Sunday
May282017

Apple Blossom Amaryllis Update 

Two years ago I published a post, Plans to Grow My Apple Blossom Amaryllis in the Ground, regarding a beautiful amaryllis I had received as a Mother's Day gift. Amaryllis plants are hardy in my area, so later that year in the fall I planted it in a sunny spot next to the patio. Last year I was disappointed when it produced lovely foliage but no blooms. 

Why no blooms? Too much nitrogen fertilizer or soil that is too rich could be a culprit. Poor drainage is another possibility. I did not think any of these factors applied to my amaryllis. Too much shade? I eyed an overhanging dogwood branch and considered the possibility. Sun floods the area by the patio most of the day, but in that particular corner there was some shade part of the day. I trimmed back the tree branch and waited to see if the amaryllis would bloom this year.

Success! This year my Apple Blossom Amaryllis put on a show. Here the Apple Blossom Amaryllis had just begun blooming. Other plants are Coral Drift roses, Bacopa, and a silvery Artemesia. I used two unobtrusive green plastic stakes to hold the stalks upright.It grew to 34" tall and put out a total of eight blooms on two stalks. Each bloom was over 9" across.

My beautiful amaryllis has finished blooming now. I have cut off the tall stalks, but the strappy foliage remains, hopefully storing energy for additional blooms next year.

Sunday
May212017

Wrens Choose a House

Honey, look at this real estate ad: Old house, needs work.

In good neighborhood. Mature trees and shrubs. Lots of straw and nesting materials.

Here it is. I'll check it out:

Hey, it has both a front and back door! Great access and ventilation for babies!

I'm going in.

Definitely needs work, but overall it looks great!

Time to get busy!

The other day I was walking in the woodland garden when a couple of wrens caught my attention. They were busy refurbishing an old birdhouse. Because it has a hole in the roof, I thought birds would reject it, but this industrious couple were making it perfect for a new brood. I watched for a while, taking photos. The birds were not bothered by my nearness. I tried to catch both birds in action, in the same shot. One would go in the hole in the roof, then the other would come out the main entrance. Sigh. I never did get the perfect picture, but it was fun watching them!

This wasn't the first time this old house had a makeover! You may enjoy my previous post, Easy Birdhouse Renovation.