Are you ready? It's time for our 14th annual photo contest! Enter your best pictures of the year, for a chance to win a calendar and annual subscription here. Hurry! Deadline for entries is October 21.
I'm finding myself already longing for spring, and immersing myself in the pics of blooms and lush foliage from warm sunny days. Lets share those special shots, and recall the feeling of seeing that first Daffodil open in late winter, or that sniff of the first Rose bloom of the season.
So share those special shots of your gardens, and tell us what you recall about that day!
On this day, when this pic was taken, I was particularly happy to see well distributed color in this bed (I call it the "pink bed"). From where I was standing, the scent of cloves was heavy in the air from the pink Dianthus that you can just see at the top of the pic. It was pure joy to see the 'Erfurt' Roses in bloom with that Clematis and the Mock Orange for the first time.
Asiatic and LA hybrid Lilies were in full swing on this June morning. Looking out over the pink bed, I was enjoying the unexpected surprise of seeing those Easter egg colors together, that I hadn't considered when planting the beds. The yellow and white blooms are in an area comprised of 3 beds, planted in all yellows, blues and whites. The baby's breath-like little blooms of Geranium pyrethicum that form a cloud at the base of the Lilies, as well as the slightly filmy haze in the photo, made this picture remind me of some magical fairy realm, and of some of the scenes in the movie, 'The Secret Garden'.
This was taken the same day as the first photo, standing on the other side of the huge Mock Orange in the pink bed. I was loving the first color showing from that pink Peony, my first blooms from the blue Columbine I'd wintersown the year before, and the beginnings of a glorious show from the tall Siberian Iris from Polly :-)
This view made me extra happy that day, as I hadn't realized I would be able to see the butterfly garden, the beds at the rear entry to the house (which is the main entrance), and the lower beds of the front yard from the same spot. Those layers of color made me feel like a child on Christmas morning!
Been looking through some spring pics, building excitement for those early bulbs that so effectively color up the garden in those first warm days. Daffodils and Tulips in the yellow, blue, and white area in the pic above, where I've had trouble getting all 3 colors at the same time. Last spring it went from all yellow and white blooms, to all blue and white blooms, till finally early summer hit and I finally saw it come together. Some clearance bulbs are due in next week, I'm planning to rectify that problem with some 'Sky Jacket' Hyacinths, various Muscari, Scilla, Chionodoxa, and Iris reticulata.
Stormy, those are 'Spring Valley Hybrids" from Brent and Becky's, and they have been great performers. They love a site that is dry and well drained, but seem otherwise happy in any sunny spot. I lucked upon them during one of their 1/2 off sales a few years ago, and this year snagged 'Lemon Meringue' on sale. I had vole issues at my last garden, but they must have preferred Lilies over the Eremurus, LOL.
Thanks, gen! I'd love to see your garden pics too :-)
Gemini, As my beds are mostly shady, I don't have a lot of great bloom shots. Here are Astilbe blooming among my Heuchera & Hosta. In the far back are really tall OT lilies that grey over 9' and bloomed later.
Oh, I love Astilbe! They were so lush and happy in my last garden, in a moist, woodland environment. They haven't been so happy here, in a dryer area and we had droughts the first 2 years I lived here. I remember all too well the difficulty in keeping color in the shady garden.
That is an OT Lily from the American series, I believe it's American Heritage. The large foliage is Verbascum thapsus (Mullein), that grows wild here. I allow a seedling or two to remain in that bed each year for its stately presence. This year, 1 of the 2 of them suddenly looked really cruddy and dried up, just a foot or two from the other. You can see it right in the middle of this shot. The American Heritage are budding to the right of the photo, and those blooming are American Spirit from the same series.
