What’s Happening in the Garden – July 18, 2021

Hello there!

Mid July is a time of great growth and anticipation and there’s a lot going on in the garden this week, It’s fun to see things starting to come together, or not, in some cases. It’s been very very rainy here, almost tropical at times. The break from daily watering is nice, but we need sun, especially for the tomatoes!

Michael has been working all spring and summer on replacing fences… this is in the list of things that are coming together.

The bee balm has been full of perfect little pollinators and I’ve been watching a monarch butterfly visiting the milkweed plants. I would love to see our butterfly population increase.
This border is coming into bloom.
I found a little Anise Hyssop seedling at Maitland Farm on Mother’s Day and I’m so pleased with the plant that it’s growing into. I need to learn more about how to propagate this to spread it around the garden for next year.
Here’s something that’s NOT coming together. I grew cucumber seedlings and they looked great.. we put together this cool trellis, I planted the cucumber plants and they’ve almost stopped growing. Today I added good compost to fertilize them and new seeds to the soil in between the plants. Most years I have lots of cucs and no trellis…
The kale is happy and so are we. We’ve grown to love kale around here! I put it in salad and soups.. I even add it to Mac and Cheese!
For some reason I called this Russian Kale a few weeks ago.. I was wrong, it’s actually called Black Magic. It’s a little tough and not especially tasty, but it looks nice. Behind it we have lots and lots of tomato plants.. These are Big Rainbow and the plants in the next photo are Bumblebee Cherry. There’s also Green Zebra Stripe, Beefsteak and lots of volunteer Cherry tomatoes scattered here, there and everywhere.

Have I mentioned that they would like some sun?

We just added the top layer of trellis to the yard long beans and they instantly reached up for it like magic.
My cilantro didn’t reseed well this year, so I bought some plants and just planted them today (bottom left). I’ll cut them back in a few days after they settle. Hopefully the new leaves will fill in and be ready for salsa when the tomatoes are ripe. 😉
The Rose of Sharon that my sister sent years ago are sorting to bloom already.
There are so many seedlings.. please let me know if you’d like some. This has me wondering if they’re considered invasive, but I’ve never heard that they are.
This little nook below our sunroom/office is a new addition..
It’s a nice spot to sit and take a rest, think about things or have a quiet talk.
I’m especially fond of my lobster trap table, it’s a little shaky, but it’s fun!
I’m also fond of the view from the settee… it’s all about the view!

Wishing you all peace, love and time in a garden!

Love, Michele

What’s Happening in the Garden, May 29, 2021.

Hi everyone! We are in the middle of a beautiful spring here in Salem and I thought I’d share a few photos of our garden. I hope to blog more consistently this year. Please leave a comment and say hi if you’re here. I’d love to know who’s stopping by, and your energy will inspire me to post more often.

Lots of zinnia, nasturtium and basil seedlings are ready to plant. It’s very cool, windy and rainy today, so I’m waiting another day or two.
I’ve also started coleus, marigolds, hollyhocks, alyssum, dianthus, cosmos, Brussels sprouts, eggplant and some tomatoes…hoping to plant on Monday!
My greatest success so far this spring is the return of my perennial hibiscus. These take their time to show green in the spring and we have given up too early in the past and tossed them. This year I ordered everyone away, held my breath and here it is! I’m honestly not sure what color the blossoms were, but I do remember that they were large and beautiful last year!
Salvia and yarrow, with much more to come in this corner..
Kale, radishes, lettuce and onions..
This is a Russian Kale that I planted on Mother’s Day. I found the seedlings for sale at a coffee shop downtown..
New garden fence is in progress.. that rhododendron used to live in our front yard.
Lemon balm is everywhere. If anyone who lives nearby wants some, just let me know. This is one of my very favorite herbs. I put it in everything!
Bee balm is about to bloom. I’m trying to decide if the white flower is a weed or not.. if anyone knows, please comment so I can take care of it!
Siberian iris are starting to bloom ! ❤️
And the ducks are still entertaining us! We have ducklings and goslings, but I don’t see them today. They’re often out early in the morning with their mamas.

Wishing all of you peace, love and a moment of reflection and gratitude this Memorial Day, as we remember those who have sacrificed so much.

Love, Michele

Happy Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day! October 2015

The fifteenth of the month has become my very favorite day because even if I don’t manage to publish a post myself, I enjoy visiting all of the other garden bloggers to see what’s blooming in their gardens.

Reading GBBD posts is always an uplifting way to spend an hour (or two)!

