From My Carolina Home

Quilting, cooking, reading books, gardening, crafting, sewing, photography and more


23 Comments

Winter Lights

Winter Lights is an event at the NC Arboretum for the holiday season, and is just magical.  It is a major fundraiser for their programs and exhibits, and you can attend any evening in December through the 31st.  We went on the last warm night before the recent cold snap and snow fall to enjoy almost 500,000 LED lights.  Tickets are only available online and members get a discount, see the exhibit information at Winter Lights. No affiliation, just fun.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

The first view of the thousands of lights is in the parking lot, where the trees are lit in red, green, purple and blue.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

This light show was called Twinkling Topiaries.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

The blue orbs turned green after a moment, then red and back to blue.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

The gumdrop lined path led through a red and green lit covered bridge.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

White lights drew the visitor onward to see what was next.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

As we got near to the quilt garden (I’ve shown this when it was in bloom last spring), we heard Christmas music.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

A light show was synchronized to the music, with the quilt blocks flashing in colors lighting up the star patterns. This show was called Dream Quilt.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

It was enchanting to watch!

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

The large Tree of Light, two columns and wall of lights behind it were also changing as the music played.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

So fun we stayed there for several songs, just watching the light show and enjoying the music.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Finally, moving on to the Shimmering Stream part of the show, all white lights cascade from the trees.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

There were Reindeer Games, a couple of fun things to play with. One was a tic-tac-toe game, where you touched a button on the board and it lit up a square on the game lights. We played one game, with DH playing with green lights, and I was the white snowflake ones. I won.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Snowflake Way was a covered light walkway with snowflakes hanging above.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Candy canes and lollipops adorned Rock Candy Cottage.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

If you were cold, the Cocoa Shack had hot beverages.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Still on exhibit now is a really fun indoor exhibit called Wicked Plants, all about poisonous and prickly plants that can harm.  Set inside a run-down Victorian home, there are fun interactive things to see, and a really interesting ‘murder mystery’ inside one of the rooms.  You looked around the room and tried to figure out how the victim died.  DH and I did the mystery, looking at the ‘clues’ and examining the ‘corpse’.  There is a cabinet in the room with printer’s trays in it.  When you think you have solved the mystery, you pull out the top tray.  Depending on the answer to the question, you pull out another tray lettered B through E.  That tray will tell you if you are right or not.  We got it right.  I pulled out one of the other trays to see what it said, and it told the reader to go look again.  Wicked Plants will be on exhibit until January 7.

Back outside, there were three firepits where you could stop and get warm.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

There were lit figures here and there, like this blue heron. There were more but this was the only photo that came out well. It is very hard to get good pictures of lights at night.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Some of the Bonsai trees had lights too. These were brought into a greenhouse area to protect them from the harsh cold.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Another one had blue and white lights.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

Back out to the parking area, we headed home after a very fun evening.

Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum ~ From My Carolina Home

We are planning to see the Lake Julian show before the season is over. I like these smaller light shows in natural settings better than the huge ones with lines of traffic winding through parking lots.  Happy Hanukkah for my readers celebrating the Festival of Lights this week.

Do you enjoy light shows like this? Are there any near you this holiday season?

Sharing

Take Me Away!

 

 

Advertisements


32 Comments

December In the Garden – Snow!

December mornings have been cold and grey these past few days. Fog in the valley shows the layers of hills between our mountain and the next ridge.  This might have to become my header photo for winter.

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

Friday morning dawned colder still. As I looked out the window, I noticed that the snow had begun to fall. It was just a dusting at first, then a little later I noticed that the driveway was starting to get covered.

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

I watched the bird feeder for quite a while, as they came and chowed down.

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

A bit later, the patch of clear pavement on the driveway was gone.  The pile of snow on the post is a bit taller too.

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

Winter wonderland isn’t it!

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

The birds kept working on the seed, and the suet cake.

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

By mid-afternoon, we had somewhere between 4 and 6 inches, depending on where you looked.

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

Beautiful serene and quiet, here is the snow on the rhododendrons in the back.

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

The road going down the mountain has not been spoiled by any cars, too dangerous to try.