Thank you so much for this thread Gemini! Today was so wet and cold, I'm already lusting for spring. I love to see other's gardens and both of yours are beautiful! Here's a late May pic that gives me the itch to just be able to go prune in March. 3 more months...sigh
Stormy, is your question regarding the picture I put up? My name is not Jan, maybe you have me confused with another Jersey girl named Jan? My name is Louise, but since there a few of those roaming around, I'm known as Weeze :)
If your question is for me, I do not know the cultivar of Iris. I have had it for years and years, before I started keeping track of plants. I love Poppies. I wish I had more sunny areas for them. Their display is short lived but worth every splendid second.
Louise, i'm sorry, momentary brain blip! Yes, I did confuse you with Jersey Jan. She'd get a kick out of being called that. Louise, your photos are always so beautiful. Louise, it's funny, I am very sun challenged, but I keep finding more places to plant poppies!
This is a nice thread to visit, this time of year. It will shorten winter a bit. I miss my garden too.
Very lovely gardens you all have.
I took this picture, to help me remember, where things are and what can be added or changed, come spring. It's at the back of the property
So many glorious pics to wake up to this morning! Thank you all so much for sharing!
Stormy, I love those Lilies with the chartreuse Hosta- such a bright pairing to bring light to the shade!
Weeze, that Iris, Rose, and Salvia are a gorgeous combination! Don't ya just love it when a group of plants marry so beautifully!
Carolyn, your Agastache, Veronica, and Clematis (I think) are a wonderful combination! I think I see Lilies budding in there too,- so lovely. I can't think of the name of that kind of Clematis with the nodding heads (seems like it starts with a v?), but I love them- they're so graceful looking.
Polly, thanks so much! Yep, that is the Bachelor Buttons- they're about 3 1/2-4' tall, and probably look taller due to the lay of the land. Gardening on this hill, I've found the usual method of tall stuff in back, short stuff in front, doesn't seem to work as well. From the house and porches, I'm looking either down hill at the beds or they're elevated from my vantage point, so I kinda work in various heights through the beds. I'm a glutton for the look of many layers of color and texture, it makes it fun to view the beds from various angles. And your gardens are SOOOOO BEAUTIFUL!! Such pleasing textures and echoes of cool colors, and the surrounding natural landscape is such a gorgeous backdrop for your gardens. I'd love to sit in the middle of that wall of Lilacs- the scent must be Heavenly!
burn, lovely gardens! That's a sweet design for the pond garden area. In your 2nd pic that shows the edge of the pond, there is a bright golden orange bloom, what is that?
jmorth, your "pleasant slice" is such an appropriate way to say it- reminds me of slices of melon with berries, scrumptious combination! I had my first real success with Rudbeckias this year, and I'm hooked. They just can't be beat for sunny, dry areas. I need to try some doubles like you have there, and the Crocosmia budding in the middle is a nice touch :-)
This patch of Rudbeckias blew me away- I couldn't believe they bloomed so heavily the first year from seed. Polly, do you see the Daylily in the middle of them? That's one of the heirlooms you sent :-)
I look at all your wonderful pictures and have to remind myself (as I look at my barren yard) that next year I will have the start of a beautiful garden to. I'm laying out the flower beds, spreading newspaper, cardboard, straw and leaves to prepare for the spring plant. I wish I could afford to have a landscaper come in and bring in tons of manure, but will just have to do what I can. I'm also preparing an area for composting. Using the techiques suggested by Dave's garden members for strawbale and lasagna gardening, I hope to have most of the 1/2 acre ready to plant. Once I finish this yard I get to move next door and start on that 1/2 acre. Most of the second 1/2 acre will be roses, esp OGR and climbers in the trees. Til than I'll keep enjoying your garden pictures. Thanks for brightening up my days.
Mary, that's how I installed most of my beds too, with the newspaper, cardboard, and organic material- it works beautifully, I'll never go back to double digging! OGRs are a great choice here in Kentucky, I grow very few modern roses any more. What kinds of trees are you growing climbers on?
Both lots maple trees on them. Plus one pine tree and a baby oak. One lot has two old apple trees that my sister says are dead. She wants to remove them. I want to grow roses or clematis on them. We are discussing it. BUT!!! As I am the one doing the gardening and work, I will win the discussion!!! Ha!ha!
