Thursday, May 21, 2015

Rain and Monarchs

More rain is in our forecast for this holiday
 weekend  and the lake is full.   
Only a month ago it was 12 feet below normal levels!

My garden is definitely green but
 a few plants have gotten too 
much water and aren't growing as well.

Yesterday I took this picture of my oakleaf hydrangea in the rain.  Even though the blooms are large they 
do hold up well when wet.

This weekend I'm hoping to get some more planting and mulching done before the heat finally does arrive. 
  I also need to clean and decorate 
my front porch too.

This was our porch a few years ago decorated for the 4th of July.   
I like to  decorate it with our flag 
and buntings for Memorial Day too.   

Today the sun came out and the privet in our garden was full of bees and American Painted Ladies but I also counted six Monarchs flying about and enjoying the multitude of white fragrant blooms. 

Such a joy to see them throughout the garden and then going back and forth to the 
privet blooms. 

I'm so thankful that my butterfly garden is doing it's job and I'm hoping that the milkweeds I've planted will help them on their migration.   

Crossing my fingers that we don't get rained out the entire weekend so I can
 finish planting a few more annuals. 

Have a wonderful weekend and  
safe travels if you are on the road! 

Sunday, May 17, 2015

May Flowers

All the rain has just been wonderful for the landscape.  We have had twice the normal amount of rainfall for this time of year and the Lake Hefner is nearing normal levels again.

We just got home from a trip and this morning I took a garden walk to see what was blooming in the garden.

I love these oakleaf hydrangeas, so easy to grow and they bloom every year no matter how cold and snowy 
our winter has been.
I wish I had planted more years ago, but so happy to have a mature shrub to enjoy now.

The privet is full of bees and American Painted Lady butterflies.  I love how they smell and how pretty they are in full bloom.   I can always count on them to be full of 
painted ladies this time of year. 

Window boxes on the shady side of the house are blooming nicely but still have lots of growing to do.

Always fun to go on a trip but I love returning home
 to my garden.


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

April Showers

It's been raining buckets and I can't do any more gardening until we have some dry days, but we are so thankful 
for the rain! 

Asao Clematis

I've been visiting garden centers, farmer's markets and small local nurseries to purchase new flowering plants.
  We have a 1/3 of an acre lot so it takes me awhile to get all the beds cleaned out, planted and mulched.  

Gerbera Daisies

The sunshine should return tomorrow and hopefully by Thursday the soil won't be so wet. 

Before the rain started I went out and cut a 
bouquet of irises 
from behind our fence.  

These were already laying on the ground from a
heavy dew and some wind so I brought 
them inside to enjoy. 

I always love cutting that first spring bouquet!  

I'm linking with 

Friday, April 17, 2015

Wire Flower Baskets and a Winner!

I love window boxes and filling them full of 
my favorite annuals.   There is something so charming about window boxes, don't you agree?

I found several french wire baskets years ago and I decided to hang two of them the brick wall outside
 my kitchen window.
The wall is a dark brick fence that belongs to the 
house next door.   I've never liked the dark brick color so I 
 decided to soften the look of the wall a couple years ago.  I've tried a number of flowering vines with little success until three years ago I found that boston ivy would be the perfect solution.  It has no flowers but the wall of green foliage looks so pretty.    The ivy doesn't damage the brick or mortar and it turns beautiful shades of
 yellow and orange in the fall.

The added bonus is the vine produces little blue berries for the birds.  The vine is vigorous and has almost covered the wall entirely in three growing seasons. 
My neighbor didn't want me to trim the vine and it has grown over to her side of the wall and has had a cooling effect on her pool deck.  Her pool is surrounded by concrete and more dark brick walls.  It just gets so hot in the middle of July so the boston ivy has been a "green" way to 
cool things off. 

