Friday, August 15, 2008

Garden Bloom Day: August

Is it Bloom Day already? Where has the last month gone? When I was teaching, August was the shortest month of the year. I would try to pack as many activities as possible in the last few weeks of summer vacation, but time would always run out. Now I don't fret so much about the end of the summer, but August still seems to fly by. Since this Bloom Day has snuck up on me, come with me for a quick stroll around the garden to see what is blooming. Please ignore any weeds you might see--I've been a very lazy gardener the last few weeks.

Many of the flowers I showed in July are still blooming, including the purple coneflowers. A few are beginning to fade, but most are still putting on a show. Other plants still blooming are the nepeta, "Walker's Low"; the salvias, "May Night" and "East Friesland"; baby's breath; Russian sage; "Moonbeam" coreopsis; and a few re-blooming Stella D'oros--but I know you don't want to see those again:) Also, the red Knock-out roses are sending out new growth and mustering a few new blooms now that the worst of the Japanese beetle onslaught is over.

We won't walk all the way down the lane to the roadside garden; if you didn't see the zinnias blooming there on Wednesday, stroll (scroll) down there when you leave. Instead, let me just show you this photo I took earlier this week of the Victoria Blue salvia beginning to bloom amidst the coneflowers. They are planted in front of the coneflowers, but are struggling for attention this year because the coneflowers have really spread and the lilies in front have grown so much as well. I may have to do some cutting back once those flowers begin to fade, because the salvia will bloom till frost and will provide the only color in that area this fall.

Here's another planting of the Victoria blues near the house. You can see how intense the violet-blue color of this flower is. I think it's much prettier than the perennials, don't you?

Let's walk over to the shade garden for a few minutes. Most of the hosta blooms are fading away, but you can see that this large hosta--unnamed, of course--is just sending up some buds. There's another one to the right; I think these could be some stunning blooms.

What is this? Oh my goodness, the primroses I planted this spring are starting to bloom again. I thought they only bloomed in the spring??

When did this caldium pop up? This is the second of six bulbs I planted more than two months ago that has suddenly appeared. At this rate, the last of them may appear just in time for me to dig them up this fall!

Finally--the last foxglove is blooming. This is the first photo of the foxgloves that turned out well. I was beginning to believe the fairies were putting a hex on my camera for disturbing their hiding places.

We'll take a look at my container plantings another time, but do stop to look at this basket of double impatiens. I love these flowers--don't you think they look like miniature roses?

You can see there are a few plants getting ready for their autumn debut. The sedum "Autumn Joy" has developed its flowers that will slowly turn to pink and then burgundy as the weather cools.

And this mystery plant I have been watching since spring is beginning to blossom so that I can finally identify it--an aster! I have no idea what variety it is, since I don't even remember planting it last year! But I won't complain; I'm glad to welcome any fall entries in the garden.

Have I shown you this before? I planted a small memorial spot for my late dog, Roco, which I will tell you about at a later time. For now, though, I just want to brag about this Shasta daisy, "Becky," which has been blooming non-stop since June and shows no signs of stopping for awhile. I've never had much luck with daisies before, but "Becky" was the Perennial of the Year a few years ago, I believe, and definitely has lived up to expectations.

Let's pop over to the vegetable garden for a moment; lots of weeds blooming here, but I wanted to show you the blooms on the tomato plants. They certainly look promising, don't they? But now take a look at the rest of the plant...

Unfortunately, nearly all my tomato plants are beginning to wilt, with the leaves steadily turning brown. I bought disease-resistant varieties, so this was totally unexpected. After doing some research, I think the problem was caused by all the rain we had earlier this summer. Tomatoes need "consistent watering," according to all the articles, not flooding one week and no rain the next. There are lots of fruits on the vines right now, but I doubt I'm going to get the bumper crop for putting up juice and sauce that I was planning on. Do you know if there is anything I can do to salvage these plants?

Oh well, let's move on to happier topics. We're now in the "back forty," as I like to call this area. It's a circular area between the house and the outbuildings; there's no garden here, but as you can see, I stick some plants here until I decide where to put them permanently. You can see the false sunflower tucked into this corner has finally taken hold and is blooming nicely. Oh yes, I know they can be invasive--Beckie, who has worked hard for years to eradicate this flower from her garden, gave me the start. But I have a lot of room here, and if the sunflower spreads, it may choke out some weeds and give my husband less lawn to mow. Besides, I'm thinking of turning this area into sort of "wild" garden anyway.

Of course, this is where the original hollyhocks were planted as well. Judging by this bud, they're not done blooming yet. I planted the passalong hollyhocks from my mother here, too, and they've been a little later in blooming. You'll notice the pink ones, the white, the red, the dark purple/burgundy, and . . .

. . . what is this? Could this be the elusive yellow hollyhock Jodi has been pining for? Look closely; that's not white or pale pink--it definitely is yellow!

Well, that was a pleasant surprise. I think that's all that is new in the garden right now, except . . . .just a minute--what is that bloom over there?

