From My Carolina Home

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Early June In the Garden

The garden continues to grow and evolve, watching for the first tomatoes and hoping for a good crop of basil.  The garden is busy and blooming so get ready for a picture heavy post!  Out in the forest, the honeysuckle is going like crazy.

Late May in the Garden 3

The sweet fragrance wafts across the air, and the pollinators are all over these blooms.

Late May in the Garden 14

Mountain Laurel is blooming across the property.  Ours are all white, no pink ones.

Late May in the Garden 4

The peach trees have a good amount of fruit. These are wild clingstone peaches, not a lot of usable fruit, but a really sweet and intensely peach flavor.  If DH is lucky enough, I’ll get the peaches before the bears do and make him a Fresh Peach Coffee Cake.  The problem is I have to leave them on the trees until they ripen or they don’t get ripe.  So, the bears and I have a race each year to get to them at the perfect moment.

Late May in the Garden 17 peaches

This red and white petunia sneaked into my basket of bargain white petunias, so I put it with the white lobelia. Both are doing nicely on the veranda.

Late May in the Garden 18

The yellow torenias are growing and beginning to bloom more profusely.

Late May in the Garden 30

Whoopee, I actually have a nice lettuce plant! This will be a salad soon.

Late May in the Garden 22

The red snapdragons are starting another show.

Late May in the Garden 24

The celosias are still little, but blooming well.

Late May in the Garden 25

The day lilies are getting going, this one with dewdrops in the early morning.

Late May in the Garden 26

My favorite pale yellow one with the deep purple throat is blooming profusely.  It is too bad that these gorgeous blooms only last one day.  I like the ruffled edges of this one.

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

More ruffled edges on the peachy color ones with yellow throats, there are two clumps of these both putting on daily shows.

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

My largest tomato plant has a flower! Hoping for a nice fat tomato.

Late May in the Garden 27

The tomatoes planted in a large pot are getting bigger too.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Out in the front flower bed, the white petunias are growing and filling the pots, flowering nicely.

Late May in the Garden 28

The larger pot on the corner of the veranda is filling in too. The daisy finished blooming and I deadheaded the blooms hoping it will go again. I like this pink coleus a lot, it adds nice color to the pot.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Another planting of basil in a small pot is coming along.

Late May in the Garden 34

Inside, a friend convinced me to try growing another lettuce from the core of one used for dinner. So I did. I thought using a bulb vase would be perfect to keep it just in the water. I cut a thin slice off the bottom and put it in water.

Lettuce rooting

About a week later, it seemed to be doing really well. No roots yet, but I was hopeful as the leaves were growing.

Lettuce in bulb grower

Then, for some reason it died and turned brown. I don’t have a clue why. Another epic fail, LOL!! Also on the failure front, the poinsettia in the large pot on the veranda died too. I guess it didn’t like being replanted, or something was wrong with the light or water. But the blue lobelia and the peachy pink begonia still are growing and blooming nicely.

Lobelia May

The vibrant colors are just beautiful.

Peach begonia with lobelia

Basil and more begonias, both doing well.

White and pink begonias

The fuschia put on a spectacular show!  The two color flowers are so interesting.

Fuschia 1

Last week I made DH a couple of loaves of Apple Bread, and put the peels and cores out in a dish for the critters. It didn’t take long for the crows to find it and steal an apple core.  The others tried to take it away from him, instead of getting their own from the dish.  Later, I noticed it was all gone, so I think they came back and had a feast.

Crow with apple2

The goldfinches are wearing their summer colors, so bright and beautiful.

Goldfinch

All the torenias are blooming and they are beginning to cascade trailing shoots of leaves and flowers. They are growing larger and faster than previous years, and I think the bone meal and slow release fertilizer I added to the hanging baskets made a difference.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Lovely cool mornings and evenings are nice to sit in the rockers and enjoy a hot cup of coffee or a nice evening libation.  The pillow is from my internet buddy Jenna’s site The Painted Apron.   She is such a wonderful artist!  I plan to get another bright pillow soon for the other chair.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I love seeing the pollinators come by, this pretty butterfly rested on the veranda, moving its wings back and forth slowly.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The June blooming lily has one bloom again this year. I wish it would do two like it has in the past, so I’ll give it some fertilizer and bone meal to help it along.  Not bad for a bulb that was a gift several years ago, and has bloomed every year since.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I deadheaded the hydrangea, and it is starting to bloom with lovely shades of pink to lavendar to blue, all on the same bush and sometimes on the same flower.

