Category Archives: Gloriosa Daisy

THERE’S A BOBCAT IN MY GARDEN

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There’s nothing more scary than

Heavy equipment in your garden.

We had known it was coming for months now.

The utility company is replacing all the lines in our old neighborhood.

Somehow we had escaped destruction in the garden

When they were in the neighborhood all last fall

Laying the main lines.

But now it’s time to connect each of us to the new main lines.

Fortunately, though it didn’t seem fortunate at the time,

We had discovered a gas leak shortly after moving into this house.

Actually our friend Clark figured it out

From the circle of dead grass in the middle of the backyard.

So we have a new connecting line

With the meter placed at the house.

The preferred location.

All of this is important because

The main line

And the connecting line

Intersect at the back of my garden.

I was told last Friday

That my number would be up on Tuesday.

So I didn’t dare leave home.

And shortly after 8 they began.

Around 11:30 I discovered

A Bobcat in my backyard

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Heading straight for the garden.

Luckily after a quick conversation

They broke for lunch

And I began digging plants

Filling the wheelbarrow.

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They even found a leftover Easter Egg.

Filled with chocolate.

Which every girl needs

At such a stressful moment!

Most of the things in their path

Were pretty strong plants.

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Daylilies

Tall Garden Phlox

Gloriosa Daisies

Lamb’s Ear

There were however some more finicky items.

Hollyhocks whose tap roots don’t make transplanting much fun.

Alliums which I simply cut and hoped for the best.

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And the greatest loss

Purple Poppies.

I’ve never had purple poppies before.

I spotted these last year in my friend Becky’s garden.

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She was able to remember the source of the seeds.

So I ordered a supply.

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Held on to them through the fall and early winter.

Actually remembered I had them

Then found them

And sprinkled them on the snow

One day last winter.

This, I have learned, is the most effective way to plant poppies.

I had a really good stand of them

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And was looking forward to their blooming

Going to seed

And making lots of purple poppy babies.

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But they were right smack dab in the wrong place

For the Bobcat.

So I quickly found some empty space.

Dug holes for their new home

Before I even dug them

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Then dug them with as much dirt as possible.

And popped them into their new home

With a good quick drink.

Will they make it?

I don’t know.

Time will tell.

It is only fair to report

That the utility crew

Was as gentle as they could

When you’re digging a hole to China

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In a garden

At the end of May.

O Blah Dee O Blah Da … Life Goes On.

Gail

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Filed under Allium, Gloriosa Daisy, hollyhocks, Poppy, Seeds, self seeding annuals, Tall Garden Phlox, Uncategorized

GLORIOSA DAISY

There’s a reason someone named them Gloriosa Daisies.

They are glorious!

Or maybe it’s just sentimental on my part.

They are, after all,  the first perennial I remember in my garden.

I remember the day very well.

It was December.

I was decorating for a party for Shirley Jones.

You know…of “Oklahoma” fame.

She was in town doing a concert.

The party was across the street from my friend Sally’s house.

Sally was well….distraught.

There was a backhoe in her garden.

Chewing things up.

She scooped up some plants and asked me to take them home.

They needed a safer place to reside.

So home we went.

Thus began my first perennial garden.

When they bloomed the next spring

I thought it was the most glorious thing.

Sally’s garden always has great patches of this bit of floral sunshine.

Now, all these years – decades – later I do too.

They begin blooming as the larkspur is waning.

The gold and blue combination is stunning every year.

Gloriosa or Rudbeckia if you like the Latin

Are easy to grow. 

They like a sunny spot where they can become a small bush.

About the size of a peony.

They can get tall and fall over

So support is a good thing.

I put small portable green wire fencing around them.

Gro-Thru hoops also work.

If you deadhead them.

They’ll bloom off and on all season.

They are a good cutting flower.

Bringing the same sunshine to any arrangement.

Just be sure to remove the leaves below the water line.

And slit the stem and inch or two to increase water intake.

I don’t know what varieties I have.

We’ll call them Sally’s Mom’s Gloriosa.

Since that’s their lineage.

They do self seed and make lots of babies.

To share.

Most recently with Megan and Torry.

There is one variety I don’t recommend.

Rudbeckia Goldstrum. 

The flowers are great.

But the root system is greedy.

It spreads into a giant mass.

It’s like digging up a tree to get rid of it.

Be warned.

As I look across my garden it occurs to me

That Gloriosas are like the exclamation point.

The patches here and there give accent to the colors around them.

Blasts of happy faces everywhere.

Just love this one.

Enjoy the week.

Gail

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Filed under Bouquets, Dead Heading, Garden Planning, Gardening, Gardening;Perennials, Gloriosa Daisy, Gloriosa Daisy - Rudbeckia, Larkspur, Uncategorized

PASS ALONG PLANTS

One of the things I love about gardeners

Is there willingness to share.

I’ve mentioned this before.

Sharing is so prevalent

It’s even  been given a name.

Pass Along Plants.

Sally's Pass Along Larkspur

Sally’s Pass Along Larkspur

Most well-kept gardens

Produce babies.

Lots of them. 

And there’s a need to find them each a good home.

At least that was true when I first started gardening.

After all I had been given plants by my friend Sally to start my garden.

I should certainly pay it forward

When the time came.

The truth is it’s impossible to find each seedling a new little bit of heaven.

But I still try.

Twice this season I’ve had the chance to share lots of plants.

First my friend Mary wanted to fill in some empty spaces in her flower beds.

She moved a few of her things around.

Divided some hostas

And dug from my garden.

Ferns, Gloriosas, Purple Coneflowers, Larkspur.

And a Rosebush which had a Helianthus growing up the middle.