Oh my goodness, a "Naked Lady"! I have seen these on Lisa's and other blogs lately and commented how I wished I had some. Wherever did it come from?? I know I didn't plant it. Could this have been here all this time, and I just never took the time to come out here and notice it blooming before? We always called these "Surprise Lilies"--this one has certainly surprised me!

I know it's time to go and there are other blog gardens to visit. I'm so glad you took the time to stroll around the garden with me; I might never have noticed some of my own blooms otherwise!

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day is sponsored the 15th of each month by Carol at May Dreams Gardens. Be sure to visit her for many other Bloom Day posts.


  1. Beautiful Blooms Rose! I never tire of Coneflower! Your Shasta is lovely, bloom since June, that is a happy plant! Maybe I ought to try her in my garden. I think your right some of the annuals really put on a show, they must know they have to wow the socks off of the pollinators since they have just one season! Happy Bloom Day, have fun in the garden and visiting all the blogs today!


  2. Awesome blooms and Color! I like that primrose. How cool is that? My poor Beckys are long gone by and yours look fabulous still. Nice bloom day.

  3. Gail, I would be happy if the coneflowers bloomed till November! The shasta daisy has been a pleasant surprise; I did feed her a lot of compost. I was surprised at how much was still blooming right now; I thought I'd have to depend on just my annuals.

    Tina, The primroses are so small, but so bright. I was so surprised to see them yesterday.

  4. Rose, I am impressed with your coneflowers-they are still so bright while mine are fading fast. I am just going to have to get the annual salvia, I love the color. The caladiums are finally coming up?? I wonder what's going on with them. The primrose is a surprise, how pretty. I'll bet you were in school when the surprise lily bloomed before, but isn't wonderful to have found them now. I wish I knew what to tell you about your tomatoes...that's a shame. All in all your garden is still looking great as late as it is getting. Where did summer go??!

  5. Could your mystery Hosta be plantaginea? The leaves look right. Does it have large, fragrant white flowers? I love your mystery Aster! How tall does it get? Not fair! You've got Lycoris you didn't plant blooming & mine, which have been moved several times, have never bloomed. The garden is a cruel, cruel place. Other than your sad tomatoes, everything looks like it really enjoyed all the rain you got. Your Hollyhocks are so pristine they almost look fake.

  6. Love your impatiens. At first glance I thought it was a begonia. How do you manage to have such lovely hollyhocks with the Japanese beetles?

    I was thinking the same thing as Gail. Maybe I should try Shastas especially since my coneflowers aren't thriving.

  7. Well Rose....what a lovely display you have....too many to talk about individually......
    Primroses sometimes have a second flush in fact I have buds on some of mine......

    Lovely foxglove, it is strange to see it in bloom now that all mine have finished.....

    my favourite is the yellow hollyhock, I want that plant, it is exquisite.....

    Lovely tour Rose.....have a wonderful weekend.....

  8. You have so many gorgeous plants, including many I have too, like salvia, naked ladies, roses, coneflower, and primroses.
    The color combinations are lovely.

  9. Beautiful blooms Rose. I didn't know that primroses bloomed a second time either. I don't have the daisy 'Becky' obviously since my shastas only give one good bloom per season. I am very disappointed in them especially after seeeing yours.

    Have a lovely bloom day. Thanks for the shout out for my blog. I can't post today because my computer is still kaput. It is at the fix it place. I hope it is fixed soon. I am now at work trying to get some reading done between chores. Have a good weekend.

  10. One of my favorite flowes is the Shasta Daisy. It always does well in our heat. I love foxglove but it never does well for me. I love the surprises that just pop up in your garden. You have some wonderful ones.

  11. Beckie, You are probably right about my being in school and not seeing the surprise lilies before; they're not in an obvious place. Wonder if I can transplant them? Notice I'm not in panic mode now that summer is almost over, LOL.

    MMD, I'll check out the hosta when the flowers bloom. I think these were originally passalongs, so they may be the variety you mention. We'll see how tall the aster gets--it looks similar to another one I have which usually grows to about 30" tall. The lycoris don't bloom for you, but for me? Then it's luck, not gardening:)

    Marnie, The Japanese beetles hit my hollyhocks when they first bloomed, but I think most of them have left, so the later blooms have been undisturbed. We'll see how the Becky does next year, but I'm quite impressed with it this first year.

    Cheryl, It's a little strange that each of the three foxgloves I bought this year bloomed at different times. I'm going to check out how to save hollyhock seed. If I can, I'll send you some yellow. Have a good weekend, too!

    Terra, Thanks and thanks for stopping by! I started out with pinks and purples in the garden, but sometimes another color likes to pop in:)

    Lisa, Thanks for stopping by. I knew your computer was kaput--I saw your comment somewhere else. I do hope you can get it fixed soon--I've missed your posts! When you have some time, check out my Wed. post on the zinnias to see the little planting I did ala Lisa:)

    Eve, I've had many surprises in the garden this year, most of them pleasant ones. I've never had luck with daisies before; we'll see if this one comes back next year with the same vigor, but "Becky" comes highly recommended for the Midwest garden.

