Bloom Thyme Friday: When the temps drop

The temps are dropping quicker that I had hoped for — at least more drastically than I had hoped for October. Seems the number 70 has been forgotten… 80 and 90 were very commonly heard from May until Tuesday. Now today we are hearing 50s, 40s, and 30s. I really should not be complaining about the weather as we watch our southern friends crawl out from under the horror that was Michael. Our thoughts and prayers are with you!

No, fall is not my favorite. I get so much more excited (many might say tooooo excited) about spring and the rebirth. 😂  By the way, as of today, I believe it is 158 days until spring. But, who’s counting!?!?!

Next for me is to don my coat and do a bit of fall cleanup. I confess to being one of those who doesn’t do much in the way of fall clean up. If you want to read more about what I do, read on here.  I do have bulbs to plant and that’s real exciting. More daffodils, crocus, tulips and garlic! It will be fabulous to see them in the spring! 🌷🌱🌷

 

BLOOM THYME THIS WEEK

Some of the roses are ready for a break, but some have been blooming like crazy. While I should be leaving the blooms on the shrub to calmly, quietly make hips and go to sleep … I find it hard to do that and have been cutting enough for a few bokays!

Even some of the perennials are showing off! Here are some going out with a bang…

Stokes Aster . One of the best rose companions.
Champagne Wishes / Easy Elegance Collection
Fun in the potting shed…

Head Over Heels / Easy Elegance Collection
View this week from my Potting Shed porch

While we are on the topic of weather… I have to confess that I do love the snow. More each year. The days that I spend “cooped up” with Mr. G when the snow is falling are some of the very best. Those of you who know him, know that he doesn’t stay cooped up long. He has to go out and blaze trails in the snow and that is fun too.

Whatever the weather, wherever you are … BLOOM!

Beautiful Work at the Biltmore

Every weekend I spend judging at the Biltmore International Rose Trials is a weekend immersed in beauty at every turn…

Beautiful friends.
Beautiful roses.
Beautiful place.
And, Beautiful Hats!

George Vanderbilt was serious about hospitality and horticulture and his legacy continues. It is the perfect place for such an event!

Friday evening we have a chance to meet new friends and renew cherished friendships in the rose garden … sipping wine and enjoying yummy food.

THE BEAUTIFUL “WORK”

Saturday morning we begin our “work”… with a delicious cup of coffee as we watch the enchanting fog lift over the garden. Then with clip boards in hand, we are up closed and personal with the roses.

THE WINNERS

Biltmore Winners 2018 Awards Day
Roses Entered in 2016

Oso Easy Urban Legend (R.’ChewPatout’) 
Chris Warner – Spring Meadow Nursery

  • Lord Burleigh Award for Best Disease Resistance
  • Chauncey Beadle Award for Best Shrub Rose
  • Purchase this rose here.

 

Princesse Charlene De Monaco (Meidysouk)
House of Meilland – Star Roses & Plants

    • Cornelia Vanderbilt Cecil Award for Most Fragrant Rose
    • George and Edith Vanderbilt Award for Most Outstanding Rose
    • Pauline Merrell Award for Best Hybrid Tea

 

Highwire Flyer (Radwire)
William Radler – Star Roses and Plants

  • Gilded Age Award for Climbing Rose
  • William Cecil Award for Best Growth Habit

 

Shining Moment (Radshining)
William Radler – Star Roses and Plants

  • Edith Wharton Award for Best Floribunda

THANK YOU…

Paul Zimmerman: 

Sending special thanks to Paul Zimmerman for his vision and his hard work as Coordinator of the Biltmore rose trials.

  • Because of his work, both professional and amateur hybridizers have a greater chance for their creations to be known.
  • Because of his work, the backyard gardener has more beautiful options for their gardens!
  • Because of his wonderful work, ARS President Pat Shanley awarded him a Presidential Citation for a job well done.

Congratulations Paul!

Paul, me and Parker

Parker Andes:

Pat gave another much deserved Presidential Citation to Parker Andes, Director of Horticulture , for his work and dedication to this project. Parker and his teams ensure the Biltmore gardens are at their best and stay true to the Vanderbilt vision.

And, special thanks to David Pike, CEO of Witherspoon Rose Culture and John Beaty of Beaty Fertilizers for sponsoring our cocktail party and awards luncheon. We sure appreciate you!

MORE FUN!!

Thanks for stopping by and don’t forget to stop and smell the roses!

Bloom Thyme Friday: Hydrangeas stealing the show!

Before we get to the blooms, let’s talk about my current little obsession … bottle brushes. I will never know why it has taken me this long to buy a set of bottle brushes but it did. Since I have a thing about glass, and glass comes to me from a variety of places, I am always removing labels and cleaning bottles and jars. These new brushes have simply changed my life — for the better. #happydance #iloveglass You can find more about my obsession with glass here.

