Monday, May 25, 2009

Gardening to the Max

Like some other garden bloggers out there, I've been busy in between rains trying to get the gardening work done before leaving for Chicago Spring Fling. It was an intense day of work yesterday as I battled the beasties (fire ants, slugs, and spider mites), deadheaded, transplanted (see yesterday's post for one of the transplants), fertilized, and tidied up beds.

The daylilies are still at the height of their bloom period. The daylily up top reminds me of a dreamsicle. The daylily below is one of my cheap-in-a-bag purchases called El Desperado. Or so they say. The description from the package describes it thusly: mustard yellow with a striking plum-purple eye, plum picotee and deep green throat. It has none of that. Basically it looks like the old fashioned Tawny daylily except that the petals alternate light and dark colors.

Okay, last daylily photo, I promise (for today anyway). There's still one more daylily to bloom in this photo. It's at the end of the rock wall and has the same colors as the last one in this photo only it's a double. And very prolific.

Okay, I lied. Here's one more photo of daylilies. But I didn't want to discuss them but rather the little red blooms in the background. I purchased a six-pack of Salvia 'Coral Nymph' and split it with a co-worker. They were very small plants at the time. Imagine my surprise when one of them bloomed bright red. Well that messed up my whole color scheme so I had to move it to this bed. Not that this bed really has a color scheme but it seemed the best place for now. It's a very brilliant red and quite lovely. I hope it can thrive well enough with the dappled sun it will get for most of the day until the end when it will get blasted by intense sun. Also seen in this photo is the hosta 'Elvis Lives' (love the name!) and Bamboo Muhly (Muhlenbergia dumosa).

As I mentioned before, part of my work yesterday involved dealing with beasties and other tough garden problems. I seem to be getting them all at once! I had blogged previously (see Slugfest and other garden battles) how my coreopsis had developed powdery mildew because of the rain and humidity. That was leading only to more decline and a greater population of pillbugs and other creatures I don't want. So I whacked them all back. I have no idea if they'll come back but since I know it was only going to get worse, I don't mind. I'll find something else to fill the void if they don't survive the whacking. Also seen here are several 'Victoria Blue' salvias and a baby buddleia, 'Pink Delight'.

For my bird friends I decided to make a little ledge on my water pot (that's Equisetum hyemale or Horsetail Rush in the pot). I've noticed the finches and cardinals occasionally trying to drink from this but they were never able to stand on something. So I built them a little bamboo bridge. Hope it works.

I didn't really do any work in this area of the yard yesterday. But I thought it was looking nice now that the hydrangeas were starting to bloom. The one in the foreground is 'Lady in Red' and the one in the background is 'Mini-Penny'. Eventually (as in a long time from now) I hope to remove the lawn to the left of these beds and create one big shade garden.

I leave you with a close up of the 'Mini-Penny'. It hasn't started turning pink yet but should soon.


  1. Your daylilies are gorgeous. I love daylilies and have many myself. The ledge is a cute idea, I love those little touches in the garden. Good luck fighting all the diseases and bugs!

  2. You can't have too many dayliles or pictures thereof! That dreamsicle hem is a beauty indeed!

    I'm looking forward to meeting you later this week!

  3. Hi! The garden looks delightful...I love daylilies and mine are opening just in time for me to be in Chicago! Isn't that the way it always is! Coral Nymph is a wonderful mild winter it seeded itself in a container. This year I am using it with a giant nicotiana and trailing sweet potato vines. Love your rock wall and the corner garden! What do you use for mosquito protection...they are terrible here? gail

  4. Gail - about the mosquitoes, hmm. They can be really bad here and currently are. This past weekend I tried a new organic product that is a mix of different plant oils. Well guess what? It didn't work worth beans! I have bites all over me. So I will just have to go back to a product containing DEET. I probably should anyway since West Nile Virus is prevalent here and I really shouldn't take the chance. Have you ever tried those things that make some kind of humming noise that sounds like dragonflies to mosquitoes? I haven't but have often wondered how well they work.

  5. Hi Jean, oh Lady in Red is such a hummingbird magnet. It self sows here in the gravel but I can't get it to germinate in the beds. I think it goes great with everything. It will be blooming long after the daylilies are finished. And those daylilies are just yummy! I fear the Liliums will bloom will I am in Chicago, in fact I know they will. Hope they hang on until I get back. There is never a good time to leave the garden! :-)

  6. Jean, I tried an new product from Whole Foods...I got a headache from the fragrance...I must be used to smells decent to my nose. gail

  7. Hi Jean, I was wondering if you could check out my blog, I have a couple of phots of plants I am trying to figure out what they are and I think one of mine looks like a plant in your photo above regarding dayLillies. Thanks so much if you could let me know what you think.


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