It’s going to be a hot one today, the weather man is saying up around 90f. Kind of a hard thing to get used to since two nights ago we had frost. It’s a good thing I covered the flowers.
I’m glad I have the barn all clean for the day. It’s going to be a good day to stay inside with the windows closed to keep in the cool air. I also decided to water the plants outside first thing this morning and found all kinds of glories this morning.
One of the annual flowers I like to grow each year are Morning Glories. They are so pretty in the late summer when they start to bloom. For years I struggled to get them to grow. I would plant them and nothing would sprout.
As it turns out they are one of the harder seeds to germinate, they have a thick shell. I have found my own way to get them to grow and I imagiane this would work for other hard shell seeds as well.
I lay them out on a wet paper, cover them and in a few days they have sprouted. I can then carefully plant them, give a bit of water and they grow.
I will plant them just deep enough to leave the sprouting first leaves at the top of the soil surface. These will have to wait for later this evening once it cools down a bit, today’s heat and sun will cook them in no time.
Here are a few lettuce plants starting to grow nicely in a pot. It was an afternoon Daisy and I project a couple of weeks ago. I helped her with it and I suppose it is now her pot of lettuce. She is enjoying watching it grow, watering it and we even tried a taste the other night. Well just a taste, these won’t be ready for a salad any time soon. She is enjoying the new experience.
I don’t know the variety, they were some seeds left over from last year, stored in an envelope.
The new growing bed next to the house has sprouted well and comming along nicely. It was a quick spur of the moment idea. I used an old broken pot for plant markers. Isn’t that beautiful mulch, if I do say so myself… It’s a bit of composted horse poop and wood shavings mixed together.
The iris will be blooming very soon. These are what I would call “An Old Barn Yard” variety. They will be the prettiest lavender color. They are growing in almost every old farm yard around here. No one I know can tell me the variety so I named them myself. These came from an historic house in town. I helped the care taker of the property clean out the iris beds a few years back and she gave me a few to take home. There are also lots of yellow and brown ones around but I don’t have any of those yet.
Iris grow on rhizomes and will only bloom once on that rhizomes. As they grow each year they multiply quickly and a bed can become overgrown and stop flowering in a few short years. They need to be dug up and the older sections of the rhizomes removed with the newer ones planted just at the soil surface with the top left uncovered. They look a lot like ginger root and grow horizontally to the soil surface with the fans of leaves growing from one end. Their roots grow across the bottoms side.
August (late summer) is a good time to dig them up once they have flowered for the year. This will also give them plenty of time to settle in again before the ground freezes for the winter. Sometimes but not always when you dig and replant they will miss a year of flowering, but don’t worry they will the following year. They are very forgiving plants.
This Hosta is an unknown variety growing by the rock wall along the side of the barn. This section of the garden hasn’t seen any care for a couple of years now. These I will dig up come fall to thin them out and plant the extras in other places.
I first started with 4 small sections that I swapped with a gardening friend she wanted some of the bee balm I had. Swapping and sharing plants is a good way to add flowers and plants to your yard with out breaking your gardening budget.
It also pretty much insures the plant you are getting will grow in your yard. It will already have proven itself to be hardy in your area. You will need to know what the growing requirement for the plant are.
Most gardening books will tell you Hosta won’t grow in strong sunlight. Well these sure do around here and quite well too. They also grow well in fairly deep shade around here. A nice addition to the gardens the brigh green almost glows in the shade. They will send up shoots and flower with lavender colored, bell shaped flowers that smell nice too.
Here is Mumma Kitty coming out of the hay barn to say good morning. When I went in to fill her food and water bowls there was a nice chipmunk present waiting for me on a bale of hay. What a good cat she is.
She also has a new litter of kittens hiding in the hay about a week old now. I haven’t seen them yet, I haven’t been up to moving 30 or so bales to find them. They are ok for now.
The strawberries have started blooming. I have no idea what these are, they throw out runners pretty good and have good sized berries. I have about 30 or so I rescued from my sisters walk way last summer. Last year I waited for them to ripen and one morning I went to check and every last berry was gone. Left behind were some lovely bear foot prints for me.
The Peonies are also getting ready to bloom and the ants are enjoying them. This one is a Sarah Bernhardt.
Peonies are a plant that live a very long time. 100 years is not uncommon, they survive all kinds of abuse and actually like to be left alone. I top dress mine with compost and mulch in the spring. Come fall I will give them a bit of bone meal and call them good. They don’t like to be divided so will grow quite large. Mine need staking as the huge light pink and white triple blooms will bend to the ground.
Some have told me the ants chew the wax off the buds and if they don’t they won’t open. I don’t believe that, I think they just like the taste of the sweet taste of the wax.
I hope you all find some of your own morning glories today.