BLOOM THYME…

There’s plenty blooming in the garden although not too many roses as I trimmed them back to discourage the Japanese Beetles. It has worked, they are fewer in number at this time. Perhaps there is another reason for fewer of them in the garden since Mr. G found and hung the Japanese Beetle Traps — one of his obsessions. Once the beetles were here, the traps few off the shelves. Note to: Tell Santa about Mr. G’s obsession with Japanese Beetle traps. #stockingstuffer  I know there are conflicting reports and thoughts on the beetle traps BUT, I live with and love Mr. G and we go with his thoughts on this one — he has done plenty of research. And puts them way out to the edge of our property!

Now for the hydrangeas! (Maybe another obsession, but we are NOT going there.)

One hydrangea is threatening to block my way into the potting shed. I don’t mind at all, it is a beautiful welcome!

Little Limes framing our entrance.
A very healthy Bobo. I have 6 of these. #favorite
Hedge of Annabelles
Limelight starting to bloom

OTHER BLOOMERS…

Sally Holmes and her neighbors.
I never tire of the lovely blooms on Ping Lim’s Music Box from the Easy Elegance Collection.
Comte de Chambord and neighbors – over the top pink! LOVE!
Oh I love this rose — Flamingo Rosita!!

Not sure what this Zinnia is reaching for but I love this color.
The Fawn is staying under the radar and the Japanese Beetles aren’t finding her.
Common Phlox   An over achiever — beautiful but I have to keep my eyes on this one.
Dare I say it … when I see these, I think fall. 😦

COMING SOON … A GARDEN SYMPOSIUM

 

The Indianapolis Rose Society is hosting the ARS Illinois Indiana District Conference and Rose Show Sat, Sept 8, 10 am – 4 pm — at the 4H Fairgrounds in Lebanon! (FYI: I will be installed as the new District Director in October!)

Cost for the public to attend the educational sessions is $10. We have some of the best of the best speakers coming from around the country and these sessions have been approved for Master Gardener Educational Credit. Click here to see the list of speakers! We would love to see you there! I guarantee you will have fun, learn a ton and see some of the prettiest roses on the planet!! There is even a lunch option too! ALL THE DETAILS HERE! 

HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE! Send me any questions you might have!

Bloom Thyme Friday: Bokay Day

The rain held off this morning and I was able to do some work in the garden. What started out as Japanese Beetle “bubble bath” day and garden “clean up” day, soon moved to BOKAY DAY. I just couldn’t help myself. With a garden the size of my garden there is always something to pick and the JB are SOOOOO attracted to the roses that they leave many of the other beauties alone. I became mesmerized by the bloom explosion that was happening today and decided that today was to become BOKAY DAY. So I’ll make bokays and share them. #favoritedays

Since I can’t share a bokay with each of you today, I thought I would share my favorite bokay makers and a few tips and tricks for your fresh cut bokays.

PERENNIALS (Bloom year after year)
Roses
Oriental Lilies
Yarrow
Coreopsis (Favs Moonbeam & Creme Brûlée)
Phlox
Dianthus
Bellflowers
Daisies
Stokes Asters
Ferns
Herbs (Lavender / Sage / Thyme / Mint)

 

ANNUALS (Bloom for one season)

Zinnias
Larkspur (reseeds)
Nigella: Love in a Mist (reseeds)
Superbenas  (Proven Winners)
(Favs Violet Ice / Whitecap / Royal Chambray
Senorita Rosalita Cleome (Proven Winners)
Herbs (Rosemary / Parsley)
Euphorbia Diamond Frost (Proven Winners)

Superbenas!


SHRUBS

Hydrangea (Favs Bobo / Pinky Winky)
Boxwood
Lilacs
Viburnums
Evergreens

 

MY MORNING HARVEST…

 

 

TIPS AND TRICKS

  • Morning is the best time to cut flowers.
  • Choose the freshest flowers — best to pick those not yet fully open.
  • Take bucket to garden with you.
  • Place in water immediately after cutting.
  • Let “condition” before arranging … even as little as one hour can be very helpful in their recovery and being ready for arranging. I go for at least 4 hours.
  • Cut under water if possible before adding to bokay.
  • Use preservative in water.
  • No greenery underwater… begins to decay quickly and that takes away from the life of the arrangement.
  • Every 3-4 days, recut stems, add fresh water (with preservative) to your vase.

P. Allen Smith’s Floral Preservative Recipe

Equal parts lukewarm water and lemon lime soda
One aspirin
Half a teaspoon of bleach

 

BLOOM THYME THIS WEEK…

Here’s a video of one of my evening garden walks this week after work. In the video you will see many of the annuals and perennials I mentioned above. Most of them are very hardy and have done fine in all the heat we have had this year. We do water occasionally, but not extensively.

 

Well, it is time for me to get back in the garden and continue with my original plan … Send more Japanese Beetles to a soapy “bubble bath” ☠️ and garden “clean up.”

 

HAPPY BLOOM THYME FRIDAY