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

So, much is blooming and more to come.  My one little squash plant has a big flower, and I hope for more.  The hostas are filled in and fully leafed out, and should have the tall spires of purple blooms soon.  More day lilies will come into bloom too.  I still plan to move some things around, and will get to that soon.

What’s going on in your garden?

 

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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?


12 Comments

Late September in the Garden

Fall colors are going to be late this year and likely not as pretty as in other years due to the dry weather, the need for rain, and warmth that is lasting too long.  We need a cold front, and some rain!!  I cannot find much in the way of color yet.  We should have some by now as our peak is usually the second week of October.  Some of the Bradford Pear trees have begun to change in town, but on our property not much is happening.  Well, except for the stupid locust trees that are raining brown leaves on the driveway.  Everything else is staying green for now.

Driveway leaves

Up on the veranda, the geranium decided to have one more burst of hot pink blooms. Not one of my fall colors, but it didn’t care about my color scheme or the harvest wreath hanging near the door.

Geranium

In the large pot near the front door, a volunteer yellow double begonia came up totally unexpectedly. I planted these last year, but went with the white single begonia this year. It sure took its time, not flowering until now.

Double begonia

The white impatiens continue to bloom, amazing that they just don’t seem to want to quit. But I am sure that the warm weather is responsible.  All three pots under the little tile tables look like this one.

Impatiens

The watering can plants have struggled a little, never really taking off the way I had hoped. But this intrepid pink impatiens finally bloomed nicely.  All the lobelias are done and gone.

Pink impatien

The purple torenias in the hanging baskets are still blooming some, but are looking really ragged.  If it wasn’t for the hummingbird still visiting them I’d take them down.  She stopped by yesterday and hovered right in front of me as I was watering them. The yellow torenia is still going, but it is winding down too.

Yellow torenia September

The flowers themselves are also much paler in color, but still pretty. I would have cleaned them up a bit, but it is just still to warm for me.  Pulling weeds, cleaning up the grass in the beds, and deadheading the flowers is all on the list of things to do.  Maybe early next week when we are supposed to get a little cooler.

Torenia yellow

So, I looked around for some fall color, and all I can find is this little bit on a maple tree up the mountainside.

Late September Garden at From My Carolina Home

And just a little bit in this tree on the north side of the house.

Fall Leaves Sept 2016

The rest of the forest all around our home is still green to the west, …

September Forest 1

green to the east…

September Forest 3

and more green in the back.

September Forest 4

A few visitors came by, nine turkeys all hungry for the acorns falling all over.

Late September Garden at From My Carolina Home

I tried to get some pictures of them in the field but they ran off pretty fast.

Late September Garden at From My Carolina Home

There was some color in the sky one evening last week.

Late September Sunset 3

I hoped they were bringing rain, but alas, not to be.  Still the evenings are cool, and it is nice to sit on the veranda in the rocking chairs and watch the light play in the clouds with the setting sun.

Late September Sunset 1

In other news…

If you missed the giveaway yesterday for the book, click on Sewing Fiction Stories of Life to enter. That drawing will be Saturday so you still have time to comment.

And on the Bloggers Quilt Festival, nominations are open for Viewer’s Choice.  Nominations will be taken through the weekend, then voting on all the categories begins Monday.  Visit this link and nominate your three favorite quilts for Viewer’s Choice voting.  Click HERE.  Actual voting for quilts in the categories begins next week.

So what are you up to?  Gardening, sewing, reading?


