Friday, June 20, 2008

tale of two hydrangeas

The flowers gracing the tables at our wedding were potted hydrangeas (blue).
Afterwards, we gave some to special guests, and planted the rest at home. The ones in the shade never came back, but the ones in the sun get bigger and better every year. Boy, do they like a lot of water.
In the front they're in a planter, and pink.
In the back, they're in the ground, and they're blue. Apparently this has to do with the acidity of the soil. I'm just happy that they're alive, and while I always thought I'd prefer them blue, the pink ones make me kind of happy too.

Monday, June 16, 2008

fence cover

How many times can I mention how much we hate the chain link fence? In 2006, the fence cover strategy, henceforth Fence Strategy One included clematis, which everyone said was a great climbing fence cover. I didn't get it until this week. Last year, it was nice, but kind of lackluster. All of a sudden this year, it's gotten thick and well, this week it bloomed. Guess it just needed to mature. Here it is, you can't even see the fence here behind the petunias bursting out of the Perch Bird Feeder. But if you look closely, you can still see some fence.

From a more "macro perspective", behold Fence Cover Strategy Two, which included akebia quinata, seeds from neighbor Debbie up the block, planted fall 2006. Akebia is a funny one. Didn't do much of anything in 2006. In 2007 shot up and it was fun to see. This year it's gotten vigorous. Grows so fast I see why it's invasive in some areas -- it's sent runners everywhere. But those little runners are easy to manipulate and send in strategic directions.

Still we need a Fence Cover Strategy Three. There is a huge gap between the flowering (or not-so-flowering) quince and the top of the fence where the clematis and akebia thrive. It's not that we don't love our neighboors and their above ground pool. Really it isn't.

Meanwhile, on another note -- borage. Argh. Last year I planted seeds, and it came up all huge and was kind of annoying snaking all over the peony bed, and then this year it came back with a vengeance. I left it there all spring since I didn't have any other plan, but now there it is with its big fat stems, totally taking over and creeping out into the "lawn". Somebody's getting pulled out soon. To be replaced with... ??? ... ???

Sunday, June 8, 2008

early summer blooms

We're having a pretty intense little heat wave, all the more brutal because of a pretty chilly May. The flowers like it, when they aren't wilting. Witness Hibiscus, after looking pretty lackluster the past couple weeks, this morning it came out bright and happy.
And then there's the Astilbe. Last year it fried in the sun and the pretty flowers turned brown right away. This year it came back so bushy, I'm hoping for longer lasting blooms.
And the Icelandic Poppies? I don't think 95 degrees and humid is what they get much of in Iceland, but they decided to bloom just now. The Gerbera daisies limped in the sun, but then after a good watering and overnight rest, they popped back, uh, fresh as a daisy.

Friday, June 6, 2008

quick! peony!

Peony season doesn't last long. And our peonies are very pretty, but the as soon as the buds open, the blooms tip over, so they have to be picked immediately.