Then last weekend Megan came.

Megan & her trunk full of plants

Megan & her trunk full of plants

She got here as I was finishing up the big dahlia dig.

So she got a bit of this and a bit of that.

Ferns, Stella d’ Ora Daylilies, a mystery Day lily,

Two pieces that fell off one the Blushing Bride Hydrangeas.

They are real babies, but patience will reward her.

More Gloriosa Daisies, Purple Coneflowers, tall garden Phlox and Larkspur.

A Butterfly Bush

Dahlia tubers

Tiger lily bulbs that appeared in the mail without being ordered.

And volunteer Hellebores – which I’ve never had to offer before.

Then we hit the leftover seeds for more goodies.

We dug

And visited

And laughed

And remembered our “professional” gardening days together.

During her Junior High and High School days.

It gives new meaning to sharing.

Sharing gardens

Sharing lives.

The timing was perfect

Just as the Larkspur was hitting full stride.

Larkspur & Friend

Larkspur & Friend

The Larkspur growing from seeds given to me by Sally

Who got it from her mother.

Generations of plants ago.

Life is good.

Gardening makes it even better!

Gail

 

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Filed under Dahlias, Ferns, Gardening, Gloriosa Daisy, HELIANTHUS, Hellebores, Hosta, Purple Coneflower - Echinacea, Seeds, Tall Garden Phlox, Uncategorized

OLD SOLES

My original red garden clogs

Twenty plus years ago my friend Debra gave me a pair of garden clogs.

They have red soles.

Not the red soles that a certain designer now temps us with.

No these were red plastic from their turned up toes to their elevated heels.

Molded plastic.

Not very stylish.

But oh so practical.

They were platforms before we knew platforms.

Keeping my feet high and dry.

Transporting me through the wet grass on my early morning walks to see what’s new in the garden.

They are among the first “garden tools” I owned and have graced the back door at both homes where I have gardened.

Various dogs have chewed on them along the way.

Their cork and burlap insoles were molded to fit the shoe.

Over time they have simply disintegrated.

I’ve looked for replacement soles to no avail.

So now it is time for them to retire.

They have been replaced with a sunny pair of lime green clogs.

Old "sole" friends and new.

Softer

Not as tall

But comfy

On to the next quarter century!

This week has been hot.

Unusually so for the first week of June.

This is when a healthy perennial garden really shines.

First of all it’s June.

And like the old song says “June is bustin out all over”.

Stella d' Ora Daylillies, Larkspur and the Garden House

The larkspur is the color backdrop in my garden these days.

With its self-seeding nature it lays curtains for small vignettes of color play.

Gloriosa Daisies and Larkspur

My before mentioned friend Debra visited this week and brought along her trusty camera.

You’ll notice an improved quality to many of the pictures this week.

They are hers.

Poppy pods and Asiatic Lilies

The truth is my garden is a little out of control.

For some reason I’m behind where I usually am.

No real reason.

No excuse.

Just behind.

My normal ritual once all the planting is complete is to begin at one end of the garden and weed and thin my way to the other.

Not this year.

No focus.

I go into the garden and just flit about.

A little staking here

A little pruning there.

Then there were all those evening spent picking strawberries and snap peas.

So…I must get back to my routine.

To begin this sweep of the garden I usually take along my wheelbarrow, pruners, wicked EZ digger, and a bucket of some sort for weeds.

Pruners and EZ Digger

Then I start at the west end and

Deadhead

Pull weeds

Thin volunteer plants

Clean out around the rose bushes

And generally whack away at anything that is too big or having problems.

This week it was two Aloha rose bushes.

They have had some bug on them every year for the past several years.

This nasty little guy eats the center of each and every bud.

From my reading I think it’s thrip.

I’ve tried organic control.

And I must confess some not so organic controls

Nothing works for very long.

So I just decided I’d cut it back to a foot or two from the ground and see what happens.

I’m not getting any roses from it now so how can it hurt.

I did this earlier in the spring with the rose on the arbor to the garden house.

It’s coming back nicely.

Arbor rose revived.

So far disease free.

As long as I’m confessing to using a few chemicals I might as well come completely clean.

There are two problems that I have read simply cannot be fixed organically.

Bind weed grows roots so deep that it cannot be dug out.

Bind weed growing through the deck!!!

It comes back from the center of the earth every time.

I’ve tried spraying it with vinegar .

No luck.

Nut grass is the other.

No such thing as a pretty picture of nutgrass.

If you pull it out – even in very loose soil – there is a little bulb underground that explodes with the force of being pulled up.

When it explodes it makes babies.

More nut grass appears within what seems like seconds.

Sometimes nature really tries my patience.

So in these two instances I am now confessing to using Round Up.

I’m not proud of it.

It’s the only control I’ve found.

Even then it can take more than one round to kill it out.

And…chances are both of these little demons will appear again.

Let’s end on a positive note.

Three years ago I planted Bressingham Blue hosta in my front bed.

Bressingham Blue Hosta and Impatiens

They have loved it there.

This year they have gotten so big that they are shading out the Impatiens planted along the edge of the bed.

So…a little pruning was required.

I cut off the front leaves to let in a little sunlight.

They were simply too gorgeous to compost.

So I brought them inside and put them in a vase that had belonged to my mother in law.

We’ve been enjoying this unusual and breathtaking arrangement all week.

Hosta leaves in Geraldine's vase.

It will likely last another.

Remember to drop by your local farmers market this weekend.

Enjoy the week in your garden.

Gail

 

 

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Filed under bind weed, Gloriosa Daisy, Hosta, Larkspur, nutgrass, tools, Uncategorized