Entries in summer (9)

Sunday
Jul032016

Summer Garden Images

I started talking to the lady in front of me at the check-out at the store, and soon we were mutually lamenting the steamy, sauna-like weather. As she departed, she gave me a big smile.

"Welcome to Alabama in the summer!"Crape myrtle is the iconic summer bloom of the Deep South. It loves the heat and humidity.

It's true. Should one complain about what is completely normal and expected? It would be far worse if we did not have air-conditioning, and I wonder about my ancestors who came to this part of the country without benefit of modern comforts. As I stepped from the store's cool indoor air, I was blasted by the sultry heat. It was a shock to my system, an event repeated many times a day as I go in and out. Would I get used to the heat if I did not have air-conditioning? Probably, but I really like my air-conditioning!

I walk in the garden in early morning or late afternoon. It is quite noisy. There are little birds everywhere, chirping and celebrating life. A young male cardinal keeps visiting the weeping yaupon holly tree outside our kitchen. There were cardinals nesting there recently, and I assume he was one of them. Last week I caught this baby wren in a one of the birdhouses by the patio, the day before he fledged:

Here are some more recent images taken in the summer garden:Hydrangea 'Endless Summer'

Boston Fern in the arbor garden

'Coral' Drift rose

This "Easter lily" originally came from a friend. It blooms reliably every year, but long after Easter! Thanks to commenter Erin Baily who gave me this information: "It is an asiatic lily which faces upward, may or may not have spots and blooms early in summer. It is a tough and reliable grower."

Gardenia. This shrub originally came to me as a cutting from my next-door neighbor.

Japanese Painted Fern and Red Dragon Persicaria

Hosta bloom

Zantedeschia foliage. No blooms have appeared yet this year, and I wonder if they will. Nevertheless, the foliage is lovely.

Marjorie Fair rose, a rose that will bloom in partial shade. This one is in the woodland garden

The blooms of Snowflake hydrangea are double, unlike its common oakleaf hydrangea cousins.


Clockwise from top left: Hosta 'Sum and Substance'; A Bromeliad I received at Christmas. It was inside through the winter, and I thought it had died of neglect. When I put it outside, thinking to throw it on the compost heap when I got around to it, it came to life! Now it is putting out buds; Variegated Toad Lily; Hardy Begonia; Acer japonica 'Aconitifolium'; A colorful coleus in the woodland garden.

 You may also enjoy these previous posts:

 A Gardenia For Me

Summer is Here!

Summer Proof the Garden

Have a great week!    Deb

Saturday
Aug152015

Mid-August in Deb's Garden

Can it be? Summer is slipping around the edges, loosing its intensity, with cool nights and early morns. Humidity is also less, so that even mid-day temps are more tolerable. The garden has taken on a mellow, relaxed atmosphere, hinting of autumn to come.  Fall colors are beginning to show in these Japanese maple leaves.

Lets start a tour of the mid-August garden with images taken in and around the front garden:This trail leads from the patio steps, with the hydrangea walk on one side and the arbor garden on the other.

This trail leads from the jasmine arch by the patio. It borders the main part of the front garden.

This image shows the upper part of the hydrangea walk. The burford holly is laden with berries, which will turn red later in the season.

A couple of loving bugs on the holly.There are a couple of things to note inside the front garden. First, the voodoo lily has grown tremendously this summer. In the pot, it reaches well over five feet tall. Another thing is that I have eliminated the invasive liriope that once grew in abundance on both sides of this path. Since this photo was taken, I have planted about three dozen foxglove plants in this area, pass-alongs from a dear friend. A variety of other plants will also grow here.

Trail inside the front garden.

The first image in the collage below shows liriope growing around the base of a tree in the lower front lawn. This is easily controlled with a lawn mower:Clockwise from top left: Liriope; Crepe myrtle; Variegated fatsia japonica; Easy-to-grow mushrooms!

More photos from the front garden:

A close look at the center of this orange hibiscus.

Some images taken inside the woodland garden:

Finally, a view of the sky, so typical this month. I am thankful for abundant rain.Sky before a summer thunderstormI hope you enjoyed the tour. Can you feel a new season coming?