If anyone is still checking, please forgive my long absence! I could make any number of excuses, but my garden journal from last year reflects the same pattern of late-season laziness. Though certainly messy, the garden is looking rather exuberant despite my neglect. I haven't been posting but, I have continued to photographically document what's going on in the garden. Without further ado, here's what's been happening in the last month.
The most exciting aspect is definitely tomatoes. The regular rains and nice hot days of July and August were perfect for growing these plants. Of the six types we grew, (including Sun Sugar, Double Rich, Lemon Boy, Early Girl) only Garden Peach was a disappointment. All others have been a wonderful success. We've enjoyed extras from our farm share as well.
The tomatillo plant (on the left side just above the marigolds) is large and has attempted to take over the path, but there are few fruits so far despite the many flowers. I hope we'll get something before a frost.
There are several tall plants looming over head when you sit on the steps and drink coffee. These 6 foot sunflowers were effortless. The yellows were originally planted by a former roommate. Now each year the birds help sow them so we have a new crop.
These lovely browns I grew from seed for the Flower Garden at work, taking a couple of seeds home. Folks have asked me — what is that flower? — not recognizing the old favorite in this more sophisticated hue.
I think they are fantastic and so does our resident squirrel. He has infuriated us by climbing the stems and tearing down any flower even before the seeds are ripe. Brandon constantly throws objects at the squirrel. I've resorted to making cut flower arrangements on the porch.
Next up would be the cute little dwarf dahlias I planted at the end of June. Again, effortless requiring no staking and adding a bright spot of color in two areas. I adore the combination with the self-sowing orange celosia. Thanks again, Betsy, for your generous donation. They are delightful!
Though a prominent position is deserved, these glorious acidanthera were placed off to the side where they can't be seen from the path.
Both of these lovely vines, love-in-a-puff (Cardiospermum halicacabum) and cypress vine (Ipomea quamoclit) have been dueling it out on the front fence. I think the red flowered cypress vine is winning, which is fine since we have love-in-a-puff in another area where it can climb on to our Taxus shrubs.
We inherited morning glory and spend much of the spring and early summer fighting back the billions of seedlings which are thankfully easy to spot and rogue out. They are lovely, though, in the a.m. hours so we left a bit on this small portion of the front fence.
When we were in Texas in July, Brandon's great aunt and cousin gave me pieces of several cactus that I potted up once we were home.
In other plants-in-pots news, I cut the top off my Dracaena marginata for the second time. This low-maintenance plant was originally acquired for my desk when I worked in an office. A co-worker christened the plant "Herman" since I had not named him. I went along with it, so when I first decapitated him I called the rooted pieces the Sons of Herman.
The Sons have done quite well and I gave that plant away to a friend (who later left the country temporarily leaving the Sons in my care again). Now I have the Head of Herman rooting in a new pot with plans to give him away. The original Herman has resprouted from the base and will remain mine as always. I'm not sure if that made any sense.
Euphorbia marginata has been going strong for weeks and we've used lots of it in indoor arrangements as well.
This beautiful gladiolus bloomed one more time after I had cut back the early blooms.
I saw Bulbine planted in the ground and blooming at Stonecrop last year and tried it myself. I'll have to dig it up before a frost arrives.
Brandon took these pics of this unidentified, amazing insect.
Lots more Monarch have visited this month.