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

We are snug and warm, with a fire going in the fireplace, turkey and dumplings for lunch, and Christmas movies on TV.  Plus, being ‘snowed in’ means I can sew to my heart’s content.  The snow on the branches is captivating, I cannot stop taking pictures of it!

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

But, elsewhere in the garden in December, my white amaryllis bloomed. Beautifully! Four spectacular Apple Blossom blooms in white with a blush of pink.

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

And the most exciting thing, the red amaryllis that has bloomed for four years, is starting to put up a leaf shoot. This will be the fifth year if it blooms again!

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

Did you see the Super Moon this week?

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

Before the snow, the deer came by again. There were three in the front of the house.

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

And these two were in the back at the same time.

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

Another picture a few days ago, the dawn light was gorgeous with the orange in the sky. I wish I could have gotten a really good photo of it.

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

More bird watching.

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

A few days ago, the leaves were finally gone from the trees, and the mountains next to ours could be seen.

December in the Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

Now, today, everything is covered in white, and the low clouds almost obscure the mountain view.

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

One last look at the rhododendrons.

December Snow ~ From My Carolina Home

Did you get snow this weekend?

P.S. If you have time, go see The Man Who Invented Christmas, and take the kids.  We enjoyed it!


20 Comments

November in the Garden

November is finally getting cooler, more like real autumn weather.  I’ve been waiting for the right time to plant some bulbs, and finally got the perfect time.  It was a cool day earlier in the month, plus the forecast was for rain for the next several days, so I could be sure all the planted bulbs would get watered in well.  I gathered up the bulbs I had purchased a month before, some tools and bone meal, and set out to find spots for all of them.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I started the planting with the crocus bulbs. They are planted fairly shallow, so I put them between the rhizomes of my iris plants. Since I had divided the irises last spring, there was plenty of space. Adding the crocus bulbs will give a longer bloom time for this bed near the front door. I threw some bone meal in with each bulb. Some places I could scratch out a long trench and plant several at once.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Hyacinths were planted in a random pattern in the middle of the front bed, scattered just like nature does.  I am hoping for a fragrant display in the spring.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Then I put the pale peach ruffled daffodils in the brick planter between the asters and the irises there.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Next thing I knew, looking at the planter the next morning, the bloody squirrels had dug up some. I had wanted to put some green plastic fencing over the bulbs, but thought I had another day to get it done. So, I fixed that.  The fencing did keep the squirrels from digging in the bed after that, although DH noticed one sitting on the brick looking at the fencing like he was trying to figure out what to do next.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Look who stopped by, a beautiful young deer.  This photo was taken through the screening from the Carolina room on the backside of the house.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Very young, likely born just this past spring, his antlers are just beginning.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

His family has been eating my hostas, but I don’t mind at this point. They will die off soon anyway. I planted more crocus bulbs between the hostas. I have one little clump of them there now, and wanted to add more.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The island of land created by the circle driveway needed some color. There are azaleas there, but I have wanted to add daffodils there for some years. I planted gladiolas in this spot years ago but they never came up. I suspect the squirrels dug them up and ate them.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Bigger bulbs meant deeper holes, plus this area has a ground cover of vincas making the digging more difficult.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Down on the south side of the island, I planted more daffodils in this open area where I had some azaleas taken out a couple of years ago.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In another area of the garden, I created another stand of daffodils. All total, I planted 155 bulbs, and we will see how they do come spring.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Up on the veranda, I planted a gold chrysanthemum in the large pot next to the front door. The torenia baskets were finished, and looking bedraggled so they were taken down and the plants removed.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

There was a frost in the forecast, and my tomato plant was still heavy with tomatoes.  So I picked them all, and pulled up the plants to clean up the pots.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home<

I put them on a plate to ripen inside. Some may never ripen, but that would be OK.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Amazingly, days later, one had fully ripened and others were looking like they were coming along. It has been nice to eat them as they ripen, and there are more to come.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Moving inside, the Thanksgiving cactus bloomed with just five blooms total.  I repotted it this fall, so that might have made a difference.  Here, three red and one pink bloom came out first.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

One white one came out later.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A month ago I bought a white amaryllis, you all know I love white flowers. Just days after potting it up and watering it, several leaves had grown and the bud was coming up.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A few days later, the bud is getting taller on the stem.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

And this past weekend, a beautiful flower is opening with the promise of three more to come.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Gorgeous isn’t it, this white with a pink blush is called Appleblossom.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Outside, the trees have come into fuller color, and the bird feeder is in full use.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Looking down the driveway, nice golds and oranges in view.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Looking over the house to the mountain behind and the very tall trees that surround us.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

There is still a bit of green yet to change, but overall it is autumn here.

