Toad lilies

Three toad lilies (Tricyrtis, of unknown variety, as is so often the case in these parts), planted in ground that proved to be too damp, were recently transplanted to drier and sunnier spots. One was single stemmed and quite tall, the second clearly a dwarf, with the third in between. I presume that I will…

My small collection of daphnes

It pains me to admit that a ‘Summer Ice’ daphne (Daphne x transatlatica ‘Summer Ice’, below) planted early in the spring was lost a few weeks ago, almost certainly due to my inattention and not catching the first signs of wilt in this period of summer heat and little rain. One day it was fine,…

No flowers?

Now is the time, not next week when both of us will have forgotten, to check for next spring’s flower buds. Dogwoods, spring flowering camellias, rhododendron, paperbush, and pieris have already started budding in this garden. Actually, several weeks ago, but now most buds are large enough to see. Azaleas have set buds, but most…

Another seedling

I am endlessly entertained (perhaps writing too frequently) by seedlings in the garden. No, I am not enthused by weed seedlings, their removal the reason for much of the garden’s labor, but I am often fascinated with the unusual places that seedlings and sporelings (ferns) pop up. Most seedlings must be weeded out and discarded…

Tinkering in late summer

Despite recent dryness, I’ve been tinkering in the garden, probably too much, digging and moving seedlings and planting a few newcomers. No doubt, this would best be done two weeks from now with cooler and hopefully damper conditions, but some things can’t be helped. Today I’m motivated, who knows next week. Several deliveries have been…

A frog’s paradise

Be warned. Tread carefully while walking through this garden. One eye must be attentive to stepping stones that wobble, unbalanced on tree roots, to avoid a nasty tumble. While the other eye might roam to enjoy the garden, beware that every step might end the life of one of dozens, perhaps hundreds of frogs that…

Autumn’s around the corner

In August’s heat, leaves of serviceberry (Amelanchier canadensis) begin to fall without coloring. The tree doesn’t go bare, but the canopy is substantially reduced. The purple leafed European beech (Fagus sylvatica ‘Atropurpurea’) often drops a thick carpet of leaves upon the stone path in late summer, which quickly turn to brown, though this year there…

August blooms

Yes, it’s hot out there. Parts of the garden show the stress of summer heat, and I curse my words from a few months ago pleading for a period without rain. Now, scattered afternoon showers disappear or veer at the last moment to avoid the garden. But, while a few spots show the wear of…

A few brown leaves

Seedlings of the ‘Miyazaki’ toad lilies (Tricyrtis hirta ‘Miyazaki’) are numerous on the slightly humped bed just below the driveway. Several have been left to grow on, while dozens are weeded out each year. While ‘Miyazaki’ grows vigorously, as do most toad lilies in nearly full sun, its foliage is prone to scorching, in particular…

Again, the passionflowers

I must plant another passionflower vine (Passiflora incarnata). I see others that ramble luxuriously, which mine once did, but in recent years it appears reluctantly only in late July, and of course this is too late for it to amount to much. Often, I find it difficult to diagnose reasons that a long established plant…

Brigg’s Moonlight

I am undecided how to start with a ‘Brigg’s Moonlight’ daphne delivered in this first week of August. I am delighted that the daphne and assorted others in three and four inch pots survived their cross country journey in summer heat with no apparent trauma. This delivery was six weeks earlier than intended, a glitch…

The hard parts

Admittedly, stone paths that wind through the garden are shabby, due somewhat to poor construction, but in other parts shallow roots have displaced stones that now wobble if stepped on without proper attention. The faulty construction is no fault but my own, as paths were laid only to avoid dragging soil into the house, of…