Don't be fooled. Inside this thin coating of sweetness is a fiery core of total insanity.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Wednesday Vignette

For my Wednesday Vignette I'm sharing this photo of a bear wearing a flowered shirt, from Merrifield's Garden Center, one of our stops on the last day of the recent Garden Bloggers Fling, which I attended. It's going to be the first of my 300 or so unbearably bad photos, which I took with my point-and-shoot camera last weekend (I promise not to share all 300). For the entire first day, the camera was stuck in some strange mode that I couldn't figure out, and every time I would press the button to take a picture, a warning icon would flash at me, but if I persisted it would take the picture anyway. Some of them are curiously out of focus (that's my excuse, and I'm sticking with it). I couldn't figure out which combination of buttons to press to get it out of whatever mode it was in, until finally on the third day I managed to figure it out. Unfortunately, I'm not sure that improved things any.

At any rate, please bear with me on future posts as I share some shots from the Fling.

Anna at Flutter & Hum hosts Wednesday Vignette. Please check out her post here.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Great Plant Migration Complete

I spent most of last week moving plants out of the greenhouse, arranging and up-potting, making several trips to Fred Meyer for cactus soil and new pots, etc. I think everything is finally in its summer home -- later than usual, but it has been a long, cold spring, with our night temperatures still going down into the 40s, so I don't think the plants mind.

Plants that like sun get a spot here on the west-facing front porch/step. In the past I've tried to keep everything in between the two pillars, but this year, things have spilled a bit far to the left, and are crowding the front door just a tad.

Variegated Beschorneria is a new acquisition this spring from Annie's Annuals.

My three 'Bright Star' Yucca spent the winter protected from the rain on the front porch, and are looking good.

Three of my four "Fat Bottomed Girls" -- the hair of the fourth, a ponytail palm, is on the left

I also bought two Proteas from Annie's Annuals this spring. I know they'll eventually need bigger pots than this -- if they live.

Protea susannae

Protea repens 'Red'

One of several plants I've gotten over the years from Matthew The Lents Farmer at the Portland Bloggers Plant Swap, this rooted pineapple top, technically a Bromeliad, is producing fruit.

Itsy-bitsy pineapple

I searched the thrift store for some kitschy accoutrements to add to this repotted cowhorn Agave, but couldn't find anything appropriate. I really wanted a cow from a child's farm set. I found the gold  steer skull at Fred Meyer, but I'm not sure it's really my style. I'll keep looking, and if I find something I like better, maybe I'll box up the steer skull and ship it to Trump Tower.

Agave bovicornuta

What would make a good prop for 'Bloodspot' Mangave? A syringe? A bloody knife? I'll have to see what I can find at the Halloween shop this year. Oh! I know -- a severed finger! In the meantime, this wee birdie will have to do.

Groucho lives!
Thanks to my blogging friends I have a nice little collection of Stapeliads going. I don't remember the names of most of them.

Huernia something or other

I think the one on the left Matthew called butthole plant -- aka lifesaver plant/Huernia zebrina

'Zigzag' Euphorbia from Dig last fall

An Aloe wearing spiral glasses looks down at an Aloe polyphylla that never seems to get any bigger

The tablescape includes a Groot that's supposed to have a Chia head of hair, and the Minnie Mouse Pachypodium that used to live in my upstairs bathroom (my cat was chewing on it -- perhaps he was trying to clean his teeth?)

Aloe aristata needed to be up-potted from its nursery pot, along with about a zillion offshoots (in a mathematically challenged universe where a zillion equals 8)

Love its warty, hairy goodness!

Any babies that survive the summer will probably head to Portland for the Bloggers swap in the fall

Spilling down the back porch steps, which face east and get morning sun and afternoon shade, are shade-preferring plants such as Begonias and Bromeliads.

I always want to call this Begonia boliviensis but I know that's not it -- it's on the tip of my tongue -- luxurians!

A Podophyllum with no name, just a number, but no longer a prisoner in the village -- er, greenhouse

Bromeliads that some day may hang on a Bromeliad tree, if I ever get around to making one

This year's experiment -- tuberous Begonias -- 8 tubers out of 12 sprouted

One of them has a flower bud!