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Here’s a look at the meadow, lovely!

November in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I haven’t seen the turkeys in three weeks, and I think they have moved on for the season.  I wish they would come back as I love watching the males fluff and preen for the females.

What is going on in your garden now?


23 Comments

August in the Garden

This has been a really hot and humid August, normally the peak of the heat is gone by now, but not this year.  Of course the plants love this, but it means we haven’t gone hiking as much as we like. My tomato plant in the pot is finally showing signs of ripening fruit, plus the parsley is going wild. I really love the yellow calibrachoa flowers with the parsley, the green and yellow draw the eye to the lush corner.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I had to add a cage from an old bird feeder to the front flowerbed for the huge and heavy Cherokee Purple tomatoes to have a place to rest. The weight was pulling the branches down and breaking them over the top of the support cage.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Nearby, the wonderful pink daisy, a gift from a friend, bloomed again. Surprising as I thought it was done.  The color is just stunning.  Thank you, Bonnie H!!

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

All of the white begonias continue to bloom, both in the bed and on the veranda, growing nicely.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The torenias are winding down. I need to get out and pinch out all the dead blooms. They would likely bloom profusely again if I would.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The few blooms now still attract the most lovely of pollinators.  I think this one is a Spicebush Swallowtail, with the orange spots underneath and blue on the open wing backs.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This beauty dined on the dianthus pollen for quite a while.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I like the red leaves on this pink begonia, but it hasn’t grown as large as I hoped. I think it is getting a bit too much sun, the ones in pots on the veranda are bigger.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I put some garden lime on the hydrangeas to make the flowers more pink. The blooms came out this icky color at first.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

But the latest one is this lovely color!

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

My phlox is preparing another show, a few blooms are showing up and I expect three large heads of flowers in a few more days.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Impatiens and begonias spill over the pots on the veranda near the front door.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The two African violets love the humidity, and have doubled in size. They also bloomed nicely, now on the downside of the blooms.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The largest pot has three plants, but I am still disappointed in the flowers here. The lobelia has refused to bloom and the begonia hasn’t bloomed in a month. The coleus at least has some interest with the variegated leaf.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

But over in the east corner, the red geranium fairly glows next to the white petunias. In the back, the yellow daisy has bloomed again too. Pink coleus is getting very tall, and pink petunias spill over the edge of their pot.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Bringing the bounty into the kitchen, parsley and an heirloom tomato are set out for a salad.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Fresh parsley leaves are scraped from the stems, chopped and added to lettuce for a nice contrast in greens.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Spinach is added, and the heirloom tomato is cut into bite size bits. Lovely colors!

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A few days later, two more tomatoes are harvested for dinner.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

We ate those, and then harvested these beauties on Thursday.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I nipped out to one of four basil plants for a few leaves.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Caprese salad is so lovely with homegrown Cherokee Purples and fresh basil from the veranda. Lightly dressed with a homemade balsamic viniagrette, it made the perfect first course for a grilled dinner.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Back in the garden, the Better Boy tomato is coming along, looks like I’ll have some slicers soon.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

One more look at that parsley, I am just so pleased with its growth.

August in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

What is growing in your garden?  Are you harvesting tomatoes and veggies?


27 Comments

Late July in the Garden

It is hard to believe, but I haven’t done a post about my garden in a month.  There has been a lot going on between the Christmas In July hop and the Safelight Project, but I know some of you like to know what is growing and flowering on our mountain.  Today, I’ll show you how my garden grows. I have taken photos of this group several times over the past month, and it just keeps getting prettier. The vibrant red geranium is set off nicely next to the white petunias. That pink variegated coleus is getting really tall now too.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Lettuce and garlic are coming up well in the pot on the right. Calibrachoa in three colors planted in two pots bloom only sporadically. The daisies in the back are done.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

White begonias are overflowing several pots on the veranda.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

After having my Summer Luncheon and giving away a bunch of day lilies, one of my guests dug up the white iris in her own garden she didn’t want anymore and dropped them off  on my veranda with a gerbera daisy. Those went into the ground the same day.  I love getting new plants!

