Gardening where the sidewalk ends

Metamorphosis June 8, 2010

Filed under: flora,perennials — greenwalks @ 7:48 pm
Tags: , ,

I feel like I should rename this endeavor Failblog. Oh wait, already taken! This is probably the longest stretch I have gone without posting since starting Greenwalks in 8/09. Sorry to those who came here daily, at least for a while, in search of something new! And also sorry that I have not been around to visit folks and see what everyone’s gardens have been doing. I’m sure it all looks splendid!

While I have been rushing off to end-of-school functions, music rehearsals, and other non-gardening-related pursuits, perennials and self-seeding annuals have been keeping the garden moving despite my neglect. We had the rainiest first few weeks of June in history, which was a bummer for planned outdoor events and Seattle’s general mood, but good for the gardener with no time to water!

The Oriental poppies (Papaver orientale) that were already planted in a tough spot here when we arrived five years ago (next to a cedar tree with challenging surface roots – nothing else will grow there) continue to flourish. The orangey-red ones always seem to open first, followed by the pale pink, and then the coral ones, which are still to come.

I’m sure I’m not the first to compare their journey from fat pupa-like buds to fluttery-winged butterfly-like glory…

Oriental poppy flower bud

Oriental poppy starting to unfurl

Oriental poppy opening up

Opened poppy

Poppy center

They keep their fiery glow going well into the evening:

Evening poppy

Butterflies don’t live very long. Neither do poppies.

Lacy poppy decay

But while they last, what magnificence!


18 Responses to “Metamorphosis”

  1. Damn fine photos Karen! Worth waiting for. Hope you are enjoying yourself amongst all the hustle and bustle.

  2. gardeningasylum Says:

    Oh my oh my – beautiful closeups at all stages – brava!

  3. Welcome back! This post was worth the wait…what a gorgeous metamorphosis.

  4. Grace Says:

    No apologies. I think we’re all feeling a little tossed around these days. Garden blogging, as much fun as it is, is still second to actual gardening.

    Beautiful Oriental poppies, Karen.

  5. Jen Says:

    Hey there. I’m right there with ya trying to fit it all in. Such a busy time of year! Good to stop and smell the flowers once in awhile. (do poppies smell?!) Love that last photos- wouldn’t mind havning a dress in that pattern, kinda like tie-dye.

  6. Georgia Says:

    Beautiful, thank you. Perfect on a rainy, grey day!

  7. Ohm I so agree with you, Karen! It is not the kids, it is us parents who would need the 2,5 months off during the summer. only a couple of recitals, school BBQs and other functions to go, and I hope I won’t scream, at least not too loud. I love the way people here are involved in everything, it is so unlike us Scandinavians who expect the school (or the state…) to fix everything, but sometimes it gets a tiy bit exhausting. Anyway, loved your pics and I am hoping that the sun will peek out soon, otherwise I start growing gills.

  8. Happy to see you and your gorgeous poppy back!
    I LOVE that red !

  9. Bonnie Story Says:

    Hi Karen! I have been gone the whole month of May doing home renovations down in CA so I think I get the ribbon for “Most neglected blog”! I just posted something that I think you would like to see – some great stone planters in a streetside garden! Really a kick to see. I took lots of pics of stuff while I was in CA some i have lots of pictures to blog with – now it’s just about finding the time!! I have weeds assembled for battle out in my gardens – (Note to self: Never leave gardens alone in May…) Anyway glad you are back to blogging, glad I am back to WA, and Cheers! — Bonnie

  10. Christine B. Says:

    My poppies are still just fat buds. They are very tenacious: I’ve plucked them out each year and each year they return. I guess I’ve given up because they made it to bloom time this year. If they weren’t an awful shade of salmon I might be more excited about it but as it is they just clash.

    It is hard to find time to blog in the summer, isn’t it? I try to post on Mondays and so often this season I’ve found myself hunched over the computer late at night trying to get something written. Of course, my pictures aren’t nearly as nice as yours.

    Christine in Alaska

  11. Megan Says:

    I’ve been behind too, it sure helps catch up when other people haven’t posted too many times for me to get back up to speed 🙂
    I’ve been behind on the blog for exciting reasons though, I’ll have plant lust updates to share soon!

  12. easygardener Says:

    Poppies are beautiful – perhaps their short life makes us appreciate them even more.
    Like you I have neglected both the garden and blogging recently – the garden does not seem to have noticed my absence 🙂

  13. Matron Says:

    I know Matron does not do flowers, but that doesn’t stop me admiring someone elses!! Those poppies are spectacular.

  14. Racquel Says:

    I knew you had been missing for some time but not this long. Glad you are back and love the metamorphosis of the Poppy from bud to spent bloom. 🙂

  15. Dawn Says:

    lovely photo series 🙂

  16. Molly Says:

    Love what you’re doing with that new camera!

  17. Kristi Says:

    Wow, great series of photos.

  18. Angela Says:

    I love this grouping of poppy photos. I am a bit late to discover your work, Karen. I hope you resume for Seattle’s late Spring news.

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