BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: NOTES, LISTS & BUCKETS

Tis’ the season to” take note”. I love notes and lists. Like Santa, I’ll be making lists and checking them twice. My lists will include plant winners, losers, and new ideas!

REDESIGN

One of the things that becomes so obvious this time of year is who has outgrown their space and needs dividing or who needs to be replaced. As well as, where the garden design may need a tweak. This is one of my favorite parts. I really have to hold myself back from letting my creative juices go too crazy and start tearing out too much. But, it’s hard as there are so many new plants and so many new ideas! Right?! Mr. G and “his look” will help keep me in check. 😉

I can tell you now that my tall Bright Eyes phlox have suffered this year with powdery mildew. It’s been so hot and so humid that it is no surprise! White Bright Eyes not only suffered she was engulfed to the point I cut her all the way back. So I need to rethink her prominence in one of my garden beds.

LABEL PROBS

You have heard me talk about my love for oriental lilies and how I went the extra effort to save them from the late freeze. Well, most of my effort was in vain — as I feared it would be. So, when I did leave the house for the first time … I headed to Lowes and quickly grabbed several things including several bags of lilies. Remember those weird, scary first times to be out this spring – masked, gloved with heads down. Regardless of the shopping trauma, I was thrilled to see my fav Casa Blanca lily bulbs and bought two bags. To date, ALL of them have bloomed deep pink. BUMMER. 

I have already placed an order for Casa Blanca lilies at Brent and Becky’s Bulbs – a much safer bet on getting what’s on the label I think. I have never had this happen before but this is a very different year!  

From last July…

Today … whoever she is, she’s pretty but kinda clashy with my apricot roses. 😏

BUCKETS

I don’t know about you but I love buckets, especially metal buckets! And, if you visit my garden you will see buckets strewn around in almost every garden bed. Sometimes visible and sometimes tucked away almost hidden. They are there for those times I go to the garden just to walk about and things need a trim. I ALWAYS take snips with me. LOL And, most ALWAYS need them. 

This time of year you will also see little buckets with soapy water dotting the area and dead JBs. But, you don’t need to see that again this week. My post a few weeks back was surely enough to hold you on that one. 🙄 If there is anything you want to see or know about Japanese Beetles, you can “experience” that on the previous post HERE.

BUCKET CHALLENGE FROM TWO WOMEN AND A HOE

There are so many wonderful people in my garden world but Jan Bills is one of the most wonderful of all. In her book, LATE BLOOMER, a book of tips and tricks around gardening in the second half of life, she includes a Pink Bucket Challenge

QUOTE FROM HER BOOK: THE PINK BUCKET CHALLENGE

“Each day after work (NOTE: she designs and installs gardens for others), I challenge myself to get in my garden accompanied by a $5 pink bucket purchased at a local garage sale. My objective is two-fold: visit and weed my gardens daily without feeling inundated while serving two important facets of life: my health and my gardens. Once my bucket is full, I retreat or not, the choice is mine. This stress-free and trouble free practice gives me permission to do only what is reasonably required and expected. I set the parameter and expectation. This simple little ritual leaves me guilt-free and weed-free. Perhaps you’ll grab a bucket, fill it once or twice and then retreat to your favorite garden chair. I believe it is just as important to be present in our gardens as it is to work in them.” Jan Coppola Bills.

Thanks Jan!

I truly believe that gardeners of every age and stage need reminders and permission to just “be” in their gardens. 

MY FAVORITE BUCKET 

This sweet bucket comes from Mr. G’s dad’s family. They were farmers. This was a simple tool used in their everyday life. No matter what’s inside this bucket, it is always filled with memories. When beloved family members are no longer with us, the simple things from their everyday life go straight to our hearts and keep us connected. Don’t you think?

I especially love this bucket when it is filled to the brim with delicious bokay makers!

BLOOM THYME

We are moving to that stage where colors are getting intense making me so glad to see all my white hydrangeas who calm things down. While I was taking pics this week of my hydrangeas, I had to come to terms with just how many I have. So I made a list! 😲

  • 7 Annabelles
  • 13 BoBos
  • 3 Little Limes
  • 4 Pinky Winkys
  • 2 Limelights
  • 3 Twist and Shouts

HEALTH CARE

Just had to share…. I am one of those people who go to bed excited about the first cup of coffee I will have the next day. So, imagine how happy I was to see this bit of health care wisdom on social media this week. HAHA

 

Friends, so glad you stopped by.

