Monday, August 18, 2014

No Shortage of Blossoms!

This morning I got a really nice surprise. As I stepped outside, I was overcome with one of my favorite floral fragrances--Gardenia! My 'Frost Proof' Gardenia had, not one, not two, not three, but four blossoms! How cool is that? I picked one to bring inside; such a heavenly fragrance. This is its second year in my garden and I can't say enough good things about it. So, I'll just go with a clever, "Gardenia. It's not just for the tropics anymore." 

Here is the first blossom getting ready to bloom. 
The Four O'Clocks (Mirabilis jalapa) I started from seed in April are blooming like crazy now. Here is a late-afternoon photo showing how the blossoms unfurl from their center. Little works of art, aren't they? 

Here they are, fully opened. 

Here, they're mingling with Garlic chives (Allium tuberosum
 Another fun plant I grew from seed is what I call "The Pink Dandelion." It's actually Crepis rubrum.

It's an annual and the plants are already looking tired but
I like the flowers. 

One of my new Dahlias. I can't recall the name. 
Sedum 'Touchdown Teak' is blooming. The flowers are not all that impressive... to humans. The bees, on the other hand, find it irresistible.

Sedum 'Touchdown Teak,' before the bees were awake. 

Many of my Phlox are finishing up but this one, 'Norah Leigh' with variegated foliage,
is going strong. 

'Becky Towe' is another variegated Phlox.
It's just finishing up. 

I keep taking photos of Hydrangea serrata 'Omacha Nishiki'
because at every stage since leafing out in early spring,
 it has been a knockout. 

See how the bracts turn downward and take on that deep burgundy color?
Love it. 
More than once, I've made the mistake of planting Nepeta nervosa 'Pink Cat' in dry soil under full sun. Wrong! This little guy likes moisture and semi-shade, at least in my garden. Finally, I'm learning. 

Nepeta nervosa 'Pink Cat' (Not exactly pink, but close.) 
I had to get a close up shot of these tiny flowers. 
These, admittedly girly-girl Fuchsias are one of my many purchases from Fry Road--the GO TO nursery for hardy Fuchsias.
'Walz Jubelteen' the quintessential girly-girl Fuchsia. And I love it. 

Right next to the hardy Fuchsia is this urn of Sempervivums. Look closely at the Interloper.

Johnny Jump-Ups pop up in the strangest places.
Note the tiny crab spider. 

Lonicera x heckrottii  'Gold Flame'  has finally outwitted the aphids. 

Ditto for L. x h. 'Pink Lemonade' 

Anemone japonica 'Pamina' is blooming early this year. 

The Sedums are also starting to bloom. 

Lovely, lovely!

I've been watering my Monarda didyma 'Raspberry Wine' and lookie that!
Despite being knocked over by some strange midnight visitor, intruder, it still looks nice. 

I bought a replacement Abutilon 'Nabob' (From Fry Road) after losing my previous five year old one
over the winter.
This was just a wee plug when I got it in April and now it's going on four feet tall.  

Another plant I keep showing you all is my Rudbeckia hirta 'Cherry Brandy.'
They're sooooo pretty! 

And finally,
I should have put a penny on this Castor Plant leaf so you could get an idea of how huge it is. 

I hope you all are enjoying your gardens as much as I am.