Never Enough Thyme!

Ok, that is really corny, I know, but I had to start somewhere. Days are flying by, and I am enjoying each and every one!
The spring ran by, and now it is in my favorite time, summertime, and that means daylilies. Perhaps some cold winter day ( I shudder at the thought), I will go back and revisit the spring garden. The weather has been so unpredictable, yet I have been fortunate in that area, as we have had just too much rain. No horrific storms or flooding here. I pray for those that go through that. For the month of June we had 9 inches of rain here in this part of Northeast Ohio, in comparison, 4 inches would have been just right. I don’t really experience flooding living by a lake that has a spillway. I have been happily busy in the garden, moving plants, adding new plants, and just enjoying the sights and scents. The daylilies are doing well in all the rain. The summer garden is the best it has been in years. I am seeing instant rebloom and many poly forms. Almost all of my daylilies have scapes, compared to last year when I had just about 41 daylilies that took the year off and didn’t bloom for whatever reason. This is Eyes on the Prize, in poly form. The typical daylily form would be three petals and three sepals, but this has one more of each. Nice touch for sure.
I have decided that I need to add more of the spider form of daylilies. This is Dancing Chevrons, one of the few spider forms that I have, and I have very few, only about 4 out of the 500 daylilies that I have. A spider form daylily is defined by how narrow the petals are, with most having a ratio of at least 4:1, which means the length of the longest petal must be at least 4 times its width. I didn’t have many, because I simply didn’t care so much for the look. I am slowly changing my mind.
I do have many daylilies that are considered to be Unusual Form daylilies, as they don’t quite meet the definition of a spider. This is an UF daylily, Speedo.
Well the season is off to a blooming good start, as the daylilies are running at least a week ahead of last year’s bloom times. I had many daylilies in bloom during June. The search for more places to plant more daylilies is on! I gained two spots by adding two more large pots to the deck.
Now I search everyday, for places to plant yet another daylily.
I will end with a wonderful orange daylily, Dragon Knife.
I did start many other postings, didn’t finish them, and didn’t publish. I will make an effort now to finish!
Happy Gardening!
And Bowie, my garden helper, is doing well.

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The Necessity of Winter

While I do certainly dislike winter, I also know that it is very necessary. I see it is even snowing on my blog. Without winter, there would be no spring to follow the required winter. Winter is required for this to happen.
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The beauty of spring blooms is so anticipated, yet I know it is the dreaded winter weather that creates such beauty. Spring bulbs require weeks of chill in order to display such spring wonder, making winter a necessary component for spring bloom. So I tolerate winter. In the garden, several steps are taken to ensure a good spring. Our weather has been a regular roller coaster of temperatures. We experience an arctic vortex with sub freezing temperature, only to have balmy temperatures in the 50s a few weeks later. This can cause many perennial plants to heave, with the iris being most prone to heaving. You can see the new growth of baby fans on this iris rhizomes, and to minimize the heaving, I place heavy rocks on the iris rhizomes that are exposed. The older iris tend to do better, and I try to place rocks on just the newly planted.
The younger azaleas also require some protection, not so much from winter weather, but from hungry rabbits. The rabbits tend to chew the young azaleas down almost to the ground. This should help. I also place shredded leaves in the wire bins.
Roses require some protection. I mound old potting soil around them. The climbing rose receives a burlap cover around its longer canes. There is a tomato cage around the rose that serves as a frame for the burlap. I hope that some day this climbing rose will cover the pergola.
So many perennials require the cold winter, not to mention the fruit trees that need the chill. I have two cherry trees that need winter.
I only mulch in new plants, along with this raised bed of daffodils, and hyacinths. Maybe not necessary, but I like to think that it helps. It makes me feel better.
The daffodils, as always, are peeking out, and I let them. It doesn’t harm them and they are just fine in the spring. The poppies also show their green as a promise of what will come. So we wait.
Besides the necessity of winter to provide what many perennials and bulbs need, I need the time to plan, read, and really do housework. All those things that I don’t do during spring and summer. So I don’t have spring cleaning, I do winter cleaning! Perhaps winter is necessary for me to engage in those activities. I try to remain positive about winter, and try to work through my to-do list. The sun is so low in the southern sky, that mid day, can be quite dreary. At least we are now beyond the winter solstice and each day will bring increased day light time. I get through winter knowing it is simply necessary.

