I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Garden Peeking

Hi! As our cold wet spring  finally evolves into the days of early summer, and the Solstice draws near, Mo and I have been enjoying our walks and peeks into gardens and yards in our neighborhood.
The final spring bulb flowers have burst into bloom, bearded iris, flags, and lily of the valley.

Flags and iris are favorites of mine. When I was a little girl we played baseball [kids of all ages, unorganized] in a field across the road from my house. Some of the biggest boys would mow the ''infield'' and we'd choose up teams,lol, like four to a side sometimes. The field was surrounded by old fence posts and rusty barbed wire, and appeared abandoned. No one ever chased us away. And in my hours spent in the outfield, I discovered old plantings---white hedge roses, floribunda?, fragrant small roses that form giant hedges. There were lilacs too, and apple trees; and in June when school let out and we played til dark at 930 PM, I'd find masses of gorgeous cultivated iris in stunning bloom.

My brother also loved [loves] iris and he helped me dig up stands of the iris and we transplanted them in our own backyard, by the old wrought iron fence with its pink climbing rose. There were a number of types of bearded iris: blues/ purples; a very hardy yellow with speckled brown petals, and an exotic  iris with pale orchid pink tops and deep puce, purple brown, lower petals. Also palest blue flags and the classic bright yellow flags.

My dad liked these too and the iris tubers moved with us on to Illinois, and then Cape Cod. As summer progressed there were also stands of yarrow, lavender, blackeyed susans, hollyhocks, Ohio daises, and pink wild roses. Looking back I am guessing there was once a farmhouse there, where we played ball, and though it had long since vanished, its garden had remained and survived.
Iris are still a flower that I love.
Such a pretty planting vignette. It cold be a Japanese print, couldn't it?

In early June the rhododendrons bloom. I like their deep pink colors and woodland aspect. And that they are evergreen but not ''pine trees'', meaning not conifers.

Roses peek back at us through the tall grey fences:

This lady has an itty bitty cocoa colored poodle who hates poor Mo. Who is only wanting a friend to play with, too bad.

And the pines bloom, covering one's car hood with bright yellow dust

The snake wort is beautiful, briefly. It's an invasive weed here. This version is a wonderful variegated blue.

Mo and I travel on each afternoon to the beach bench.

Mo does his counting trick, he can count to three!

Then we sit and think and breathe the salt air for awhile.

There's a spigot there for people to wash the sand off their feet. I'm teaching Mo to take a drink there, from my cupped hands, because even the slightest heat sets him to panting and plopping.

The local home owner association sets out pretty pots. Flags are added on holidays.

My friends who for the past three years have experimented with a tropical garden switched this year to easier and more permanent Nantucket style plantings. Hydrangeas, rugosa beach roses, pink rudbeckia, astillbe, pink spirea, with some of their collection of lilies replanted.

Inspired too by blog friend Penny's lovely roses and hydrangeas in South Africa.

They couldn't totally abandon their love of tropicals. Replanted into more easily cared for large pots,

as are their lavender and other herbs.

It will be fun to watch this garden grow, as this was the design I had originally suggested to two busy professionals who often work 6 or even 7 days a week, easily 80 or more hours, with long commutes daily to NYC. It is hoped this garden with professional drip watering will be  something they can enjoy without hours of labor.

Of course Mo and I enjoy it too. Mo has his own water bowl and his cold water always stashed in their outdoor fridge.

Back home, one of my deck pots has an intriguing ''volunteer''. Mel tracked it down, it's an herb called borage, prized for its edible blue flowers. Where did it come from? The wind? A bird? Or last summer's wildflower seed pack?

Have a wonderful week. Tell me, what is your favorite garden flower?



gone to the beach....