Friday, June 10, 2011

Dear Garden Diary,

Where have all the irises gone, you ask? Well, I can not break them apart - they are so overgrown and so tightly grown together that no spade nor old kitchen knife can dissect them. I thought about sectioning them, but even that proved to be too much. Admittedly my arms are weakened, but with all else I am able to do now again, I should be able to free a few irises. sigh
I've moved the giant clumps to the side of the house, for R to attempt to break apart this weekend. I do desperately want to save and replant 20 of them (maybe more) in the large open space in front of the Wegeila, eastward from where they were before, a little closer to the fence.
They are a stunning blue, the perfect colour to break up the pinks and reds we have such an abundance of in that are (unlike the front garden which is home to too many blues and purples...)

rescued red 1                            rescued red 2

I've rescued the two red dayliles from the west evergreen garden, which can now become dog territory without worry for the flowers. My favourite of the two, rescued red 1, is planted near the spot where the Rudbeckia Goldsturm is mean to be (a few leaves have appeared but timidly and without the vigor that plant should have)... I may have to seek another rudbeckia plant. Rescued red 1 is a large-flowered cultivar with deep red velvety, ruffled petals with a yellow throat and eye. Rescued red 2 has more tapered petals in the same deep red, with just yellow in the eye of the flower. They're both late summer bloomers, appearing just as the peach and yellows ones are finishing their bloom on the east side of the garden. It should look nice now that they're all together on the same side, ...though I'll miss the balance the red blooms brought to the west side of the garden.

The name Hemerocallis comes from the 
Greek words ἡμέρα (hēmera) "day" 
and καλός (kalos) "beautiful".

I'll find a great bit of satisfaction adopting blooms and more for the west side's new side garden (I should come up with better names for the garden beds...this is getting confusing..). After a few thousand dollars in vet bills to remove rocks from a certain Basset's belly, R has removed every rock and pebble from the beds on the west side of the house along the walkway - creating two rather large, 26 foot long x 2 foot garden beds. One side, to the west of the walkway, we've filled with bags of triple mix and manure, but we'll be needing a truckload to finish the job (and repair the dog run). 
The tall, thinly leafed hosta nearest the corner is "Twilight Time", which we chose for H thinking vampires are all the rage, but I don't think she was nearly as excited as I was. Either way, it looks nice - and under are two lime leafed, small 'Gold Drop' hostas. Further along is another hosta, another rescued plant from dog territory. This one was hidden under the giant dogwood that's taking over the middle garden, and unknown to R until I mentioned it. It's a gorgeous hosta (the kind I usually fall for in the greenhouses) and will thrive in his new spot nicely. Near to that is a section of rescued red 2, which divided nicely during the move.
Hosta 'Gold Drop'

Taxonomists differ on the number of hosta species; there may be as many as 45. The genus may be broadly divided into three subgenera. Interspecific hybridization occurs since all the species have the same chromosome number (2n = 2x = 60); except H. ventricosa which is a natural tetraploid that sets seed through apomixis. Many Hosta formerly described as species taxonomically, have been reduced to cultivars; these often have their names conserved, and retain Latin names which resemble species names (e.g., H. 'Fortunei' ).

Getting back to the east side, other losses have created new space for ..apparently tomatoes. Yellow tomatoes to be exact, which fill both the space where there was once that nice two toned spurge plant, and an open area in front of the zucchini. Hoping that the zucchini catch the trellis on the fence and climb upward, my only concern would be if it caught a touch of mildew. It's a little tight in there with the tomato, but it's a sunny, hot (probably the sunniest of the whole garden) there so unless it gets damp from over crowning or too much water from above we should be good.
Black Beauty Zucchini Squash
Monarda is a great companion plant to grow with tomatoes, attracting pollinators and some predatory insects that help to minimize garden pests. Commonly understood as a food plant for the larvae of some Lepidoptera species and many Coleophora (moths), the plant is a favourite attraction for hummingbirds and bees. Also, the roots of the Monarda plant contain oils which are beneficial in deterring subterranean pests around small, susceptible vegetable crops. 
Monarda, (Bergamot, Bee Balm) and the East Garden


Anonymous said...

Everything looks beautiful!

-Kevin (sorry, I couldn't log in through my LJ OpenID.

Amy said...

Thanks Kevin! You should wander over here sometime and take a look. ...and tell me all about your garden adventure 2011 ;)