 So, the plant migration is complete, just in time for meteorological summer to officially begin!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day -- June 2017

Well, it's June, and we here in the PNW have finally been getting some warmer, sunny days, interspersed with a day or two of rain, rather than the incessant cold rain we had for months and months up to now, since about last October. Sometimes we even get a sunny day, with rain at night, and then sun again the next day (the best of both worlds).

The garden has been loving the warm sunshine, and the flowers are just busting out all over. For once, rather than a smattering of blooms, I think I'll try and show you everything for Garden Bloggers Bloom Day.

Everything!?! Yes, get that scrolling finger ready. Hope you don't get a blister.

The tag has been long lost in the mists of time, but I'm pretty sure it's Salvia 'East Friesland'

Geranium magnificum

Several repeating clumps of bigroot Geranium are flowering and attracting bees like mad

This Allium seems to last the longest, I don't remember the name, but I think it lasts because it's sterile, it doesn't set seed, although it does attract plenty of bees

Nectaroscordum siculum

Allium christophii

Who remembers that episode of Star Trek TOS called 'The Tholian Web?"

Iris 'Gerald Darby' is a rather ordinary flower, considering the early spring foliage is so cool -- well, as ordinary as an iris can be, I guess

Achillea 'Moonshine' and Calendula 'Solar Flashback'

Achillea 'Paprika' and California poppies



I don't remember the name of this lily, but it's the earliest flowering one I have, also very short

New in the garden this year, although I've grown it in the past, is Dianthus barbatus 'Sooty'

Another newcomer -- Lychnis arkwrightii 'Orange Gnome'

The flowers on Rosa glauca are simple, but I prefer them

A favorite annual, Nigella, has started flowering

California poppies are popping

Oxalis planted along the new wall is flowering, and will hopefully self-sow.

Beschorneria septentrionalis (try saying that three times fast) is flowering for the first time in the gravel garden, despite extreme neglect

Astrantia major 'Sunningdale variegated' although the leaves show just the tiniest edge of white

The bees don't seem to care about the foliage!

This ground orchid (Dacytlorhiza) has multiplied nicely

Peony 'Cora Louise'

I don't recall the name of this hardy Digitalis, but I bought it to replace the less hardy but more colorful Digiplexis that was all the rage a couple of years ago

This Clematis scrambles through the bed after it's done scrambling through the purple smoke bush

I often cut this Clem back about one-third to one-half in the spring, rather than try to unscramble that mess

I think this is Primula prolifera from Far Reaches Farm, although it looks a lot like Primula bulleyana too

Verbascum 'Southern Charm'

Verbascum Closeup

I forget which native lily this is (possibly Lilium pardalinum), but it has done well here. I divided it last fall, and all three divisions have come up and flowered.

Tradescantia 'Bilberry Ice'

I called this Brodiaea in a previous post, but I think it actually may be Dichelostemma congestum. It has been remarkably prolific in this spot, but very tall and floppy, and the thick, grasslike foliage is messy

Such a pretty flower, though, and lasts a long time in the vase, each of those florets continues to open.

Dichelostemma 'Pink Diamond'

Dichelostemma ida-maia aka firecracker flower

Dichelostemma 'Pink Diamond' has preternaturally long stems too

Elegantly long-spurred yellow Columbibe

Dianthus grown from seed many years ago

Woolly thyme

Sambucus racemosa 'Black Beauty'
Philadelphus lewisii




Begonia boliviensis

Begonia whose name I have forgotten

Callistemon subulatus 'Dark Red' is still in its nursery pot, but is flowering profusely

It's still just a baby shrub too

Lovely scented yellow daylily, also still in its nursery pot (going on two years now)

A new Philadelphus, called 'Belle Etoile' is supposed to have a red center on the flowers, but there is only the tiniest hint of pink

Well, that's not really everything, but it's close. Over 50 photos, I think, so if you made it all the way to the end, kudos for you.

Carol at May Dreams Gardens hosts Garden Bloggers Bloom Day on the fifteenth of every month. Check out her post here, where you'll find links to bloggers all over the world celebrating what's blooming in their gardens.