It’s still crazy out there in the world. I am praying that you are well and have plenty of time this week to grab your favorite “health care” drink and just “be” in your garden and enjoy all that God has provided. 😘

Bloom Thyme Friday: Love Hate Garden Relationships

This morning I got up extra early just to grab my coffee and a blanket and head to the sun porch to greet the morning. It was so wonderful.

Before we get started know this… regardless of the title of this post, I don’t “hate” much of anything. I just like some things”more.” Spring is an exception in the other direction. I am completely over the moon crazy about spring and all that it means and all that it brings.

Fall.

How can anyone not like the cooler temps, vivid flower colors and God’s magic of the changing scenery. And, it’s hard to beat the cool mornings. I do love all those things… but I miss my outside time, flower picking, collecting fresh herbs for cooking, summer nights, hummingbirds and finches when they are so yellow.

Few things say ‘fall garden’ like cosmos and a blue sky. Cosmos: Purity. These Cosmos have now reached about 10′ and are simply amazing in the breeze!

Morning Glories.

Pretty blooms. Magical in the morning. So healthy. And, sometimes — SO INVASIVE! If you plant, be careful of variety! I didn’t plant any this year and they are everywhere. And, I forgive them.

I am very curious to know how “Grandpa Ott” made his way to the patch of sage. If I ever did plant “Grandpa Ott” … it was years and years and years ago. But isn’t this bloom amazing!!!

Yellow Trumpet Vine.

(Campsis radical f. flava) A beautiful native that the hummingbirds flock to.
That drapes beautifully over our pergola that holds our facing swings.

Garden devouring Yellow Trumpet vine… pretty and drapey. I love drapey.
Another shot of “drapiness” from last year.

I love the cozy feeling this vine gives our swing time. BUT, it has made us crazy. It is popping up everywhere and we may never get it under control. I still see it for sale but I wouldn’t recommend it in my area. Resist.

POTTING SHED OVER CROWDING…

I am beginning to bring ‘inside plants’ that have been outside this summer and ‘outside plants’ that I want to overwinter in my Potting Shed/Garden Office. I am only half way through the process and there is little room left for working!

But, I love how it looks full. I will be crying out for help this winter as the darkness and dryness threaten to take them from me.

But for now they are lush and beautiful…

Love these two sitting side by side.
Yep. There is a lot more plants to bring in. Where will they go? There’s not much room left — even on the potting bench. Do you have any growing “room” to rent?

 

BLOOM THYME THIS WEEK…

Fingers crossed that fall lasts a long, long, long time.🍂

Bloom Thyme Friday: A quick look back

This week as I was putting the finishing touches on some upcoming presentations for local garden clubs, I found myself going back and forth through all my pictures to find just the right ones to use. Currently I have over 13,000 on my iPhone! 😳 Going through pictures is not an easy task but very rewarding!

I saw so many garden pictures that I fell in love with all over again and thought you might like to take a look back with me. Maybe remembering warmer days will make these bitter cold days we are having a little warmer too!

A rainy May gave way to some beautiful, if soggy, blooms of Francis E. Lester Rose. I love how when you look through this arbor you see the open gate across the garden. Sometimes it just works and this time it did.

 

The reblooming Bloomerang Lilac had a stellar spring and as advertised, bloomed off and on throughout the season. A reblooming lilac has been something gardeners dreamed off. Thanks Proven Winners!

 

Then there was rose pruning season. Time to get started in the garden. GRATEFUL for a large cart that hooks up to the tractor.

 

Saying goodbye to the boots. #jobwelldone

 

I had forgotten about the sweet little cosmos germinating! FAV!

 

Then there was the Mar/Apr American Rose Magazine that featured my garden–A Gardener and Her Tidy Mess. THANK YOU ARS!

 

And, oh yea, the boot “situation”. #drama 😱  but I LOVE my new boots. You can read about that here

 

This daylily though. I have to look up the name. It was spectacular.

Way to go wind, rugosas and birds  — creating a special moment in the garden!

A bokay to share. #myfavforsure

Yes, I loved looking back, but am totally excited that spring will be here in 59 days. I just bet you are excited about that too! If you had to choose one favorite garden memory of 2017, what would it be? I’d love to hear!