  12. I hope you do put in a "wild" garden, Rose- then we could compare notes!
    I've never had any luck with Shasta daisies, and now I think I have too much shade to try again. At least you've proven to me that they can be grown here successfully.

  13. Thank you for the wonderful tour of your garden.
    Ilove the photo of your foxglove.
    Thanks also for visiting my blog and for also putting in a good word for me on Bob T Bear (esq.'s) blog.
    It is much appreciated.
    Come visit my blog anytime.

    Bear((( )))

  14. I think we have a hollyhock coming but it is taking its time!

    Now I've forgotten what else I was going to say!

    That impatiens does look like a rose.

    I wnat some daisies next year.

    Our primroses/primulas are blooming again in our tubs. WE gave up trying to plant any annuals or re-do the tubs this year. Hopefully by next year George will have stopped eating and digging ...

  15. Hi Rose, what a wonderful tour of your garden. I always like to walk along with you, you are so chatty! Becky is a winner here too, despite the drought and reblooms well with deadheading. Your surprise lilies are look happy, ours have been done for over a month, but our Autumn Joys look to be about the same along. The primrose is too wonderful.

  16. Your whole garden looks good, Rose, but my favorite part was that your Surprise Lily was really a Surprise. That's one of the fun things about having a big variety of plants - something can sneak in once in awhile. Maybe the seeds piggy-backed in with another Passalong Plant, and took several years to mature to blooming size?

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  17. Gorgeous blooms Rose. Love the echinaceas (one of my favorites) the yellow hollyhocks and the naked ladies. I can wait for mine to bloom (a friend gave me a bulb this summer)

  18. I loved scrolling through your garden, Rose. I especially loved your memorial to Roco--plants always remind me that life goes on, even if it's in different forms--my favorite memorial is something that grows. I look forward to reading more about Roco.

    Best, Cosmo

  19. You didn't know you had a Naked Lady in your garden? I've got a lot of them right now, but I really call them Surprise Lilies, too. I love them as that pink color isn't very common in August.

    And I didn't see any weeds! I'm blind to them, I guess, because I have so many that I'm ignoring in my own garden.

    Thanks for joining in for bloom day.

    Carol, May Dreams Gardens

  20. Joyce, After some thought, I think I should call it the "natural garden"--sounds better, don't you think?:) This is the first daisy I've had that did so well, too; we'll see how it does next year.

    Bear Naked, Thanks for stopping by. I enjoyed your Olympic post:) Good luck in the competition!

    Liz, Coco, the Pomeranian, is not much of a digger, thank goodness. But my cats...well, that's another story. They think any flowerbed that has a bare spot is a wonderful litterbox. I've lost a few small plants that way:)

    Frances, People have often told me I'm "chatty":) But then, gardeners love to talk about their gardens, don't they? Most of my family knows better than to ask me about my flowers, unless they have lots of time, LOL. These are my first primroses, and they really did surprise me.

    Annie, It's possible that the surprise lily was brought in with a passalong. But then again, I'm usually too busy this time of year to spend time in the back area, so it may have been there all along.

    Gintoino, Thanks for stopping by! Good luck with your "naked ladies."

    Cosmo, I intend to do a post about Roco some time. He was a very special dog, and I'm glad I finally got around to making his own little garden.

    Carol, You are so kind to ignore the weeds...of course, close cropping helps, too:)Thanks for sponsoring Bloom Day; I always look forward to it.

  21. Wow, GBBD, already? I was moving on the last one and this past month has breezed by. Flowers do help you keep track of time.

    Your garden looks lovely, especially those healthy coneflowers. I saw primroses blooming in January in England. I didn't know they'd bloom that early or this late as I associate them with spring.

  22. Your hosta closeup is very artistic!
    I love those naked ladies too, I wonder who planted them?!

    PS, That doesn't read quite right now does it?!!

  23. Hi Rose:
    A lovely stroll through your garden today. Your coneflower header is a delight as well as the first photo in this post.

    Love the Victoria Blue Salvia... I haven't grown any of it in years but everytime I see on someone else's blog it makes me miss it. I tend to choose the indigo spires... much similar bloom but gets VERY large and sprawley.

    Your caladium looks to be a White Queen... one of my favorites. Glad it popped out for you much like the naked ladies that suprised you.

    Thank you for taking us around your garden... it's always fun to notice blooms with camera in hand we might not have paid attention to otherwise.
    Meems @Hoe&Shovel

  24. Sarah, The summer seems to be flying by. I didn't know primroses bloomed again in the fall either.

    Suburbia, I always heard of the "naked ladies" as surprise lilies. But then I grew up in a very sheltered environment:)

    Meems, Thanks for the kind words. Coneflowers are my favorites. You're right about seeing things with a camera in hand that we might miss otherwise. I always look forward to Bloom Day.

  25. That is a gorgeous hollyhock. Enjoyed visting your GBBD post.


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