Carolyn, your shot is very nice. Love that white Agastache with the veronica. Veronica is a plant I keep overlooking. Thanks for the idea.
Polly, Your Lilacs smell even through this computer!! Your Hydrangeas border is just beautiful. Does it stay all white all summer long? Gemini is right, the overall effect of your gardens is serene and peaceful
Burn, Your gardens and pond are very colorful and lovely. That tall dark hedge makes a wonderful background for showcasing your vibrant blooms. Love the birdhouse.
jmorth, your photos and plantings are always spectacular. What is that green foliage growing in the center of your lilies?
Weeze, lovely Kitty. What is the green backdrop behind him? Love that green & yellow Hosta.
Gemini, That Rudbeckia & Lilies just reeks of sunshine. It must have been quite an experience for you to switch to your wonderful sunny gardens after shade gardening. Your enthusiasm for it definitely shows in all of your plantings. I have the opposite experience.
Mary, Welcome and good luck with all of your efforts. I, too, garden under a lot of maples and an apple.
Pirl, Your patio and Lily planting is just beautiful. I saw a gorgeous photo of yours last night in PF of lily, Sumatra. Is it as red as it looks?
The front section of my road side bed gets some afternoon sun, which Is where I grow most of my daylilies. I've since added some blue Penstemons and Salvias to mix in with the daylilies and echinaceas.
Pirl, I love the way your Lilies are looking right at you when you walk out the door- a thrill for sure!
Stormy, those Daylilies and Echies are gorgeous together- I have such a fondness for those sunrise/sunset colors, especially combined with blues. The Penstemons and Salvias will be a great contrast in color and form.
gemini, you've a discerning and accurate eye for detail...seeing the crocosmia signature in all those rudbeckias made me go back and look hard myself for although I knew there was 'Lucifer' in that area I'd not known it was in that particular pic.
Arlene - if that beautiful sight that you have was outside of my kitchen door, I would never make it any further than the back stoop. Your lilies are gorgeous.
Gemini - that clem is Hendryetta. She got really big last year, so I am kind of wondering what she will do this year. She doesn't cling like the other clems and is tied onto a smallish obelisk. I believe the clem that starts with a 'v' that you are thinking of is viticella - I have pictures of viticella somewhere...
Mary - I would really like to see your pictures with the blue Penstemons and Salvias. For some reason I have had difficulties with penstemons, but I am going to keep trying...
Venu - love your cat, he looks so stoic.
Burn - I really like what you have planted around your pond. It makes me think I should revisit the plantings around my pond.
Polly - what kind of hydrangea is that in your photo? I really love hydrangeas and would like to put in more...
J - the rudebeckia with the Crocosmia Lucifer is stunning...
Stormy, the green in back of the cat is Agastache Blue Fortune. Very easy, but the bees swarm. I moved it this fall to a less frequented area. Your combination of ecchies and DLs is gorgeous. What a great color marriage.
Neal, the little plants in front of the Hostas are mukdensias. I have not had much luck with them. They seem to survive but never give me what was prosmised, which is great fall color. They peter out in the heat of August and only reappear the next spring.
Mary, best of luck with your gardening undertaking. Clems are a love of mine, and roses once were. I agree with Jo Ann and Neal that lasagna is the best and easiest way to conquer the earth, but it must be given time to do it's thing.
Jmorth, I love crocosmia, but it doesn't seem to love me. What are your secrets?
Pirl, Pirl, Pirl..Those lilies must be the best alarm clock in the world. Who would want to sleep in when that beautiful display awaits?
Here's a clem shot holding the camera as far over my head as possible, looking down, without getting a ladder.
Carolyn, my hydrangea hedge is ---from the left---Pink Diamond, Limelight and The Swan. Behind the hyrdrangea hedge is a deck attached to the kids playhouse. The hydrangeas were so packed with various bees this year the kids could hardly go on their deck.
