"One of the most delightful things about a garden is the anticipation it brings."

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The sunny side of the pond on a rainy day.

In between waiting for the phone repair guy and the rain I did manage to run outside for awhile yesterday.  I managed to get two packets of zinnias sown including 'Envy' which I'm anxious to see.  I decided to plant it around the echinacea in the butterfly garden.  The other,  'California Giants', were planted in the sunny "driveway garden" mixed with lots of other annuals.  I also moved a few plants out from under the ever growing Japanese Maple.

I'm not sure I've ever taken pictures of the "sunny" side of the pond before, I thought this would be a good "before" picture.  There are large trees that give quite a bit of shade to most of the back, so this is about the sunniest part I've got to work with.  It always looks empty this time of year, but most of the plants here grow quickly and soon you can hardly squeeze down the path.
Towards the front to the right is Nepeta 'Walker's Low' a favorite of mine and the neighbors cats.  I've got quite a bit of it planted around this area.  It's just about to bloom and it's foliage has a very unusual, but good smell.  To the left of it is Agastache, it seems to love this area as well.  It gets tall purple flowers that the bees just love.  Behind them are oriental lilies, phlox 'David', rudbeckia and fuchsia.  The fuchsia gets huge here, it seems to thrive in the sun unlike most of the fuchsias I've grown in the past.  I also planted some of the iris I moved from the front yard.  The clump was actually large enough to divide.  I've been wanting some for back here for quite a while.  In the far back corner is a Butterfly Bush (buddleia davidii).
A new plant to this area is the Chocolate Eupatorium, it will have white flowers September to October.  I've read it can self sow freely if given optimum conditions, the soil will be on the dryer side so that may slow it down a little.
I planted it by the Bluebeard (caryopteris) 'Worcester Gold' which has these pretty gold leaves and blue flowers later in summer.
From here you can see the rudbeckia and lupine.  There are lots of seedlings of larkspur and bachelor buttons coming up here.  Most, if not all, were self-sown.

In the front is Deutzia 'Chardonnay Pearls' with a new Penstemon 'Husker Red' behind.  Since not much is blooming now I'm depending on lots of colorful and interesting foliage.

Here are signs that blooms will be coming.  The hollyhocks are growing quickly.  They've got quite a few seedlings nearby too.

Another sign that blooms will be here soon, the lupine has some buds getting larger.

Lots of these pretty, drippy columbines are blooming in the shadier corner of this area.

I checked the rain gauge this morning to find we had 1 inch since yesterday afternoon.  It doesn't sound like very much after reading about other gardeners getting up to 6 inches in one day, but it sure felt like a lot walking home  from my daughter's school last evening.  It's supposed to dry out and reach the mid-60's today.
Pin It


  1. Catherine, You have such a variety of pretty plants. Many I remember from my long-ago gardens and it brings back such fond memories. Maybe today you can get back out in the garden. We've got a sunny, nice breezy day - perfect for getting outside!

  2. It doesn't look empty at all Cahterine. Looks great! And oh yes, my how those 'Chocolate' do self sow. The more sun the more the seedlings. It can be a pest, but I always enjoy it in my garden for the purple foliage and nice white blooms. It looks fantastic with rudbeckia. Have fun today, I'm off to the garden!

  3. I just love looking at your gardens! Very pretty, I would love to walk around and touch everything.....we have a 60% chance of rain everyday through Sunday, sigh....

  4. Your gardens are lovely and so lush looking. I love seeing all the different plants you are growing.

    We've finally been getting some much needed rain down here, with more to come.

    Hope you get to play out in your gardens today.


  5. I think everything looks full and lush... not empty at all. It's just beautiful! Enjoy the day! -Jackie

  6. Your garden is looking fantastic. I really want that caryopteris. I'll have to look around for it, and see if I have any garden cash left.

  7. I think your garden is looking great Catherine, not at all empty. You've got quite a few plants I could covert too!

    I've been meaning to ask you for a while, but what is an "LPN"?

  8. Good luck with Green Envy. I grew some from seed last year and didn't get too many blooms before the end of the season, but the few that came were very cool. The plants were so tall and narrow that I wished I'd had something small and fluffy growing around the base.

  9. Rain or shine your garden is always a bright spot! My lupine doesn't have buds yet, not that I noticed while chasing the little guy around the front yard. I have tons of buds on poppies though. I just seeded the poppies you shared at SAGBUTT. Do you think they'll get blooms this season?

  10. I have to agree with everyone else and say your garden doesn't look empty at all. It looks quite full and pretty to me. I can imagine how much it fills in by comparing it to mine. I tried that white flowering eupatorium and it died! One of my failures. So no worries about it spreading here. Good luck with all your new additions. I bet they love it and do well for you.

  11. Everything is beautiful!!!! Man...I need to quit my job and stay at home....I don't think The Hunter would go for that though....LOL!!!

  12. Empty? I think not. It is gorgeous and 'to die for' in my opinion. Mine is absolutely bare in comparison. But I keep looking at yours and looking at what you've planted and trying to get more squeezed tighter together. It'll take some time.
    Beautiful Catherine and your hard work shows!

  13. You have so many different textures there. I love it!

  14. Everyone has such pretty columbines like your, they make my plain Rose Barlow look so dreary :-) I have tried to grow lupines a couple of times but they always die for me or I have killed the poor things. I think they are so pretty. Wish I had a big pond like yours. Mine is just more of a water feature.