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The phlox is getting a bit taller, and the color of the flowers got a bit lighter.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Fresh parsley is wonderful for cooking, and this one is doing well with the yellow Calibrachoa.  Some of the parsley went into the shrimp risotto we had for dinner this week, adding a wonderful fresh flavor.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Multiple basil plants are giving me lots of fresh leaves for caprese salads with heirloom tomatoes from the farmer’s market.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

These are Cherokee Purple tomatoes, cannot wait for them to ripen!

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The tomatoes in this pot are coming along too.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

These are cherry tomatoes in the front bed, hoping for a good harvest here too.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Early in the month, the mornings were crisp and cool, perfect for sitting outside in the early dawn hour, listening to the birds. I found it was a great time to get some pictures of the choir in their natural setting.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Apparently there was a meeting scheduled, but I didn’t get the memo to attend.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

There were still plenty of birds visiting the feeder too. This young female cardinal stopped by.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Goldfinches stay here year round.  A male and female were in the tree, looking around and taking their turn at the feeder.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Now that I know what the wood thrush looks like, I have seen him quite often.  Oops, brain glitch, this is a purple finch, thanks, Jan!!

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Other mornings dawned foggy, lasting a couple of weeks, giving us humid, and (for us) hot days near 90°F (32°C).

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

There are a bunch of apricot gladiolas on the mountainside out back, I think some were planted by the previous homeowner and some may be volunteers. Either way, they are difficult to get to. But DH got out the limb lopper and managed to get some blooms for me to enjoy in vases in the house.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I put them in vases with some of the pinkish hydrangeas and a few tall purple hosta blooms. They look really good with my Stacked Bricks table quilt.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

After those were done, it was time for the yellow gladiolas to bloom, pretty aren’t they!

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Our resident skink made an appearance.  Usually he runs away with any movement, but this time I caught him from the veranda while he was hiding below near the hydrangea.  He ran inside the drain pipe, then slowly peeked out to see if the coast was clear.  I think there is a good size family that lives here, and I like that they eat a lot of bugs.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The snapdragons are still going, and I put the white iris in with them.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

White petunias bloom nicely in the front flowerbed next to more snapdragons.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A woodpecker watches as I water the garden.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The hydrangeas are still blooming too.  After I took more pictures of the gorgeous blooms I deadheaded the bush.  This lavendar color is so clear and pure.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I did add some lime to the top in the hopes that I’ll get some more pure pink blooms like this one.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This one is blue to lavendar on the same flower, such gorgeous colors!

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Looks like the African violets are going to bloom again too, unlike me they love the heat and humidity.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The northern flickers are back too.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A friend gave me this adorable birdhouse for the garden, and it looks perfect in the big pot next to the front door. I have been a bit disappointed in the lobelias, usually they give profuse vibrant blue flowers all summer long, but this year they aren’t doing as well.  The chocolate variegated coleus is getting bigger, and the begonia is blooming a bit too.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

So, that is the garden in July.  The torenias stopped blooming for a bit, I think they got stressed when we were gone to Lexington for a few days.  They are beginning to bloom again, but will take a couple of weeks to fully come back.  I did see the hummingbird one morning while watering the flowers, she came up and hovered right in front of my face.  It was a magic moment, and I watched her in wonder.

What’s going on in your garden?

 

Sharing

Gardens Galore


25 Comments

Early May in the Garden

The garden is coming alive again, finally!  It seemed like everything just turned green overnight here, but actually the trees really leafed out while we were gone for a week.  Still, the transformation from bare limbs to verdant green means spring is well and truly here. Our driveway down the mountain is glorious, and the overhanging dogwood is still in bloom.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