Beautiful pictures everyone!
Neal, I see the daylily! Lovely picture. It's the perfect setting for that daylily. It's happy there, I can tell.
Well, which hydrangeas did you get, Louise? We have to get the paniculatas here. I envy you that can grow the pretty blue or pink ones. We can also grow the oakleaf, but none of the oakleaf or paniculatas come in that pretty blue. I do have one blue one that seems hardy here, Dooley.
I love the tree peonies, but it's a lot of money, for something I would probably kill. You test them first, please, LOL. The one pictured is beautiful!
I ordered Dooley, along with Midnight Duchess, Izu No Hana, Kiyosumi ( I didn't want the Iris to be lonely with the Japanese names) Penny Mac, Mme. Emile Mouillere and Little Henry. On a sad note, I ordered from Rarefind and found out that the owner was recently deceased. He was a great guy and a lot of fun. I'm sure the Rhodie and Azalea lovers will miss him terribly. Along with many others.
My tree peonies are in test status. It will be probably be 5 years before I can weigh in on their success..or failure.
You have some pretty bearded irises there. I didn't know you had any of those. And you grow alliums, you stinker. I can't grow those. I've tried and tried, and I think my soils is just too light. My best friend grows the most gorgeous ones. And she lives about 50 miles to the east. You're 50 miles to the west, LOL.
Those Alliums arent the big deal they seem.The leaves are huge and spread all over the place.The plants dont dissapear until July,hard to fit annuals in.
The TBI thats in the album is DD's she brought it from the other place.
We hold our breath every year due to borer ,we never know when it will strike.We spray but doesnt seem to do much good.
The yellow peony is a peony tree Motherday gift last year.
I have never owned one and didnt have room at the old house.
Thanks for your nice comments
Jmorth love those Lilies and Rudbeckia shots.
Stormyla, those daylilies are gorgeous. Nice rich color.
Pirl very nice display. I wouldn't mind sitting in that corner with the lilies.
The kitty has a very nice environment to stroll in, Venu.
Ge1836, your lazagna garden bed, looks very promising. lovely outlined of it.
Enjoying seeing, what others have done with their garden.
Gemini_sage, the bloom you asked the name of, at the edge of my pond is a lingularia.
Here's a closer picture of it. Not the best, because of the bug damaged on the leaves. It's my first year with it.
Thanks, burn. That Ligularia is showier that I realized. Gorgeous planter, love the Lisianthus in there!
Polly, I'm pretty sure those are the common Dianthus gratianopolitanus 'Bath's Pink'. They're prolific, would you like some? They're so easy to start, I just yank pieces out and stick 'em in the dirt- that's all they require.
The above Daylilies reside in my "Salsa bed". Here's a pic of it in June. I'm kinda torn about the Poppies in there, they're a kind of pinkish red, and I thought they were going to be orange. They're so pretty I've left them, because I keep forgetting to save seed and grow them somewhere else!
Oh my goodness Mary!! You are the first person to recognize the breed. Most people think it's a goat because of the horns. I don't know the sex of that one. My brother raises them as a hobby, along with fancy chickens. He keeps me supplied with aged manure:)
I love the rams when they get their full horns grown. Does you brother sheer them for the fleece? When I lived in Calif my friend who owned Rambo & Lambo. He decided he wanted them trimmed and wanted me to do it, BUT he did not want to buy clippers, so quess what? I cut all their fleece off with a pair of scissors. Oh my word!! Never, Never again. !!! He now lives in Oregon and took them up there with him. Boy was I happy to see them leave.
My winter depression lifted a little to day. I noticed the the rose cuttings in the bathroom are starting to put out leaves. Several other thinks I have in there is also showing signs of growth. OH YES!!!
Peonies were heavily budded this year. This was just as they were starting to open. They were looking just beautiful a few days before my garden club's annual plant swap when it came a heavy down pour and shattered almost all of the blooms and of course I didn't get another picture before the storm and while they were in full bloom.
