Category Archives: garden

What’s Blooming!

It’s bulb planting time now. Actually – it is a little too warm still. Temps should be regularly around 60 during the day and we have been in the upper 60s to low 70s!  I only got a few bulbs this year.  Well, 50 bulbs, but that is a lot less than past years:

No tulips this time, only Allium. I got more of the purple sensation and the star of persia – 25 of each. I bought these from Tulip World as John Scheepers didn’t have the star of persia, which is the one I really wanted. I planted about 1/3 of them and will do the rest this weekend.

The front bed still looks decent for nearing the end of October:

Giant mum!  The one on the other side is finally starting to open up.

It’s a darker purple. No worries about frost for at least the next week so this should get nice and full.

This spring I bought 2 new shrubs to put in the dry shade bed, which I am standing by in the full shot picture above, so it’s not visible. I have one hydrangea there and the new ones are called Diervilla, aka bush honeysuckle.

The cultivar is Kodiak Orange and you can see why it has that name. These were tiny plants in the spring and probably tripled in size over the season.

Their mature height should be 3 to 4 feet. They are native to NY and good for many different growing conditions.  I also found out they are super easy to propagate. A twig broke off in transit and just for kicks, I stuck it in a pot, tucked that in a clear plastic bag and put it in a window that got morning sun. Lo and behold, it took root and started to grow! I planted that outside. Then we had a storm that knocked another twig off and I did the same thing. So now I have 4 of these bushes for the price of 2!  I’ve never had success with propagating before, so go me!  I loves me some free plants.

New snapdragon blooms:

The David Austen Othello rose sent out one more bloom:

Sorry about the bird poop on the leaf, but I wasn’t going to clean that off for a picture 😀

This is Polar Bear zinnia:

Lots of new buds on all the zinnias, too. This late warmth and no freeze should yield another crop of blooms.  It’s good for the butterflies. I see them every day in the garden. Right now it’s a lot of monarchs and painted ladies. I can go out every day and take a picture of them if I want.

Last stop is the pink picture of the day, which would be the giant mum – or the mum that ate Cleveland as I like to call it:

Remember to click for free mammograms!

What’s Blooming!

The flower posts are going to be winding down soon. Wahhh!  It’s feeling more like fall around here again. The leaves are showing some color. This was on my bike ride today:

Not too colorful and more yellow than anything else. Maybe we will go north a little this weekend and do some peeping to see if the colors are better.

The annuals are still hanging on. Our temps were 30 degrees overnight last night with a frost warning, so I covered up a few plants. Not many since it is pretty late in the season, but the morning glories are still doing so well that I covered those:

Also one of the moonflower vines since it has a lot of buds on it.

Note how similar those flowers look. It’s because they are in the same family – Ipomoea – which is related to the sweet potato! There’s your trivia for the day.

I didn’t cover any zinnias, but they seemed to be fine today.

Even though seed packets are supposed to be one color, there always seem to be outliers. This was from the  packet of the above zinnia:

It doesn’t even have the same form. That’s part of the fun of gardening, though. Like Forrest says, you never know what you’re going to get.

I’m still surprised at the size of the mums out front. This one is a single plant:

Side by side with the other one:

The one on the left just has buds and not open yet. It is more of a burgundy color. It had better get moving! LOL

That’s fall right there.

Any guesses as to why I bought this decoration? Candy corn!  Tis the season 😀


Have a great weekend!

What’s Blooming

Even though we had a little bit of a cold spell a few days ago, it warmed back up again. I’m wondering if we are going to have any fall color this year. The leaves have just been falling off the trees without changing.  It’s just been so dry.  The warmth has meant a longer bloom season, however.

The moonflowers finally are getting buds on them. I think they just might be in too much shade and that is why they are slow.