  15. I can't believe you consider this empty, LOL! I'm a fan of Walker's Low Nepeta as well (not that it's all that low in my garden) but my cats don't pay attention to it unless I cut it and spread it out for them. Spoiled little buggers.

  16. Your garden is looking wonderful.... such wonderful selections. I love the Deutzia gracilis 'Chardonnay Pearls', added mine last year and it is ready to bloom.
    Be aware that the Eupatorium rugosum 'Chocolate' gets really big and bossy with lots of shade and moisture. I planted three and after last year's wet and cooler weather, their stalks were more like a woody perennial. It self seeds indeed, but not if you cut off the white flowers! I grow mine for the foliage alone! Beautiful pictures.... soon the garden will be burgeoning for you!

  17. Oh, Oh, Oh! Your garden looks just beautiful! You have a great collection of color, texture, line and form going on over there!! :-) Happy Spring!

  18. Mildred - Thanks! I did get out for a little while and it was great.

    Tina - I think anytime I see bare dirt I think it looks empty :) Maybe I'll try to dead head it a little, I don't mind some volunteers.

    Darla - Hope it's not too rainy. I'm glad the sun came back out, it ended up being a nice day.

    Flower Lady - I'm glad you're getting the rain you need. I hope you get just the right amount and then you can get back and enjoy your roses.

    Jackie - Thanks, one of my big lavateras ended up dying, maybe that's why it seems empty to me.

    Kim and Victoria - You know, I think it may have seedlings under it. I've had it for many years, it's worth the money!

    Prairie Chicken - Thanks :)

    Nutty Gnome - It stands for Licensed Practical Nurse, in some states LVN and the v stands for Vocational. It's a one year nursing program and we have to pass state boards. I could do most of the same things as an RN, except give meds through IV's. I loved it, but it was pretty stressful. I just stopped working about 5 years ago.

    Joanne - Thanks!

    VW - I wonder if it'll bloom here then, I know it stays warmer longer there (right?). I hope I get at least a few so I can see them up close.

    Melanthia - I bet you find lupine buds soon, they are on both of mine. They usually bloom in early June.
    I'm not sure if it's too late, but you might be able to sprinkle some around in the fall, that's when the others would be self sowing.

    Kathleen - I've had many plants die that are supposed to easily grow in any soil. Maybe you should try it again.

    Dirt Princess - I think you should quit :) Tell him you have to much gardening to do :)

    Linda - I am always squeezing them in, or moving them around so more will fit :) I don't like any dirt showing!

    Susie - Thanks, trying to keep it looking good between bloom times.

    Lona - I love your Rose Barlow, and would like to have one or two here! I also really love your pump pond!

    Susan - Dirt = planting space to me :) Plus there are lots of seedlings and they just look so tiny. I just need to be patient I guess.

    Teza - Thanks for the warning. It's on the dryer side and maybe I'll keep it that way. Otherwise I'll be sure to dead head. I love 'Chardonnay Pearls' too, it's got a lot going for it!

    Shady Gardener - Thanks! There does seem to be a lot going on, sometimes I think there is too much and it doesn't flow very well. I guess that's part of my learning.

  19. Hi Catherine! Nice gardens, and that new rabbit looks very cozy on the first photo! Do your hollyhocks get rust in summer? I have the old-fashioned ones and they always get rust.

  20. I love your garden! The textures and colors all work together. The Chocolate Eupatorium wouldn't grow here, but the native is very invasive! ~~I've been trying to get hollyhocks established. I planted them for my mother, in memorial....but they have never bloomed! gail

  21. I love your garden & I think it looks perfect. It's interesting to see someone TRY to cultivate lupine. It's native here in NS Canada and is a terrible bully! It grows in ditches, and sometimes on the sides of the highways, you'll sometimes come across huge patches of it -- very pretty. We love the plant, but no one in there right mind puts it in their garden. A lot of your plants I've never heard of before (probably won't grow up here); so I'm looking forward to following their progress in your garden this summer.

  22. Tatyana - Good eye! The rabbit has a new home here, my little one loves it. Yes, my hollyhocks get rust too, luckily it's not too bad until the blooming is almost done. It works its way up from the bottom.

    Gail - Thanks. I was a little afraid to plant Eupatorium because I know it can get weedy, I think I'll try to dead head it and hopefully that'll help.
    I hope you are able to get your hollyhocks to bloom. I don't think they bloom the first year. Hopefully you'll see some flowers this summer!

    Sandy - It is interesting to see what people choose to plant and in other places gardeners are afraid of it. I always think that when I see people planting horsetail. We do have wild lupines here, but they aren't invasive as far as I know. Thanks for joining in. Now I'm going to see if I can find your blog :)

  23. Enlarging the first photo gave a great tour of the area. I put in a couple small lupines this year. Yours looks ready to put on a show.

    The chocolate joe pye weed plant I have wilts when it's hot and dry, but comes out of it when watered or it cools down in the evening. It always blooms well, though.

  24. Lovely, Catherine! Your sunny-side-of-the-pond is certainly set up to put on a fabulous show of blooms!

  25. I just love the display of all your tasty garden treats!


Thank you so much for taking the time to visit and leave a comment. I try my very best to answer any questions you may have, but usually don't have time to respond to each comment. Please leave a link to your blog so I can visit you in return.