I looked just now .
The nursery was recomended years ago, I just forgot about tem until I read your post.
I saw Painted Tongue - a plant I love and had dropped back off my radar.
I will order seeds from Annies.
I am glad they have hardly any negs. in GardenWatchdog
Here is a picture of Clematis Montana Mayleen. I pushed the zone limits on this one. I love the Montanas, but they are not hardy to my zone. Figured I would try an experiment and it worked. What is not showing in this picture is my dryer vent is about 4 feet to the left of the clem.
I was wondering what kind of clematis Neal has in the first photo? I really love clematis and have such a weakness for them. Hubby was very happy when I stopped buying clems and started to buy other types of flowers...
Wow, that does look like Piilu, but I have had it 2 years without any sign of it doubling. Bummer! That is very pretty. But I'm guessing, too, that Lowe's probably doesn't carry some of the more exotic Clematis - or is it?
Pagancat, I got the Piilu one, this year. Did get a few blooms on it, even though it was small. Will see, what she will do next summer. It looks very lovely.
Stormy, your the second person on DG's, I heard has Pneumonia. It's very hard on the lungs, do rest up well. Wishing you a speedy recovery.
I love that white columbine.
Carolyn that clematis Montana Mayleen turn out really well. Love it.
This is a spreading rose. Don't know the name.
Pagan, I'd have to say the second one is definitely, definitely Blue Light. Nice, isn't it? Loves to spill blooms. So far mine is taking it's time to reach some height, but that's okay since it's so generous with blooms.
I was lucky enough to receive at least 3 colors of the epimediums in a trade from the same generous DGer that also sent me the Japanese Anemones. I received a total of 5 plants from this nice lady. I am hoping to see some color on the other 2 epimediums this Spring. None of my pictures came out as nicely as Mary's picture though.
Carolyn, I love the Violet and the Clematis! I've got to get another C.montana rubra, I lost the one I had when I moved here 3 years ago- the only one that didn't survive the move, and my favorite one of course! That wonderful vanilla fragrance I really miss.
Stormy, such a pretty Epimedium! I've had a yellow variety for several years that has been slow to increase and stingy with blooms, and received a deep rose colored one and a rusty orange colored one from a member at a RU a couple of years ago that have done beautifully though. Seeing yours, I must now find a white one!
Pagancat, gorgeous Clems! I need that 'Blue Light'!
Here's the best pic of the rose Epimedium- I found them difficult to photograph.
Thank you, everyone. That white Epimedium is youngianum. I have about 20 different varieties of Epimedium. They all came either from Garden Visions or Edelweiss Perennials. All cost less than $10 each. If you have never shopped at Edelweiss Perennials, give them a try. Great sized plants at reasonable prices with low cost shipping.
Gemini, those Epimedium are a bear to photograph! Yours is lovely.
Do any of you grow English Wallflowers? This past spring was my first time seeing them in bloom, and what a bright joyful presence in the garden! These bloomed the 2nd year from wintersown seed. The plants are still as green as they can be, with snow topping them, and there are several seedlings around them now too.
Morning everybody. I'm just going along enjoying all the beautiful pictures and dreaming of next year when my garden will be in and blooming and I can post pictures to show everyone. Keep the pictures coming. I need the pick-me-up they give me as I ajust to retirement and Kentucky winters. Thanks
Good luck with them, Ge. All of these Clematis are just wonderful.
Gemini, I've been considering trying some seeds for the Wallflowers. Yours are really nice.
I have really developed a penchant for SDB Iris. These were the first ones I planted about 3 or 4 years ago. They seem to work really well in a lot of places. This past summer, I added a lot more of them to my beds in the front of the house.
These are some I planted last summer.
Some didnt make it,voles or sluggs I dont know which.
I always had the yellow ones that grew like mad at my old house.
The iris on the left looks like yours.
I bought mine from MidAmerica and Snowypeaks both great vendors.
I think its particularly beautiful to see foliage and flowers with matching colors.
