Monday, April 23, 2012

De-Neglecting (Bloom Day, part two)

 I've been working to un-neglect the Neglected Bed, which so far has meant pulling out the ivy that has been smothering it.
 (Sorry, no picture of ivy running rampant.  I bet you can imagine it, though.)

 I actually started the de-ivying about two years ago, with a plan to replace the rotting timbers forming the terraces.  But the ivy was all intermingled with the timbers, and it was actually the ivy, not the rotten wood, holding everything in place.  I got discouraged, and abandoned the project.  I stopped caring for this bed at all, the ivy grew over everything, and I named it the Neglected Bed.
Ivy growing through the timbers
At the end of March, taking a break from whatever other yard chore I was doing at the time, I started pulling out some ivy.  And more and more, until the surface of the bed was free from ivy.  I still don't have a plan of attack for the timbers, but I'll get there.
A pile of ivy
Look - there were plants under the ivy!

I took the following photos on Bloom Day, then decided to save them for their own post:

It seems I missed a few pieces of ivy here among the euphorbia.  This is the only time of year I like this euphorbia, with its version of "flowers" (later on, it gets sprawly and leggy).  But this makes up for it enough to keep, at least for now.

 My only non-purple phlox, banished to the neglected bed, is an attention-grabbing pink.

I used to have a blue and white columbine here, with giant flowers.  Its offspring has reverted to blue-purple, as columbine tend to do, but has maintained the huge petals.

Can I call this Gaillardia blooming?  Probably not. (A week later, it is in full bloom!)

And last Wednesday, my Sunsprite Rose had its first bloom of the year.

With all this going on (and more to come), I'll try not to neglect this part of the yard this year.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

April 2012 Blooms

Everything's blooming at once!  And I want to show it all off!  (But I don't have the patience to edit that many photos)  Here's a sizable sample:

An overview of the garage bed:  rue, moss phlox, columbine, geranium, and violets.

Up in the edibles garden, the strawberries are blooming.  So are last year's bunching onions and this overwintered kale, with flower stalks nearing five feet tall:

The red and yellow columbine have been filling in nicely over the years:

 Under the japanese maple, the green-and-gold I planted last spring have made themselves at home.

Over in the side yard, the black cherry is blooming, and is quite fragrant.

Around front, the catmint is already blooming.

So is this coreopsis, hidden among the daffodil foliage.

Over in the side yard, my pink bleeding heart is MIA.  But the white one has been very showy this year, seen here with a centaurea:

Both green and variegated solomons seal are up and blooming in the side bed, thought the ones in the upper garden are just breaking the surface.

Finishing up, here's my favorite iris blooming today.

Thanks to May Dreams Gardens for hosting the monthly Bloom Day.

(Also blooming today:  hellebore, periwinkle, creeping and woodland phlox (nearly finished), moss phlox, S-O-B (pulled today), spanish bluebells, camassia, anemone, pansies, lavender irises, mazus reptans, euphorbia, dicentra eximia (nearly finished), flax, and pasque flower)

Monday, April 2, 2012

April in the Woods

Yesterday I took a short walk along the C&O canal, just upstream of the DC/MD line.  The woodland was all abloom!

An allover carpet of green-and-gold
Chrysogonum virginianum

played host to Virginia bluebells,

Mertensia virginica


Phlox divaricata or P. stolonifera?  I don't know.

and a mystery yellow flower.

Bluebells also lined the canal.

More Mertensia

Overhead, a shrub had some exotic-looking red flowers.  And idea what this is?

A friend gave me the answer to this one:  it's a paw paw!
 Back in my own garden, I have phlox and green-and-gold growing.  I've planted bluebells in the past, but they don't seem to think my yard is woodsy enough.