Win some …

Deadheads getting the Idea Beds ready for the next SoireeThe blazing sun and muggy heat this past couple of weeks has been the true test for us, the volunteers and the freshly planted. The Deadheads dripped (sweat) and deadheaded and Nick-the-Unstoppable ripped all the old wrinkling fabric out from under the gravel paths. Smoke bush (Cotinus coggyria) packed and ready to moveThis week Fred and Dan dug the smoke bush by hand, wrapped a tidy root ball, and moved it about 50′ to it’s new permanent location on the other side of the Display Garden. It looks meant to be and like it’s been there forever! (fingers crossed and lots of T.L.C. while it settles in.) That garden is ready to be Soireed!Smoke bush (Cotinus coggyria) in its new home

We and the Rockettes (well, one Rockette who beat the heat) cleaned a big daylily border and deer damage in the Rock Garden. The Rock and Water Garden have been host to a lot of wildlife lately. A visitor spotted a mink, another startled a great blue heron and there are racoon tracks in the disappearing-pond mud. I suspect our frog friends are supper… Tidying the daylily border

Rose Garden 8-1-07

The Rose Garden is looking spectacular (everyone says so!) especially compared to previous years. The Heliotrope and Zinnias are loving the heat and have gotten huge and the roses are going for a mid season bloom despite the Japanese beetle infestation. Mercilous Florabundas drowned with one hand and deadheaded with the other. The new shrubs are standing the test of summer – all but one Pinus strobus ‘Blue Shag’. Pinus strobus ‘Blue Shag’ — one healthy, one not.We bought three and the other two have grown leaps so we think this one must have had pre-planting root problems. So far, that’s the only casualty from our batch of purchased plants. The transplants are also taking the heat in stride – except for one ‘Sum and Substance’ hosta in the new dry shade bed by the Moongate. By the looks of it, it succumbed to mold and rot. The other three are still looking hale-n-hearty (knock wood and eyes out for spores)… The North Garden 8-1-07The North Garden is glowing white with Phlox ‘David’ and Hydrangea ‘Limelight’ (my favorite – it’s late and green tinged). So far all is very well!

The blaze and mug topped with seasonal fatigue has turned my brain to jelly. Yesterday I blamed a wicked headache on the weather – I shook my fists at the sun, cowered under my hat, became blathery and probably sounded to visitors and coworkers decidedly unqualified for my job. At home I discovered a clean coffee cup next to a full pot… Right… Rather than continue my detox, I choose caffeination today in hopes of being able to string a few sentences together. Speaking of stringing sentences, I have a little quote to share with you that I found oddly (quite contrarily) inspirational:

Yet still I believe in gardening when I have the time and even stronger, believe in writing when I have something of merit to say. Too often as of late, some horticultural blahgs I attempt to read are nothing but meaningless and embarrassingly concocted twaddle. I am acutely sensitive to contributing to an inchoate heap of words better composted.
Daniel J Hinkley

I am constantly amazed at how many people are writing, taking pictures and creating community on the world wide interweb. Not everyone has lucrative book deals and just like wanting to share a recipe (“I had the most amazing desert last night – you’ve got to try it. Here’s what you do…”) we all have something we want to offer. Blahgers give it away – to anyone who wants some – for free. Thank you to everyone who has chosen to read my heap of words and I hope all my twaddle inspires a roadtrip to Blithewold – or your nearest public garden.

Praying mantisNow it’s time for a vacation! I’ll be recharging for the next two weeks and hope that when I am back, faithful readers, you will return too! Stay tuned for late August and September coming attractions: more portraits of praying mantis and maybe yellow orb spiders; perhaps a mink sighting; late season garden pictures; September Days and Gardeners’ Day; and (hopefully) a busman’s holiday with Gail to Chanticleer and other Wayne, PA gardens. Until then, Garden On (and tell us all about it)!Lotus (Nelumbo ‘Mrs. Perry D. Slocum’) 8-2-07