Monday, May 23, 2016

MAY I Have Your Attention?

If gardens could talk, right now during this fickle month of May, my garden would sound like this. "MAY I have your attention please? We need staking over here." "Attention please, we need deadheading." "Put down your coffee and attend to me now!" It's ridiculous. And it affirms the futility of it all. It can get discouraging. Why do I bother? Well because I love my garden, that's why. And when things are tidied up, well, I feel better and I can ignore the hundred other things that need done. 

Here are some recent photos. 

Lilium x martagon 'Claude Shride'

I bought six of this Lily bulb. One is blooming. Only one. The rest are just sitting there, three inches tall. Maybe next year? 

Silene aterias

Carpenteria californica and a cute approaching bee

Lots of blooms on it this year.

Another bee, this time on Centaurea dealbata.

I'm happy to introduce the flowers of Geranium palmatum. They're a long time coming considering I sowed the seeds in January 2015. They germinated and grew well. Here is the foliage on last year's plants:

Geranium palmatum foliage

Geranium palmatum foliage

Its foliar good looks persisted all summer and all through (a very mild) winter. Then, a month or so ago, flower buds emerged and finally bloomed! 

Bee-attracting Geranium palmatum flower!

Geranium plamatum flowers -- worth the wait? Oh yes!

You could say I'm pleased with the outcome.

Another "worth the wait" is this flower. I finally was able to purchase a double-flowering Silene! I'm so in love with this flower. 

Silene dioica 'Flore Pleno'

The foliage rosette is in the pot on the left.

And then there's this intensely fragrant rose:

Rosa 'Rhapsody in Blue'

With those yellow centers, you know it's another bee-loving flower

Rosa mutabilis is settling into its newest location.
More sun should produce more flowers.

I'm really loving this flower combo:

Geranium x magnificum and Santa Barbara Daisy (Erigeron kavinskianus 'Profusion'

And speaking of hardy Geranium, check out the foliage on this new one I found at a plant sale a few weeks ago. 

Geranium x oxonianum 'Katherine Adele'

Katherine is so pretty!

The exact identity of the plant below is still in question. It's a Deutzia, but which cultivar? If you know, please do tell.  

Deutzia ??

Nectaroscordum siculum

Clematis 'Princess Diana'

Clematis 'Pink Fantasy'

Variegated Porcelain Vine (Ampelopsis brevipedunculata 'Elegans')

And speaking of variegated foliage:

Acer pseudoplatanus 'Esk Sunset'

And the peachy-pink undersides of it.

A good match for it is:

Autumn Fern (Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance')

And then there's this green mess. 

And now, for some wide shots...

These are the aforementioned 'Rhapsody in Blue' roses.

The same area from a different angle.

My new rock garden area, where the pear tree used to be.

The same area looking the opposite direction.

Also a "new" area since limbing up the Laurel hedge.

The Sambucus nigra 'Black Lace' and Rosa 'Knock Out'

From the opposite angle.

From yet another angle.

Here is the other side of the above border.

This is what I mean about deadheading and cleaning up.

The hummingbirds seem to enjoy my new water feature
but I'm not patient enough to get photos of them so you'll have to take my word for it.

This silly Erigeron is blooming after an unexplained hiatus last year.
Erigeron glaucus 'Sea Breeze'

And behind the Erigeron, stinky but beautiful Phuopsis stylosa is starting to bloom.

The white flower is Anemone 'Wild Swan'

My Japanese Blood Grass (Imperata cylindrica 'Rubra') is so happy. 

And to finish off, a little fauna to complement the flora.

I literally detest flies, but this shiny green one was pretty enough to photograph.

And finally, Nala the indoor-kitty cat, is waiting for a catnip treat.


  1. Beautiful as always! You have such a diversity of plants, always a joy to visit here.

    Love & hugs ~ FlowerLady

  2. Your garden deserves attention! I was envious of pretty much everything (like that Silene!) but my envy spiked when I saw Geranium 'Katherine Adele'. I grew that in my old shady garden and it's the one plant I most regret having left behind. I don't have a lot of shade here (and it would need a good amount here) but, with the last of the lawn gone, I could try it again. I'll have to see if Geraniaceae offers it by mail order in the fall. Thanks for the reminder of the treasures I've yet to collect.

  3. Wow, double wow! I couldn't resist looking over and over at your specialties. That Silene is stunningly beautiful and charming--I can see why you are happy you waited. I was also thrilled with you at the geranium palmatum. For some reason, I was expecting that foliage to produce something entirely different. What a display you have there! I also LOVED your Clematis, Pink Fantasy and that Sambucus Nigra, which looked so very different depending on the angle. What an interesting lacy look--I'm wondering if they are usually that tall? They produce a fascinating canopy. I'm with you on the "garden crying out for my attention" thing. If I was home more, I'm sure I'd do a better job of it. But for now, I'm living in the moment and that isn't always the case-:) Love to you Gracie!

  4. Your garden makes my heart sing. So much going on, so many fab. plants, stunning array of blooms and the green mess is to die for!

  5. Delightful! Love the bee-attracting Geranium palmatum flowers.

  6. You have so many cool plants. A friend just got that porcelain vine and I decided I need one. My White Swan came up early, then died back. No sign of it now. May be my saddest loss this year. :(

  7. for this garden to fail to get your attention, you would have to be deaf, blind and lacking a sense of smell.

  8. You just have the most unique plants in your garden! I don't know if it's because we live in different climates, or you are just a voracious plant collector!

  9. I am reading your book and loving it! I somehow lost your blog so I have some catching up to do!

  10. Beautiful! We have many of the same plants. I really love that Phuopsis. I have never heard of it. Your deutzia is indeed a deutzia, but I'm not sure which cultivar.

  11. I wasn't sure if there was an end to this post...what don't you have in your gardens. So many different plants in really cool settings. All looks wonderful !

  12. Been far too long since I was here and commented on the beauty that is your garden Grace, but work at the nursery has been insane this year! The best May 24 in at least five years made for craziness that has yet to slow. Question: How much shade is your A.p 'Esk Sunset' in. Mine has started to burn and crisp already. I know humidity is an issue for us here in Ontario this year, but I am so frustrated with how terrible he looks.

  13. Gracie girl I have meant to email and certainly "comment" more often .. my bad!
    Your collection of extraordinary plants are stunning and I would think that is a duetzia too! .. I love your geraniums ! and the sambucus Black Lace ?
    When is mine going to get as tall as yours and flower as much as yours it is about 10 years old .. now there is a mystery ! it has to be me .. it doesn't like ME!
    We share a few as well which is nice .. makes me feel connected all the way over there ? haha
    Hope all is well with you and family .. love the picture of indoor kitty : )
    Take care !


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