We haven’t had a frost yet here in Salem, so while the garden is starting to wind down, it’s still producing and blooming almost as much as it did in September.
IMG_9669The morning glories are glorious, even at ground level and paired with rosemary.

IMG_9586The mexican marigold is happy hanging out with the lovage.

Lovage is very similar to celery and I’m using it often these days in soups and stuffing.

IMG_9583I’m always posting photos of my volunteer snapdragons. I remember my mother using snapdragon in an arrangement for my first communion when I was seven years old, and I can never quite believe that it grows so easily in my garden. I’m hoping that the foxglove right behind it blooms in the spring.

IMG_9662_2Here it is up close with the macro setting…

I can never get enough of snapdragon or the macro setting.

IMG_9653_2Macro’d cilantro…
IMG_9648These yellow chrysanthemums survived last winter’s difficulty. The other chrysanthemums really did not.

IMG_9603The taller zinnias are supposed to be a giant variety, but their not too big. I planted them quite late in the season (maybe the first week in July or so) so it took them a long time to bloom, but here they are!

IMG_9604It is a very pretty bloom.
IMG_9608I’m still kind of partial to the Cut and Come Again variety of zinnia.

IMG_9639_2This single shoot of bellflower popped up on the opposite side of the fence among the pepper plants.

IMG_9617Sedum is one of my favorite fall plants. This small variety has very delicate flowers.
IMG_9599This white daisy-like chrysanthemum is being crowded out by other plants in the bed, but there’s a bit that’s still with us. I need to thin the iris, echinacea and black-eyed susan that surround it. If anyone from the area would like starts of any of those plants leave me a message in the comments and we’ll work it out.
IMG_9593And the knock-out roses are non stop. Yay for knockout roses, you just can’t hurt them!

Be sure to visit May Dreams Garden by clicking here to see what’s in bloom today in gardens all over the world!

Be well,

Love, Michele

Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day- August 2014

Happy Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day! We had a lot of rain the other day. It was nowhere near the thirteen inch amounts that were reported in areas to the south but it was a continuously driving rain all day. In anticipation of that I took these pictures on Tuesday because I wasn’t sure that there would be any blooms left after. We ended up doing okay in the rain. Everything got a good drink but we didn’t have too much destruction.

IMG_7016Last fall we scattered knockout roses across the front and side yards and while their very common, they have added a nice bit of color. I’ve been reading about rosa rosetta virus and worrying so I pruned all red canes and branches back to the ground a few weeks ago. I’m pretty sure that mine have it and there’s not a lot you can do to stop it other than try to cut it out before the mites make their way to the roots. We’ll see what happens.
IMG_7019I like the way the reddish pink flowers look against the worn fence.

IMG_7013The scarlet runner bean is taking off. I enjoy this plant because it’s pretty while it grows and it produces beautiful purple beans at the end of the season. It’s just a great, easy vine for filling in tall, long spaces.
IMG_7015It’s starting to creep up the bird feeder pole. I should have provided strings or a trellis.

IMG_7009We have lots of lilies. These were all planted in the years before I would have saved the packaging and made note of varieties. I like this pretty pale pink..
IMG_7005Deep orange…I don’t think it’s a ditch lily? Betsey, what do you say?
IMG_7004And a beautiful deep red…
IMG_7002I planted a few varieties of zinnia this year. The only ones blooming as of today are “peppermint stick mix.” I’m a little disappointed in them. I expected big beautiful bunches but so far the few seeds that germinated have produced single, scattered flowers.IMG_7001 That does resemble a peppermint stick. It was pretty on the package but I’m not so sure now.

IMG_7000Volunteer sunflowers are scattered around.

IMG_6996And I’ve been enjoying these deep shaded coleus this year.

IMG_6999This is my favorite deck planter. It’s about three feet high.

IMG_7022The rose of sharon that my sister sent me in a manila envelope a few years ago is in bloom. I love these plants.

IMG_7012  Here’s the big picture… lots of blooms from last month are still raging out there!

Does your garden “rage” too?

I think I need to get back outside, lol.

Be sure to visit May Dreams Gardens by clicking here  to see the other GBBD posts. They are going to be amazing!!!

Love to you all,

Michele

Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day-October 2013

Here’s my very late in the day, just under the wire Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day post!  I started it at 6:30 this morning (when it was technically too dark to take photos) and I was so close to finishing tonight that I just had to do it. I love reading all of the other posts, and while I don’t generally use the latin names, and some of my blooms may have been posted in months past, I find great satisfaction in participating.  So… here we go!

