Sunday, June 23, 2013

Flaming June!

                 Well, it's been flaming for the past few days at least. We have been travelling, and gardening furiously since our return, so there hasn't been much blogging time. Thanks to wonderful neighbours the plants in the greenhouse were still alive when we returned (June is a BAD time to travel if you are a gardener). There are actual strawberries on the plants inside, ones that should ripen in the next day or so. Don't they look a lot more lush than when they came out of the vegetable plot? The outdoor ones are just a bit behind.
             We dug a new bed for the tomatoes this year, to see if the blight problem will lessen. I was pulling off diseased leaves as I was planting some of the bought ones (Hybrid Sweet 100, my favourite cherry tomato) so I am not - as they say - sanguine. But I buried them all d-e-e-ply, so I hope they grow great stem roots and do better than I expect them to do.
            What's new in floral? Great bloom on the two surviving tree peonies, especially the dark red one, which has 8-10 blooms. The pink one has definitely died, but the rootstock is sprouting again, and I have decided to leave it, as any peony is better than none. The big blue-edged iris is blooming well -
many more blooms came out subsequent to this photo, and they have hidden "back up" blooms when the first ones fade. Spectacular! I notice that the dark burgundy iris I got 2 years ago at the Flower Patch is still not blooming - it has great big leaves but nary a sign of a flower bud - yet. I suppose it is quite a late one. The white Siberica ones are blooming away, though - from the same source. I must find time for a photo shoot tomorrow.  Things are getting ahead of me.

The first rose this year was Fra Dagmar Hartroop (or whichever spelling you fancy). I had noticed many of them in Toronto at the first of the month, blooming away. She seems much happier in her new sunny position in the herbaceous border, though I have to keep an eye on the tanacetum and dicentra around her, as they may try to crowd her out and steal her sun. She is an early one, but repeat blooms very prolifically. There are many more out by now - the David Thompson and of course the rugosas on the mound - where they can get some sun! The "wild" rose is covered with buds - can't wait!
The only other really new thing is this yellow deciduous rhododendron - blooming this year for the first time. I nearly collapsed last fall when the leaves all dropped - I didn't know then that there are deciduous rhodos! My sister gave it to me, and I was sure I had killed it. Phew!
        This is the bloom with our Princess kitty. (This is the last photo I have of her, as she has disappeared, just like Boy kitty did a few years ago. They were both outdoor cats, and we live on a busy road. And there are foxes and even coyotes. I fear she is gone for good.)
The rhododendron I bought last year - a more common mauvish one - didn't bloom but it is putting on good growth, so it seems happy where it is. The mature ones you see around the countryside, blooming their socks off at the moment, are certainly an inspiration.

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