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Posts Tagged ‘gardening’

in the garden, end of September

leaf

rosey

dogwood

gow

cone

optimisim

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This is the first year our garden is a dragonfly magnet. Most years it is a bee magnet, but for the first time that “bee die off” is being seen in our area. I would also say the butterflies are being affected, too, because there are not so many of them, either. And when I say “dragonfly magnet,” that really means I can look around and spot about 5. But doesn’t that sound like a lot of dragonflies in one small space?

Most of the dragonflies look like this one.

dragonfly

I spotted this guy because that white abdomen (thorax? tail?) was just so striking. What the heck? I’ve never seen this before or again. It looks like he was hit by a splash of paint from an airbrush gun, only the white was also on the underside. Do you think it’s a kind of mold, maybe? I had to run and get my camera before he flew away.

fly

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And here’s a shot of Coconut relaxing in the cool dirt. It’s supposed to be 109-degrees here in a couple days. Sigh. Those kinds of nights just never cool off.

bun

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peonies abloom

I’ve been setting my paintings aside for the show, and then after that I will start filling my etsy shop again. So be assured more paintings are on their way!

Meanwhile, the first peony opened up in the garden. Such a vibrant color.

peony

peony2

The white irises have come and gone, replaced by these pretty variegated ones.

iris

My camera did something interesting all on its own. I didn’t change to a different setting in-between shots. I wish I knew what I did differently….

iris2

How about your garden? Is it starting to look like summer yet? We had an 80-degree day yesterday, and expect another one today. That’s about all the heat I like, thanks.

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the journey to Spring 01/09/15

I did not chronicle Spring last year, and now I’m sorry I missed it. I’ve been saying since the beginning of January that there’s been flocks of robins all over, so Spring is going to be early. I know Puxatawney Phil did not agree, but maybe since I’m west coast things are different. Most years the robins show up around March/April. About three years ago my neighbor was housebound and kept asking if I’d seen any robins yet, every time I visited. And then she passed away in March, without seeing the robins, which arrived late April. So now I always watch for robins and think about her.

So this year flocks and flocks descending in January seemed unusual. Except here we are in the first week of February, and I’m outside and the temperature is 66 and I spot this:

tulips

Six inches of tulips in the first week of February? It has to be close to unheard of. And yes, I checked around and found six inches worth of daffodils, too! I don’t think the flowers can be wrong, can they?

The lilacs are pretty minuscule, so I guess they’re no indication.

lilacs

And look at this weird bug pod. Can someone tell me what it is? I usually find these along the bottom of the house, hidden behind shrubs. If I smash the pod, it’s crispy and made up of lots of air sacks. What the heck is this? Is it a good thing or a bad thing? Any help would be appreciated.

weirdthing

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wild flower mix

I buy those packs of assorted “spring flower” or “wild flower” seed mix, so what comes up is a surprise. By the time the flowers have bloomed the packages are long thrown away, so I can’t refer back to figure out what the flowers are. Next year I will save the package, because I like everything that came up!

These guys look like snowflakes.

flowersnowflakeflowersnowflake2

And this one is a fairly large flower, which droops and closes as soon as the sprinkler hits it. I love how it appears so fragile; the blooms last about two weeks.

flowerpink

If I could identify either of these, I’d try and buy seed packs of these as stand-alones. As it is, I hope they seed themselves for next year!

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Ranunculus is one of those flowers I try to grow every year, with zero luck. I buy those little 4-inch garden pots with the flowers already in bloom, and I transplant them, and they wither away surprisingly fast. Year after year. And they don’t come back the next year.

So this year I spotted a packet of tubers? corms? they’re not bulbs or seeds…but anyway, I planted them and they have sprouted and produced flowers! Success!

Look at this glorious color.

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I mean, geez, does this color even appear in nature?

flower4

I love these flowers!

flower1

I am a tiny bit disappointed they are not the many-petaled variety that appear in magazine floral arrangements. But, I guess I am on my way and half-way there.

flower3

This orange is going to be lovely tomorrow when it opens.

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Now if I can just get them to come back again next year….Any hints?

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poppies in the garden

Every spring I buy flower seed packages, hoping some will grow. For about $1 a try, it’s still sort of like playing the lottery. Some packages never produce a thing, even though there looks like a couple hundred seeds in the package.

This year I am surprised by two icelandic poppies actually growing. I wasn’t sure what was growing — I subscribe to the “sow it and forget it” school of gardening, which leads to surprises later in the summer.

Two poppies, one blooming.

pop2

What a lovely color. I wonder if it really is an Icelandic poppy, or something else?

pop

Since there is only one bloom right now, the other one might not happen in time for the bees to be able to pollinate and create more seeds. I am half tempted to go out to the nursery and see if I can find a match, just so there’s a chance of it re-seeding for next year. I looked at Home Depot this morning, but no match.

pop4

Later in the day, look at the lovely glow.

pop3

Just gorgeous.

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