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Saturday, June 30, 2007

What's in Bloom today

(Daylily 'Good Vibrations')

Life has been a bit crazy this past week. Storms, power outages, kids underfoot, so I thought I'd stick in a quick photo op to show some of the summer perennials that are beginning to bloom.

In the herb garden, the clumps of Rue are covered with their simple yellow flowers. I love the blue foliage on this plant.

Daylily 'Navajo Princess' has a chevron pattern that is extremely distinctive. The great news is that this is an older cultivar and if you find it for sale it will usually run only $7 or $8.

Stachys monieri was a plant I bought many years ago at the local Franks Nursery. I rarely have seen it in any other gardens and I just adore it's cottage flower charm.

Sedum 'Matrona' is starting to show off her colors. Who needs flowers with foliage that looks like this? But wait, there's stunning blooms too that will come at the end of summer when we desperately need them.

Tiny little Daylily 'Mary Ethyl Anderson' is a delight in the front of the perennial garden.

Years ago I bought a yellow Asclepias for my garden. It was beautiful for 4 years or so and then disappeared. Last year I noticed a foliage that seemed familiar but it was a good 20 feet away from the original plant. Hooray, today there are two clumps of Asclepias blooming in the garden and I've found the foliage for more of them coming along.

Stachys monieri 'Hummelo' is a named variety of this delightful flower. It's blooms are more in the purple family than the pink one I highlighted earlier.

Holy cow, this Iris Ensata (Japanese Iris) is a late blooming wonder! I'd give you all the name if I could only find it. It's there somewhere at the base but the companion plants are so thick that I haven't found it yet.

Double daylilies are doubly delicious! 'Double Perfection' was hybridized right here on Long Island by George Rasmussen (one of my most favorite hybridizers). It's name is right on the money because it doubles every time (unlike some other double daylilies that are actually quite sporadic).

And that's it for today folks. I'll try to sneak in a few more photos this week but I can tell you in advance that it's going to be one more crazy week around here.


Monday, June 25, 2007

The Necessary Room

The first time we saw our house, we had been looking for a new home for two years. We had a list of "must haves" and this house had almost nothing on that list (including no master bathroom which was "non-negotiable").

(All that bordered this driveway back then was lawn, lawn and more lawn.)

What this house did have was charm and before we even walked through the front door we had fallen in love. My first recollection was the property was amazing, the fireplace inside the house was humongous, the house was smaller than what I wanted and the pool house was the perfect thing for a gardener.

(At six and two years old, my daughters first noticed the old school play ground equipment attached to the pool house.)

(It's got a toilet and a sink with cold running water. What more could you ask for?)

Our pool house has several names, sometimes I call it a cabana but that is really too uppity a name. Sometimes I call it a pool house which is most likely the correct title but often I call it a fancy outhouse. You see, it's pretty basic, the bathroom is one step above camping, the pool filter fills it with a constant rumbling and the smell of pool chemicals and the mini-fridge is just big enough to hold lots of water and drinks for when you are hot and thirsty from working in the garden all day.

Last year we had 600 people come tour the garden when we were part of the national tour for the American Hemerocallis Society (Daylilies). In the past I had ignored the outside of the pool house, it just had the attached playground equiptment and that was good enough for me.

I dressed it up with some pots and garden junque for the tours and found that I now have the most beautiful view right outside my den window (where I sit to type this blog). So even though no major tours are planned this year, I had to replant all the pots around the pool house. One thing I did though was add lots of Hosta to the pots in hopes that they give me something that returns year after year.

(These hanging baskets were $1 at the dollar store and I've had them five years now! I guess I got my money's worth out of them.)

The end :-)