Take note: the weather has been amazing!

Hi there, and welcome to my blog! The weather plays an important role in the garden, and by extension, in the gardener’s life. While others might not pay too close attention to the rainfall, or the temperatures, I can definitely tell you if it was a dry or a wet season based on how much extra watering I had to do in the garden! So I tend to mention the weather … a lot. And the weather has been quite good lately. For those who live in areas that don’t see the sun as much as you’d like, you’ll know the uplift you get with a blue sky. There is nothing like being outdoors when the temperatures are mild, the sky is blue, and the sun is shining! I am very thankful for those days.

The garden has also been enjoying the mild weather. Our fig tree now has quite a few figs on it. Growing a fig tree is new to me. The figs are quite small and hard at the moment. I’m hoping that they’ll mature enough to eat before we get a frost.

The ‘fall flowers’ are looking quite pretty. The rudbeckia, persicaria, helenium and incrediball hydrangea are all near each other and the colors just look so pretty together. Next year I’m hoping to also have more purple in the mix, with the newly planted salvia and agapanthus.

The lavender is really showing off in this good weather. You might remember that I planted a border of tiny lavender plants this spring. All of those new plants are now blooming for a second time! This looks so pretty as the plants are that bit bigger than the first blooming. I’m looking forward to seeing it when they are all filled out, which should happen next year.

Next to the lavender border, I have the dwarf Little Lime hydrangeas. It took them quite a while to get blooms, but now that they have them they are quite pretty. They are planted too close to the grass, though, which means we have some more edging to do, to give them more space.

The three Marina Di Chioggia squash are all doing well. I’m looking forward to seeing how they taste!

I’ll be joining The Propagator’s Six on Saturday meme. I hope you enjoy the tour!

Figs from the fig tree

1 – Fig tree. We have figs! I’m guessing that the tree wasn’t getting enough water this summer. It didn’t produce any fruit until the rains came in September. Some of the fruit seems to be going dark and hard, too. I have some research to do!

Lavender blooming again!
lavender border view with sunflowers

2 – Lavender border. Lavender grows quite quickly. The border is filing in nicely, and what a bonus to get a second blooming! The dark purple spire flowers are so pretty, especially with the sunflower backdrop.

Fall flowers of rudbeckia, helenium, persicaria and hydrangea
helenium and incrediball hydrangea

3 – Fall flowers: Helenium, rudbeckia, persicaria, incrediball hydrangea. The helenium flowers are the second flowering from those plants. I completely deadheaded them after the first flowering. So worth it!

4 – Marina di Chioggia squash. Three different squash in these pictures and they all look different! It is a large and heavy squash!

5 – Dwarf Little Lime hydrangea border. I’m very happy with how they look as the border to this side of the garden. We just need to edge the grass a bit more so they aren’t so squished. 🙂

coleus at the back door

6 – Coleus. These beauties took a long time to get going, but they are now completely filled out (and higher than the wall). I know I just showed them not that long ago, but I thought this was a nice update.

Doesn’t it make such a huge difference when the sky is blue? I hope you found some joy while visiting my garden! Take care 🙂

In Peace,
Dana

A garden transformation with a ‘before’ and ‘after’

Hi there! Welcome to my blog where I like to talk about all things gardening. 🙂 I was scrolling back through photos the other day when I came across two pictures that you’ll see today. One is of my seed packet for Marina di Chioggia squash. This is definitely the mystery squash from last week – despite the fact that my online search of this squash doesn’t fully align with the seed packet image.

The other picture that caught my attention is of our garden from this past May. It was completely bare! So of course I had to seek out a current picture. (My feature image at the top of the page is one.) The garden looks so full now! The hosta filled out, and the sunflowers of course, along with the plants growing on the arch (sweet pea and squash), the pumpkin bed, not to mention the pear tree, blueberries and strawberries. But in addition to those, there are the perennial plants that we added this year: dwarf Little Lime hydrangeas, Lavender and Rosemary, all along the borders. The perennials have come along really well in one season, and I like the way that they frame the garden. It truly is amazing, though, how quickly everything changes!

Speaking of changes, there is definitely a fall feel to the garden, now. The helenium are on their second flush of flowers (worth deadheading the old ones!) and look very pretty with the Incrediball hydrangea as a backdrop.

The Rudbeckia (black-eyed-Susan) and Persicaria blooming under the birch trees also signals the shift to fall.

The dahlias are finally picking up the pace of flowering. You may remember that the ones that were planted in the ground this spring were eaten by something. I’m talking decimated! So it has taken this long for them to recover, grow and now produce blooms. But it is worth the wait, given the beautiful flowers I’m getting now. The dahlias in containers are a lot more work, mostly ensuring that they have enough water. But they did start flowering much faster, having not been attacked by the mystery bug. I do plan to plant them out in the ground next spring, though.

I’m joining The Propagator and his ‘Six on Saturday’ meme again this week.

Enjoy the tour!

A before and after picture of the garden looking at the sunflower bed
A before and after picture of the garden looking at the Pumpkin bed

1 – The ‘before’ and ‘after’ pictures! The clouds are the only things that seem to have stayed the same. The bottom pictures aren’t completely equal because the raspberries have grown so tall that if I stood in front of them, none of the rest of the garden would be visible. Also, in the same bottom pictures, we started with garlic in the left raised bed, and ended with sunflowers. It is fun tracking the growth of everything. 🙂

Rudbeckia and Persicaria under birch trees

2 – The birch tree bed. I’m delighted with how the rudbeckia and persicaria have filled out, especially since I haven’t really given them a lot of room. I might remove some of the bearded iris to give them more space – I’m still deciding on that.

