Tuesday, May 23, 2017

That 'Whoa!' Moment

I rounded the corner of the garage to head out back to the garden on Saturday and let out an audible exclamation when I saw the honeysuckle.  I hadn't realized how large it had gotten until it flowered.  The fence above is six feet tall and the honeysuckle is trying for more.

I guess it liked the recent 3" of rain followed by three days above 90 degrees.  I'm glad somebody did...

Monday, May 15, 2017

Stubborn Garage Gardening

I was looking forward to working in the garden and on planting my troughs on Saturday.  I had a bunch of new plants from Wrightman's Alpines that I was dying to get planted.  The weather did not cooperate.  It rained all day and was in the low 50s...not a gardening day by any normal definition.  Being of the stubborn sort, I moved into the garage with my trough planting.  Above is one my hypertufa troughs (30 x 16 x 12"H) on a dolly, partially filled with a mix of Turface MVP, fine granite, and some topsoil.  The mix is richer on the bottom of the trough and leaner (very little topsoil) nearer the plants.

Once I had the rocks arranged (and split thanks to my new carbide stone chisel), I started placing plants.

Yes, I know it looks like too many rocks.  It's not.  These tiny plants like the cool root run of crevices.

I removed most of the bark or whatever it is that these plants were grown in at the nursery.  This material is too rich for long-term cultivation of these plants.  Working their nearly-bare roots down into the crevices between the rocks, I added more grit, tamping it with a chopstick.

A top dressing of pea gravel and the trough was ready to roll out into the rain.

I promise I'll post a photo of the trough that doesn't look like it was taken in a cave.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Tiny Jewels Part II

The ridiculously beautiful spring parade continues.  
Above is epimedium grandiflorum var. higoense 'Bandit'.

Good old reliable arabis sturii.

Home Depot aubrieta.

Home Depot saxifrage (L) and aubrieta x cultorum 'Royal Blue'

Veronica whitely is out to dominate this trough

Aquilegia viridiflorum

A couple days later on and it's fully open.  (Thanks, Hilary)

Fritillaria uva-volpis (back) with white dodecatheon in front.

That red pasqueflower really hit its stride this week.

I got one flower on androsace barbulata

The native aquilegia canadensis self-seeded into a crack in the patio in front of a trough.

 Saponaria ocymoides

Another sax from Home Depot.

Daphne cneorum 'Blackthorn Triumph'

Potentilla porphyrantha

The nearly-impossible-to-photograph-well mattholia trojana.