Gardening where the sidewalk ends

GBBD – June 15, 2009 June 14, 2009

Filed under: flora — greenwalks @ 10:46 pm
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June in the garden is kind of a crazy time for me. Just trying to keep up with everything and not quite managing it, still too many plants in their sad dry pots, school about to let out and gardening time will shrink to almost nil, so every spare second (up until dark and sometimes afterward) is spent out there at a rather frantic pace. Not a lot of time for blogging, but I wanted to keep with my posts on the 15th of the month for Garden Bloggers Bloom Day so here is a somewhat random selection of what’s out there at the moment. Click here to see other Bloom Day posts, hosted as always by the lovely and talented Carol of May Dreams Gardens.

First up, a few roses. Yes, I threatened to yank them all this year, it will probably still happen to some of them but in this long span of unusually warm and dry weather, they are trying hard to win my over by blooming insanely well and (mostly) keeping the black spot at bay. Here are a few, ‘Brandy’ is the orange one and the other is unknown but I love how it is creamy with just a tinge of pink. Both were planted by the previous owner and lovingly maintained with sprays and fertilizers, both of which I eschew (except for a bit of alfalfa meal in the early spring if I remember). Another mark on the plus side – they have a citrus-y fragrance that I find irresistible.

'Brandy' rose

Blowsy rosies

Staking plants is not for me – my floppy poppies will show that here. They’re at the end of their run but it’s been a notable one this year. They can lean on their friend the cutleaf Japanese maple for support if they want to, fine with me although the color combo is a bit extreme.

Floppy poppies

I planted two Cistus laurifolius (Rock rose) from very small starts (3 inch pots, maybe?) a few years ago, and this year they are finally really getting going with blooms. Of course I attempted to transplant one from a bad spot during a hot spell and may have killed it, oops. This one stayed put and is putting on a show. Hungry for fried eggs, anyone?

CIstus laurifolius

Culinary sage bloomed like a maniac and is now finishing up, but I like how its purple flowers hang on for a bit and dry out.

Sage finishing flowering

Lavender is big here – the previous owner obviously didn’t want to invest in improving the soil, so mostly planted things that would be okay in the crummy stuff. Many, many, many lavender plants, all the same type (French?), all budding up and starting to flower. The spittle bugs love them, you can see their white blobby “spit” houses if you look closely at some of the stems.

Lavender hill beginning to bloom

Calendulae self-seed in my daughter’s garden, they must like it there.

Calendulae (one open, one spent)

While those of you who planted their peas indoors are now enjoying the first tastes of summer, I was late getting mine into the ground so they only started to flower this week. I hope the bees notice them and we still get a decent harvest! These are Cascadia snap peas from Seeds of Change, they are growing vigorously so far.

Snap peas finally flowering

Lamb’s ear (stachys) can be a bit of a wanderer but it’s easy enough to pull out where it’s not wanted. Fun to feel its fuzzy leaves and its flower spikes are pretty cool too. This one showed up across a path from where it generally lives, but I’m letting it stay (the lemon balm behind it is a pest, though – I’d keep that one in a pot if you decide you need it!).

Lamb's Ear in bloom

I have removed most of the bolting over-wintered veggies and annual herbs, finally, but have let this parsley stay because a) it’s fun to have a parsley “tree” and b) I want to try to figure out seed-saving and this would be one I’d like to have.

Bolting curly parsley

Foxglove (digitalis) also self-sows around the garden, although it seems like there might be fewer this year than usual. At least it’s been dry so the slugs haven’t attacked them like they usually do. This one is about 6 ft. tall, growing under the witch hazel tree.

Towering Foxglove

This is getting long, so I will end with one final shot, of the nicest arrival in my garden today. Nope, it’s not a flower – it’s Susan Tomlinson of The Bicycle Garden :ย  long-distance blog buddy, writer, naturalist, birder, gardener, woodworker, paddle-maker, triathlete, professor and all-around great gal. She and her husband Walt graciously allowed me to monopolize the majority of their one day in Seattle, and we worked a brief tour of my garden into the mix. Thanks for posing in my parking strip, Susan, and I will write more about our fun visit soon!

Susan T. in my garden


20 Responses to “GBBD – June 15, 2009”

  1. Kanak Says:

    Karen, your roses!! The Brandy rose is a stunner! The floppy poppies, the lavender, the sage—all look so lovely. Calendula no longer blooms here. That’s very much a winter/early spring bloom for me. Happy GBBD to you!

  2. Jen Says:

    Everything looks terrific. Susan, too!

  3. Curmudgeon Says:

    In our garden the lemon balm always seems to pop up with the lamb’s ear. I like the yellow-y green of the lemon balm next to the silver lamb’s ear. I’ve finally stopped trying to yank it all out and it seems to have settled into 3 different spots in the garden that I can live with. I made tea from the lemon balm. Not bad. If only it wouldn’t smell so much like Lemon Pledge furniture polish!

