Sunday, July 26, 2009

Berry Time

Yes, it has come to that time of year again. Blackberry season is upon us. While we grow most of our berries for the birds they have to share these blackberries with us. As you can see we are going to have plenty. This is our first ripe blackberry. I did the right thing and let my DB eat it. Now the he and the birds are going to have to be quick to get any more.
The birds have plenty of berries to look forward to such as these Hawthorn berries that will soon be turning their fall orange color.
There are Soloman's Seal berries for the taking.
The Viburnum out front looks ready for the birds too.
This blue cedar is expressing itself with berries growing right beside...
the French Honeysuckle that has those beautiful shiny bright berries that the Robins and Catbirds like so well. These won't last for long I can tell you. Sometimes you hear a fuss going on between them when both try to dine at the same time.
Do you have any berries in your garden at this time of year??

Friday, July 24, 2009

Surprises

It is that time of year again. Naked Ladies are surprising us in the garden sending up their slender stalks with several buds at the top just waiting to show their beautiful faces.
While I was out pulling weeds I broke off several of these tall delicate stems. I was sad because I like to see these sweet pink faces swaying in the breeze. I decided to place them into vases just in case they decided to go ahead and open.To my delight another surpise coming from them. They make great cut flowers. Every bud has opened. So far they have been in the vases since Monday and continue to show those pretty pink faces.
Another little surprise from them is that as the bloom ages it gets a purple hue in the petals. I guess I have never had them inside, up close and so easy to view. I will remember that becasue I have quite a few of them in the garden.
I hope that you have a few of these beauties in the garden. They are such tough flowers despite their delicate appearance. Their green leaves come up early in the spring and then dies back and the bloom shoots up on a stem right from the bulb with multiple buds and all open making it such a delight as they seem to appear overnight.
I have planted yellow and red ones but they haven't shown their faces yet. Hmmm I will be on the look out for them now. Do you have Naked Ladies in your garden?? It seems that every region has a different name for them. Gail in Tennessee calls them Surprise Lilies for instance. What do you call them??

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sunday Safari

Today I am posting a Sunday Safari that I took through my garden. Cheryl at My Wildlife Sanctuary in jolly ole England has been doing this for some time every Sunday. Sherry over at Q's Corner also usually posts a Sunday Safari. Today I decided to join them since there are lots of birds, bees and bugs to see in our garden today. I haven't tried to id every bug here but if I happen to know what it is I will say... this house wren scolded me as I went around the garden. It wasn't thrilled with my tour especially when my DB came out with his camera to see what I was up to. I want to thank him for some of the pictures I have used here.
You can click on the photos to enlarge them if you want a closer look.
This butterfly below is a Snout. You can see why it got its name.
I have no idea about these wasps and wasp mimics...
I would have positioned this butterfly up by the other one but Blogger is acting bad today. It won't let me move photos. BooooooAt the bottom left of this picture you can see the Ruby-throated Hummingbird that was having a rest after dining on this French Honeysuckle.
A honey bee. The Curly Mint out front is blooming which is what a lot of the bees were attracted to.



This bee looked as though it had gotten into a pollen storm, it is just covered with pollen.
I hope you enjoyed the bugs and bees. We are having such a lovely weekend here. Cooler than normal temps and we have had plenty of rain so we are just sitting back and enjoying what the weather brings.
















Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day - July 2009

This dry spell we had is making a lot of my flowers start to look ragged. The dribbles of rain keeps things hanging on. The butterfly weed doesn't seem to mind. This ragged Pearl Crescent is happy to find the butterfly weed. Another native, Joe Pye Weed, is getting a bee hug. I could just hug them too because they never complain about the weather.

A few Cranesbills are blooming.

I even have some bushes blooming. This is the delicate blooms of the Beauty Berry Bush. These tiny blooms each represent a purple berry that will be on the bush this fall. Yes, I am thinking about fall already.

Liatrus and the Susans are beginning to mingle.

A few daylilies and Jackamanii Clematis are still blooming.

A plant that has surprised me this summer is the Comfrey. It is still blooming. I moved this Comfrey from a position where it was hidden by asters for most of summer. It has taken to its new home and showed its appreciation by blooming all summer so far.

