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