20 June 2013

Gardens in Mid-June

Awhile back, I shared that I'd be jumping back into my blog with a few "easy" posts before I get into the heavier subjects which are weighing on my mind.

Let's start with the current state of my flower gardens. Gardening is one activity which I've found to be very therapeutic in the last few weeks. As I've posted in years past, gardening for me is very much a "trial and error" thing -- with many more errors than successes. As such, my gardening posts are intended to provide an honest assessment of what I think is going well in the flower gardens and what needs to be dug up and re-thunk! :)

We might as well begin with the mess shown below! I was SO happy with this narrow flower bed behind the garage when I planted it a couple of years ago. Now it's an overgrown mess. This is largely due to spacing issues: Plants grew larger than I expected and others spread stealthily underground and popped up in strange places. Now I need to dig out some of these perennials and place them elsewhere in the yard.
This little angel found a spot next to a new echinacea plant which appears to be thriving. The rust colored flowers are beautiful.

 The flower bed next to the patio is filling in very nicely, although I still have some awkward gaps. I've been plagued by serious spacing issues in this garden. Last year I added a lot of plants and that has helped significantly, but I still have more work to do here.

The other side of the same garden is doing pretty well. The new hostas (not visible in this photo) I planted are thriving. I think I'll plug a few more holes with sun-tolerant hostas. (In general, a hosta with white on its leaves can handle sun.)

This is the flower bed on the other side of the patio. As you can see, I have gaps in this garden, too. Some of the overgrown flowers from the garage garden will be moved here.

This stone was a gift from the wonderful ladies I work with at Memory Bound. I placed it near the statue in the corner (shown in the previous photo), which was a gift from my parents. We will soon be planting a flowering tree in the area next to this garden, also in honor of my dad.

The area behind the house looks OK, but the iris seriously need to be divided. I missed the window of opportunity to do that this year. As a result, this particular patch produced only two wimpy flowers.

 Other than a few weeds, this area around the other side of the house will be OK once the tiger lilies (not visible in this photo) start blooming. I transplanted them from my grandma's house. In this photo, you can see clumps of sedum, asters (also from my grandma), daylilies, and phlox, all of which will bloom in mid to late summer.

I'm still very happy with the garden in front of the house, although the ground cover (actually it's an inadvertent mix of a couple of different ground covers) is a little out of hand. You can see HERE how this garden looked a couple of years ago.

Our Japanese maple tree actually has leaves this year! This replacement tree looks like it's going to live.

The hanging baskets are fan flowers. They're very hardy, withstanding wind, heat, and an occasional lapse in watering.

While I was with my dad at the hospice, Bailey planted my two front porch pots for Mother's Day. She showed a picture from last year's blog post to the person at the nursery, who helped her find the same flowers. It was such a sweet gesture at a very rough time. Each time I see the beautiful pots, I think of her. :)

In fact, Bailey became so excited about these planters that she helped me fill all of the other pots with flowers while she was home. It was a treat to see her showing some interest in gardening. But she's deathly afraid of worms, so I'm afraid she's stuck with container gardening for now!

I spray painted the two largest pots shown below using paint designed for plastic. I somehow deleted the "before" pictures, but trust me: They were a very faded salmon color. Now they look brand new!

There's one more garden in our back yard not pictured here. Although it has some serious issues, it also features a lovely new lilac bush, a gift from two dear friends in honor of my dad.

In spite of my gardening errors, I'm thankful for the opportunity to create small little patches of beauty in my world. I especially need this outlet right now.


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