Today was a gorgeous day, the flowers are still blooming, it was in the 70’s, the sun was shining, I will take as many days such as this one as Mother Nature is willing to give us. Unfortunately, this weekend may be the last one with temperatures anywhere near civilized. A cold front is coming next week, for Blandford that means we are in for a frost, my pretty flowers won’t surivive a frost, so this is probably their last hurrah, poor little guys.
Coneflowers and upright phlox are the quintessential August flowers. I love their vibrant colors, their height and especially the way they self-propagate throughout the garden. They are also drought resistant, they haven’t exhibited any signs of distress since the drought started, they are a solid choice for any gardener, beginner or expert.
I love the coneflower’s structure, it is a bee and butterfly magnet with its wide center full of pollen, I would call them the insect world’s drive through, the bees and butterflies come and go without a care, knowing that the coneflower stands tall full of what they need and love more than anything. It’s a beautiful thing to watch, especially all of the different butterflies that come through my garden.
One of my best friends in the world, my former next door neighbor, Debbie came to visit with me. It did me a world of good. I posted a picture of my hydrangea because of its color, purple; violet, lilac, any iteration of the color purple represents Debbie, I have never met anyone who loves purple more than Debbie. We used to joke around that whatever Debbie touched, if it was a plant, would turn purple. My hydrangea started out as a pink hydrangea, that didn’t last for more than two growing seasons, lol. I have a clematis in the back, it originally produced white blooms and within two years it started to produce purple tinged flowers. I used to love to point it out to Debbie lol. Debbie and I over the years have made so many inside jokes between us, it did me so much good rehashing so many of them. I had a great afternoon.
This year I am conducting a garden experiment, I haven’t physically worked on it at all, I am allowing my garden to do as it pleases, my decision is based on my constant fatigue and my weekly absences from the garden due to being with my husband during his frequent trips out of town. Do I miss weeding? Perhaps a little bit, just the meditative aspect that proper weeding affords me. I have done a little bit of weeding because the Bishop’s Weed has taken the opportunity to spread throughout my little gardens, so I bend over and yank them out, but that isn’t the correct way to weed them. I would have to sit myself down for hours of digging out their insane extensive root system that spreads out by feet rather than inches and I don’t feel up to that challenge.
I can see that this experiment can only last this one season, Bishop’s Weed is too powerful a weed to leave unchecked for more than one summer if I want to keep my perennials healthy and alive. Bishop’s Weed can choke the root system of other plants quite quickly, so next year I will have my work cut out for me, I will need to start in the early spring snuffing out the tiny Bishop’s Weed before their root systems anchor themselves firmly in the middle of my perennials.
I can’t stop taking pictures of my flowers, I’m sure I’m boring my family and friends with the non-stop focus on every new bloom, I may need an intervention lol. Flowers are so beautiful and unique and it’s not just from flower to flower, but also from year to year, each bloom emerges as a singular expression of genetic history, evidence of climate effect and an entire host of other factors. I think that is why I am continuously fascinated by my plants, it never gets boring from my perspective because my garden doesn’t remain static, it’s a dynamic entity constantly changing and being shaped by both internal and external conditions, many of which are out of my control which can be a source of frustration at times. I often need to remind myself that I don’t particularly need to control the physical appearance of my gardens, I should be happy watching nature unfold organically and be grateful to be able to document it with my cell phone.
My irises are out, it might be just me, but I swear it feels as if they came out of nowhere. One day the irises are about six inches high and the next, they are practically all in bloom. Time is getting away from me again and I protest, I would like spring to linger for a bit longer, I’m not in any rush for summer.
Once the irises are spent, a large section of my side bed loses its dramatic color, I still have dianthus and purple sage planted in the side bed, but their blooms can’t compete with the visual impact clumps of blooming iris give. As I always say, shaping and maintaining a garden, be it a flower or a vegetable garden is always a work in progress. What to do, what to do, I suppose I could plant some annuals to get splashes of color throughout the season, I’ll think on it.
I love these flowers, although my new vegetable patch ate into quite a bit of their territory, it made me sad pulling up the tiny plants while I was prepping the area pre-planting. These flowers are however, sturdy and stubborn, they will prevail no matter what. I remember I gave Debbie just a few to plant in her backyard, to fill in a few bald spots in hard to grow places, before she knew it, she practically had an entire field, all from those three or four little plants.
I’m not sure why the two pictures are so different, the first one, I know I took during full sun, the second may have been overcast, it was a partially cloudy day or it could have been the editing tools on my iPad, there is the enhancing tool that makes the colors pop, but I wouldn’t think it would change it to this extent. I’m not sure. I kind of like going back and forth between the two.
I apologize for the brevity of my post but I am having quite the issue, not only with my devices but also with the Internet in general. I consider myself very lucky to have uploaded the pictures, though it did seem to take forever, typing is getting excruciating, each letter slowly appears one after the other.
Pretty flowers hooray!
I have cute little cucumbers growing! They are a first for me, as is the very pretty aubergine blossom, I’m not sure how long it will take for that blossom to develop into an eggplant, but let’s just say I’m excited. The yellow squash are growing and mulitplying by leaps and bounds, I may be forced to start baking squash breads, squash cupcakes, squash brownies, basically find a creative flair to deal with endless squash later this summer. lol
My orginal balloon plant bloomed yesterday:
It got so big and tall as opposed to last year, not that it was small by any means, but I didn’t expect it to get as tall as my large hosta to the left of it. I’m so happy with it, there are so many buds, it’s going to be gorgeous for quite a while, it’s a present that keeps on giving.
The cone flowers are just starting to share their beauty, the majority of mine are a delicate pink with two or three white ones in the mix, just enough to highlight the pinks in their grouping. The delicate lavender flower up above is something that pops up in my garden haphazardly, I have never planted them, they just make their presence known every year, this year I don’t have many, I hope they haven’t decided to pack up their bags and head out of town.
I have been pushing back hard against these feelings of panic, dread and anxiety that are cropping up despite my best efforts. Mindfullness may be a buzz word, I know, but I believe in it, I went out in the garden to take pictures, detailed pictures of nature as its best or at least how she rewards me in my little backyard. Sitting back on my heels, patiently waiting for clarity and detail of petals to come into focus on my screen, along with the gradation of the background, I could feel my center shifting back to calm. The moment was shortlived because my mind became distracted by the work needed to be done right now in the garden, I often fail to see the beauty of what I have planted and nurtured, for the sight of all the weeding that needs to be done and bang boom, back comes the nauseating flutters of panic, dread and anxiety. I can’t tell you where it comes from, it is somewhere buried deep, I prefer to bury these feelings and concentrate on my more normal setting, easy-going and optimistic, though there are days when being optimistic, despite being a natural way of being, is too exhausting to maintain.
Mindfullness and centering, two words that have taken up the internet, they may seem trite to the uninitiated, but to those who have practiced yoga and/or meditation, the results are pretty wonderful, if only for the peace of mind it can bring.
Writing this down helps a lot, it gets my mind to deconstruct my emotions and while I sit here, typing on my little keyboard, I practise cleansing breaths, they feel really nice; I can hear my yoga instructors in my head, speaking slowly and hypnotically, reminding me to focus on my toes, breathing the tension out of them, then gently proceeding up the legs, next the belly, the arms, the shoulders and finishing with the neck and the head.
Sometimes, it’s as easy as taking a deep breath.