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When October Goes

I have such mixed feelings about October. When October goes, it can only mean one thing—snow. 

The daylilies are gone, and it is the rare daylily to bloom in October.  The Stellas don’t count, they are just about always in bloom until we get hit with a killing frost.  Which makes me wonder, why can’t we get that trait in other daylilies.  Then again, would the fabulous blooms of other daylilies be so fabulous if they were more common place?  The stellas are yellow and start the season, and finish the season with that same yellow.  Many daylilies are labeled as rebloomers, but the truth is, here in northeast Ohio, they do not rebloom.  I typically have a few that rebloom, but it is a real toss up as to which ones will rebloom.  Every year, a different daylily decides to rebloom, and it is most often not the ones that come with the claim to rebloom.  You will get more reliable reblooming further south, and I do mean much further south.  This year Clothed in Glory rebloomed for me, and it has never done that before, and it is not listed as a rebloomer. I am thankful that it rebloomed, and it isn’t yellow.

I did have one lone daylily blooming away in October. It just kept sending up flower scapes all season long with it’s FFO on July 17th. ( FFO  = First Flower Out)  Baby Moon Café. Isn’t it cute? I have Baby Moon Café  in the field across the street, which is my overflow bed!

However, and most fortunately, October is the beginning for some gardening activity.  The planting of spring bulbs.  The one fall activity that I do so look forward to.   Last fall I did not do a major planting, only potted up a few for forcing.  This year I placed a large order.  I planned out this order last spring, as the gardens were filled with daffodils, and other spring bloomers.   I carefully marked areas that needed a bloom with golf tees.

The bulbs arrived from my favorite seller Van Engelen , their website is on my sidebar, and I highly recommend them. The UPS driver was very concerned with all the ‘work’ he was delivering!  I see planting bulbs as therapy, not work at all.

The bulbs were large and healthy. Here is a double nosed daffodil bulb. There is Bowie in the background, overseeing the bulb planting.
I ordered a bicolor, Classic Garden, a double pink, Candy Princess, a trumpet pink, Chromacolor, and a nice yellow/ white small trumpet, Pipit.   This order also included a mixture of Muscari , a few Asiatic and Oriental Lillies, and a few bulbs of Crown Imperial.   The Crown Imperials are impressive spring blooms, but they do stink.  If planting these, and I do recommend them , plant away from any sitting areas!  The plus side of the stink is that they will deter those pesky squirrels and chipmunks.  I have several planted among the tulips and I know it is why these tulips have not been disturbed over the years.
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The other word of caution for the Crown Imperial, which is in the fritillaria family, is that the bulb is different from most spring bulbs, in that it has a hollowed out center as you can see from the picture.

Because of this unique characteristic of the bulb, it needs to be planted sideways in the ground. This way water will not settle in the center and rot the bulb.   All other spring bulbs are planted with the root plate on the bottom and the pointed end up.

Well, October is quickly passing and the bulbs are planted, and there is snow in the forecast for the last day of October. I am closing up the garden, putting most of the hardscape away.  This is probably not totally necessary, but I know the items will last longer, and I have the room to store them.

I haven’t been on my blog much at all this past year, the time spins by so quickly, with computer issues, and life becoming busy, I just never got around to sitting down at the computer.  I have much more gardening to share, as the summer was very busy with special garden visitors.  I do have one last bloom to share, and this is my most precious bloom of all!   A new (and first) grandson!  What a joy and a true blessing.

Happy Fall Gardening

Posted in Daylilies, garden hardscape, Gardening, Perennials, Spring Bulbs | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Fifty Shades of Daylilies

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The color palette for daylilies is astounding, so much so that it could make you dizzy. I have one flower bed devoted to just the shades of pink. I believe that the number of registered daylilies is now well over 80,000. Just imagine that!! So many daylilies to choose from. So we really don’t have 50 shades, but more like thousands of shades. I’ll start with those in the yellow hues.
Sunday Morning, a brilliant yellow with a blazing green throat.
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Panther Eyes, a soft yellow with that dark eye. Stands out.
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Russian Easter, a soft yellow with a softer mauve eye. Like this one a lot.
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Cat Scratch Fever, a nice yellow with a blue/purple eye and edge. Then a close up of Optical Art, with that great pattern, and a ladybug.
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Now to a darker shade, orange. Citrix, a wonderful bloomer, with lots of buds.
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Tigerling, another heavy bloomer. This is an ‘older’ daylily.
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Not sure what color this may be, but appears to be a shade of orange. Tennessee Afterglow.
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Getting further away from orange, maybe closer to yellow, with Little Rainbow, another oldie but goodie. Thanks for this one Pat!
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Tiger Eye, a nice combination of two shades.
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A wonderful blending of red shades, with Joan Derifield.
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A lavender shade with Time to Fly. Showing a poly form.
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Dizzy yet? Let’s pause for a relaxing view of many shades.
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A softer shade of pink / lavender with Paper Butterfly. An early bloomer with high bud count.

