I don't think I told you, but at the end of April I broke a couple of bones in my hand and in my elbow. My husband is suggesting -- only half in jest! -- that I be wrapped in bubble wrap for awhile. Actually I just need to pay more attention when carrying things around two large and very enthusiastic labs, who want to be in on the action -- whatever it is!
Of course that was prime gardening season, which I missed out on. So for Mother's Day Miss J took me to the nursery to select flowers and annuals which she then planted in containers for me. We bought small-sized plants, knowing half the fun is watching them fill out and grow.
Come along on a short tour of container gardening!
A cactus and two succulents nestled into a pretty pot that sits under the kitchen window.
|Catharanthus roseus, Pentas lanceolata and Oxalis sp|
The vinca has tripled in size by the side door. The red pentas behind it hasn't responded as expected; probably needs more sun than it's getting. Both the antique concrete planter the pentas is in and the heirloom perennial pink oxalis in front were described in last summer's A Snapshot of Container Gardening.
The mandevilla is flowering more and has begun to twine itself around the trellis. When it reaches the top it will spread across the fence, providing a lovely view at the end of the driveway. We chose pink this year, unlike my usual red selections.
Multicolored portulaca is joined by a pompom-shaped yellow marigold. Often horticultural selections originated in Japan or China, but portulaca are succulents native to Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay. I've had the blue ceramic pots for several years and placed them on opposite corners of the deck.
Overlooking them is a life-size blue jay, pre-rusted by the craftsman!
The second container in each of the pairs is home to geraniums the color of the pink stripe on the portulacas.
We bought this square container to house one of the succulents. I like how the flower decoration on the front is like the plant within. Behind it in relief is a hand-crafted metal sculpture of a lizard. He's been with me a long time.
Planted last summer, this was evidently a perennial that is happy in the broad flat concrete planter. I don't recall it doing so well last year.
This succulent looked much like the one in the earlier photo for the past 18 months. Suddenly in May it sent up a tall shoot with an explosion of pinkish flowers.
We selected this succulent for its unusual form. It sits on a teak table with a ceramic lantern and a colorful frog.
Chrysanthemums are returning to several pots. I'll soon need to begin pinching the tips to prevent flowering before the fall. The container in the back is planted with an Endless Summer hydrangea. It's vexing me at the moment -- no blooms in sight, though it looks contented.
|Evolvulus glomeratus 'Blue Daze'|
Planters in the shape of urns flank a garden bench on the upper patio. They hold 'Blue Daze' and...
...whimsical metal sculptures. One is a quarter moon and star, the other is the sun.
My favorite part of the garden this summer is the lower patio. It is entirely shaded by large oak, hickory and dogwood trees. The center of the patio has a chat table that converts to a fire pit in colder months. It's surrounded by teak armchairs and pots filled with various coleus, calladiums and...
...New Guinea impatiens. They are loving all the rain we've had.
And whatever this is! (What I get for misplacing the label, lol!)
On the fence I hung my garden art purchase of the year. I like that he's rather cheeky!
He's mimicking the wrens who have claimed the birdhouse on the deck, described in this post, for their summer nursery/home. Amazingly they're not in the least bothered by the comings and goings of our two labs, who pay them absolutely no attention.
My thanks to Miss J for providing me summer joy!
And thanks to YOU for joining me today.
Update July 3: I finally got a decent photo of one of the wrens bringing food to their chicks.