Happy Bloom Thyme Friday!

Bloom Thyme Friday: Celebrating Overachievers

Today we celebrate overachievers!

This summer we have had steamy, hot conditions and tons of rain. I mean R A I N. When it rains, it RAINS. Rain coming down like never before. Inches and Inches of rain. Most of us are well aware that roses like water BUT they do not like being drowned. I have roses out there who are asking for a life jacket. GULP!

But, there are also those overachievers … rain or shine they just keep doing their thing.

Here are 5 of my current favorite overachievers:

PINK CARPET ROSE
This blooming machine does not care if it is rainy, does not care if the Japanese Beetles come to town, or does not care if the rain doesn’t come. It is also forgiving of the huge tree that is encroaching upon it’s very being!

It just blooms and grows in the enchanting way that I love — not quite upright — not quite a climber — not quite a rounded shrub — just rambles around, hugging up to the fence and covering the ground in that perfect cottage garden way. It sure gets an A+ in my garden! The pictures here are of a group of 3 pink carpet roses.

YARROW
I have a love/hate relationship with Yarrow. Regardless, I will always have it in my garden.

It IS lovely.
It comes in so many colors.
It works well in a vase.
It is a welcoming host to so many good bugs
It is loved by pollinators.
It dries well.
And, it has medicinal properties.

Grow it but, keep an eye on it, it will take over and you will hear the low cough of it neighbors as they gasp for space!

DAYLILIES
So much bang for your buck. I really thought all the rain we’ve had this summer would be difficult for the daylilies. It has not been. They have done wonderfully and filled my garden with lovely blooms! Warning: here comes a ton of pictures!

HYSSOP

Hyssop is a herb that is truly a beautiful garden plant and beautiful compliment to roses. However it is a part of the mint family assuring it’s place as a major overachiever. The pollinators cannot get enough of this beauty and neither can I. Hyssop is also considered one of the Biblical herbs as it is mentioned in the Bible many times. One of the most heart wrenching passages mentioning hyssop is John 19: 28-30. Read about that here.

DAISIES
While daisies are not my favorite usually, this year they have stood up to the rainy conditions in a wonderful way. On the days when we are seeing the garden more from the inside than outside, the daisies stand tall and proud and are providing a bright light in all the gray. So, let’s hear it for the daisies! True to self, they are definitely exceeding their space this year, so I plan to divide them in the fall. I’ll have plenty of extras to share!


Just checked the weather and they are predicting a perfect day tomorrow. Low humidity and 80 degrees. Perfect. After a busy week, I need a day in my garden. And, after the pounding the garden has had this week — it sure needs me.

Hope tomorrow is just perfect for you too.

Happy Bloom Thyme Friday

 

Bloom Thyme Friday: Arranging Things

I took Wednesday off to get ready for a class I was teaching on roses at the local library. I wanted to have time to make bokays to have for door prizes! The dreaded Japanese beetles who had descended a few days earlier and an all night rain meant there was a chance that no “suitable” roses would be found for my bokays.

So I woke up early eager to get started and I was greeted with a cool, peaceful, misty morning. A morning perfect for gathering flowers! Sometimes you just feel you have God’s stamp of approval on the task at hand and this was such a time! #grateful

I loaded up my wagon with buckets of water and a nice big container to hold the weeds and dead heads I found along the way.

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The fruit of my labor…

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There are few things I enjoy more than a morning in the garden to gather! Unless it’s arranging the “gathering”! I forgot to take pictures of all the arrangements but here is one…

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TIPS FOR YOU

Last week at Rosefest  I did a mini workshop on flower arranging. It was such fun! Here are some tips I gave those who attended for extending the life of their bokays.

  • Morning is the best time to cut flowers.
  • Use sharp snips or pruners.
  • Choose blooms not yet fully open.
  • Place in water immediately. (Take bucket to garden!)
  • Re-cut stems under water before adding to arrangement.
  • Remove leaves that will be under water.
  • Use flower preservative in water.
  • Change out water and recut stems every day or two!

On this Bloom Thyme Friday, I wish for you a beautiful, peaceful, misty morning to be in your garden and flowers to pick for your bokay!

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Bloom Thyme Friday: Boot Update

I am not sure who of you said, “You won’t want to wear the new boots in the garden—they’re too cute.” Well, that almost happened! I looked at them for two weeks and wore “other” boots. (The original boot post is here.)

