Thursday, August 7, 2014

The First Week Of August In The Backyard

Okey dokey, it's backyard photo time. I took all of these pictures at the same time as the ones out front, so it was at dusk.

Up first, let's go with my new Dahlia.
This is another grocery store purchase.  I'm tellin' ya, if you're near a Winco, they have the best bulbs in the spring.  And they're only $2 bucks!
They're always at the entrance of the store, in boxes on racks.
This one is called Otto's Thrill.  It's a dinner plate like my white one, but soooo tall!
The box said 40 - 44 inches.  I'd say it exceeded that.
It reads as really pink in the photos, but I'd call it more of a dusty rose in person.

For height comparison, that's a 'David' Phlox next to it, and if you have one of those, you know how tall they get.
The fence is six feet.

I had to maneuver around this guy to get in and get close ups.
I didn't wanna break his (or probably her) web.

So dang pretty.
And speaking of pretty, let's ooh and ahh over the blue Hydrangea.
They're just so photogenic.

I don't know if it's because of the sun exposure, but most of the flowers are on the back side this year.

These are some shots looking behind that bed.
To get your bearings, I'm standing in front of the shed.

And this is looking the opposite direction.

Under the tree, my unidentified Heuchera is doing well.
I've mentioned not ever having very good luck with them, but this one seems to be growing, despite its owner.

I don't know why, but I never think to take pictures of this angle.
So here are some pulled back shots of the back side of the big tree bed.

One of my new babies from the Leach Botanical sale this spring is under there.
And it's blooming!
Anemonopsis macrophylla, 'False Anemone.'

Onto the side of the house, the Fuchsias are blooming good.

As you can see, the Hops is quite prolific this year.
It might eat the house if I'd let it.

The Chinese Chives are blooming.
I yanked almost all of them out this year 'cause they're super naughty.
I even have them coming up in the parking strip.
Naughty naughty.

Another batch of Hostas are blooming.
And I found another friend snuggling in for the night.

Okay, back into the main part of the yard...
My poor Peegee Hydrangea really took a beating from that rain storm we got.
It's tied up in about five different places to keep it upright, but at least I only lost a couple main branches.

The lavender Phlox next to it is still blooming.
I'm pretty meticulous about deadheading it, but still.
Let's hope it lasts through the garden tour next Sunday.  :)

To the left of that, I stuck in a couple State Fair Zinnias.
They're growing all wonky and I'm out every day staking them up.
And they just now started blooming. 
Not sure I'd plant them again.  I'll stick with the shorter guys.

Heading to the right of the Peegee is where it transitions to shade.
My Gartenmeister Fuchsias in the pot are doing well.  As well as the other Fuchsias I have poked in over there.

On the opposite side of the yard, the annuals have takin' off.
Cleome, Blue Salvia, Zinnias, Lantana, Cosmos, Basil, as well as Rudbeckia, Phlox, Salvia Chiapensis (that I love, love, love and wish was perennial here), and the Salvia Patens 'Cobalt', are all the bloomers right now in this bed.

Here it is, looking from the opposite direction.

This is the exact same Phlox that I had to whack to the ground out front because of the mildew.
This one is healthy as can be.
Let me know when you get it all figured out.

And yet another angle.
You can sort of see the lawn and the sad state that it's in.
This is looking out from the wine bottle path.

I'm so in love with the Cleome right now.

This potted Fuchsia on the path has been blooming nonstop.

The Pentes has really taken off - ya know, since I bought it a few days ago.  
It's not even planted yet in these photos.
Don't judge me and my plant buying addiction.
Why don't they sell these earlier in the year anyway?  
I LOVE them!

Also along the path, the Marjoram has jumped out of its pot and rooted (another naughty plant) and the Pineapple Mint is growing like crazy in its pot.

Despite Baby's attempt to destroy it, my clearance rack Gerber Daisy is blooming again.

What else?  
How 'bout the fire pit area?
It's got a lot of pink happenin' right now.

And finally, for those of you who made it to the bottom of the post, here's a couple shots of the wine bottle path from the deck.

