Archive | April 2014

It’s about (spring) time!

Looks like we made it. Pretty far into April, but spring has finally arrived here in Tennessee.  And it’s about time!

Spring. A time of renewal. A time of growth. A time of fresh, crisp, clean air in the mornings.  Bright sun beckoning you to shed your coats and enter each day with flip flops, cotton shorts and tank tops.

Days get longer, and life bounces into your steps. Smiles seem to come easier in the spring. I see many more toothy smiles when the spring is new.  It just makes us all happier.  Spring. One of my favorite times of the year.

I ventured outside two weeks ago, for my first yard cleanup. My intentions were, to clean up my garden, with weeding and some planting. I made it as far as our woods to throw a few dead leaves.  Then I lost 5 hrs of my day, to picking up fallen limbs and sticks, and starting a fire in our fire pit. I felt a huge sense of accomplishment. I even toasted a few marshmallows.  I paid for it, the next day, and for 2 weeks. I am still paying for it. My back gave out.

What a man needs in gardening is a cast-iron back, with a hinge in it. ~Charles Dudley Warner, My Summer in a Garden, 1871

Donning a back brace and handling a cane, I gimped outside today. I am tired of feeling helpless. I pulled some weeds, in my gardens, around my house. It was a daunting task, and even though it hurt more than usual, it also felt good to tidy it up a little. Much more needs to be done, but all in good time.

Greeting spring with it's first sign of life, and color!

Hummingbird. Greeting spring with it’s first sign of life, and color.

The first thing I do every year, is to fill several of these little feeders with colored sugar water. These fragile  ‘looking’  birds grace my front porch in swarms, buzzing about  and working themselves into an almost “high” like frenzy. I sit in a rocker close by, and I am always greeted just inches from my face with a curious hummingbird. I hold my breath, as not to startle him/her. Of course, I talk to them.

Oregano starting to grow.

Oregano starting to grow.

My first Oregano planting ever. I am excited to see how these work for me.  They have already begun to emerge after about 1-2 weeks.

 

Yellow Coreopsis   emerging.

Yellow Coreopsis emerging.

Butterflies really love Coreopsis. These dainty flowers last well into the summer and early fall.

White Crepe Mrytle finally getting its buds into its second year.

White Crepe Mrytle finally getting its buds into its second year.

We had a long winter and several late frosts. I was beginning to think my Mrytles were lost. This is a welcome sight to see.

Russian Sage. Still needing some cut back, but is starting to grow.

Russian Sage. Still needing some cut back, but is starting to grow.

This is my next project. I need to place some river rock around my new flower bed. I have been collecting river rock for a year from places  I travel to, to implement in my garden.

Pink Dianthus in full bloom. This smells heavenly.

Pink Dianthus in full bloom. This smells heavenly.

See my Gnomes and their Mushroom? I paint these every year. They are beginning to fade.

Yellow Daylily. When bloomed, the Light fragrance is dreamy. Even my husband loves this one!

Yellow Daylily. When bloomed, the Light fragrance is dreamy. Even my husband loves this one!

I gathered the weeds here after I snapped the picture.

White variegated Hosta. I can always count on these to bloom, whether in full sun or shade. My go to plant to fill a space.

White variegated Hosta. I can always count on these to bloom, whether in full sun or shade.

My go to plant to fill a space, is Hostas. They are simple to grow, and very low maintenance.  Just dig a hole, plant them and you are done! Once established, they do not need much watering.

Cornus Sericea. This is really full so far this spring. It has white flowers on some of the branches. In the winter, it's stems turn red.

Cornus Sericea. This has really thickened so far this spring. It has white flowers on some of the branches.

In the winter, the stems on the Cornus Sericea turn red and drop their leaves.   My beautiful garden statue adds Angelic peace and a touch of romance to this part of my garden.She overlooks a cement garden bench that I often sit upon, gazing over green pastures.

I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in. ~George Washington Carver

Purple Creeping Phlox. One of my favorites with its hypnotic  &  amazing scented flowers.

Purple Creeping Phlox. One of my favorites with its hypnotic & amazing scented flowers. These are in full bloom.

My little cement dog was a real find at a closed up shop in Cross plains, TN.  I picked him up for a mere 5 dollars.  He was crumbling on his base, but I buried him in the pea gravel. His is standing a firm watch.

More Light Yellow Day-lilies. These should bloom soon.

More Light Yellow Day-lilies. These should bloom soon.

My gardens are a continuing work in progress. I like to implement recycled items into them. The brick used around my cottage was from our front porch step that we knocked out when we poured a new sidewalk.

Chives. (Allium schoenoprasum) Nice onion-y flavor and scent, good in salads.

Chives. (Allium schoenoprasum) Nice onion-y flavor and scent, good in salads.

I have several cats that avoid this area, thankfully, due to the Chives here. Cats do not like onions! Now, to get them to stay away from my Thyme.

Pink Knock out Roses. My all-time favorite in my garden. I am ready for this to bloom again this year. I didn't cut it back, and it is getting over grown, but just wait till it blooms!

Pink Knock out Roses. My all-time favorite in my garden. I am ready for this to bloom again this year. I didn’t cut it back, and it is getting over grown, but just wait till it blooms!

Leo, one of my girls here, tends to follow me about my yard and gardens. I stop to hold her many, many……many times.  All my cats tend to drink from this fountain. I used to worry about them digging and ruining my plants. Once I gave up chasing them, they left things alone. My advice? Let them be. They will become lovers, not fighters, and actually stop to smell the roses with you!

I have many more perennial flowers, and plants that I will save for future posts.  More to come.

What plants are your favorite in the garden?

(Solar) Nighttime Angel watching over my garden.

(Solar) Nighttime Angel watching over my garden.

I love spring anywhere, but if I could choose I would always greet it in a garden.  ~Ruth Stout