17 Comments

July in the Garden

Wow, after all the holiday posts, it is nice to get back to the garden for a bit.  The weather did cooperate for me, giving me lots of cool and rainy days to post about Christmas ideas, then turning back to warmer and sunny for getting back to the present.  Unfortunately it is now maddeningly hot.  Heat absolutely makes me wilt and I hate it.  While we were making holiday projects and getting new ideas, my flowers kept going. The torenias are spilling down the sides of their baskets, and I managed to grab the camera when the hummingbird paid a visit.

Hummingbird July 2016 4

She comes regularly, but only stays a short time. By the time I notice the movement and run for the camera she is usually gone.

Hummingbird July 2016 5

I am pretty sure she is a girl, there is no red on her.

Hummingbird July 2016 6

July is the time for my gladiolas to bloom, and they did.  I thought they should bloom in June so I was disappointed in them then, but I just needed to wait another month for gorgeous flowers.  A couple of hard rainstorms broke the spires, so I had to cut them and bring them indoors to a vase to enjoy. One thing about glads, the flowers will continue to open even after cutting. Here is the white one…

Gladiolas in July at From My Carolina Home

and the yellow.

Gladiolas in July at From My Carolina Home

This gorgeous deep apricot one is in the back on the mountainside. It is either a volunteer or was planted years ago by the previous owner of the house.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

DH was kind enough to get out there on the slope behind the chain link fence after a rain, and dig up several by the roots to replant in the front flower bed with the yellow ones. I cut the spires for the inside vase and planted the bulbs. The little daisy was a gift from a friend, and I think I’ll plant it too.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

The lighter color apricot is also from the mountainside.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

Lovely together aren’t they?

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

A misty, foggy morning during the Christmas in July event shows the layers of hills across the valley.  It is so thick that you cannot see the next high ridge that I show on my header photo.  By the way, I changed the header photo to a summer pic.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

My caladium seems happy in its place, another gift from a friend.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

I planted the johnny jump-ups too late and they never bloomed.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

But the little dianthus flowers keep going.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

These yellow torenias continue to bloom too, I just love these flowers and so do the bees.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

All the impatiens are getting huge and blooming profusely.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

It is just too frazzling hot to get out and deadhead the hydrangea, and I need to clean up the torenias and the geraniums. On the bright side, the lobelias don’t need any tending, and they are still blooming nicely.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

The super belles are getting a bit leggy, and the blooms are few and far between.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

And I was very surprised to find a squash plant growing in the middle of them! How it got planted there is a mystery, but I suspect a squirrel did it as I keep running one off the porch that has been digging in the pots. The squash plant has produced some flowers but no veggies yet.  Well, at least it has some flowers, maybe I’ll get a squash or two. The others have been eaten by something, the plants are completely gone. Rabbits or some other leaf eater got them all, and my broccoli too.

Squash in the flower pot

The tomato plants have only produced a total of three little tomatoes, and I do not understand why they won’t grow better.  They get 7 hours of sun a day, plenty of water, and I have given them marvelous soil and fertilizer.  So, I am still buying tomatoes at the farmer’s market and the produce stands. Also in the front bed, the verbena is still going strong so why the veggies aren’t doing well is beyond me.

July 2016 in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

What’s blooming in your garden?

 

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Garden Blooms May

I have had so much to post about that I haven’t been able to get back to updating the garden.  The fairies have settled in permanently, and I found another door in the kitchen.  The weather finally has turned warm to stay, so the landscape has turned verdant green.  There are still some flowers in the wild areas of our land.

Late May Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

It rained so much during the time the rhododendrons and mountain laurel were blooming that I almost missed getting pictures. Across the meadow, the huge green shrub in the center is mountain laurel, almost done. The white next to it on the right and just visible on the lower left are both white dogwoods.

Late May Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

The dogwood on the circle is blooming too.

Late May Garden ~ From My Carolina Home

Mountain Laurel is blooming in the back on the mountainside as well.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

The pink rhododendrons are in full swing, but the white ones are still in the bud stage.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the back, I went to check out how the peaches were doing, and they are all gone. ALL of them! Dang bear they weren’t even close to being ripe!

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

Out front, the lily does have a bud and I am hoping for it to flower this week.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

Looks like I may get some tomatoes this year…

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

and some squash too!