  4. Racquel Says:

    That Rose “Brandy” is a gorgeous color! I love all the blooms you have going on right now. I envy the Lavender that thrives in your garden, I’ve had no success with it overwintering here. Maybe our heavy clay (although ammended) is not to its’ liking? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  5. I can’t even imagine a 6 foot tall Foxglove – how cool. It is hard to dig out plants that start blooming at the mention of the word shovel. I’ve become hard and cruel and have dug out plants in bloom. Hard to believe, but I actually kind of like the combo of the Poppy & the Japanese Maple. The dark flares on the Poppies make it work.

  6. Wow your roses almost make me think I could like roses! They are beautiful, I especially like ‘brandy’. Hope you like the smell of lavender, having that much must be very fragrant. And Karen you are not the latest one to get your peas in, mine aren’t even blooming yet. The parking strip gardener down the street from me is already harvesting…next year I vow to be better. I did harvest radishes last night!

  7. Tessa Says:

    I hear you about the plants sitting around in pots! I’ve got some gorgeous Morning Glory, Black-eyed Susan, and some Nicotiana still waiting to go in- a lot has been dumped too. Sad! I over did it…again! I really love your foxglove- that is a plant I’ve never tried and wanted to try. My Lupine is not looking great, so maybe I’ll give them a try. That is if I don’t move soon ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Kris at t.m. Says:

    It’s funny – I posted the other day at bwold about the effectiveness of threatening roses – so many on our hit-list are now too gorgeous to remove. And how nice to have so much lavender – there’s just nothing better for the crappy soil spots! And that foxglove!… (sigh)

  9. ricki Says:

    Foxgloves grow like weeds along the roadside here (Portland OR) and migrate to the garden. Something funny is going on with them this year. If you know foxgloves, I would love it if you would visit my site and tell me what’s up (click on ‘ricki’s blog’ at the bottom of any page).
    Love your pictures. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Carol Says:

    Karen you are not alone with plants in waiting… I have many in pots and that is where they will be for a bit longer. Your roses are lovely … as is your giant foxglove!

  11. Gail Says:

    An excellent bloom day post…I love reading that other bloggers let their plants flop! I do, too..Who has time to stake them and they do look interesting peaking over the shoulder of their neighbors in bloom! The lavender (bugs and all) looks wonderful. Love the photo of Susan at your garden edge…so glad you had a good time! gail

  12. Catherine Says:

    The roses and lavender must make your garden smell delicious. I’m not into staking either, my poppies look about the same ๐Ÿ™‚
    Glad you got to visit with a fellow garden blogger. Look forward to hearing more about it.

  13. Megan Says:

    I think you probably meant the lavender is french, but at first I thought you meant the former owner was french. Swaths of lavender always make me think of French gardens.
    I’ll admit it. That peach colored rose is pretty.

  14. GardenJunkie Says:

    Seems like most of us have a love-hate relationship with roses – I also complain about them every year, threaten to hack them down to stubs, and then relent when their gorgeous, fragrant blooms arrive (although this year it’s rained every day for the last 2 weeks here in southern Connecticut so the roses turned into masses of rotten, brown petals, mostly on the ground – so disappointing). Love that foxglove of yours – amazing how tall it is!

  15. You have a great mix of things blooming right now. I love the photo of the foxglove. That is the way to show off the speckled blossoms! I don’t think one can have too much lavender. It is pretty and such a nice fragrance. Have you ever made lavender wands with it? It’s a fun project and they make great gifts. I bet you can find instuctions on the web somewhere.

  16. Jane Says:

    Karen, I love your mix-and-match posting! From the humble but satisfying foxgloves and lambs ears, to the sublime roses, to that great cistus, it’s a lovely group and it gives me a nice feel for your garden.

  17. Cynthia Says:

    I’m a day late leaving this comment- meant to yesterday when I viewed this bloom filled post but ran out of time! It is always interesting to see what is in bloom in your garden Karen as my garden seems to be right behind yours! The sages have yet to bloom and the lavenders are still just in bud. What a difference a zone can make!

  18. Karen, what a lovely post, I bet the scent from your lavender is wonderful when they are all in full bloom.
    How nice to see Susan too!
    I am very fond of lambs ears – I always think of them as such happy plants ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. Dreamybee Says:

    Your garden is lovely, crummy soil, pesky lemon balm and all! I especially like your extreme poppies-very pretty!

  20. Gorgeous blooms. Next time you have an over ripe banana or two, stick ’em under the roses for more flowers later in the season or next year:-). It would be a shame to get rid of them.

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