Category Archives: Hellebores

Easter Egg Hunt

I love gardens

And children

So it is with great joy

that once again we hosted

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The 1st Presbyterian Church Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday.

My friend Kay is my partner for this.

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She gives her considerable talent, creativity, energy and education

To the children of our church each week.

She does the lion share of the work for this event

Along with other talented friends.

Four generations of friends, neighbors and church members gather for the fun.

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When you think of it, what better place for an Easter event

Than in a garden.

But you may recall I was concerned that because Easter is so early this year

That my garden wouldn’t “look good”.

The grass was not picture perfect green.

Actually it’s mostly brown and still crispy.

Just a few things are blooming

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Forsythia, hellebore, pansies and violas

And plants are just emerging from their winter’s sleep.

When will I ever learn that I am not in charge here!

God has it covered…every time.

God…and Kay

She had many activities and stories.

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All of which told the story of Easter

Resurrection and new birth

From the live grass for the Easter baskets

Planted a month ago during Sunday School

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To the annual Lady Bug release

(Aphids don’t stand a chance in this garden)

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To enacting butterflies emerging from their cocoon

(A card table covered with a brown cloth)

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Learning about and experiencing nature

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Taking flight.

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Is there a better way to spend a glorious spring Saturday

Than to create memories for children and adults

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To experience nature

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And God

What a gift.

Happy Easter,

Gail

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Filed under Butterflies, Easter Baskets, Easter Egg Hunt, Forsythia, Hellebores, Lady Bugs, Uncategorized, Violets

ANTICIPATION

Remember that old ketchup commercial?

An upside down bottle

Cap off

Carole King singing “Anticipation” in the background.

But the ketchup just wouldn’t come out.

This spring  feels like that ketchup.

It just can’t get started.

And so we awoke this Palm Sunday morning

To yet another snow.

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After all it is still  March!

But I’m just a little anxious.

The fact that I’m having the church Easter Egg hunt next weekend

And my yard hasn’t even been scalped

Is driving me just a bit!

So today I did a little “snow gardening”

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Yes, it was cold.

And windy.

But after putting on tights, pants, sock liners, socks, boots, wool sweater, coat, glove liners, gloves & ear muffs

Combined with sunshine and a wind block.

It was pretty toasty out.

Smiling violas kept me company

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Just waiting for companion tulips to appear

The leaves were wet with snow

But they rack up just like dry ones.

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And there is life beneath.

The hope of spring

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Of garden days to come.

Of blooms to breath in

And share

Of life!

Sunshine’s on it’s way.

Enjoy the week.

Gail

 

 

 

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Filed under Easter Egg Hunt, Forsythia, Hellebores, Rake, spring, Uncategorized, Viola, Winter Garden

Garden Travels

It’s finally here…Spring!

Officially on Wednesday.

It’s just a bit soon here to begin digging.

You can start cutting back all that brown dead stuff

And racking back that protective coat of leaves.

But instead of standing at the window

Staring into the backyard

Wringing my clean hands

I’ve been lucky this past month

And gotten to visit not one,

But two glorious botanical gardens.

About 3 weeks ago Virginia, Debra and I

Spent an afternoon at the Desert Botanical Garden.

I’m not really a desert person – Virginia is

It was after all a garden, so I was happy to tag along.

So glad I did.

There was a bit of Chihuly glass.

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If you don’t know Chihuly glass

Get to know it

It’s art…beyond belief.

Butterflies were another draw for me.

A butterfly pavilion had been added for the next few months.

Being in a small enclosed space with hundred of butterflies.

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Or…flutterbyes as I like to call them.

Is…well…like having God doing a fly by.

Really low!

Now, I’m not someone who travels a great deal.

Quite the opposite.

I love being home.

Somehow just two weeks later John and I were heading to Dallas

It was warm and sunny while we were there.

Yesterday on our way out of town we visited Dallas Blooms.

And bloom it does!

The Dallas Arboretum was lit up with no less than

500,00 spring flowering bulbs.

Bed after bed of daffodils and tulips.

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Underplanted with violas of every combination.

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Pots of Ranunculus

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Shouting “It’s Spring”

Planter boxes with the tallest ornamental cabbage known to man.

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We were in Texas after all

Brides taking their wedding portraits amongst the glory of it all.

And many princesses complete with crowns, gowns and velvet couches!

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There’s a tradition there I need to explore.

Then there were these two darling boys.

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Who I was certain had found a lady bug

or caterpillar

or some wonder of nature

Because they had turned their backs on this breathtaking beauty.

Look closely

It’s an iPad!

Somehow I kept from screaming at them.

It’s starting here.

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Hellebores are always first.

Patches of daffodils are beginning to bloom

Next will come forsythia and flowering pear trees

Then the big parade begins

I can’t wait

I’m just grateful for such a splendid preview.

Take in a little spring this week.

Gail

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Filed under Butterflies, Daffodils, Forsythia, Hellebores, Ornamental Cabbage, Spring Flowering Bulbs, tulips, Uncategorized, Viola

A GOOD DAY

I love the mundane.

Now I realize that isn’t “culturally correct”.

But really, there is nothing like a day of regular.

And that is what today was – mundane – regular – wonderful.

After a quick trip to the last Farmers’ Market.

I headed straight to the back yard

The goal was to finish transplanting on “the hill”.

It began about a month ago.

I was tired of the vinca minor running the show.

So I began to dig it up

And pull it back like a carpet.

Then I transplanted 5 big ferns.

I’m not sure but I think they are Cinnamon ferns.

They’ve settled in nicely.

So, today was the day to dig the hostas in the front bed

And bring them to their new home on the hill.