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

This little dianthus is blooming like crazy, but I wish it would get a bit bigger.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

The daylilies are starting up now, and there are tons of buds to come.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

These will bloom continuously for several weeks.  There are five or six varieties in the garden.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

I have put three pots in the garden with flowers to add interest and height to the bed. Those are doing well, this one really looks good with three different flowers. I just missed the geranium blooming with them, but it will bloom again and most of the summer. The verbena and petunias are doing great.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

The most exciting thing is my hydrangea is blooming this year! It didn’t bloom last year or the year before, so I am thrilled. It is covered in blooms!

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

There must be sections of soil more acid and some more alkaline in the same area because I have blue and pink flowers, and a lovely lavender too, all on the same plant!

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

Stunning, aren’t they?!!

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

They spill out of the bed through the stair railing, with many more clusters in the process of developing.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

Back up on the veranda, the lobelia seems to be happy.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

White impatiens are overflowing their spaces with flowers.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

All the torenia baskets are now trailing a bit.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

The yellow ones are doing well too.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

The lettuce is coming up, and I hope the bear doesn’t find it.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

The white geranium is happy too.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

I love this pot with the pink and white colors together.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

On one end of the veranda, the lobelia looks great with the pink geraniums. Another variety of lobelia complements the yellow lantana too.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

Lobelia and white begonia almost cover the little fairy house.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

The rockers are ready for visitors.

Late May 2016 Garden at From My Carolina Home

Want to come sit for a spell?

 

 


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Planting for the Veranda

Lots of plants came home with me over the past week, and this past weekend some of them did get planted. I brought home a flat of torenias, 12 purple and 3 yellow. The purple ones go into the hanging pots for the hummingbirds to enjoy.  I did see a hummingbird this week at one of the azaleas in the back.  Of course by the time I got the camera it was gone.  I began planting with putting coffee filters in the bottom of the pots to keep the soil in while allowing excess water out.

Torenia pots

DH was happier bringing the potting bench up to the front, rather than schlepping the pots down and back up. Behind the bench, in the flowerbed, I added a leftover piece of lattice from the back yard to add some interest to the bed. It is held to the wall by two clay pots that will have geraniums eventually. I am planning a vine of some type for it.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

Planting started with the hanging pots.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

Each hanging basket gets three purple torenias.  There are four hanging pots in all.  In the background, you can see the trees just coming into green.  The next mountain is still visible, but it will be obscured soon.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

The yellow torenias were placed in the rectangular planter.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

The pink geranium does look good with the lobelia, so they were planted in the large clay pot together.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

They were placed on the corner of the veranda to get full sun. The yellow lantana got a green ceramic planter.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

The larger green ceramic pot got the yellow candy cane superbelles.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

I just love these flowers, with the yellow and white stripes.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

This is my latest thrift store find, a cute little ceramic planter with a picket fence and flowers. The other blue lobelia goes well in it.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

Out in the front bed, tomatoes and squash were planted.  I plan to put a geranium in the clay pot.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

Another tomato was planted in front of the gladiolas peeking out of the ground. At the top are the tulips, I deadheaded them so they will put their energy into making more blooms next year.  The plants at the bottom of the pic are daylilies.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

All the seedlings from my winter experiment were put into the garden.  Everything got a nice layer of mulch after watering.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

I don’t know if this will work, but I had a potato that sprouted. So, I cut the eyes into pieces and put them in water. They made roots, so I planted them too. We’ll see!

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

The last green ceramic pot now holds the white geranium.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

The birds didn’t seem to mind me being out planting. The goldfinches have shed their winter drab for the bright yellow of spring.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

I got very amused by the black capped chickadee. He would land and look around first, then sing a few notes.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

He grabbed a seed from the feeder. DH insists on feeding them the good stuff, shelled sunflower seeds.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

Then he would put the seed between his toes and beat it with his beak into small bites.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

He’d look up for a moment, sing a bit, then go back to finish off that seed.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

I still have a lot of pots to fill, so more planting soon.  While I was planting, I thought I could hear a faint whisper of wings.  I couldn’t see what it was but I have an idea, will have to see if something magical happens.

