Monday, May 26, 2014

A Garden Ramble

Today has been a quiet day. When you're a military daughter, wife, and mother Memorial Day means more than just cookouts and a chance to sleep in. It's a reminder of how grateful I am they all came home. I spent the morning in the garden, the best place for sorting through my thoughts.


This urn of hens and chicks sailed through our bitterly cold winter without any problems.


 A lot of my sedums seemed to have thrived in the sub-zero temps this winter.


I thought this pot was a bit boring so I added some rocks and a cool woolly thyme.


I'm a tactile person and love plants with soft or interesting textures.


This native clematis crispa is taking over the fence.


 But I don't mind. It's flowers remind me of an octopus.


Centaurea dealbata is also known as Persian Cornflower.


It grows at the edge of the rain garden in a moist but well drained spot.


Anthemis 'Susanna Mitchell', also known as marguerite, is an early bloomer.


'Sarah Bernhardt' peony and 'Evisix' clematis


Bowman's Root and anemones
I added some river oats (chasmanthium) to the spot between the crepe myrtle and the Bowman's Root but it's still small.


I plopped these 'Berry Fizz' heucherella into this spot last fall after nearly killing them in too much sun and they're thriving.


They have beautiful dappled foliage that my cheapo camera managed to NOT capture.


Honeybee on the tradescantia


The stamens remind me of fuzzy feathers.


I've decided to move my sweet potatoes out of the NanoFarm and into Pottersville, my container garden. The foliage will cover the ugly little concrete chunks holding up my pots and cascade down the steps. At least that's the plan.


Every year I grow Bush Porto Rico sweet potatoes ordered from Southern Exposure Seed Exchange. They're excellent for small spaces and the potatoes are creamier than the ones in the grocery store.


 The shade garden is filling in. This area receives morning sun and afternoon shade.


'Blue Ice' amsonia and a pink penstemon digitalis grow in dry partial shade. Native white penstemon digitalis and Western Indian Physic (porteranthus stipulatus) growing in the back will be blooming soon.


 I bought this off the sale table a few years ago.


Native honeysuckle has taken over the fence in the dog run but no one minds.


Mystery pink clematis


35 comments:

  1. Our garden plant choices are so similar....it's like a walk round my own garden (except mine's minute compared to yours!). Great minds n' all that x

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    1. My garden is wide but not tremendously deep. But no wonder I like your garden so much! It feel so familiar. :o)

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  2. Oh yum yum yum !! Some of my faves ... peony Sarah Bernhardt is just gores, and penstemons are one of my best faves. they all look fantastic ...
    BTW all the set thinking happens in the garden !

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    1. Gardening clears my mind, for sure. Sarah Bernhardt is quite a looker this year. The poor gal just needed some support. :o)

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  3. So many pretty things in your garden! I am a very tactile person too; I have to touch everything! I love the combo of the woolly thyme with its rubbery, pointy-edge companion.

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    1. Touch is so important to me. I avoid any plant, except a rose, that isn't pleasant to touch. When I felt the woolly thyme I knew it was a keeper.

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  4. Thank you for the garden tour.It was a good day for reflection.

    Sarah Bernhardt is just stunning with the blue. I looked back the second time and realized we have NO plants in common except tradescantia which grows wild here. It's time I cut it to the ground so it can renew.

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    1. I cut it back, too, when it gets ragged. It pops up everywhere but is so pretty when it blooms, I usually leave it be. The clematis/peony combination is a happy coincidence. I had forgotten it was there when I transplanted Sarah there years ago. But I do love the two of them together. :o)

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  5. Your garden is clearly a wonderful place to reflect and regroup. Everything looks great despite your prolonged winter. I love the peony-clematis combination. Those Heucherella are impressive too - I've pretty much given up on both them and Heuchera here as they just look nasty after repeated blasts of hot, dry air.

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    1. Heucherella definitely aren't as drought tolerant as heuchera. I nearly killed mine. Actually, I did kill one but managed to move the rest before the sun fried them, too. I don't think there are many plants that can survive a Santa Ana. I always dreaded those winds when I was a kid in Oceanside (Camp Pendleton).

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  6. The woolly thyme is seriously cool, never seen anything like that here!

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  7. I can only read your words today as the pictures will not download - our internet speed is on worse than go slow, but by everybody's comments and your words it sounds wonderful.

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    1. Thanks! Hopefully, your internet connection will speed up soon and you can see the pix, too. :o)

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  8. I have always loved hen and chicks, but my daughter introduced me to a whole new world of succulents, so I have them growing in several spots. But do you know how hard they are to fine these days with all of the Pinterest interest? I rally like your clematis. Your garden looks full and rich.

