From My Carolina Home

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


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?

Advertisements


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


27 Comments

March in the Garden

It is still looking more like spring than winter here, and amazingly the flowers are coming into bloom.  I am so afraid that our Blackberry Winter will nip all these flowers. Blackberry Winter is what we locals call a cold snap, and often a freeze, right when the blackberry bushes begin blooming – usually early April. Recently, I went to the Biltmore House, and showed some of the wonderful costumes in their Designed for Drama exhibit. While we were there, we did some walking around the gardens. Normally there would not be anything blooming in February, but due to the early warmth, lots of flowers are coming out too soon. All around are Bradford Pear trees and Golden Forsythia starting to put on a show. The cherry trees are starting to bloom with their delicate pink blossoms.

Biltmore Gardens Winter at From My Carolina Home

Little clumps of daffodils are popping up here and there.

Biltmore Gardens Winter at From My Carolina Home

Believe it or not, these are azaleas! They shouldn’t be in bloom for two more months.

Biltmore Gardens Winter at From My Carolina Home

This beauty is a variety of crocus dwarf iris?  There were several beds of these guys around Antler Village at the Biltmore Estate.

Biltmore Gardens Winter at From My Carolina Home

One thing I appreciate about winter is the architecture of the bare limbs of plants and trees. This gorgeous thing is a giant wisteria vine along an arbor leading into the Biltmore Gardens, likely close to 100 years old. It covers this arbor, and is stunning in spring.

Biltmore Gardens Winter at From My Carolina Home

This is a Japanese cutleaf maple, wonderful twisted trunk and branches, almost resembles a giant bonsai. In spring, this will be covered in red leaves.  There is such grace in this form.

Biltmore Gardens Winter at From My Carolina Home

Just down the path from the arbor is this spray of white flowers covering several bushes. I didn’t get the marker for what they are.  But I know they shouldn’t be blooming yet.

Biltmore Gardens Winter at From My Carolina Home

Back at home, the seedling are starting to put up small leaves. I need to replant some of them a bit deeper.

March Garden at From My Carolina Home

The best part of February was the progress on the amaryllis. The bud came out in mid-February, with 2 blooms. Previously the flower spike had four, so I need to repot it this year. It must need more nutrients than I can give it with just fertilizer, and needs new soil. Excruciatingly slow, it took four days to get partially open.

Amaryllis Bulb Year 4 at From My Carolina Home

Then one flower opened fully, beautiful dark red. The other followed a few days later.

Amaryllis Bulb Year 4 at From My Carolina Home

Both flowers fully opened, just lovely. I moved it out of the kitchen over to the pub table to protect it from damage.

Amaryllis Bulb Year 4 at From My Carolina Home

The bad news was there was going to be a major thunderstorm with possible hail on Wednesday night, then below freezing temperatures for three nights beginning Thursday night.  As I raced home from BOM club and errands on Wednesday trying to beat the rain, I found this when I got home.

Hyacinths 2

The hyacinth bulb I planted last year has come up and begun blooming. I knew the freeze would kill it, do I dug it up and put it in a pot in the Carolina room out back.  Then, looking at the flower beds truly for the first time in a few weeks, I was not pleased to see all this growth, in every bed! All three iris beds, the tulips, and the gladiolas are all coming up!

Tulips

I needed to get them all covered before the rain hit, just in case there was hail. Plus, they need to be protected from the mid-20s overnight temperatures we will have for three nights. Racing against the oncoming storm, I managed to get them all covered with sheets or fabric, weighed down with lattice bits, extra pots and gutter remnants. The forecast for Saturday night is 24 degrees, a hard freeze.

Covered bulbs

As I went to the veranda for extra pots to use, I found the jump-ups were already in full swing, and blooming! So I picked up that pot and put it in the Carolina room too.

Jump ups on veranda

As I worked, I also saw that the bargain snapdragons that I got for less than a dollar made it through the winter and are growing.  They have doubled in size from the original plantings. They got covered too.

Snapdragons

The planter box was covered as well with a piece of lattice and a drop cloth. I just hope that there isn’t a lot of wind, and that the covers all stay in place for the next couple of days.  There are daylilies and irises here.

