Thursday, July 24, 2008

Peas and the wind

My heritage peas. Seeds were sent to me by Rebsie of Daughter of the Soil
She experiments with breeding of peas, and wished to send anyone who wanted, some of her heritage seeds.

I think this may be a Golden Sweet Pea flower.

This is the flower of a Clarke's Betony Blue, a purple podded pea.
And this is a flower of Magnum Bonum Pea.

There were several mishaps, all because of the strong wind we have here. The first was that my box of seedlings were thrown upside down by the wind, and all my tags were scattered along with all the little pea seedlings. So I had no idea which was which. I grew them onto old Christmas trees. And last month, one tree was toppled by the wind. I straitened it up, and the next day it was back down. So I left it there. Half of those peas survived. It's standing up again, as I hope that stormy weather has passed.

But fortunately, the peas were all mixed up, all 3 varieties are still growing. This is the Golden Sweet, a yellow podded pea, and it grows like crazy!

Here's the purple one, Clarke's Beltony. Lovely color.

And here's a bowl of peas for dinner, from all 3 varieties. mmmmm...
Thanks so much, Rebsie, for the seeds. I am definitely saving a few seeds to plant again next year. Plus a few again now!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Rapunzel Willow

My Salix Caprea has grown itself some lovely long branches. They are so long, they have lain themselves along the ground. So, since I haven't yet named this tree, I think she will be Rapunzel Willow. Now, if she only grew atop a tower, her branches could sway properly in the wind.

Friday, July 18, 2008

A four year old garden

My garden is now four years old. Some shots of the back garden over the years:

My "garden" in July, 2004. The only thing planted is the little alba rose, Celestial, over on the left side. It was just dirt when we moved in, a brand new fresh neighborhood. I had ordered the Celestial that spring, and wanted to get it into the ground while they were still building the houses. I put a brightly colored plastic bag around it to protect it from the tractors. That's me with a watering can, just finished watering my freshly seeded meadow.

Two years later, with not much money to spend, there is a lot of grass. Several small trees from the old house, from seeds, and given to me from various people. The meadow in the far end turned into a patch of weeds.

Four years later. The Celestial is a huge bush, the trees are taller than me, and flower beds have been dug. More roses and other shrubs have been added. The meadow is now "Peppermint Woods": several trees and a big patch of peppermint. Still on a very tight budget, I think it is looking fairly nice. 2 more years, we'll be in the clear, and maybe I can get a greenhouse! And more roses.. *dreams*

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Beech woods

There is something about a group of trees that draws me in amongst them.

"There is always Music amongst the trees in the Garden, but our hearts must be very quiet to hear it." ~Minnie Aumonier

There's a quiet feeling of magic and ancientness.

"Alone with myself
The trees bend to caress me
The shade hugs my heart."
~Candy Polgar

"For in the true nature of things, if we rightly consider, every green tree is far more glorious than if it were made of gold and silver." ~Martin Luther

This stand of beech trees is in the Kasteeltunien
Arcen, Netherlands. An extremely large and very beautiful garden.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

July Bloomday

Garden Bloggers Bloomday for July, in the Windywillow garden.
Below is the rose, Scintillation, backlit by the evening sun.

Most of these photos were taken over the last few days. This morning is so dark and windy, the flowers are moving too much for the camera to capture.

See what I mean? The weather has been dark, rainy and stormy since the day of summer solstice. It's as if summer had been turned off on that day, and has returned only in scarce moments. Once in a while, the sun peeks through the clouds, and I am immediately outside! But all in all, it's been a dreary few weeks.
Plus the slugs have been out in full force, chewing up everything I find pretty and delicious. My poor strawberries! I finally decided to wage war against them, and go out late in the evenings and early mornings and chop any I see in half. It freaks me out. *shivers* I need to get an animal here that eats the slimy things!

Anyway, on to the flowers. The philadelphus is just going out of bloom. This pic was a few days ago.

Celestial roses in a moment of rare sunshine. It seems to happen a lot late in the day, when the sun manages to get low enough to shine underneath the cloud cover. (I know that is illogical, but it does seem that way.)

Scintillation again, she is looking lovely this year. The shrub is growing bigger and there are loads of flowers.
Roses are still blooming intermittently, one or two blossoms opening this day and that. Please ignore the holes in the leaves. I've been picking sawfly caterpillars off by hand most every day, but there are a lot of leaves to do, so on and on the insects chew away.


Graham Thomas

The Dark Lady

All my Roses have come form David Austin's Roses. I adore the English rose, and also very old or wild varieties.

Self seeded feverfew grows here and there. Pretty little daisy flowers make the garden a happy place.

Another type of daisy, a group of them alongside the stepping stones.

Another flower in the lawn is clover, covering a large patch near my clothesline.

Pea flowers. I'm growing several heritage varieties this year, peas of all different colors.

Borage growing behind the blond raspberries.

Godetia, my hubby brought home a pack of these seeds, they turned into some lovely bright flowers.

While I was writing this post, the sun has decided to show his face for moments, so I've rushed out and retaken several photos.

Lady's mantle, pinks and geraniums, a new photo just taken moments ago.

A brighter photo of fuchsia, glowing in the misty sunlight.

Meanwhile, the violas in the strawberry bed were seen gossiping about the chives blooming out of season.

As the sun does decide to peek through the clouds this morning, Sarah Viola bursts out with a song. (lyrics from "It's a Beautiful Day", Sarah Brightman)
You can visit Carol's blog "May Dreams Gardens" and see what's flowering in July all over the world.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

rain and slugs

(click on the picture for larger view)