Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Garden Blogger Bloom Day April 2014

It is definitely spring in Central California! Rosa Berries and Cream...

and California native Heuchera maxima bloom above and below the fountain.

Dwarf blue marguarite, felicia amelloides, is back in bloom after taking a couple months off.

After spending way too  much time watching Carol Klein's Life in a Cottage Garden videos on YouTube this past winter I bought cerinthe seeds to try to copy some of her ideas. These little plants are sweet and I like the blooms but I think I need to try them again and see if I can have a more robust display.

The passalong yellow columbine, possibly Aquilegia chrysantha, is always one of my favorites. But I have created a bit of a monster and a little thinning is going to happen after the bloom period. Or pretty soon that is all I will have in that bed.

Rosa Cecile Brunner blooms over the umbrella table in the far corner of the yard, with a bit of variegated orange abutilon twined among it.

Butterfly Blue scabiosa blooms at the front of the bed being threatened by the columbine invasion.

Salvia Dancing Dolls is just beginning to bloom, backed up by a bearded iris.

Carnation Bliss is one of my recent carnation acquisitions. I would absolutely love it but for the fact that it is relatively scentless. One of the best things about carnations, in my opinion, is the scent.

Rosa banksiae Alba Plena blooms in the back corner, winding down both the side and back fences.

I thought these were Dutch Iris Symphony but they wouldn't be so blue if they were. Whatever they are, I love them!

The passionflower, Passiflora caurulea, has been putting out a few early blooms and the gulf fritillaries have noticed. For now there are just a few blooms and a few butterflies but soon there will be lots of each!

Rosa Flower Girl on the front garden arbor is its beautiful spring pink. As the weather heats up the blooms will become paler but still a welcome sight out the front windows. Elsewhere in the garden there are other blooms, including allysum, iberis, wax begonias, aloes, freesias, bearded iris, salvias, citrus, and hardy geraniums.

Spring is a floriferous time in Central California. Even after our disappointingly dry winter blooms run rampant across the landscape. California poppies, Mexican evening primrose, redbuds and more bloom along the roads and gardens are full of spring beauty. It is reassuring to see nature carrying on but those of us in this area are needing to rethink our gardens. Many changes are happening and many more are needed. I am holding to my vow of no new plants in 2014 (aside from veggies) and have been working on moving, dividing, eliminating, refining, and simplifying my plants and my garden design. So far I have managed to hold strong...and soon it will be too hot to plant so I will be safe from temptation! 

In the meantime, visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens to see other blooming gardens, and maybe some gardens that are still trying to escape winter. 

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Dear Friend and Gardener...

There is a new virtual garden club on the plot! Dee Nash, Carol Michel, and Mary Ann Newcomer have organized Dear Friend and Gardener,  a club for those of us who grow our own food, flowers, and herbs. Sounds like a lot of fun to me so I have signed up and will be posting on the things growing in my garden this summer.

Although it is pouring rain today (I can hardly believe it! Rain!) we have had some beautiful weather already and I have had a chance to start some seeds. So far I have carrots, beets, radishes, and lettuce sprouting in a raised bed and basil seedlings in pots waiting to be planted out in a few weeks. Fava beans planted last fall are just about ready for harvesting and peas also planted last fall are in full production.

It won't be long before the soil will be warm enough for tomatoes, peppers, and more so the fun is just beginning!