April in the Garden | From My Carolina Home

The mystery bulbs have come into flower and the mystery is solved.  They are purple iris.

Iris bed at From My Carolina Home

This was baffling to me as I already have two purple iris beds, why would I plant a third? These blooms are smaller than the other two beds, and the purple color is a bit lighter on top.

Iris bed 1

The answer came to me a couple of days ago, after I was certain they would be irises. A client at our office brought them to me last fall, and gave some other plants to the rest of the ladies. We had no idea what they were, so I put them in the brick planter. Now that I know, I can move them into the second iris bed when they are done blooming and double that bed’s size.

Iris close

The azaleas are just about at their peak, will show you those soon.

Today is Earth Day.  So it is a good day to plant something, start seeds outdoors, or find something to recycle, repurpose, or reuse.  What is going on in your garden?

 

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What'd You Do This Weekend?


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Dreaming of My Next Garden

As we near the end of the holiday rush, it is still weird to have it so warm outside.  But, that only makes me think more of spring and my next garden.  Meanwhile my indoor plants are just maintaining, growing a few leaves but not flowering.  I think they do not get enough sunlight from our southern exposure windows.  I put several in the sun for a while yesterday, that is when the clouds broke up.  I really do need to re-pot those African violets.  As warm as it is, I should do that before it gets colder later in the week.  Yes, that is my begonia outside, still blooming all the way through until now.

Plants in window

I received one of my seed catalogs last week in the mail, and DH gave me a Farmer’s Almanac for 2016 in my stocking. My gardening calendar came last week too, so I am in garden planning mode! One thing I learned last year, my idea of using bakery plastic clamshell containers for starting seeds was a bust. The seeds grew great, but the transplant shock killed them.

stacked greenhouses

This year I will look for some tiny peat pots to put inside the little plastic greenhouses so the baby plants can be moved without damaging them.  All this basil, and only two plants survived in the garden after transplanting.

Basil seeds sprouted

The most exciting thing is my amaryllis looks to be sprouting a new leaf again this year! If it blooms again, it will be the third year it has bloomed. I will watch it closely, and keep you all informed! I need to add just a bit of soil to it.  Click on Amaryllis Rebloom to see the second year blooms from last winter.

Amaryllis 33

Santa brought a new camera, so hopefully my pictures will improve. I love the sharp focus on the subject with the background blurred, and now I can do it!  This little goldfinch was happy to model for me.  It has a huge zoom capability, so maybe I can get the foxes this spring.  Look for more pictures of the garden this year too.

Goldfinch

I got a couple of gardening magazines at the magazine exchange recently, now is the time to look them over.  Our local library has a table where you can drop off magazines you have read, and pick up someone else’s.  I also scored a couple of garden books at the library sale on box day.  So many pretty things to grow, what to choose this year?  I know I’ll have torenias as the hummingbirds do love those. Here’s one of those from last summer.  I put them in hanging baskets on our veranda.

Torenia June 2015 - 5

Last summer I divided my irises which were just getting too crowded. I had enough to create a new bed, and I can’t wait to see if they survived the move.  Here they are just after moving them.

Iris newly planted bed ~ From My Carolina Home

I hope my hydrangea will bloom this year.  I have fertilized it and it gets enough water, but it just refuses to bloom.  It is dormant now, and just has some brown sticks to show where it is.  I would love to have a wisteria, but I really don’t have a good place to put one.  The spot that has room and a fence to grow on wouldn’t get enough sunlight.

It doesn’t help that the Cooks Illustrated magazine has lovely art on their back covers.  There were a few of those in the magazine haul too.  Makes me want to plant all kinds of tomatoes, peppers, squash, onions and herbs.

CooksIllCovers

The Almanac says our best planting days in February are the 13th, 14th, 17th and 18th for above ground crops.  I might wait until mid-March as our final frost date here is April 12.  Then the little seedlings would have six weeks to the best transplanting dates of May 1-2.

Are you in planning mode for your garden yet?