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    1. Thanks! I did notice that most of the hens and chicks were sold out at my fav nursery the other day. I don't use Pinterest so I didn't realize there was a craze on for them. I love succulents, too and have added a few new ones to the container garden this year.

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  9. What a beautiful, contemplative space you have created. I have never seen woolly thyme and now I must have it. MUST. Thank you for focusing the purpose of the holiday. Both my parents were in the military, as well as friends and family. I am thankful for their service, their sacrifices and for defending the freedoms that mean so much to me.

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    1. My father, cousin, and husband are all veterans so all military holidays are bittersweet for me. I just hope my son can finish his enlistment without deploying. :o) I wanted/needed my garden to be joyous but peaceful, too. The trees feel so sheltering and I'm more drawn to the shady areas than I ever thought I'd be.

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  10. The woolly thyme looks marvelous.

    Love how the clematis is running rampant.

    And that hammock is calling my name...

    Thanks for a great post.

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    1. Get thee a hammock! The woolly thyme is a keeper. I just love it!

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  11. What a beautiful post, Tammy. My family includes a few military vets and current enlistees. I'm very grateful, too, and please thank your family members for me. :) Memorial Day weekend is a crazy, crazy time here. I generally wait to plant my tender annuals and veggies until now--even though we usually don't have frost after May 15. But they don't thrive until the really warm weather, which is now! Yay! Thanks for this lovely Memorial Day post.

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    1. I planted out my zinnias this weekend, too! They are the epitome of summer to me. Thanks for your kind words. I'm incredibly proud of our family's military history although I'd rather we all just stop killing each other. I'm a hippie at heart. :o)

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  12. I'm grateful too, Tammy, that your family came home safe and sound. I have to tell you that I really studied your photo of that honey bee on the tradescantia--it is stunning. What a photo you have there. I hope you frame it for somewhere in your home when you happen to have a day when you've forgotten why you take all the trouble to use organic everything to feed your garden. That honeybee says it all. Also, the peony "Sarah Bernhardt"....wow! An elegant beauty. Beautiful weekend here in Portland--we got our veggie garden all planted.

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    1. There is absolutely nothing like seeing your husband/son come home alive after a deployment. But it's a painful kind of happy because there are so many who don't come home. Seeing bees with pollen that I know is pesticide-free is so satisfying. Tradescantia can be weedy but if I cut it back it regrows so beautifully. Yay for your veggies!

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  13. We all struggle with the gap between what our eyes see and what the camera captures, but your "cheapo camera" did a fine job on the Tradescantia close-ups.

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  14. What a lovely post with so many stunning images, how lovely to see the daisies and the peony.....I can't believe how quickly it has all shot up!
    A wonderful place to think and I'm so glad all your family came home too....Oh...and I do love you dog! How lovely to have the scented honeysuckle in their area.xxx

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    1. The garden smelled like honeysuckle over the weekend and it was so wonderful! The dog in the photo is blind, diabetic, and has thyroid disease but don't tell him. He'd be shocked. He just thinks the world is blurry. :o)

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  15. I see you've also got a "mystery pink clematis." :) I used to have C. crispa too but it died. Dang. Such a pretty flower. My 'Sarah Barnhart' is also blooming. Love those voluptuous blossoms. Your dog is adorable. Glad your garden is growing and thriving. I might need to copy that sedum pot with the tiny sedum cascading over the side. Very cool.

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    1. The tiny sedum is actually woolly thyme, a soft, fuzzy thyme that's very petable. :o) It feels like a soft sweater.

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    2. Ok, I looked at my pics again! The urn does have a very cool tiny sedum cascading down the sides. I love how it contrasts with the thick, wide leaves of the hens and chicks. It works together really well.

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  16. I am glad they all came home too friend...and I can only imagine how much the garden comforts you. As your space is just a piece of heaven! I love what you have done with those containers....the hens and chicks just rock! So many beautiful blooms you!! Happy week to you! Nicole xoxo

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  17. Dear Tammy, I'm so relieved they came home, but as you say, it's bitter sweet ... in that context your garden is a beautiful sanctuary. I am familiar with woolly thyme, and this post has given me a sudden flash: how could I have lived so long without it?

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  18. Wow your garden has certainly come alive and is thriving very well.
    I too am glad with you that they all came home...bless them.
    Wish I could take that mystery clematis off your hands....I'd certainly find a name for it in my garden....smile.

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  19. I am sure Memorial Day has great significance for a military wife, mother and daughter. I am glad that you have your garden as a sanctuary where you can sort out your thoughts and feelings.
    Your garden is looking wonderful. Love the combination of the pink penstemon and the 'Blue Ice' . My Amsonia needs a similar friend. Right now it is a bit lonely. I bought some Bowman's Root last summer and I like it so much I bought and second plant this spring.

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