Helenium and the hydrangea bed

3 – Helenium ‘Moerheim Beauty’. You might remember that I moved these three plants from two different locations in the yard this year. They are so much happier here and have provided a lovely splash of color for a nice length of time. I also used supports for them, which kept them upright and looking lovely. I deadheaded these plants a couple of weeks ago and they are now blooming again. The red is very pretty with the white Incrediball hydrangeas. It would be even nicer with the purple agapanthus that is planted in the middle of this bed, but they decided they weren’t interested in blooming this year. Better luck next year!

seed packet of marina di chioggia

4 – Marina Di Chioggia seed packet. The picture on this seed packet isn’t like the images I get when I Google it. This is most likely the mystery squash from last week’s post. Glad I was able to figure that out (eventually).

arrangement with dahlias and sunflowers
arrangement with dahlias and Japanese anemone
arrangement with dahlias and Japanese anemone

5 & 6 – Dahlias! We have dinner plate dahlia Cafe au Lait (a creamy white), cactus dahlia Coffee at midnight (a deep red), and pompon or ball dahlia Tam Tam (also a deep red). In the top picture there is a pink dahlia that I only have as ‘Maxi’. All of them are just so pretty! I am already thinking about what colors and varieties to add for next year!

I hope you’ve transitioned nicely into the next season! I’m really liking these fall flowers, so I’m not too upset about the passing of summer. What about you? Do you prefer summer or fall flowers? 🙂

Take care!

In Peace,
Dana

Wordless Wednesday: Evening Sunlight’s Magic

marigolds

Marigolds

I think I’m getting the hang of this Wordless Wednesday thing.  Here are just a few pictures which I think have a magical look to them simply because of the evening sunlight.

Marigolds

Marigolds

The flowers are not spectacular, really, but I think they look spectacular in this light.

Japanese Anemone

Japanese Anemone

Silver Anniversary Hybrid Tea Rose

Silver Anniversary Hybrid Tea Rose

And then my favorite … I captured a picture of a Speckled Wood Butterfly on my Rudbeckia (Black-eyed Susan).  This was the picture that inspired me to post on my blog tonight.

Speckled Wood Butterfly

Speckled Wood Butterfly

Happy Wordless Wednesday!

Dana

Winter Blooms in my Irish Garden (An anemone steals the show!)

Mr. Fokker Anemone

Mr. Fokker Anemone

When I think of winter certain things come to mind:  snow, cold temperatures, skiing, sledding, ice skating, hot chocolate!  Living in Ireland has changed that idea a bit for me. Our winters are usually fairly mild, with only a quick cold snap.  Snow is unusual. Cold is cold, but not like what I’d be used to while living in Central New York. And the winter is short. Really short if I look back to my days of having snow around until March!  I do miss the snowy side of winter.  But the tradeoff is having flowers in my garden even in January.

A frozen anemone

A frozen anemone

We had a deep freeze the other day: -5 degrees Celsius. I took some pictures in the morning, and by the afternoon the rain had come and everything thawed out!

First morning light over the frosty field

First morning light over the frosty field

This close-up of the crystals is my favorite

This close-up of the crystals is my favorite

Frosty evergreenToday was yet another mild day, 8 degrees Celsius, and sunny.  I am not complaining, I just hope it has been cold enough to keep the slugs at bay!  My garden has a few flowers which are blooming. The anemone have multiplied over the past few years. They don’t seem to mind that it is January.  Also giving some color in the garden are a few daisies and a black-eyed Susan plant!  I think they are simply confused. The primrose are a lovely bright color. There is also a lot of green in my ditch wall garden from poppies. Lots and lots of poppies!

The day after the frost

The day after the frost

This is flowering in January.

This is flowering in January.

A sunny winter day

A sunny winter day

January in the garden

January in the garden

Dogwood plant

Dogwood plant  has lovely red branches

Our area has really been very fortunate with the weather.  Even just seeing the sun for a bit of the day is refreshing to the soul.

Evening view from the front yard

Evening view from the front yard

The very last rose.

The very last rose.

Do you have any flowers growing in your winter garden?
Happy winter!
Dana

Flower Friday

My favorite flower!

My favorite flowers!

We are having quite a wet, gray winter. Or maybe it just feels that way at the moment, but none the less, I would enjoy seeing some sunshine and flowers!  So I’ve put together some of my favorite pictures of flowers from the past year.  I hope you enjoy them and they bring a little sunshine into your lives!

Dana

Burgundy Ice Floribunda Rose.

Burgundy Ice Floribunda Rose.

Silver Anniversary Hybrid Tea Rose.

Silver Anniversary Hybrid Tea Rose.

Queen Elizabeth Floribunda Rose.

Queen Elizabeth Floribunda Rose.

Tulips.

Tulips.

Anemone Mr. Fokker.

Anemone Mr. Fokker.

Anemone Mr. Fokker.

Anemone Mr. Fokker.

Zephirine Drouhin (1868)

Zephirine Drouhin (1868)

Zephirine Drouhin (1868)

Zephirine Drouhin (1868)

Poppies.

Poppies.

Poppies.

Poppies.

Marigolds.

Marigolds.

Marigolds.

Marigolds.

Afternoon sunlight on black-eyed-Susans.

Afternoon sunlight on black-eyed-Susans.

Rudbeckia (Black-eyed Susans).

Rudbeckia (Black-eyed Susans).

There, that feels better! 🙂