For those of you in town, or anyone lookin' to do a road trip, here's the link to next Sunday's Garden Tour information:

Just a little reminder that you can purchase my floral photographs in my Etsy shop.
If you see one in a post that isn't in the shop, shoot me an email and I'd be more than happy to list it for ya.

Please see my sidebar for the parties I link up to.


  1. Wow.....I am in love with your backyard!!!! Do you think my husband would be down with me driving all the way to your house for a garden Even I would think I was nuts to drive from Ohio just to spend 45 mins on a garden tour. haha. So here comes my questions.....are you getting sick of them yet? :) First, I want WANT want a blue hydrangea and I definitely have to get my hands on a Peegee hydrangea. I love them. Do you give them anything to make them that big and beautiful? I have one hydrangea and its pretty sad looking. I am thinking I either prune it at the wrong time of the year or it just doesn't like it out in the hot hot sun in the front yard. Any suggestions? You did it again, introduced me to a new flower that I must have......Cleome. OMG I love it, must have it!!! So for your annual bed, how do you do it? Buy a bunch of different seeds and plant them or do you buy established plants? Every Spring I say I am going to do a flower bed with all different sorts of annuals, but somehow just don't get to it. Any info? I also have to ask, how in the world did you get your whole yard flower beds with paths? Just kept adding flower beds, one after another until the grass was gone? lol We have exactly one acre of land here and in my head I would love to just make it a yard full of flowers with paths leading everywhere. My husband says No Way!! lol I don't think I would be able to keep up with the maintenance anyways. I have my hands full with all my flower beds now. Happy Gardening!! Are you going to take pictures the day of your Garden Tour??

    1. Yeah, I don't think the price of gas would even out with the free tour. :)
      I hate to admit that I rarely (never) fertilize my shrubs, so the hydrangeas, other than compost every year, don't get a lick of anything. I know there are fertilizers specifically for things, ie azaleas, rhodys, etc, but I've never bought them. My mom swears by 16 16 16 for everything in the garden. No specific brand, but those are the percentage of the ingredients. I never remember which number is which, but they're nitrogen, phospate, and potash. I'm a Miracle Grow girl and generally buy the all-purpose, so when I'm feeding annuals and new perennials, the existing stuff probably gets a little dose, but I don't know if it's enough that it would make a difference. I think mostly, it's the good dirt that makes them healthy.

      I prune my hydrangeas in the spring, once I can see the new grown coming. I usually cut above the second or third set of new leaves when they're just nubs. For my peegee, because they're meant to be large shrubs, I started out cutting it back at the last set of leaves so I could get it to be taller. Once it had some height, I pruned out the bottom to make it more tree-like. I've recently seen that there's a 'Little Limelight', which is the same peegee as mine, only smaller. Would be perfect for a smaller spot, but sounds like you have tons of space.

      The peegees like sun, but the others don't. Mine in the driveway gets late afternoon sun and the leaves fry on really got days. I'm sure there are varieties that can handle more than others, but in general, I would say they prefer only morning sun.

    2. (I blabbed so much that it wouldn't all fit in one reply box!!! If you want, you can leave your email address and I can reply to your comments that way.)

      Isn't the Cleome awesome!? I used to grow it all the time years and years ago, and had completely forgotten about it. I remember it reseeding itself in rentals where I had planted it, but I've not ever had it do that here. I just bought a six-pack of starts this year, but I would assume that they're probably pretty easy to start from seed. I'm saving seeds from mine and I'll throw some out at the end of summer and then throw more out in spring and see what happens. I used to start annuals from seed when I lived in place with a basement. It was my second yard ever and I was starting everything I could get my hands on. But I just don't have the space here, so I buy them. I have started things outside in trays and just in the ground, like zinnias, but it's just easier at this point to buy the starts. If you have an entire area that you want as like a cutting garden, you could do both seeds and starts. Buy a few seed packets of things, like the Cleome, Salvia, Cosmos, etc, then also get a few tray packs of things to fill in.