So, a trip to the garden center was in order to pick up the torenias, and a few other plants to turn the veranda into an lush, flower filled outdoor room.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Going to buy plants is so fun, and it is difficult not to just go crazy with all the colors and types of flowers.  This is Raymonds, my favorite spot to buy flowers.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I have plenty of pots to fill, some new ones from the thrift stores and some that have been on the veranda for a long time. A couple of gifts from friends of pots or plants all need to be dealt with. DH was kind enough to move my potting bench up to the upper level and set it in the shade for me.  I had to make a second trip out to the local big box hardware store’s garden center for more small seedlings and tomato plants. My bargain buy for this season is the white petunia basket on the ground. Actually I bought two of them on the clearance rack, just $3 each and they contain seven plants each! Just deadheading the spent blooms and a little water is all that was needed. White impatiens will once again occupy the table planters. They are just so perfect, and grow so well in the shade that nothing else would do as well there.  In the background, the redbud is done blooming, and the azaleas finished up while we were gone too, so I didn’t get a lot of pictures of them in full flower.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Torenias will be the hanging baskets once again as I love having the hummingbirds and butterflies.  I place coffee filters in the bottom of the pots to keep the dirt in while allowing excess water to drain.  Adding potting soil, and this year I am shaking in a sprinkle of slow-acting fertilizer and a bit of bone meal into the very bottom soil which is reused from last year.  Then fresh potting soil is added over that and the plants set into place.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Three to a basket, they are hung on the hooks on the veranda.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The veranda holds four baskets between the pillars.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I picked pink begonias this year instead of the yellow I’ve had for several years.  Good to mix things up so the veranda is a bit different each year. I put one in each of these taller planters I got at the thrift store, along with a white petunia. These will go on either side of the front door.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

New this year will be this fuschia placed in a pot on a stand to allow it to cascade down the sides.  I had one of these several years ago but I tend to forget about them.  This year they were next to the torenias at the garden center, so I got two.  This variety will have dark pink, purple and white flowers.  A little fairy has moved his bakery into the pot too.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Lobelias have such a vibrant blue color and bloom profusely. This year I got one in blue and one in white. More and more I am gravitating to mixed pots of flowers with different colors together instead of single varieties. Last December, a friend gifted me with this white poinsettia, and it is still alive. So I put it in the large ceramic planter next to the door, along with the blue lobelia and a peach begonia, also a gift from another friend.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This yellow daisy was another gift from friend.  I just realized that my friends just seem to like to bring me flowers! I seem to get new ones every time I have a luncheon or dinner party. I put it in the larger planter on the corner of the veranda with a pink coleus and yet another white petunia.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This blue pot sits on a stand, and was planted with a pink begonia and a small basil plant. I wanted at least one of the basils near the door in case I need some when it is raining.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

More pots are planted, and set around the veranda.  Pink begonia int he little blue rimmed pot, and a white one with a basil plant in one of the Chinese planters.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Another pot is planted with a couple of yellow celosias along with the white petunia. I haven’t had these before, so looking forward to seeing how they do.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I put the yellow torenias in the rectangular pot like last year. I like the way they cascade down the sides of the planter. Another fairy has moved his house to the veranda, I wonder what his home is like up those little stairs behind the door. The white lobelia got its own pot.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

My seedling starts were not a success, not a dismal failure, but somewhere between.  A few plants did OK, but many didn’t survive and I have no idea why.  I put them under the grow light, and watered them carefully, yet many died after putting out their first set of leaves.  The squash and tomatoes I replanted and the second ones are still alive.  Some of the lettuce looks viable still, but all the herbs need to be restarted.  All the johnny jump-ups died, and that is one of my favorite flowers.  I got some more seeds to start again.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I set them outside a week before transplanting to harden them off.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The hummingbird vine second planting is looking good. I put it next to the lattice in the front flower bed.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the front flower bed, the veggies and flower seedlings were placed in front of the perennials. I got another perennial in a deep purple called a Veronica ‘Inspire Blue’. It is supposed to bloom all summer, so the butterflies should be happy. It has the potential to get 2 feet tall! I put the lattice back out again, and added white bargain petunias to the clay pots that hold it up.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The snapdragons were supposed to be annuals, but our winter was so mild that they survived. We are Zone 7 and they aren’t supposed to be considered perennials until Zone 9, but who knows!! I am enjoying their beautiful blooms this year too. I got them for just 25 cents a plant last year on the clearance table at the hardware store’s garden center. Great buy!

