Sunday, July 7, 2013

Catching Up Outside

Winter-sown basil, two different kinds ('Genovese' and 
some generic "sweet basil" from the dollar store).

This has been a week of big changes in our family, so I've been using the garden to try to get some space to think and de-stress.  Not to mention, the garden needs attention or it will revert to chaos quicker than dismissal time before break at the junior high school. 

A candid shot of the (obviously unweeded) veggie bed.  
Tomatoes and butternut squash - time for tomato cages.

Thanks to all of the rain and warmth we've had recently, the garden is lush and growing like a weed.  Unfortunately, the weeds are growing like weeds too, and I'm slowly reclaiming lost ground from them, a bushel at a time.  I use a couple old dollar store laundry baskets for weeding - they're lightweight and easy to carry around.

The veggie garden is finally getting up to speed - still behind where we usually are, but making up for lost time.  The pole beans are just starting to climb, and the tomatoes and peppers are blooming.  Even the late-planted sunflowers are 6" high, so there's hope for fruits and blooms eventually.

One of my nicest seedlings from three years ago.  
I'm pretty sure it's an offspring from 'Fairy Tale Pink,' 
but it's original crossing tag is MIA.  
Whatever its parentage, it's a lovely color 
with a nice old-fashioned form.  It's a keeper.

My daylilies have started their explosion of bloom, and they are loaded with scapes and buds more than ever before.  Some of the more vigorous tetraploid ones (the ones with four sets of chromosomes instead of two, meaning they're usually more robust, with heavier leaves and often heavier blooms) have scapes thicker than my little finger.  I'll have to take some time-lapse photos of the front bed as it reaches its peak.

My daylily seedlings are starting to bloom as well - some of them are three years old now, and settling into their mature forms, and the younger ones are still in the "do I keep it or compost it" stage.  I need to tag the keepers as they bloom.  I still have to get this year's winter sown seedlings into a bed or large containers so they can get some good growth before winter.

The flowers on my only hydrangea, 'Quick Fire.'  
Believe it or not, this turns from pure white to dusky reddish-rose 
as the season progresses, before drying to a soft light beige.  
It's a lovely shrub, well worth the garden space.

Maybe I'll get another bushel or two pulled tonight.  The crab grass has sprouted and is threatening to take over the vegetable beds, while thistles are in the front of the yard.  Time to trim the salvias back so they can bloom again, too.  There's always something to do in the garden.

One of my oldest "seedlings," now a mature clump.  
It's not registered, but I call it 'Oye Como Va.'


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