But, today was the day, up and out in the garden early and the boots were on.

It was a full day of gardening and I gave them a workout! I can now report I made the right choice. They are not too “cutesy” for real work … actually these boots are amazing. I totally recommend Bogs!  I even have my eye on another pair!

Don’t judge but I had a fashion shoot before getting them dirty. (And they sure are dirty now!)

Yes, the Bogs are a winner


In other garden news… Look at the Bloomerang Lilac. Beautiful, fragrant and a rebloomer!

 

The Dogwoods are going crazy. This picture does not do them justice since I have 4 large Dogwood trees around the deck. Don’t you just love Dogwood trees!

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!


Happy Bloom Thyme Friday!

 

Bloom Thyme Friday: Sunshine Daydream

Look who’s coming to join my rose family, Sunshine Daydream!

Star Roses and Plants introduced this grandiflora beauty a couple years back and I am excited to introduce five of them to my garden this year. I think they’re going to look just perfect next to some lovely bell flowers I have!

Note: Just heard from Matthias Meilland on Facebook who told me that this rose has won 13 Awards, including an AARS.  💛🌟💛

Star is very serious about regional testing and this rose has been scoring high points for excellent disease resistance all over the country! For more details… read on.

While my favorite color of rose is pink (I know you are shocked.), yellow comes in second!

Look at the dreamy picture below. Yes, this rose looks to be one that dreams are made of and won’t it look so pretty in bokays this summer.

There are several more new ones joining my rose family … so stay tuned.

What new plants are you introducing?

The Language of Flowers

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Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to tell those you love that they are special to you. To me that message is best conveyed with flowers and food …a special dessert … a special meal … or CHOCOLATE. (Chocolate is food right!)

The Victorians were serious about their flowers and even developed a “love language of flowers” that included herbs, shrubs, roses and more. Don’t you just love that! These arrangements were often given in a small nosegay called a Tussie Mussie. Mothers of that era were directed to teach their daughters religion and the art of making a well-made bokay. Talk about your priorities! 🙂

Since we do not have the advantage of floral dictionaries common in Victorian days, we might have to explain the flowers offerings we share. But, I’m thinking it might just be worth the effort to make someone’s day.

Here are a few of my favorite herbs and flowers and their meanings….

Basil: Best Wishes
Black Eyed Susan: Encouragement
Daisy: Beauty, Innocence
Parsley: Joy
Pink Carnation: Gratitude
Rosemary: Remembrance
Lavender: Devotion
Lily of the Valley: Sweetness
Lemon Verbena: Enchantment
Red Rose: I love you, desire
Pink Rose: Appreciation
Yellow Rose: Friendship
Lavender Roses: Love at first sight and enchantment
Zinnia: Thoughts of absent friends

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FROM ME TO YOU…

I am virtually putting together a Tussie Mussie for you. It includes yellow and pink roses with a touch of rosemary, basil and lemon verbena. 🙂

HAPPY VALENTINES DAY!

💌💌💌

 

What Fall Brings

Once I “get over” the fact that summer is over and spring is far away, I can nestle into fall and all that it can bring to the garden. Beautiful colors. Gorgeous seed pods. Luscious rose hips. Blooming Grasses.  And, to the gardener. Slower pace. More time to think. More Potting Shed time. And, pumpkin spice everything. 🎃 😉

Tonight I am taking advantage of some Potting Shed time. As most of you know, this is such a special place for me. A place to work, play and pray. All with a view of the garden.

Potting Shed View
Potting Shed View

This has been quite a fall. Nice rains. Plentiful sunshine. Moderate temps. And some very lovely blooms.

Like these…

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Campfire from First Editions … a new rose to me and one I am loving a lot!
East to Please Up Close
Easy to Please Up Close
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Easy to Please
Lions Fairy Tale from Kordes
Lions Fairy Tale from Kordes
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Lions Fairy Tale from Kordes

 

Aloha
Aloha
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Cherry Pie and a friend 🐝
Sweet Drift
Sweet Drift from Star Roses and Plants

And the grasses…

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I hope you are having a wonderful fall season full of beauty and extra time … and plenty of pumpkin spice everything!

🎃🍁🍂🎃🍁🍂🎃