Friday, May 30, 2014

SUCCESS - guerrilla gardening in my neighbour's yard

If it has not occurred to you to ask permission to garden in your neighbour's yard before, I say what have you got to lose? All they can say is "no".  If you can see it, consider planting it and if you are able to afford it offer to contribute the plants themselves.

In this case the vacant tree ring turned garden bed is behind our bench, which is a focal point, so I wanted to adopt it. 

 With our late spring this year the early-blooming "Ice Follies" daffodils are just now blooming and they look smashing. Next year I hope to see them blooming before the daylilies get so big, but this year I am just happy to see them at all.  "Pink Pride" daffs, randomly and equally mixed with the Ice Follies, will bloom after the latter are done.

Last fall I detailed this guerrilla gardening episode in my neighbour's front yard. Not the first time I had gardened in a neighbor's yard, but the first time without permission. 

It will be interesting to see if the daylilies get enough sun for any blooms. 
I will keep you posted.

Sunday, May 25, 2014


The tulip – Ottawa's official flower – was given as a gift in perpetuity to the Canadian people for having provided safe harbour to the Dutch Royal Family during the German Occupation of the Netherlands. 

Today, over 1 million bulbs bloom throughout the Tulip Route.
A traditional 'Canadian' look in front of the parliament buildings.

 Across the river in Quebec the displays continue.

While the tulips get most of the attention in their coloured-themed beds, I prefer the naturalized look of the daffodils that were also blooming along the banks of the canal.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014


I told myself that putting the tulips at the side of the house instead of in the front garden would keep them safer from the deer, but I may have just told myself that because their colours matched my orange/yellow/red theme in the Sun Garden.  

I also could have just tried 25 in the first year instead of 75, but some times you just have to go for it.  Maybe next time I try something so risky I will scale back on the size of experiment.  

Prints are clearly visible amongst the tulips stubs.

The weight and shape of them clearly indicating (hungry) deer.

What they left behind was actually fairly interesting from a close up perspective.

Even beautiful.  

But not as beautiful as the tulip in bloom.

If only I had planted them in the fenced-in back yard they may have survived and I would not be faced with this conundrum: do I rip them out on the assumption the deer will be back each spring and they are not worth saving or do I transplant them to the apparent safety of the back yard knowing they will not look as good in their second year? Any assumption that the deer will not be back next spring is foolish and leaving them in is not an option; their foliage is too distracting once it is passed its best to justify without the normally attendant vibrant splash of spring colour.  

In other words they need to pay their way.

What would you do?


Monday, May 05, 2014


Since I still have no blooms in my yard I thought for the 'end of the month' meme I would share some photos I took in the middle of the month, to demonstrate how much can change in two weeks.

The yellow branches of this unknown tree really stand out when they are surrounded by white.

Canada Geese are some of the first birds to return up north and don't seem bothered by some snow.

Two weeks later they have been replaced by puddles and bicyclists.

No more crossing the river; clear channels of open water were running down each back.

While further downstream an ice jam had formed. Really quite spectacular to see close up.

A bit of snow can brighten up any spot.

While the time between clean fresh snow cover and lush green new growth can look rather drab.

At least we are heading int he right direction and hopefully soon I will be able to share actual blooms from my gardens!