Getting a picture of the flower open can be tricky. You have to catch it either at night or early in the morning. The blooms only last through the night. They smell so good, too. Here is a nighttime picture:

I wanted to share my success with powdery mildew this year. Last year my peonies got it terribly and were covered in the mildew – which looks gray and yucky. It doesn’t really hurt the plant, but it looks horrible.  Anyway, I started early in the season with some organic neem oil:

You can pick this up at any garden store or big box garden center. I mixed it with water per the instructions and just a bit of dish soap to help emulsify it. Then I put it in a spray bottle and sprayed my plants with it.  You do have to spray after it rains since this will wash off. I am so happy that I only had a bit of the mildew and was able to control it. My peonies look like this now instead of icky and gray like last year:

The lawn is brown and dormant, but it has to fend for itself. I’m going to make the neem part of my regimen from now on. The other bonus is that it kills aphids. I sprayed a plant that had aphids and they were dead the next day and never returned. When I spray, it is only at dusk after the pollinators have gone for the day – just an FYI.

Gourd blossoms:

My baby gourd is growing! It is about 2 inches now:

The mums that are in the ground have just started opening up. Way later than the potted ones.

I’m still surprised that these keep coming back and getting bigger.

Sunpatiens in pots:

I have these in the space where I dug up and divided my irises in order to fill in the open space.

Passion flower:

I’m going to bring this plant inside again this year and see if I can get another season out of it.

John has gotten into doing stained glass as a hobby. I had a metal stem that the flower top had broken off of and it was on my list to do something with it…for years LOL. Anyway, I asked him to make a flower top and here is the result:

Now I’ve told him he has to make me more because I love it!  I need more stems, though 😀

Last, but not least, some decorations! My neighbor gave me these little ghosts as she was clearing out her Halloween stash.

So cute! They look cool by the solar lights, too.

Have a good weekend everyone!

What’s Blooming!

Not too much new going in the garden right now. Things are winding down and it has been so, so dry and hot here! All the rain in other places and we are hot and kind of humid with no rain. It doesn’t look like it will be changing any time soon, either.

Volunteer snapdragon:

Those yellow flowers are marigolds that just popped a bunch of blooms with this heat. The annuals are loving this extra sun and warmth. You can see fallen leaves all over, too. Already.

Fair Bianca:

I  missed this bloom forming, so it’s a little old looking.  I hadn’t been looking at the rose bush other than watering it from afar and didn’t notice the blooms forming.

Some of you may remember the long gourd vine I had last year that appeared out of nowhere. I harvested about 8 gourds from it and used them, along with some pumpkins, for fall decor in the garden bed. Squirrels ended up munching on everything. Well, a new vine appeared this summer where those gourds were 😀

It is really short – only 3 feet long or so – and I decided to leave it. It is covering up my one aster plant, however.

The vine started really late, but I see a couple gourds forming. Tiny baby gourds:

I’m pretty sure these won’t get full size before frost, but it’s fun nonetheless.

More annuals out back – my potted morning glories:

These are a beautiful color. I wish I could bring this inside over the winter, but morning glories can be toxic to pets if they eat them, particularly the seeds, and Pixie would at least be eating the leaves.

My Enchanted Evening rose is having its September flush now:

I love this rose. It’s not very tall. Descriptions say it should get 3 to 4 feet tall, but it’s about 2 feet.  It’s disease resistant, hardy and fragrant – all a girl can ask for in a rose!

We have another hot and dry weekend coming up. It will be early riding to beat the heat, that’s for sure.  Have a great weekend!

What’s blooming!

It’s seems a little weird to be posting mundane things and life here in upstate NY is just going along all the while nature is just in upheaval in other places.  Please, please everyone heed warnings for Irma and stay safe! And Jose? You can just pass on by, thank you.

