as exciting as the flowers

This is Sorbaria sorbifolia ‘Sem’ or False Spirea. Say that 5 times fast.

 

I get a lot of anxiety in early spring, fearful of what plants didn’t survive the winter. While this pic of Hydrangea ‘Little Lime’ may mean little to you, it means the world to me. I’m so thankful to have her back for another year considering I recklessly moved her around three times last summer.

 

This is the plant I’m most excited to watch progress this year. It’s Filipendula rubra (Queen of the Prairie). This will be its third year in my garden and I hope it can reach upwards of 6 feet in height with plenty of pale pink flowers in summer.

 

This is Diervilla sessilifolia (Southern Bush Honeysuckle) with its variegated foliage emerging over a mass of Bee Balm rosettes. This combo should be killer by early summer.

 

Photos that make me think

Baptisia is here, yeah. So are the weeds, boo.

 

I like to sing the praises of Bee Balm (Monarda) and its agressive nature, but this spring they have marched into enemy territory. Enemy territory being other perennials. Here it is challenging Heuchera (Coral Bells). I think we know who will win.

 

I am way excited to see that tulips have, knock on wood, survived the winter and appear ready to bloom. Even better is the fact that this small ornamental grass will strategically cover the decaying tulip foliage as it gets larger with the warmer temps. Hopefully by allowing the tulip foliage to decay, it will energize the bulbs and provide a repeat display of flowering next spring.

 

I’m totally cool with the Leucojum aestivum (Summer Snowflake) expanding its colony even if it’s underneath this evergreen shrub. I say “evergreen shrub” because I can’t recall the name even after a search through my garden archives.

 

Finally, and I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but I can’t bring myself to cut down this pairing. I’ve loved it all fall and winter and can’t end it quite yet. It is Little Bluestem grass, with its stellar orange hue, and Mountain Mint with its still upright seed heads.

I’m going to enjoy it for a few more days before cutting them both to the ground.

In and around the November garden

What have I been up to of late?

Glad you asked.


I finally got around to installing my Screech Owl house. Fine, I didn’t physically install it so much as I was an active gofer for my handy brother-in-law who fortunately lives two houses away.

You all know me too well.

owl-house

The owl house was installed during the day on Saturday at a temperature close to 70 degrees and got its first test that night when we had gusting winds and almost 2 inches of snow.

Yay, November.


Who can resist a good late season plant sale? How about this monster bargain:

carex-lowes50 cents x 3 is so worth the risk of getting these through the winter. They are all Carex buchananii ‘Red Rooster’.

I consider it research for my ornamental grasses book.

A tax write-off.

Wish me luck.


Some times you just have a feeling.

Some times your gut tells you to just do it.

Some times you need it.

As silly as that all sounds, it all added up to me attempting to grow tulips successfully for the first time ever (not including in containers).

tulips

There is a deeper meaning at play here and one I’ll never talk about.

I need this to work and I’m confident that it will.

Tulips don’t dig the wet winter soil and that has been my problem for decades.

Until 2017 that is.

bulbs

We now wait until spring where my blind faith will hopefully pay huge dividends.


Beyond all that, I’ve been doing my best to soak in what is left in terms of color out in the garden.

spirea-fall

Spirea nipponica ‘Snowmound’

heuchara-fall

Heuchera

rhamnus-fall

Rhamnus frangula ‘Fine Line’

mountain-mint-fall-2

Pycnanthemum incanum (Hoary mountain mint)


And you know, ornamental grasses.

grasses-fall-2

 

grasses-fall

 

grasses-fall-3

 

miscanthus-fall

 

 

 

 

Now the good news

I just got back from riding over a rainbow with a unicorn and then we shared a sundae and listened to Wilson Phillips. So needless to say, I am oozing positivity and have left my prior post in the rear view mirror. Now that was cathartic and I am all the better for it.

Love one another and enjoy:    

I have 3 Pieris sitting in containers from last Fall and I am still debating what to do with them. One of the best features of this shrub is the brilliant red new growth as you can see here. I have only one spot where these will work and don’t know if they are “worthy” enough. TBD.
   

The Ajuga ‘ Chocolate Chip’ are now blooming which is a sweet burst of blue this time of year. To be honest though, I prefer how these look after they bloom when the foliage takes on a nice maroon color. It will fill in empty spots real quickly but doesn’t take over. As I’ve mentioned before, they all divide real well and you can triple your number of plants in no time.
   

The Potentilla ‘Verna Nana’ are blooming …. ummm …. ehhhhh … they help suppress weeds … they’re OK I guess.
 

Now this plant is FANTASTICAL … blooms early in the Spring … nice green clean foliage that looks great spilling over stones. Another plant that has divided well for me.   

The Iberis ‘Snowflake’ is blooming and I am still lukewarm on this one. I moved these to a new, better draining location this year so I will give them one more year.

About to bloom Malus (Crabapple) and the blooms are off the charts. Bring it.

More tulip blooms about to pop. Sweet.

These Leucojum (Snowbells or Snowdrops … don’t remember) have been a revelation this Spring. I would love to increase the number of these next year as I’m sure they look even better in large masses.  

My first and only emerging Hosta ‘Great Expectations’. I definitely want some more this year. 

The Phlox ‘David’ seedlings are everywhere this year and I’m not sure why but I am anxious to see how they develop.

I transplanted this Itea ‘Henry’s Garnet’ this morning from it’s holding cell in my raised bed to it’s new location in the bed surrounding my driveway. What struck me as funny in this photo is the Spirea sitting in the grass that I took out in order to move the Itea in. I left it there for an hour – roots exposed and all. It got me thinking about how I don’t follow the transplant rules very well and also transplant on a whim. It is a typical “male” stereotype of just “doing” without “thinking”. That will be a topic of it’s own in a future post. 

And I’ll end with a question. How should I handle these small off-shoots growing on the trunk of the tree. Should they be snipped? I’ve read that this should be done immediately whenever they pop up.

I’m thinking about posting a video soon but not yet sure what it will be about. I am considering pulling in a friend who was a prior actor (not kidding … actually once had his SAG card). Be afraid … be very afraid … but also prepare to have your mind blown.

Chat with you soon my friends.