Sunday, May 25, 2014

They're blooming!

The garden is beginning to fill with blooms - and not just dandelion blooms, either.  lol

Take a little tour with me to see the flowers today.

 A pretty purple and white iris in the border garden

 Lily of the Valley, delicate and fragrant

 My favorite petunias, Supertunia 'Vista Bubblegum,' are spread in many containers throughout the gardens.

 Geranium 'Max Frei' has bushed out greatly over the past two years.

 Sedum looks great growing over rocks,especially when it's blooming.

 This is Yellow Archangel, which I just read is invasive. I'll need to keep an eye on it.

 Clematis 'Claire de Lune'

The alliums are just beginning to open up.

 Last but not least, I spotted a different type of oriole at my feeder. I looked in my bird book and I believe this is an Orchard oriole. They are known to summer in our area, although I've not noticed them before.

And here is the Baltimore oriole, for comparison purposes.

What's nesting and/or growing in your garden?

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Tulips peaking in what "must" be the tulip capital of Iowa

Tulip Time was, and always is, the first Thursday, Friday, and Saturday in May. 

My friend and I went to Pella a week after Tulip Time and as you will see, the tulips were at peak beauty! 

Here I am, posing with a "river of tulips." This was in Sunken Gardens Park, where there is a pond in the shape of a wooden shoe. I think you'd need to get a picture from above to be able to see the shape, and I didn't have the opportunity to climb up in the windmill to get the shot (lol).

 My friend Marilee poses in front of a bed of tulips in Pella's Central Park, in the downtown area.

 The Historic Village

Marilee and I had lunch at the Tulip Tea Room.

A few more tulips:

I am inspired! Inspired to plant more tulips this fall, for oh, how I love tulips!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

The view out my window

Now that I have a better camera, I can get pretty good shots from my dining room window. Would you like to see what I see?

 Here you can see parts of the cottage garden and rocky garden, the raised beds (for herbs and vegetables), daylily junction (by the garden shed), and the berry patch. It has a good start; it'll look so much fuller in a month or so. While I look forward to that, I'm going to enjoy each stage of the garden as it comes - there won't be any tulips as time goes on, and I do love them.

 These guys can be kind of a pain,  however, we do rely on them in February to predict the length of our winter!  He is a groundhog, also known as a woodchuck.

 Female oriole

 Male oriole

 The hummingbirds have returned.

 Bleeding heart

 Columbine - love the color

 Primula sieboldii

 Virginia bluebells - wow, have these ever taken off. They are SO beautiful.

Most of my tulips are gone, but I'm still enjoying these red and white beauties.

I am enjoying my garden, and spending a lot of time on various gardening tasks including clean-up, edging, digging out dead roses (boo hoo), planting, and weeding....and a myriad of other little tasks. All part of maintaining a large garden....and it's totally worth it!  :)

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Early May in the midwest

Spring, oh glorious spring! Here in the midwest we are enjoying warmer days, plenty of rain, and little changes in the garden every day.

Epimedium 'Rubrum'

Tiny, true blue flowers grace Brunerra 'Jack Frost'

One of my 900+ daffodils that is still in bloom

Virginia bluebells - a favorite around here

Lathyrus vernus

I had to take this photo in the calm before the storm. Today it began to bloom, and we're expecting thunderstorms, possibly severe, later today. So I'm enjoying the blooms when I can!

 Bleeding heart

 The hosta farm is coming to life! Later on, the hostas will fill in and the ground will be invisible.

 The lilacs are blooming, and a fragrant bouquet graces my mantel.   :)

 Jack in the pulpit

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Flowers and Birds

Do I garden for birds - for butterflies - for nature?

Yes, indeed I do. I enjoy the benefits of gardening for wildlife, and they seem to like my very hospitable garden too!

 The creeping phlox are very colorful and that is so welcome at this point in the season!

 This is Lathyrus vernus. It was given to me by Larry Conrad when he visited us two years ago.

 Busy at the feeder! Three male orioles, a female, and a catbird vie for grape jelly.



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