It’s been a fairly dreary week here. I think there has been a bit of rain at least every day and sometimes a lot of rain. We had some city crews working on our street. This year they are revamping all the water mains on our street. It’s been a summer long project and they finally got down to our end. Last spring we had to have the end of the driveway opened up to reach a covered water main to reach the shutoff. Well, now they moved the whole thing. Why they want to move it to where the sidewalk is, I don’t know, but I’m sure there must be some reason.  I got a little panicked when they knocked on the door and told us our driveway would be inaccessible for a couple hours. Then they started sawing into the sidewalk at the end.

I thought they might go into the end of our driveway with that machine, but they worked really skillfully to just lift the one section of walk.

I would almost say it was delicately done, but it’s still big machinery LOL!  After lifting that, they then dug down about 6 feet down.

They really did only take a couple of hours to do this and our driveway is fine. Of course, the hole is filled with dirt and cinder now. I am assuming that they will be redoing everyone’s sidewalks when the project is over. I hope.

On to the blooms. One surprise balloon flower:

More snapdragons:

You can see how all of my pictures have damp in them. They weren’t taken on the same day, either!

This was a surprise gift from a friend earlier this summer:

She said she thought of me immediately when she saw it 😀

It’s mum time right now. I wanted to put mums in my tippy pots this year and lo and behold there was a sale on small mums – 5 for $5!  I only needed 4, but who am I to turn down a flower deal?

I got one different color for the fifth one, rebel that I am.  Here are the tippy pots now:

Those will hopefully fill out nicely in a couple weeks.

It’s been a somewhat cool summer and I don’t think some of my plants are ever going to bloom. I love the old fashioned flowering woodland tobacco. A few years ago I tried growing some from seed and they were such a pain and only one flowered. So, this year I bought some as plants. They look really good, but it just hasn’t been warm enough for them to really grow:

They should have tall flower spikes on them by now. Wahh. If they don’t bloom, I’m tempted to dig them up next month and bring them inside until they do.

The zinnias are really cooking along. The flowers just keep getting bigger and bigger.

You definitely need patience with the zinnias. Remind me of that next year when I complain, okay?

Joe Pye is big and strong:

It’s amazing how this was at the bare ground this spring and now 6 feet tall. Plants are just so cool!

Have a good weekend everyone and stay safe!

What’s Blooming

Does anyone else just feel exhausted and overwhelmed by the world right now? It’s crazy. I feel so fortunate to have our house and my gardens to help. I’ve said in the past that being out working in the gardens is a good thinking time and meditation.

It’s been quite chilly here. Temps hit 40 degrees last night. It’s way too early for that! I think it might be even a little colder than that tonight. We shall see if some of the last annuals that haven’t done anything will be able to if the cold proceeds along this fast (I’m looking at you moonflowers).

My white lilies:

These nod downwards and are hard to get a good picture of unless I want to lay down in the garden bed, which isn’t going to happen. 🙂

More wayward cosmos:

The $1.99 mums from 2 years ago are still going fantastic for whatever reason.

That’s two plants. Just goes to show you never know what will survive and thrive until you try.

Polar bear zinnia:

I have these in the front and back gardens.

Miniature butterfly bush:

I’m thinking of getting one of these in the back if the big Black Knight one doesn’t do better next year.

Here is a little marigold:

These came from my BIL’s nursery. They were done with all the planting and there were annuals left over that were just going to be composted, so I brought some home with me. Some sun ones and some shade ones:


The coleus are by Radiance Falls. I’m making notes to put more of these here next year.  I have a notebook for gardening where I keep receipts, plans, schematics and various notes about ideas. It sounds organized, but you should see the notebook LOL! It’s crammed.

More of my zinnias out back:

I have to remember that zinnias are really late flowers around here – at least when direct sown into the ground.

The hydrangea tree:

I was standing by this yesterday and there were so many bumblebees around it that it sounded like a hive! It was very cool and wonderful to see all the bees.  The flowers are just starting to age pink and look so pretty:

Here is the back edge of our property:

It’s a study in white.

It’s going to be a cool weekend, but Saturday should be dry for riding. Sunday I think we are getting some leftover Harvey rain. It’s amazing how far and long that extends.