These were planted about 3 years ago.

They were bare root so they were tiny.

Unfortunately they just get too much sunshine in the front

And the last 2 summers they have simply fried.

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So a home on the hill under the shade of the old cedar trees

Should make them much happier.

The root balls were the size of small trees.

I’m thinking they’ll be just fine.

Smaller hostas were also relocated.

Layered in the front between the Hellebores and Ferns.

I did have my assistant gardener close by

She has figured out that when I dig

Worms appear.

And she loves worms!

Unfortunately some things disappeared.

My favorite pruners can’t be located.

My best guess is I buried them under one of those

Very large

Very heavy

Hostas.

Didn’t have the energy to dig around for them.

Hopefully they’ll surface tomorrow!

There are lots of little surprises

In the fall garden.

So on this

Mundane

Regular

Wonderful

Saturday night.

I thought I’d share a few.

May you find the blessings

Of a mundane day soon.

Gail

 

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Filed under Clematis, cockscomb, Dahlias, Fall, Farmer's Market, Ferns, Gardening, Gardening Friends, Hellebores, Perennials, Plumbago, Pruners, roses, Shade Garden, Tall Garden Phlox, TRANSPLANTING

The Morning Walk

When I first began to garden

I unconsciously created a habit.

The morning garden walk.

I distinctly remember going out each morning

To walk through my first garden

To observe the changes

That can happen over night.

For instance, Lilies open in the night.

As do the blooms on Hardy Hibiscus.

So even though I walk along the same path each day

The path in spring

The path in spring

It’s different every time.

And summer

And summer

Subtle changes.

But change just the same.

The irony of this is that

We used to laugh at Daddy

When he would go to “check on” the wheat.

We accused him of spending time

Watching the wheat grow!

Every farmer does it

And they should

Just walking through the garden or wheat field.

Helps find things.

The first buds of spring.

Hellebores in January

Hellebores in January

Things that need to be done.

Bugs that have arrived to do good

Or not.

Remember last summer’s Harlequin bug invasion?

Diseases at their beginnings.

Weeds – always a few.

But I don’t stop to solve these problems on the morning walk.

No, the morning walk is simple to take it all in.

To enjoy

Nature's accident

Nature’s accident

To smile

To observe

Curious Peg

Curious Peg

To wander

And to wonder.

Gail

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Filed under Diseases, Gardening, Gardening;Perennials, Harlequin Bugs, Hellebores, Hydrangea, Japanese Tree Peony, Lady Bugs, Oriental Lilies, Perennials, Shasta Daisy, tulips, 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

THY NEIGHBORS GARDEN

Gardening is for me

a solitary pastime.

I love having people drop in

to see what’s blooming.

But I spend hours alone in my garden

Singing to myself

Admiring my work

And plotting my next adventure.

Roses & Iris

Roses & Iris

Perhaps that’s why I love having gardening neighbors.

Someone close by to share with

and borrow from.

Kelly and I have been that kind of gardening neighbors

Even before we were actual neighbors.

Now that we are only a block apart we are

Dangerous together.

Between the two of us we are constantly changing things.

Sharing things

Learning things

Our gardens complement each other. 

Where mine is good-sized.

Kelly’s is mammoth.

Where I have endless varieties of perennials

Kelly wisely has focused on flowering bushes.

She has much more space to fill

And filling it with annuals or 4″ perennials is

Well….unimaginable.

She moved back to this part of the country from Seattle.

There she had learned a great deal about Roses and Peonies.

She brought that knowledge with her.

And has over the years adapted it to our “slightly” different climate.

She helped me overcome my fear of growing Roses.

Rosa Aloha

Rosa Aloha

I in turn introduced her to Hellebore.

Hellebores

Hellebores

Over the years she has planted a “river” of them.

That’s the thing I love about gardeners.

They are so willing to share.

Actually, I can be a little annoying that way.

I’ve been known to give TMI  too much information!

This  week is a good example of that sharing.

I did a flower arrangement for a bridal shower.

I needed hot pink and oranges roses.

Since my Katy Road Pink is blooming out of it’s mind right now.

Rosa Katy Road Pink

Rosa Katy Road Pink

I’ve got the pink part covered.

Orange on the other hand is a problem

Especially since it’s one of the few colors I don’t do.

Lucky for me Kelly has a whole row of the most glorious orange roses.

It’s a Weeks Rose called Colorific.

Rosa Colorific

Kelly's Row of Rosa Colorific

And it is terrific.

So I took my favorite pruners and a bucket of water down the street

And cut a few.

Roses ready to arrange

Roses ready to arrange

Now it won’t be long till I can return the favor

Because next week Kelly needs 14 table decorations. 

I have lots of spring bloom

Wild Orchid

Wild Orchid

And an endless amount of Euonymus for filler.

So you’ll find her cutting in my garden.

And because those Colorific Roses are so terrific.

I’m thinking of adding a few to my garden.

Shower  Arrangement

Shower Arrangement

Gardening neighbors.

Good friends.

If you don’t have one.

I hope you find one soon.

It doesn’t get much better than this.

Gail

And speaking of gardening friends,

my friend Debra sent this marvelous quote.

“I think gardening is nearer to godliness than theology. True gardeners are both iconographers and theologians insofar as these activities are the fruit of prayer ‘without ceasing.’ Likewise, true gardeners never cease to garden, not even in their sleep, because gardening is not just something they do. It is how they live.”

Vigen Guroian, from The Fragrance of God

 

 

 

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Filed under Bouquets, Garden Planning, Gardening, Gardening Friends, Hellebores, Peonies, roses, Wedding Flowers