Iris bed raised

I’ll have more gardening chores to do this month.  Transplanting the seedlings to set them lower in the dirt (which encourages stronger root growth according to my gardening book)  and thinning them out will best be done between the 5th and the 12th when the moon is waxing.  A PBS show on NC gardening has given me a couple of good ideas for new plants for the garden this year, so I will try to find these in my local garden centers – variegated weigela and red salvia.   I need to order my torenias too, the garden center grows them, and sets aside a flat for me each year.  Still keeping in mind that the last frost date for here is April 15, planting outside will have to wait in spite of this warm beginning.  I just hope that the freezing temperatures overnight and over the weekend don’t damage the local apple crop, or my bulbs.

Are you doing any garden chores or planning?  Or are you enjoying the last of summer in the southern hemisphere?

 

Sharing

Foodie Friday and Everything Else

Brag About It!

Celebrate and Decorate

Share Your Cup


26 Comments

February in the Garden

The moon is in the right phase for planting up to the 10th according to my Farmer’s Almanac, so I had to get a bit done over the weekend.  DH has set up a grow light for me in the basement, and donated some of his workbench space there so I can once again make an attempt to get some decent tomatoes, and a head start on the flowers for the veranda. Before we get started with digging in the dirt, here is the bud on the amaryllis. It continues to make slow progress towards a flower again this year.

Feb Garden 6

The African violets in the kitchen continue to do well in their new pots. See how tall the amaryllis is getting! This will be the fourth year it has bloomed.  I put a stake in the pot and loosely draped a selvedge around it to give it some support if it starts to lean.  Most years it stands just fine on its own. This way if it starts to fall over, it is protected from damage.

Feb Garden 7

This year I am starting some seeds in the pots I plan to keep them in, so no transplant shock. I found these two urn shaped pots at the thrift store.  I think they will look great on either side of the front door.  I plan to put johnny jump-ups in them.  They are only about 2 feet tall.

Feb thrifting in the garden 3

Warm days over the weekend made it nice to fill pots with soil outside.  Once again, I did coffee filters in the bottom.

Feb Garden 1

I plan a small herb garden in the ceramic pots, and I want to start those seeds now too.

Feb Garden 2

I had to dig out some trays to catch the water, and make sure I had enough of them.

Feb Garden 3

Then DH did pack-mule duty and helped to carry all of it down to the basement. I planted seeds in all of them. This year I hope I have solved my labeling issue, every year I seem to mess this up. This year I dug out some leftover plastic knives from my picnic supplies and wrote the plants on them with a sharpie pen. Let’s hope this time I’ll still be able to read them in two months.

Feb Garden 4

Last year I put some seeds out in the garden after the last frost for a hummingbird vine. The seeds were sent to me by long time reader, Mary. I do not know what happened to them, but I suspect that I forgot they were there and pulled them up as weeds. This year I put them in the large clay pot on the left, and Mary, I promise that I won’t pull them up as weeds this year. She also sent me some Meyer Lemon seeds, and I’ll try those a bit later in a larger pot.

Feb Garden 5

And lastly, I am still enjoying the gorgeous white roses DH brought me over a week ago. Aren’t they beautiful?!  They have such a lovely fragrance too.

Roses 1

Here are a couple of close shots, just perfect flowers.

Roses 2

Roses 3

I found this lovely white planter at the thrift store, but didn’t plant anything in it now. I want to put flowers in it and I ran out of seeds. But I’ll get some for planting later in the week.

Feb thrifting in the garden 1

Oh, and I found this garden themed goodie too. Not sure what I will do with it, the holes in the sides make it unsuitable for planting. It might end up on a table at some point.

Feb thrifting in the garden 2

If you have a spot for indoor above-ground crop seed starting, now is the time for February, up to the 10th when the moon reaches its fullest point.  Are you planning your garden or starting seeds now?

 

Sharing

Celebrate and Decorate

Brag About It!

Vintage Charm

Share Your Cup

Handmade Hangout

Foodie Friday and Everything Else

Saturday Sparks at Pieced Pastimes