What’s Blooming!

I didn’t think there were going to be many pictures this week as the garden is moving towards late summer, but I ended up with a good amount of new things.

The irises that I divided and transplanted last week have started to put on new growth. They all look like this:

It’s almost as if they are giving me the finger because I ripped them out of the ground 😀

New bloom this week is an heirloom lily:

I thought these were going to be taller. They are about 2 feet tall. Maybe they will get tall next year as this is the first flowering year for these from the bulbs I planted last fall.

The passion flower is putting out all kinds of buds now.

The blooms only stay open for one day so you have to catch them fast to take a picture. The flowers look a little different than they did last year. There was more green to them, I think. Still pretty neat, though.

Potted plant in the back:

For the life of me I can’t remember what it is. It’s some sort of annual.

A bit more of the butterfly weed blooming. This sent out a second flush of blooms:

The last few days there has been a zebra swallowtail coming around. He looooves this flower.

We’ve definitely seen more butterflies than last year. Yay!

More zinnias:

Again, an outlier color from the salmon. John mentioned this was pretty much in the middle of the path through the garden. Well, yes it is since I spilled the seed packet when planting. Ooops.

My black knight butterfly bush is still pretty small, but it’s flowering:

I moved it last year and I think it will just take another year for it to be established. I hope.

Lots of Black-eyed Susan:

You know summer is nearing the end when these are blooming around here.

Another sign of approaching fall is the Autumn Joy sedum:

You can just see a hint of color on the bud tips.

I mentioned a couple weeks ago about how the hydrangea tree was looking great and hadn’t flopped over. Well, we had hard rains and there it went:

These blooms are enormous and heavy:

I swear it almost weighs a pound.  That’s why the branches flop since the flowers are already heavy and then when they get water logged, it’s just too much to support.

This bush has responded so well to severe pruning the last 2 years. I’m going to keep doing that in late winter from now on.

We have a beautiful weekend coming up. Those of you in the Gulf area stay safe from Harvey!

What’s Blooming!

Welcome Friday!  This week was iris division and planting week, but first a few blooms.

My beautiful heirloom lily.  When it finally blooms, it has a long bloom time.


There are a bunch that haven’t opened up yet and all were seeded at the same time. Go figure. This one is Giant Salmon Rose. Not really giant, but remembering from last year these could grow a lot later.

Now for some irises. Unlike most planting times of spring or fall, irises get done in mid August or so – about 8 weeks after they have finished blooming.  I had ordered a few rhizomes early in the spring (on sale, of course LOL) and they arrived this week at planting time. How convenient!

I’m trying a reblooming iris for the first time. It’s name is Immortality , which brings of visions of vampires for some reason.  It’s a pure white flower.  That is going in the front bed.

In the back, I am moving one of the irises, Night Ruler (black), because it didn’t bloom this year and the clump isn’t big enough for size to be the reason it didn’t bloom. I think it just didn’t get enough sun.

You can see it leaning into the direction of the sun here and kind of being crowded by surrounding plants.

I know some gardeners like to trim  down the iris fans each season, but IMHO it’s not necessary and stresses out the plant for no reason. However, when digging them up I will cut them so they aren’t trying to pump food into leaves when they need to be putting down roots.

I just put a shovel under the clump and levered up. Then I basically just pulled up the rhizome clump. Unless they are really overgrown, irises come up pretty easily.  The dirt pretty much falls off the root as well. It really is one of the easiest plants to move around.

Two years ago I planted one rhizome – the big middle piece – and now I have three.

Just simply cut or break the rhizome off the mother bulb. You can toss the mother bulb as it will likely never bloom again.

Replanted the three rhizomes in new spots and I put two of the newly arrived rhizomes along with them. I got Edgefield Glow, which is orange, and Wild Irish Rose, which is a rosy orchid color. Should be fun!

