Sunday, May 27, 2018

Nichols Arboretum University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

I will tell you right now if you like peonies you will appreciate this post. I have lots of pictures. I will for the most part let the pictures do the talking.
 It has been scorching hot here. We had hoped as we drove North to Michigan we would find it cooler. It was not to be as they are having record breaking or near record temperatures. When we stepped into the garden my first thought was oh we have missed everything.
We looked down the long path where the herbaceous peonies are planted and realized we were just a week or so too early for them. My what a sight this would be with all of these blooming.
I did find a few blooming.



As we strolled further in things began to look much better. I noticed that they had under planted the tree peonies with wildflowers. Here I recognize Golden Alexander and Geranium Maculatum. 
The big draw for us and the other early birds were these tree peonies backed by the huge golden and orange Rhododendrons. 
I also read a sign that said this Laurel Hill trail was being renovated. I guess that is why a lot of these tree peonies didn't have name tags.
No matter because they are gorgeous no matter what the names are. 

This yellow one was one of my favorites. It did have a tag, 'High Noon'. It was a tall plant, maybe 4' tall. I must say I have never seen tree peonies this tall.
A close up of it 'High Noon's' flowers.
'Leda' is the name of this pretty girl. 
'Satin Rouge' a French variety. 
This purple to lavender to white one is my very favorite. It had huge blooms and the color is perfect in my eyes. The name gives it quite the spirit too, ' Guardian of the Monastery'. This was also a very tall plant. 
As you can see even though we missed the big show we had plenty to admire.
I hope you were able to get out this weekend and enjoy the day before it got too hot.










Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day - May 2018

To start of this bloom day I present you with this Exbury Azalea. Normally it has a lot of blooms but it isn't releasing all of the buds at this time. We haven't had rain this month so it is a bit too dry for too many blooms. Plus...the dreaded rabbits at half of this shrub last winter. I am just happy it has any blooms after that treatment.
The Buckeye shrub Aesculus pavia  is also reacting to this lack of rain. We will still have a few buckeyes just not as many as usual. 
This pretty little yellow Baptisia is not phased by the lack of rain. 
Neither is the catmint. I think this is the best it has ever looked. It may be because it is it's third year in the garden. 
The wind has played havoc with the big white irises this year. Kate doesn't seem to think a thing of it. She has some sparse blue blooms. She really likes more moisture than she is getting. I have threatened several years to pull her out since she goes dormant in August, as in dying to the ground, when we get our normal drought and high temps. 
The drying winds have caused the irises not to last so long but it is nice that these white ones edged in lavender have held on for today. You see we still have quite a bit of columbine blooming too. 
The first blooming clematis is all revved up. 'Multi Blue' doesn't seem to mind the dry weather. 
Around on the north side of the house the Jack-in-the-pulpits are blooming and looking taller than normal. I am glad they don't seem affected by the lack of water. 
What is Princess Annie doing you as? Why she is watching over the robins. If you look close you can see that these little chicks have a lot in common with the Honeysuckle blooms. 
The inside of their mouths are a dark orange while their "lips" are a pale yellow. They seem to be healthy. Mom and Dad are constantly bringing in the food. The chicks sit like this almost all day. 
Mouths open. The biggest one can almost launch it's self out of the nest. That would be a disaster. I hope it stays put. Their little eyes aren't even open yet. It won't be long.
For more blooms from all over flick over to Carol's May Dreams Garden to see what all everyone else has blooming this month. 

Other plants blooming at Greenbow
Weigelia 'Red Prince'
Kerria 
Variegated Weigelia with pink and white blooms
A blue columbine
Holly shrubs
Ninebark 'Little Devil'
Water plant
Snowball bush


Sunday, May 6, 2018

Migration May

Such a busy time of year. What have I been up to? This post will give you a hint. It isn't only birds and flowers that are busy. I got a call from an 87 year old friend that said we needed to dash over to her place to see a 'Natural Phenomena that is happening in her garden'. So off we go to her house. We found her nearly dancing at the site of a tree frog clinging to her door. 
 If you have never had this little visitor I can say it is quite fun to open the blinds on your door and find one clinging with those little suction up toes. 
A day or so later we get a call from another friend and she told us she had a Harris's Sparrow coming to her feeders. This is a sparrow that is rarely in our state let alone just a few miles from our home. We dashed right out there and got a few photos through the window of this handsome sparrow. 
We walk Annie every morning. While she watches for moles to make a move...
We watch for new spring arrivals such as this Wood Thrush. It is always a thrill to hear the flute-like  early  morning concert performed by this beautiful bird. 
Then yesterday we helped with the Lawrence County, IL Spring Bird Count. Gary was  happy to be able to get a decent photo of this very skittish drake Wood Duck. Of course I would be skittish too if someone was often shooting at me.  
So this morning when I woke, I looked out the back door to see if the Robin was still ensconced on her nest. You can see her there. 
I doubt she goes any place what with three of these beautiful blue eggs to attend. The poor dear probably would have laid 4 or 5 eggs if she had been someplace where no one could bother her.
As it is I can hardly avoid the area. Annie stayed with friends yesterday for an overnighter while we were busy. She is sticking pretty close to home today.  
I had to get out into the garden to see what might be going on now that all the tulips and daffodils have been cooked to well done in the heat of the days past. Alliums are taking their place in this garden. You can see the purple iris are also making a show. How did this bed get so blue/purple?? 
I didn't wander long. I plopped into a chair on the gazebo patio. Looking at the dappled lush is about all I will accomplish this day. 
Oh, look over here. Our first Red Admiral butterfly taking advantage of the sun on a white Lilac blossom. Aaahhhhh.... 
Can't you just feel the warmth of that lovely spring sun.
I hope you all are having a wonderful weekend. I certainly did because to top off all of this we had a delightful visit with my son and his fiance. Happiness is...