The wire flower baskets give a much needed pop of 
color to the wall. 
These type of "window boxes" are so wonderful because there is no wood bottoms to rot and they are easily changed with the seasons and are virtually maintenance free.  
I purchase new coconut hull liners each spring and fill them with a fresh premium potting soil before planting.

I have found that sun loving annuals like geraniums, lantana and verbena do very well and keep blooming throughout the season.

Last year I planted red geraniums but this year I decided I wanted to look at pink and yellow flowers all summer long. 

Thanks to everyone who left a comment on my 
previous post.  Congratulations to

for winning the $30 gift card.
I will email you today to get your address.

I'm linking with 

Cindy's Romantic Home
Show and Tell Friday

Friday, April 10, 2015

Garden Walk and Giveaway

Spring is popping out all over!  
I love my garden walks this time of year because 
everyday there is something new blooming 
or emerging from the ground. 

My redbuds are leafing out and I've enjoyed
 their pink blossoms in the landscape for the past two weeks. Redbud trees are abundant in Oklahoma and signal spring is really here.    

The Japanese Maple leaves are the deepest crimson red and it's by far my favorite tree.  I planted a small one right off my patio so I could enjoy the color. 

Wisteria that I planted many years ago has reached maturity and is one of the delights in my garden.   When the wind blows (and it almost always does in Oklahoma) the scent carries throughout the garden.

Our last average frost date is April 1st and many gardeners in Oklahoma don't plant anything until April 15th.  I usually just start with potting up annuals in containers on my patio.  If we have a late frost I can easily move them and 
protect them from the cold.
I just have a hard time 
waiting until the 15th to purchase flowers!

This year I decided to purchase some larger pots and combine some of my favorite annuals for the patio.

This pot is planted with 'Lady in Red' salvia,  yellow million bells, crocosmia  'Lucifer' bulbs,  sweet potato vine and purple pansies.   This is a sure fire combo 
to attract hummingbirds.  

When the pansies die out there will be more room for the sweet potato vine.   My only problem is keeping the squirrels from eating the vine and digging up the bulbs.   
My dogs do a pretty good job of protecting my pots 
when they are outside.    

The farmer's market downtown had some beautiful lavender and I paired a Spanish variety with pink geraniums and marigolds.  All three are drought tolerant and make good companions. 

Since we are all trying to conserve water this year I am trying some new annuals that are more drought resistant.
These Gazinas are so pretty and come in a variety of colors.
They stay low and spread and look great in the front of the flower border or in pots.

The color combinations are so pretty all in one plant.   I love Gerbera daisies however I can't get them to rebloom very well in my garden so Gazinas 
will make a  great substitute. 

Lastly I would like to offer a giveaway for a
 gift card for $30 off a canvas print. 
I was asked to do a review for  
and was glad to accept the offer in exchange for a canvas and a gift card to be used for a giveaway to one of my followers.  

The canvas I received is 16 x 24 inches from a
 photo of my son while filming a documentary. 
The quality is excellent and exceeded my expectations. 
 I wasn't sure how a small photograph would 
look enlarged but it looks great! 

  He needed a poster to take to film festivals so the canvas was a great solution and the timing was perfect. 
The canvas arrived in a week and was delivered by Fed Ex.   The canvas was well packaged in bubble wrap and came complete with a wire hanger and ready to hang.  

This is a beautiful way to enjoy a special photograph 
and they offer many sizes with prices starting at $30. 
You can also create a  wonderful collage.  
What a perfect gift for Mother's Day or graduation a
canvas print would make. 
I'm already thinking of other photographs 
to have put on canvas.  

Please leave a comment to be entered for the
 $ 30 gift card
 and please follow if you haven't already. 

The folks at CanvasPop also offered a 35% discount
 to all my readers,  just use the 
code BLOOMERS35 
The discount expires April 30th, 2015.  

I will choose a winner April 17th!  

I'm linking with 

Cindy's Romantic Home
Show and Tell Friday 
Brenda's Cozy Little House
Tweak it Tuesday