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Storm Damage, another shade of pink / lavender

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Pebble in a Pond, great shade with a wonderful complex pattern in the eye.
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Lets go to a lighter shade with Border Music, with a clear white and dark eye and edge. The pinkish shade daylily in the background is Pitter Patter.
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Blue Eyed Butterfly
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A soft lavender shade in Magnificent Rainbow.
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Not sure what shade this is, Waxwing Watercolor, listed as a pale creamy orange, with a pale blue purple center and edge. I don’t know what shade it is, I just know that I really like it.
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A few more shades, perhaps this should go with the oranges, Web of Intrigue, super early blooms. One of my first ones to show up in June.
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Just Fabulous, and it is just that! I love the darker eye area.
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And when you think you have seen all fifty shades of daylilies, there are those daylilies that are just plain brown. Milk Chocolate.
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A big pink shade in Big Kiss
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I’ll end this post of daylilies with a pleasant grouping of shades that are in Sink Into Your Eyes.
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This could go on forever. I do believe that I have never seen this shade of green in a daylily, but I’m sure someone will someday have a seedling with this shade. This coneflower is Echinacea Green Jewel.

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Spring is just a mere eleven weeks away :) even though right now it seems to be fifty weeks away :(
Just a FYI, I didn’t read the book. The last good fiction I read was Cloud Atlas. Lately I have been reading nonfiction. The latest thought provoking nonfiction that I have read: Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn and Far From the Tree by Andrew Solomon.
Stay warm, the frigid temperatures make for good reading, just not outside.
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Looking for a New Year

Just didn’t order the massive amounts of bulbs that I generally plant in the fall. But I needed my fix so I went to the big box store in October and purchased a bag of hyacinths and a bag of Ice Follies daffodils. I decided to force them and they are in the little dorm sized refrigerator that is reserved for just the bulbs. I know from experience that I need to be patient and leave them alone in the frig for at least 12 weeks. I check only once a week for water levels and growth. Things are happening. All containers have visible roots, and a few have the signs of new top growth.
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I will be looking for fragrant blooms mid February in the new year.
On one of the last days of the year, the temps rose to the lower 50’s, so Bowie and I did some gardening, looking for a new year!
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Everything looks good. Just a few labels needed to be pushed in, and a few sticks were to be picked up. We pulled a few weeds. I was surprised to see so much green and it reminded me of a new year.
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Made a list of things to do in the spring. I had covered the new climbing rose with burlap that is secured around a tomato cage. We have had several days of high winds, but it has held very well.
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Those perennials that promise winter interest have held up under the heavy snow.

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We found an interesting growth of lichen on an old tree stump. I generally place a pot here, but this is kinda cool looking.
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Also used a tree stump to plant a few succulents. They also are looking good for the new year
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And of course the daffodils are sticking up their heads looking for the new year. This happens every year. If your daffodils are showing growth, nothing to worry about. I used to go out and cover them with potting soil or shredded leaves, but found it didn’t matter much. So I leave them alone to do their thing.
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It was a nice day to pull a few weeds and take a stroll through the gardens. Then that pesky snow returned.
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Bowie and I found a few signs of the new year. Now to go inside and plan for spring!! Happy New Year and I hope you all find signs of a good year to come.
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Late to the Party

>I should say, so very late to the party!! I just haven’t posted at all lately, life has been so very busy. I started to organize my thousands of pictures from this past gardening season, and I thought I should post a few of the late blooming daylilies that were enjoyed at the end of the season.
One of the many wonderful things about daylilies it that the different hybrids have different bloom times. Starting with the very earlys and ending with the very lates. This way the daylilies, at least in my part of the gardening world, can be enjoyed from June through September. This is Pumpkin Kid and it is actually a mid blooming daylily; however, it sent up rebloom scapes in the summer, something it has never done before, so I continued to enjoy this bloom until the frost did it in. This is the first of the reblooming version.

