Wednesday, July 25, 2012

COMMON DITCH LILY - photo update

I just love this flower.  I love that it naturalizes freely, I love its colours and I love that it will be available to me in Zone 3. 
 I also really love its doubles.
Sometimes I don't love doubles, they can be too frilly where simple would serve well, but in this case the more petals the more robust and intriguing I find it.

 Compare side-to-side with another daylily I got from Veseys. 
There is nothing wrong with it, and I like variety in the garden, but these simple reds don't hold a candle to the more complex orange for me. 

They also come in singles of course - check out the top left hand corner of the pic above - but I find a have more doubles than singles with these. 
Is that common or have I lucked out?  I am not sure.

Another shot that allows us to compare the 'double ditch' to its simpler neighbour.

To think these beauties grow wild at the side of the highway.

Sharing with Wildflower Wednesday and Outdoor Wednesday

Sunday, July 22, 2012

ROSE OF SHARON - photo update

The Rose of Sharon does not get as much sun as it really should and so has fewer blooms, but under a maple the size of ours I am happy to get anything that will bloom, so I have two Rose of Sharon side by side. 
Tall blue and short pink.

 I would appreciate any comments on the photography. 
What do you think about the various croppings? 
They all start with this image above.
 This is my preference. You can get added depth and contrast from the greenery in the background and still a close enough look at the details.
 My eyes actually linger the longest on this one because the detail in the petals is surprising. 
They looked so flat from far away but are gracefully twisted and textured.
 More for fun than anything, it was interesting to see how much detail my camera would capture in it's "close up" mode.

 The sun streaming through makes it appear ghostly. 
When seen in the shade, as it is most of the day, the bloom is a pale blue.

This is my favourite of the three.
We lose some of the colour but with the camera and sun conspiring to act as microscope the plant's inner workings are revealed.

What catches my eye here the most is the 'fallen pollen' that has collected on the petals.
Was it deposited by bees or breeze?

Sunday, July 15, 2012


Let's start in the Lily Garden today.

 This is my favourite, mostly because it is so different form the rest.  The deep red is pretty much black in the middle which contrasts nicely with the white tips.  In searching for the name for this species (which I did not find, so if you know, speak up!) I believe I found that the orange and yellow lilies I thought were "Grand Cru" are "Giraffe", or they certainly look it to me at any rate.

 This is more orange than red in the garden.

Taken with a flash since it was a dusk - sure makes the flecks on the  petals stand out.

 This is actually one of the pinks I am not that fond of.

However between the pinks I prefer this spotted version to the more plain varieties.

Now on to the LakeFront Garden
 I was quite worried that we would be done with the cottage and moved to Winnipeg before we got to see any daylilies in bloom, but the banana yellow one above was the second to bloom so far.  Clearly the majority (which are the beautiful but common orange ditch lily) bloom later in the season than the varieties I have added form Vesey's
This is a close up of the Yellow Loosestrife, which I have to say has been in bloom for quite a long time.  Can it be three weeks already? 

This beautiful iridescent  roadside weed is Viper's Bugloss  according to this amazing site for looking up Ontario Wildflowers.  
I have expanded the LakeFront Garden to incorporate a lot of them as well as Oxeye Daisies and Chicory.  
The overall effect of the blues and white together is quite nice, but more on that addition another day.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


When I first mentioned our decision to move to Winnipeg I suggested some of the bigger projects that I would need to focus on: the flagstone path, adding a new garden by the old tree and getting the moss border in around the Lakefront Garden.

I've actually done a pretty good job with it, and then some. 

One thing that was not on the list was the North Deck Garden.  It was going to be okay if this took a few years to get done. 
But who are we kidding? 

Once I see the potential - and happen have an endless supply of free plant material at hand (from local roadside ditches) - well what is one supposed to do?

