Monday, June 29, 2009

Vertical Bells A Corner of the Front Garden

Here are featured three plants growing in the front shade garden. The Hosta Blue Umbrellas shots were taken after the last rain... when has it not rained? Well yesterday we made it through the Garden Tour for the library without a drip! The Hosta flowers look like jewels with the rain drops from two days ago and you can see perfect mini reflections of the host leaves in the tiny droplets. The deep purple of the Campanula trachelium is striking next to the green of other Hosta varieties. I love the delicate bells of the Digitalis Lutea as it rises above a sea of sweet fern.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Blooming Friday

It's Blooming Friday hosted by Katarina at Roses and Stuff
Be sure to visit her blog and see other gardens in bloom around the world. Here in New England it is finally feeling like summer and today was even dry with sunlight bouncing off all the leaves and flower petals. The air is cooler this Thursday evening, as I write this post, and outside fireflies are filling the night sky with their luminous glowing flashes, all in the name of courtship. I am offering an overview of the gardens, as seen from my barn studio and some details from within the north garden and the blueberry field. The hydrangeas are swelling along with currents and blueberries. The Catbirds have nearly wiped me out of the currents and all the birds are excited about the blueberries, so I must cover some bushes for myself very soon. The Cat Bird has my currents in it's bill and he was trying to get to his babies when I took this shot. The baby Cat Bird nest is hidden in a hydrangea bush. The Indigo Bunting is using the vacant Blue Bird house to perch and peek often lately. The indigo feathers are echoed in the blue waves of the Mount Holyoke Range in the distance. We are in between peaks here for now, with lots of dead heading and pruning going on. You can see my pruning assistant Nate busy dead heading the lilacs, and it is due to his faithful labor that we can look out over the gardens and not see hundreds of vertical shoots in most every shrub and small tree. The forms of the trees and shrubs have been sculpted this way over the years. Our largest Japanese Tree Lilac got hit hard by the ice storm last winter and is not flowering this year. It is usually like a white fluffy cloud this time of year and is greatly missed. You can see a smaller one next to it in full bloom. Flower Hill Farm is part of the 'garden tour', for our fabulous local library this weekend... much to ready out in my wild garden. Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Pretty Perfect Pink Petals of Poppies and Peonies

Dappled light made its way into the gardens yesterday... a treat from the rainy days and low light. Many if not most of the peonies and poppies have dropped their petals or fallen heavy weighted by rain to the carpeted ground. Botrytis is rampant and any plant parts with signs should be removed. These prissy pink peonies are the last to bloom and the largest blossoms of them all are a gift from the garden and former inhabitants of this land... it must be some forty years ago. The peony plant was dormant for many years, for there had been large trees growing near the house that heavily shaded it. It decided to wake up a few years after the medium size Rock Maples came down and I planted a weeping Japanese Maple next to where it slept. One June day it just began to bloom ... that area tends to get rather overgrown ... as much of the gardens and I had not noticed the leaves. It has been blooming strong ever since and is a testament to the durability of Peonies, when they are planted the right depth in heathy, well drained soil. The variety reminds me of a Sarah Bernhardt but I am not certain. There is also a single, a lighter and darker double pink peony still blooming as of yesterday. The papery pink Poppies are growing beneath some late blooming lilacs ... that were much smaller when the Poppies were planted. The shade seems to hold them back, so that they flower after all those growing in the sun have gone to seed. Though this year with so little sun, I am not quite sure what kept them from blooming earlier. Some bloomers just have their own inner clocks and bloom whenever they feel like it... not according to any set time table. Late bloomers are always worth waiting for.
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