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I am impressed with how well the dianthus is doing too.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Believe it or not, I still have empty pots.  So, those will get seeds planted for more herbs.  I’ll let you know how it goes in a couple of weeks.

One more thing to show you, as I looked out on the veranda a few days ago, I saw our resident woodchuck on the veranda eating one of my plants!! Opening the sliding glass door sent him running to the other end of the veranda. He went behind my largest pot and stuck his head out. Of course I grabbed the camera then, the good one with the nice zoom lens.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

DH tried to get him to run off, but instead he went behind the grill to the right of the table in this picture, and climbed up onto the shelf under the cover. After DH wiggled the grill while trying to stand well away, the woodchuck circled back around the large pot and made a bee line for the steps.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Then ran off, jumped off the retaining wall and kept going across the meadow and into the woods. By then he was going at top speed! I could only get one picture as he bolted away.  Little toot, he better stay out of my lettuce!

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I have another garden post for tomorrow, a special one for a special day.  Then I have quilting to show, a new recipe, more tablescapes, and the mystery quilt continues soon.  Lots to come, not enough days in the week!

Have you planted in your garden yet?  Any critters visiting?


36 Comments

Early April in the Garden

It is getting warmer now, and the garden seems to be coming to life again. All around the flowers are not as prolific this year due to a late freeze that did some damage to the buds. Still, the light pink azalea is producing blooms and the bumble bees are having a great time.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

As was the case last year, the white shows the most damage in the discoloration of the blooms. But I still love the white flowers.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Covering the tulips helped, and the pink ones are in full flower.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Dawn on a quiet morning, sunlight makes an interesting pattern on the ground from the leafless trees. This time of day is so peaceful.  Crisp mountain air, hot coffee, breathe.  Soon the trees will leaf out, and the mountain views to the east will be obscured until fall.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The azaleas in the circle are sparse, but the ones that are blooming are pretty. Several others haven’t started yet, and the dogwood is still dormant.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A view down the drive from our home, more azaleas are coming out. It doesn’t seem like we will see the profusion of blooms all down the side of the meadow this year.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

We have new visitors to the meadows and the back yard. This Eastern Towhee was scratching for food.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

His mate was nearby. She seemed to be more interested in bits of twigs and grass, and I am hoping that means she is building her nest nearby.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

It seemed like this female cardinal might also have a nest in mind.  I hope so.  Her mate was in the rhododendron but I couldn’t get a good picture of him.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

We had a visit from a Northern Flicker as well.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Another dawn, and a foggy morning over the valley. Looking out over the hushed silence of the morning, there was time to appreciate the beauty of our world.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Goldfinches wearing their brighter color jostled for position on the feeder.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The hostas are coming up strong, and soon will completely cover the bare ground around the tree.  My one little red tulip gallantly blooms all by itself.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The redbud is blooming, hosting a number of bees and butterflies.  I am hoping that the new growth coming from the bottom will fill in the bare spots.  DH has pruned it a bit severely to get the branches off the driveway.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Closer to the small blooms, the pink color is intense, and lots of buds have yet to open.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Another new visitor, I am not sure who this is. I don’t think it is Bert or Ernie as he acts differently. He puffs a lot and gobbles loudly, happy for a handout of whole grain bread. But he has been in a scuffle or two as his bedraggled tail attests.  But, how would I know?  He might just be acting differently because it is spring.  In any case, he is fun to watch.  And he seems to like the bread treat.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

It is surely spring when the robins appear.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Small violas cover the mountainside behind the house, and sporadically in front.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The white and purple one I planted in the garden came back this year.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the small clearing behind the garage, ajugas are blooming profusely, covering a large section. The pollinators like them too.

Early April in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I’ve taken so many more pictures, but this is enough for now. I love sitting on the veranda and enjoying the quiet solitude of our place, the mountain views ever changing, nature ever evolving.  We still have a week to go before the last frost date, but I think it is safe now to do some gardening.  The forecast is for temps in the 70s all week, with lows in the 40s.  Time to begin hardening off the seedings in the basement.  Some are still alive, but some died for no good reason that I can tell.  Oh well, will see what happens when I get them replanted.

What’s going on in your garden?

Sharing

Brag About It!

Celebrate Your Story

Talk of the Town

Share Your Cup

Saturday Sparks