At the front I have put Black-Eyed-Susans since I think they will require the most sun , behind them I have put Oxeye Daisies - and between and beneath them all - Sundrops!  At the back is a hardy geranium I planted just to soften the break line where wall and garden meet.  And while it is serving that purpose well, the job is much more suited to... daylilies of course!

I'll be taking out the geranium and adding it to the ferns at the front and putting in some daylilies here.  They have the right stature for the back of the garden.  I can just picture their bloom stalks pushing their way through the ferns, ensuring they will be noticed.

I said I was going to move a lot of Sundrops from the Lily Garden, and I was right.  Seeing the Sundrops in the LakeFront Garden still in full bloom while  the Lily Garden is bereft of Sundrops I realized that the Lily Garden is really not the right place for the SunDrops at all. 
It just does not allow them to be all that they can be. 
So I will move as many as I have time to, and will have all winter to figure out what to put in its place next year.

 I can already picture this time next year with the Sundrops' bright yellow blooms filling the space under the decks, along the water and up alongside the path.  They are really going to have a heck of an impact, just you wait and see!

Monday, July 09, 2012


Because I once bought a variety pack of lilies from Vesey's I allowed pink Asiatic Lilies into my life. 
I may never buy another variety pack of flowers again. 
I am sure some people love pale pink, but as you can see, I prefer vibrant colours reminiscent of sunsets and autumn.  I'm looking for summer heat, not a delicate spring wedding.
There are three or four in the front and one wa-aay in the back (I have circled them because their pale, washed out colour makes them hard to spot).
To make the best of it I'm going to move the one at the back into the group at the front.  Perhaps together they will be able to compete for attention with their livelier neighbours.  

As with the Fleabane and Columbine under the North Deck Garden, there are of course times when I will end up with pink flowers. For example, I won't ignore the free pink Columbine from my neighbour's yard in favour of going out and purchasing a different Columbine.
In that case, pink will do. 

Sunday, July 08, 2012


The Lily Garden is really hitting its stride.

Most obvious are the Asiatic Lilies, so let's cover them today.

These I got from Veseys a few years ago, listed as "Grand Cru", but when I search for a link I find all the other Grand Cru out there have red throats with a yellow exterior and mine are yellow in the centre with red tips. 
So what are these, could they also be Grand Cru?

And these are "Montenegro" which used to be a deeper red, as in the catalogue, but are now a deep rich orange.  This is fine, in fact I prefer it, I'm just curious as to what drove the change.

Friday, July 06, 2012

EPIPHANY - north deck garden

I was looking at this rather messy scene of browning Columbine and dying Fleabane and thinking:
  • when transplanting the way I do, it is not about what it looks like this year (all brown and scraggly), but what it will look like next year!
  • the pink Fleabane has come and gone before the white, is that normal?  
  • how interesting that there was a lone Daisy and a lone Sundrop under the north deck

Brave souls who have left the comfort of their traditional homes and sought out new adventure. 
A metaphor for our decision to move to Winnipeg? 
Certainly, it worked for the Sundrop, which is healthy and stronger than those still in the Lily Garden.

Seeing these two survive on their own is a reminder that many of the flowers I am planting 'here' and 'there', could also work 'there' and 'here', and 'over there' too.

These two bright spots inspired me to see in a flash what the garden will look like when it is flooded with them, both the Sundrops and Daisies together.  A great pairing. 
In this particular garden it will be interesting to see how they work with the Fleabane and Columbine, but it will be a few years before I tackle it -- because it got me in turn thinking that the South Deck Garden is an even better place for the Sundrops!

There they can fill in between the ferns and I will achieve that "no bare soil" look I go for.  They are the right height and from how they veritably scream out for attention from the greens next to the Dry Creek Bed, I know they will be fantastic here too.

I will keep give the recent transplants to the North Deck Garden a chance to show me next year how they are taking before I start introducing any other plants there, but I will not pull out these early settlers either. 

If they are patient they will one day be heralded as trendsetters by their kin.