IMG_3781Our zinnias are still unfolding. I couldn’t live without zinnias.

IMG_3783The volunteer snapdragon carries on.

IMG_3784The cosmos continue, and so do the canoes.

IMG_3779A simple white chrysanthemum.

IMG_3785A pretty pink and white, very hardy chrysanthemum.

IMG_3786Classic yellow mums

IMG_3792

And one of the last roses of summer.  I dug this rose bush out of the Harrington estate on Essex Street in Salem right before a bulldozer scraped the top ten inches of soil out of that yard about thirteen years ago. It blooms in June then comes back a bit in the fall. I moved part of it here from my garden on Forrester Street when we bought this house in 2002. I believe that the other half is still living down on Forrester St.

IMG_3796

Of course there are chrysanthemums in a shade of rust. See what happens when you plant the hardy varieties rather than toss them?

IMG_3801The knockout roses forge on as well. You have to love them!

IMG_3817Zebra grass

IMG_3814Sedum

IMG_3807And while not “blooming”, our woods just below the garden are full of fall color!

Be sure to visit the other garden blogs at May Dreams Gardens!

Goodnight!

Michele

What’s Happening in the Garden — August 24

I’m a bit behind on my “What’s Happening” update.  Packing and going to camp in New Hampshire took lots and lots of time. We didn’t exactly rough it (other than sleeping in tents) on this camping trip. One of the huge, huge benefits of camping at Calumet is that you can eat in their dining hall or on their beach for breakfast, lunch and dinner. With so many kids, we usually cook many of our meals at our campsite, but since this year’s trip was just for three nights we enjoyed the luxury of eating inside. That said, I still had a zillion loads of wash to do and lots of things to put away and catch up on. So, here we are, the soccer and golf seasons have started for my high school kids and fall is right around the corner. I’m trying to make the most of my garden time!

We have zinnias scattered around, I love the bright orange zinnias!

Here’s some mesclun that I planted on Saturday, I hope it keeps growing at this rate so we can enjoy it soon!

We have several pepper plants producing fruit. Peppers can be a little tricky for me, so this makes me happy.

I think there will be salsa in the next few days!

We have lots of Roma tomatoes. I froze a few gallons (whole) and made pizza sauce. We eat fresh tomatoes non-stop so we can never have too many.

The pumpkin vine is creeping quickly past the chicken coop.., Michael put that light there to help us remember not to step on it. Good idea!Here’s one of the pumpkins! There’s another one that’s this size (about fifteen inches long) and at  least a couple of smaller ones. Pumpkin carving will be extra fun this year!

Here’s my disaster, the cucumber beetles have pretty much wiped out the cucumbers. I did try hard to use a large size photo to show you. First the computer couldn’t seem to export this photo to my blog, then it wouldn’t size correctly. I don’t care, in the  interest of transparency, I’m sharing this smaller photo so you can see what happened. I need to pull the plants and add something in, maybe kale or brussel sprouts if I can find some plants. I need about ten more hours in my day! and next year remind me to take a break from the cucs!

In the chicken coop, this girl has suddenly taken to pecking at my foot. I don’t know what’s up with that but it hurts! Our egg production is better than it was a few weeks ago.  Here’s the strange thing: around the time that I posted that we had an egg deficit, one of our chickens started to look  unwell. This happens sometimes with older chickens, they stop eating and start to look tired and glassy eyed. They just seem to be ready to pass on. Well, we had a buff orphington who was going through this and I was trying to shore her up with some extra vitamins, food, and water in a corner of the coop. Strangely as soon as she died (very peacefully) the chickens started laying again. Three eggs that day, and we’ve had an average of six a day since. Any thoughts on this chicken keepers? Share your thoughts in the comments below please!

Is this a weed? Michael and I have been going back and forth about it for a few weeks. I have to admit that I think he’s right, it is a weed. But I like it.

The kentucky pole beans are growing. Next time I need to remember that they need poles. I think they’d be happier.

And finally, the potatoes. Their supposed to wilt and die just before their ready to harvest. I added soil as they grew but I’m worried that I didn’t keep up with them. I think we’ll check to see if it worked in the next week or so. I will be thrilled if we get a potato out of this pot!

I’m looking forward to drying some of this rosemary and thyme. I tried to dry bananas last week but they didn’t turn out as well as the basil did. We may try some apple slices.

There’s my update! How’s your garden growing? Share, share, share!!

Love,  Michele