In the front, it was certainly time to divide these irises!

These ones are super prolific, much more so than my larger bearded iris.  The batik iris is to the left of the picture and you can see how different it looks. When we moved here 3 years ago, I cut off a hunk of these rhizomes and divided them into 4 plants. Look at them today.

This was from one rhizome! Multiply that by 4.


All nicely planted. It’s a little bare now, but these will start showing growth pretty quickly – I hope.

After replanting what I wanted – I am left with over 40 rhizomes!  40!  That’s after tossing any that had bloomed already.  Message me if you want some. It’s this iris:

Have a great weekend!

What’s Blooming!

Today is snapdragon day. As I said before, I have platoons of snaps this year. So much so that I’m not going to deadhead into the garden this year, but into my compost bucket.  Here are the lovely colors this year:




Multi – hiding under my bird bath:

Hot pink with an interesting single color bloom in it:

Almost red. That one I might collect some seeds from to see if the offspring turn a full red.

The Calycanthus bush:

It’s a nice size bush now. I do have to trim stray canes as they will shoot out really long on occasion. This has been flowering for a couple months now:


This is a short version of a butterfly bush:

It’s a little overwhelmed by the cosmos so I will probably remove most of that since the butterfly bush is the main plant there. Like all the BBs, this one smells like honey.

Some of the zinnias have popped open.

This one is called Giant Salmon Rose. I don’t know what it is about me and zinnias, but they never come out like they are supposed to on the package. This is only about 15 inches high and it’s supposed to be twice that.  I just can’t win.

Potted heliotrope looking pretty:

This is really a keeper. I am going to try to bring it inside and overwinter it. I definitely will get one next year again if it doesn’t make it – and maybe get another anyway if it does!

The wave of Japanese beetles seems to have died down and now my coneflowers are being left alone. This is Milkshake:

The globe thistles keep on going:

So many bees this year – it’s wonderful!

My Joe Pye is just starting to open up and the bees have discovered it:

Our tree hydrangea looks really good this year. I gave it that massive haircut early last spring and last year and this year it has just taken off:

So far there hasn’t been a heavy enough downpour to make the branches bow down like they did last year.  I love the tree form. You can see Joe Pye in the background and how tall it is.

Happy garden this year!

What’s Blooming!

I can’t believe I haven’t posted since Sunday. I’ve kind of lost my blogging mojo a bit. Maybe it’s time to start posting food again.

Today is John’s birthday. Lucky John having a birthday on Flower Friday and all that 😀  There will be dinner tonight and then a cake party this weekend.

On to the garden! Lots of snaps:

A new flower opened up. This is an heirloom lily:

It’s actually held up by a shepherd’s crook. It’s about 5 feet tall and quite a statement plant.

I have a couple blackeyed Susan plants, one in the front and one in the back. At our old house, I had planted some and they overran the place! I was hesitant to put in more, but these have been very good.

They go nicely with the hydrangea:

Balloon flowers:

I gave them a good deadheading only I got a little carried away and snipped off a bloom.

I stuck it in the mum cluster 😀

An area that is still struggling a bit is the newest bed we put in last year. I have a several small shrubs growing. Last year I put in foxgloves and they looked good. This year, I got a ton of baby foxgloves, but now they look kind of tired and brown:

Just to show that not all of my gardens are A+  😀   This bed will need a couple of years to get established.

More Cheyenne Spirit!

I’m going to have some baby ones of these to share in the fall, I think.

Hostas blooming in the shade bed. I did not plant these. They came with the house.

Potted plant which I cannot remember the name of now:

Lots of globe thistles going.

If you look close you can see a bee butt in there 😀

Here is a full look at them:

Behind is the Joe Pye Weed. I really like this plant, but it sure is tall.  This is eye level:

The flowers haven’t quite opened up yet, but when they do, they will be covered with bees and butterflies.

Hope you have a great weekend!