Wednesday, April 8, 2020

My Gardening Notes

I use the blog to document life in the yard and my flowers, so if you are not into flowers you can skip onto the next blog because that is all I have today. I plan to do a stitching post this week.

I made big changes this past year and so it is important that I note what has worked and what is not working. I love to TRY and grow things. I have learned with age that I can't do it all.

That has been the big change. Less is more. I still have a lot and may over more time have to wean it down some more.

On the front where the roses once were the new beds are really coming to life. The day lilies are starting to pop. The bottle brush is starting to get some buds. I can't wait for that. I am hoping it will bring in lots of hummingbirds.

By the front door the three big pots are coming to life.

The lilies of the Nile have been going in that pot for years. I probably need to thin them, but they come back each year very healthy. I have never lost them to cold and I think it is because of the location of the pot so close to the house and the number of them in there. The swans can't do plants. If things are surviving in spring they don't stand a chance in summer, so basically it is bows to keep them cute.

The middle pot has an assortment of things in it and that seems to work there. Enough of the things that will last all year and some fill ins when seasons change. There is still a ornamental cabbage growing in there.

It surprises me that this geranium is still ticking. If we have a night or two that goes down below 30, I will put it up right by the door and cover with a sheet. It has been ticking for over 5 years too.
One side has hostas that die down in winter but pop back every spring.

That wraps the front door porch. 

Now to what has worked on the wall by the garage.

I didn't plant these until the beginning of November this year due the extreme heat of October this past year.  These pots have been amazing and so pretty when you drive up into our cul de sac. I got almost 5 full months out of them and probably could have gotten more if I had planted them a bit earlier. Pansies just don't like heat and October this past year was too hot for them. 

The dianthus has been spectacular and should continue for a while. I want to note that.  All of the fillers such as the lambs ear, foxtail fern, and dusty miller have all been super workers this winter.

I took these pictures this weekend and those violas have already almost expired.  The pansies are kaput. I have loved them and will use white pansies again. They were amazing against the green. Best color I have ever planted.

I plan to try and get some fillers for the violas and pansies at some point. The won't look too bad when I pull them out if I can't go shopping this year. It is just what it is and I don't plan to dive back into getting out too quickly.

Waiting in the wings behind the wall are the lilies of the Nile for the summer heat when basically nothing survives.

I have almost lost my one and only hydrangea this past year. I have been babying her and she is popping up. I so hope she will survive and flourish this year. 

On the bottom deck Jeff has some tomatoes planted. We did something totally different this year. We started with seeds and planted them in the house and just this past week he put them out in the pots. That is where the one rose left over from last year landed. She is thriving in her pot, but it is April. 

She is a hybrid tea called Oklahoma. 

I so wanted to be a rose grower, but you have to have the right conditions. In our previous home I had a little better place and grew several there. I always brought in a jar of blooms in fall and spring. One of my favorite books to read to the 4th graders at the beginning of school was Otis Spofford by Beverly Cleary. Below is a quote from the book and I of course would always share the names of my roses that I would bring in.

I guess I thought I was a rose snob since my roses had names. 

I was inspired to grow them when I was in high school Our neighbor had the most beautiful rose bushes I have ever seen. No botanical gardens topped his. They got morning sun and I think that and the soil were two things I can't replicate here.

If Miss Oklahoma can't produce I will continue to purchase some grocery store roses, but I loved a Mason jar full of all the colors mixed up sitting on my desk or counter.

Spring is one of my favorite seasons and rain is expected tomorrow so April Showers will hopefully bring lots more May blooms.

A stitching post up next. 



  1. You definitely have a different climate than ours. Imagine having flowers over the winter. Are those orange flowers in that middle pot lantana? Here they don't survive the winter, so unless i get lucky they have to be annuals. I may not be able to get any this year. Next year I'll do it again. The hummingbirds love them, and it's so rarely we get a hummer around that it's worth planting specially for them.

    How do you handle pots in summer weather? I'm guessing your summer is much longer than ours.

    1. Yes, it is lantana. It rarely dies, but might not bloom in winter. You lose your plants to cold. We lose ours to heat. You just simply can't keep enough water in pots for the summer heat of August and September. That is when those lilies of the Nile will go up on the wall in pots. They will provide green at least. Zinnas and some begonias will grow in the ground with sprinklers hitting them daily. Other than the full on heat from late July through September, we can grow lots of things. The geranium in the large pot has lived through the summers, but she will stop blooming as well.

  2. Gardening and stitching... both foreign to me but I do know what is pretty and what looks nice! Great photos!

  3. I am finally getting daffodils blooming and your garden is in full bloom!! Just gorgeous flowers, you certainly have a green thumb.

  4. Late to the party here! This post got buried underneath the email well-wishes for Easter.

    Your red geraniums look so pretty next to the white rose and your front walk up to the door. Beautiful contrasts in color. I love it that geraniums last seemingly forever in Florida’s climate. I bought 4 more small ones earlier this week and planted them in pots on our back patio.

    Long live the Hydrangea!!!!!

    LOVE the stitched umbrella! I think we’re going to need umbrellas for the rest of this week! Maybe I should go through my patterns to find one to stitch for myself!


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