      The paths have happened organically, for sure. They've changed and moved as the yard has evolved. The one along the side of the house, obviously serves a practical purpose. Before we added the addition on to the back of the house, there was a boardwalk path along the back. But when I lost that and was putting the yard back together after construction, I just moved flower beds out and stuck the path down the middle. That's the one I always call the wine bottle path. The little one in front of the shed came to be with the shed. It eventually merged with the side of the house path and the wine bottle path via going behind the big tree. I always try to put them in where everyone naturally walks anyway. So I'd say if you were wanting one, take note of where there's a path in the lawn, or where you're always stepping in a flower bed. I put in a few stepping stones from the fire pit area through to the little wall behind the main bed in the back. The whole strip where the peegee is. The kids were constantly going back there to play, so finally, instead of fighting the trampled plants, I got smart and gave them an entrance.

      So yes, the lawn gradually got smaller and in turn, the beds got bigger, which created the need for more paths. :) If I had an acre I would pee myself. It would be a ton of work if you made a bunch of beds all at once, but if every year you took out another section of lawn for a new bed, or made an existing bed bigger with a path through it, it wouldn't be so bad. And if it happened gradually, maybe your hubs wouldn't notice. Ha!

      I'll definitely be hauling my camera with me on tour day. I can't wait to see other people's yards. I'll be a train wreck up until mine is over, but it will be fun.

    3. Hello Again! Thanks for all the information. My e-mail is Believe me I could babble on and on but work "hard" at trying to keep my comments just that, comments and not essays. :) I love all the information you give me!!! In the past I have mostly focused on collecting different kinds of hostas, daylillies, iries, hibiscus trees/bushes. Each year I add new plants to my yard. This year I bought a lot of new to me bushes. I usually do many flower pots with different kinds of petunias. I also have the kids make pots with their favorite kinds of annuals. In my yard if I do annuals from seeds in pots, they do great. But every year I try different kinds of annuals by seeds in some of my beds and they just don't mature fast enough. By time they start to flower, it gets to cold for them to survive. So my plan next year is to make a "cutting" annual flower bed in a very sunny location. I think I will buy starter plants. Each year I get my husband to cut a few more trees down. When we moved in, most of the yard was shade. But I swear we are fighting a hard battle. As we cut down the big walnut & pine trees to get more sun in the yard, the small trees grow massive and make more shade. Some of my beds that got all day sun have turned into beds that are lucky to get a few hours now. Every year that I edge the flower beds they get bigger and bigger. I do have a few paths and due to the big patio we put in this Summer, I know have a few more starting. Next year I am going to focus on the South side of my house because it is just natural to have a path there. I do have stepping stones going half way. We took down a huge old dead pine tree on that side and it completely opened up the South side. So I have a shade bed along the house and a big flower bed at each end. Next year I will work on putting in more of a path :) Gardening takes lots and lots of time and with 3 kids and having a job (I do from home) it cuts into my gardening time.....Big Time. lol

  2. There is always lots of pretty views in your garden Mindy! That $2 Dahlia has turned out to be a stunner. I was also eyeing the interesting plant support. I liked the Hydrangea and the Anemonopsis macrophylla, 'False Anemone' too. Your Peegee standard looks great despite the rains storm incident. Have a wonderful Sunday!

  3. Hi Mindy,
    Be still my bearing dahlias and blue hydrangeas. It's a garden after my own heart. You aren't kidding that dahlia is tall. Holy smokes! The garden is looking beautiful!

  4. I have a soft spot for delicate woodland / shade plants like your Anemonopsis macrophylla, 'False Anemone' - so pretty! Pentas! I used to buy pentas each spring - I don't think any nurseries here are even offering them anymore.

  5. There is so much to love about this post. I'm going to be looking for those dahlias in Winco. That girl is outstanding! Your Anemonopsis is fabulous. Despite all the plant buying I've done this year, I still don't have one. One thing I did buy was a white-flowering hosta. I think the white flowers look much nicer than the lavender ones. Your sleeping bumblebee is so cute. Great post.


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