Garden Report: May 18

It's Nigella season, and this is a good year for them. Last year I took the seed pods and spread them around to get larger swaths of flowers, and between that and the more consistent watering, they're doing quite well this year.

Nigella patch

Nigella are really pretty and interesting in all stages of life. This is what the flower looks like, which sort of explains the common name, Love-in-a-Mist.

Nigella flower

But look! The bud is really interesting, too! And when they make seed pods, those are fascinating. It's a flower that never looks terrible, unlike certain others (coughdianthuscough) that go through a mangy phase.

Nigella bud

I decided to let this be a slow year for plant acquisition, so I could get to know the plants I have, and also because I was planning some epic seed raising. Even so, there are several new flowers in the garden this season, from plants that are blooming for the first time. Here's Salvia candelabrum, which has really long stems on its flowers (think four or five feet tall, from an eight inch plant). Nice purple flowers, too.

Salvia candelabrum

Here's one of the plants I started from seed, Bellis perennis, aka English Daisy. I planted them much too close together and didn't thin them, but they seem to be doing OK anyway.

English daisies

One of my last trays of started plants is this one full of gourds and pumpkins. I'm not sure where they all will go, so I'm dithering, but they grow so fast that they have to get in the ground soon after germinating in these tiny peat pellets, so I have to make up my mind this week.

Pumpkins and gourds

There are some unexpected plants coming up, too. Like this poppy, which appeared out of nowhere in the bed under the new apple trees. Looks like Lauren's Grape. Next year, I will buy more poppies to put in there and hope for more self-sowing.

Volunteer poppy

And these sunflowers under the bird feeder. I sometimes let them grow and go to seed, because it make the birds really happy. They never do as well as they would if I were growing them with real care (I planted a bunch of sunflower seedlings, so perhaps we can make a comparison later this year).

Volunteer sunflower

Oh, and cherry season just started, so how is the cherry crop? Eaten. Next year, I will not just buy the tree netting, but actually apply it in time to get some of these guys.

Eaten cherries

Pea season is off to a roaring start, as well. I should have planted the peas sooner, but they look to be producing for me anyway.


Around the side of the house, we have this little garden beside the driveway with armeria and Isotoma fluviatilis, aka Blue Star Creeper under the sweet pea. This is a classic garden combination for me: a pompom flower and a spreader in blue and pink. I think it works really well here because of the narrow width and the fact that there's really not much else right around there.

Armeria and isotoma

And last, but not least, another shot of my lovely roses. I've considerately cropped out the large nasty patch of weeds and dead grass in the foreground; I still can't quite figure out what I want to do with that bit of the front yard and it's been suffering from my indecision. But for now, we have great big fluffy pink roses.

Rose hedge

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posted by ayse on 05/18/08