The annual I am most pleased with at this time is this Abutilon. It is performing so well being planted with some ferns and sitting in the shade. There are so many wonderful colors of this annual. I must remember this for next year. There are many more things blooming in the garden. I thought this was enough photos for this post. The tall garden phlox, roses, veronica, hostas, mint, perovskia, etcs and the bushes spirea, kerria, buddlia and wigelia are all keeping the bugs, bees and resident gardener happy.
I hope you are happy with your garden. Happy Garden Bloggers Bloom Day. For more blooms go to Carol's May Dreams Garden.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Out of the Garden - Muscatatuck National Wildlife Refuge

I was at Muscatatuck national Wildlife Refuge this weekend. It was a new (to me) place to explore. This little jewel of a NWR is tucked into an area near Seymour, IN. It has marsh areas, trails to hike, places to launch boats for fishing and lots of potential for bird sightings. The Visitor's Center has a very welcoming planting of native plants. The Great Spangled Fritillary butterflies were making themselves welcome for sure. This gave me the urge to go home and plant more natives.
We saw lots of birds in the marshes including this Green Heron.
The next day we went to our usual birding destination and we found that the lotus was abloom. I just love this wildflower. It is beautiful in any stage of its life. In the photo below you can see each stage from bud to the seed pods.
There are still lots of field birds apparent even though they are beginning to flock up. Breeding season is about to come to an end. It just doesn't seem possible. This female Dicksissle has a grasshopper in her mouth. No doubt going to take it to a nestling. We had lots of fledglings being fed this weekend.
I hope everyone has plenty of fun memories of their weekend and have eased into their work week. I want to thank my DB for taking all of these close up photos for me.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Frisky Ferns

The poor Sensitive Ferns are not liking the dry spell we have been going through lately. They are protesting by curling up. After the rain we got last night they should recover. That is the good thing about natives. They seem to take the worst of the weather and keep on growing even if they pout some. Most of the other ferns in the garden are reacting to the droughty conditions by setting spores. The Ostrich ferns are setting their reproductive goals. The put up these spore covered wands that turn an interesing brown that you can use in flower arrangements.
The kangaroo paw fern is setting spores on the back side of its leaves. Many ferns use this method.
The Autumn fern is also setting spores. It is always facintating to me to find these unusual looking growths on the back of the fern fronds and to think that this is how they reproduce.
Are your ferns setting spores yet?

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy July 4th

It is a great honor that we live in this big beautiful country. I wish everyone the best that we have to offer due to all the brave who serve or have served our country. Happy Birthday America.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Skywatch Friday - 3 July 09

As we were sitting the the line at Dairy Queen I noticed that there were clouds gathering. A rain is predicted for tonight and maybe tomorrow. We need the rain so I won't complain. Even though it might mess up our picnic plans. Sorry about the lines in the photo. I just thought our little courthouse was kind of nice looking against the sky. Here, I will leave you with an almost line free photo from our front garden.
For more Sky Watching you can go here. Happy 4th of July to all and if you aren't celebrating the 4th of July with us have a nice weekend anyway.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Thankful Thursday - 07-02-09

Today I am so thankful of this unseasonable cool weather. I headed outside to enjoy the garden while this cool weather lasts. This was my perch this morning before the sun ran me into the Casa. As you can see in the background there is a sea of Gooseneck Loosestrife under the apple tree. Chris over at Outside Clyde was just mentioning how controversial this plant can be due to its aggressive spreading. All I can say is that I like it. It does spread out whereever you plant it but it is manageable. I just rip it out whenever it gets too close to something. It doesn't mind being in the dry shade that the apple tree presents it. It works well in flower arrangements too. Another thing I am thankful for is this hardy plant that my cousin Beckie at Dragonfly Corner gave me. I don't know what it is but it is also surviving the not so great conditions of partial sun and dry environment. The only thing is I don't know what it is. Hey Beckie, do you remember what you gave me?? Does anyone else know what this might be?? It doesn't look like anything I have ever grown. It looks like it might bloom sometime soon. Maybe then I can figure out what it is.
I have a tomato in a topsy turvey plant hanger that my daughter gave us for Easter. We had a Cherokee Purple Tomato so we planted it in the hanger. It is growing and by golly we are going to have a tomato or two.
All of this an my favorite daylily, Wilson's Spider, has started blooming. This one always pleases me. It is the only spider daylily I have. It is the first one I ever saw at the time when I bought it. It doesn't cease to please me.
I hope you all are pleased with the way summer is going in your garden.