Saturday, 22 April 2017

April in the Garden

      April is one of my favourite months of the year. I love all the flowering trees and bulbs, and even the erratic weather. I think I've mentioned before that I turned a relentless sucker from our neighbour's plum tree into a espalier- styled tree along our fence. Last year our neighbours cut down their plum tree, and I wondered what affect that would have on my sucker. So far, it's meant that I had a lot of blooms! Maybe, just maybe, I will even get a plum! I went outside with a paintbrush to help the bees out but I think I may have been a little late.

Most of the edges of the flowers on my camellia were touched with a bit of brown this year, due to the cold spring, but I added one of the better looking photos here. There's also a few pics of my other bulbs and our one and only tree that we had cut down. It was a hazelnut tree that had the dreaded Eastern blight that has affected so many hazelnut trees in our area. I'm hoping that by some miracle the new growth will come back healthy. If not, I'd love to hear your suggestions on how to hide or incorporate the trunk so that it looks better. Happy Gardening!

Plum flowers

Plum tree

Muscari

chinodoxa

Anemone blanda

Camellia

Hazelnut when it was healthy

Our hazelnut now

Chester our garden inspector  

Oliver the assistant

Chester intently watching the neighbour's cats 

Friday, 31 March 2017

Oh Deer

    There hasn't been a lot blooming in my garden in the last month, but I did manage to get a few photos of my King of Striped Crocus. It's a good thing I took them when I did, because a couple of days later a deer came along and ate every single one. He or she also ate all my tulips but I'm really hoping they will still bloom since the flowering stem hadn't started to grow yet. He was also sampling my succulents and who knows what else. Thankfully, we don't get deer too often but when they do arrive, they sure can wreak havoc on a garden.

    I started my first batch of seedlings a few weeks ago, and will be doing my second batch soon. My first batch contains peppers, tomatoes, dahlias, spinach, lettuce, agastache and two types of cosmos. My solitary spinach already died, and I have no idea why. Last year I had trouble with them too. I've never grown agastache before but so far they are doing well. I started the seeds indoors but quickly moved most of them to my little cold frame on my covered patio, so they could get the light they need. I am keeping the tomatoes, peppers and dahlias indoors near a south window. I also planted peas and sweet peas outside. The peas are up after two weeks, but no sign of the sweet peas yet. If you have any suggestions for deer resistant plants, I'd love to hear them.
King of Striped Crocus

King of Striped Crocus
Sarcococca
Random mushroom and chives

The Culprit

Pink Dawn Viburmum

Monday, 6 February 2017

Snow!

  It's been a very snowy start to February, in fact we've broken snowfall records. It's been snowing off and on for four days now, and there is still more to come. On the bright side, the snow brings varied thrushes down from the mountains and into my yard. I saw a total of four, while in the past I have only had one. It also brought a song sparrow, which only comes to my feeder when it's snowy, though I hear him singing at other times. I've almost ran out of seed but at least I have a good supply of suet. Even though the snow is pretty, I am so ready for Spring!
Varied Thrush

Anna's Hummingbird

Cute little bushtits

Junco

Song Sparrow

Starling

Jay coming for his daily peanuts

If you look close, you can see four thrushes here

Snow 

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Merry Christmas!

   For the first time in two or three years we have snow! So I went outside to see what looked interesting in my December garden. I also took some pictures of my cats helping me wrap Christmas gifts, sometimes wearing their Christmas collar. I think they will need a new one next year because Oliver thinks it's fun to pull the white balls off. Oh yeah, and the cats aren't supposed to be on the table, ha ha. There's also a photo of the patio of one of my miniature gardens. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season and a blessed new year!
Skimmia Berries in the snow

Persicaria with snow

Add caption

Red Rose Branches from Therese Bugnet

Mini Garden with real mini autumn leaves 

Anna's hummingbird protecting her supply

Curious Chester

Oliver checking out the box

Oliver 

Chester wearing the dreaded Christmas collar
Oliver and my lovely birthday roses

Friday, 18 November 2016

Autumn Colour

        "Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower"  by Albert Camus is one of my favorite fall quotes, and so very true. By now, most of the leaves have fallen, so some of these photos were taken a few weeks ago. A few years ago I bought a little maple to grow in a container on my patio, but after several years of the leaf tips turning brown every summer, I decided to plant it in the ground. It is much happier now, and no brown leaves! This spring I bought a new shrub to replace my elderberry that died, and even though it is still small, I love the colours of the leaves, both in the summer and now. 
  I attempted to grow cantaloupe this summer, even though our summers are too cool for them, and what did I get? One little cantaloupe that I babied with a cold frame into early October and wasn't quite ripe when I picked it, but we sure enjoyed it! There's also a few blooms left, and a picture of our kitten Oliver who is six months old now. What are your favorite plants for fall colour? 


Maple


Maple leaves


Burning bush
Burning bush and Chester

Ninebark and Viburnum

Cantaloupe

Choisya ternata

One Last Cosmos bloom

Oliver with some summer annuals still blooming

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Still Blooming

     September is one of my favorite times of the year and while there are a lot less flowers blooming in my yard, I still found quite a few. The dahlias and zinnias are especially blooming well now. I decided to dig up my beloved Hansa roses, which makes me a little sad. The leaves have been plagued with a mysterious problem for three years in a row, and this year they had black-spot as well so they were looking less than lovely, to say the least. They had also outgrown their space. I am trying to save a small section of it that looked healthy and will see if that carries over the leaf problem or not.
     Last year I grew two tomato plants from seed that I had saved from store bought grape tomatoes, and they all grew and tasted like the original tomatoes. Since I still had a few seeds left, I grew them again this year. While one of the plants produced grape tomatoes, the other one produced larger tomatoes. They are pretty tasteless so I am saving them for recipes instead of fresh eating. I knew that I was taking a chance on that hybrid seed coming true but it is fun to experiment. 

Dahlia 'Blue Boy"

Dahlia Crazy Love

Figaro Dahlia grown from seed
Grape tomatoes

Balloon flower

Bleeding Heart 'luxuriant'

Chrysanthemum

Cosmos and Sedum

Feverfew

Hibiscus 

Hollyhock

Soraya Sunflower, the blooms are all small now

Morning Glory


Perennial Sunflower

Persicaria

Russian Sage, not sure what's in the back

Sedum

Spirea

Zinnia

Oliver with Chester in the background