Carolyn, I've been looking through old packing slips but haven't found the one from Brushwood yet, and can't recall the name of that Clem. It's really more a lavender-lilac color than the blueish tone in the pic, closer to the color of yours, but perhaps not as pinkish.
I got Batik as well, it's a flower I could stare at for a long time, lol.
If you like the softer colors on shorter irises, I recommend Proton - bloomed the first year and has spread nicely. http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/showimage/107593/ The pic on DG looks a bit more apricot than my flowers did, maybe it got a little less sun.
I am hoping that I did not lose any of my iris this past year. We had so much rain that it was causing problems with the iris. There were these little brown blotches that were as a result of the constant wetness. A couple of times I cut back the affected leaves and sprayed them with a fungicide. I will not really know what is what until Spring.
Stormy, it's an oriental poppy so it's a perennial. I planted an epimedium this past spring. I think it was a white. Hopefully it will survive the winter so I can confirm the color next spring. Hope you're feeling better!
Carolyn, have you tried Japanese or Siberian Iris?
Mary, does Garden Visions sell on the internet? I'm a little confused about it looking at the website. But they have some great epimediums. I'm familiar with Darrell Probst, have seen his intros for years, probably from Heronswood, I think they carried some of his stuff.
Beautiful iris, Louise. I find the sibs and JIs so much easier to grow than the bearded. I get so disgusted with the foliage on the bearded looking nasty by mid summer. But I do love the flowers.
Thanks, Weeze. I was ordering some Poppy seeds last night and there was one that looked just like yours. They called it an Oriental Poppy, but also had it listed under Annuals. I went overboard on the Poppy seed ordering, but Holly is taking some of them.
I planted my first Japanese Irises this fall. A good number of those new Epimediums went in this area among these plantings.
Polly, I really don't know. They set up a hugh Epimedium display every year at the Hardy Plant Society Sale, and I usually buy from them there. Everyone should look for their local chapter and log onto their site for the sale date. Brushwood always exhibits and brings tons of Clematis. PineKnots also brings hundreds of Helleborus. I know that the society is very active in NY and New England and most of the areas in the cooler zones.
Venue - Hubby put in a couple of the Japanese Iris last year. I really liked them and would like to add more to what he put in. I have looked at Siberian Iris, but not gotten any yet, although I did add some more of the flag iris. Even found a nice red flag iris...
Mary - I will have to check the Hardy Plant Society Sale and see what the local chapter is doing. Sounds like a sale I cannot miss.
Geez, I don't know what any of my Clems are anymore! With moving them 3 years ago, losing some to the backhoe work last year, and now having misplaced my records, there's no telling. This one was growing up through a Lilac, which was about 5' tall last fall when the backhoe came through. Afterword, no sign of the Lilac whatsoever, then in spring, to my surprise, the Clem showed back up!
Polly ! I wish she would thin them, they have been in there for 20 years.
We have been here 3 years, that was the only flower bed when we moved in.
You must know how dense they are. I doubt a chainsaw would do the job.
I am just the mother so I keep my mouth shut.It really is a beautiful sight when they are blooming.
It is hard sometimes to be 'just the mother' isn't it? Love your photos.
Neal - I think your clem may be Warsaw Nike, but I am not positive. I was also thinking about what you said about your ohter clem not getting very tall - what type of pruning schedule do you have for it?
Carolyn, Brushwood shows Warsaw Nike as a more reddish color, but the bloom shape looks correct. I'll be looking through the catalog, and see if something rings a bell.
Polly, the more vigorous Sibs tolerate dry soil amazingly well, I've been pleasantly surprised by the performance of some of mine through 2 years of drought. For some that aren't so forgiving, and for some Japanese Iris, I'm going to use the bath tub we just removed from the bathroom we're remodeling. I plan to use mounded stones and soil to hide the tub, and fill it with composted manure and peat moss. This bright idea just came about a couple of days ago when deciding what to do with the old tub :-)