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Here is the rebloom of Pumpkin Kid posing along with the fall mums, and yes, it does look like a different daylily. Daylilies can take on slightly different faces depending upon the temperature, humidity, amount of rainfall, and soil conditions. It seems to me that it is the factor of temperature that changes the face of the daylily most often. Pumpkin Kid was more pinkish than orange as it bloomed in the much cooler fall temperatures.
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I actually have few late blooming daylilies, and am always on the look out for them. It seems that the very lates tend to be generally yellow or pink, as in Suntemple Spirit, a very late bloomer.
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And Orchid Corsage a nice pink unusual form daylily. This one is one of the last ones to start blooming, and it is listed as a midlate.
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I find it funny, how we gardeners are so excited to see the ordinary colors of yellow or pink, in a daylily when they bloom late. It does seem that most of the very early and the very late tend to be in the more common colors. You just see a lot of yellow early on and later on.
A really pretty daylily that blooms late for me and is listed as a mid late, is The Holo Deck.
It is a great growing Hanson daylily. It seems a lot of the late daylilies that I grow happen to be Hansons.

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Waves Become Wings, a very late blooming older Hanson, blooms late in a sea of daylily foliage.
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Yet another daylily that is late to the party, From My Lips. This one is listed as early mid, yet it has always bloomed later for me. It has been in my garden for several years now, and tends to start to bloom late in July. Don’t know why that is.

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Carnival in Brazil always comes late to the party and it is listed as a mid season bloomer.

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Frans Hals, is a very old daylily, registered in 1955!! I have three groupings of it in one garden bed, just because it is so nice and so late. I found this daylily growing in my yard when I first moved into my house some 35 years ago!! Glad I kept it.
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A brilliant late comer is Enola Gay, can’t describe this color, and pictures don’t describe it well either. It is listed as late and comes late. I have it planted right by my deck, so I can enjoy it. Here it is showing off in a poly form. Enola Gay is another Hanson daylily.

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Another late arrival is Ashwood Inferno, listed as mid late, and it did bloom late for me. It is also a new arrival, this past season was it’s first season in my garden. It was sent as a bonus plant from Richard Norris at Ashwood Garden.
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A consistently late daylily is Chicago Apache, a real beacon in the garden.
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This is a lovely late bloomer, not real sure of the name, I think it is Lake Effect. sorry about that. I should have organized my pictures much sooner, I am late doing that too.
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Then the snow came early!!
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Bowie is doing well. He has a warm winter shelter in my garden room, with his own cat door, so he can come and go as he pleases.
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One more late comer to the party is Baby Moon Cafe, it is listed as an early mid season bloomer. This is one that I planted this past spring in the field across the street. Since it is new this season, it could be confused on blooming time, but it was nice to have it come to the party late.
It takes a few seasons before newly planted daylilies adjust.
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Happy New Year and wishes for a good gardening season to come.

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Oops, I did it again!

a href=””&gt;Picture 005The road trip to Crintonic Gardens in Gates Mills Ohio was a most wonderful adventure. Well of course I brought home more daylilies in that lavender/ purple color, and even though I only had two spots, I brought home three. My sister in law so kindly looked away as the purple daylilies were dug.:) Best of all, it was a peak bloom day.
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Here is Curt, tending to the daylilies. He is always generous with his daylilies and has amazing seedlings growing. I added many more to my wish list.
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Just a few of Curt’s wonderous daylilies that I added to my wish list

One for Steve.

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No Man’s Land
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The ones that came home with me:Sins of Omissions, Unfolding Paradox, and Freudian Slip

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I can justify each one!! I had tried to get Unfolding Paradox for years, but every time I went to Curt’s gardens, he had the thing tagged up due to making crosses with it, so it was not for sale.
Well, Freudian Slip was needed for the name, and Sins of Omission, a very nice smokey purple with an orchid watermark!!!
Besides, Bowie approved of each new addition, and helped me pick out prime spots! I had to do some rearranging, and one older daylily was moved across the street to the field so everyone was planted.
I see a lot of grass in this picture. It is the largest area of grass that I have, but unfortunately there are huge tree roots under this area. I know, I have tried to dig it!

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Take a look at Curt Hanson’s daylilies, I have a link on my sidebar. And for anyone who has the good fortune to be able to visit in person, you will recognize this garden art!
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Happy Gardening, and Happy End of July!!

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