Friday, June 26, 2015

Memories of May

Wow, was my last post really May 5th? I think that may be the longest I have gone without blogging. I thought when my night web design classes ended I would find myself with more free time. That wasn’t the case. I was playing catch-up with the garden like a madwoman, plus I have had one vacation and two long weekends since then. When I wasn’t away, I was working overtime at work. Feel like I am constantly trying to get back on schedule.

What was May like in the garden? Well not much as far as the Kitchen Garden was concerned since I was so late getting my seeds planted. The Flower Garden had more stuff happening, though. Here’s what it looked like.

The Flower Garden in May

Let’s take a walk through the garden gate and see what was blooming in May... 

Actually, before you walk through that gate, take a gander to the left and you’ll see my vertical garden and hanging ferns. I used this same idea here last year to dress up my fence that is falling apart.

The first thing you will notice as you walk through the gate this time of the year is the Wisteria.  You might actually smell it before you see it. I missed getting it at its peak bloom time this year. It was covered in lavender blooms, and covered with bees, as well!

I have mentioned many times that I have a love/hate relationship with Wisteria. May is love time. The rest of the year is hate. In fact, I just had to prune some Wisteria that had made its way through my upstairs window air conditioner unit into the bedroom! Yep, no lie, there was Wisteria growing in the bedroom.

The Wisteria tree didn’t do as well this year. I think maybe the tree next to it is shading it too much.

Azaleas and Clematis grow up against the shed/workshop. They are in their Sunday best in May. 

May is also baby bird time. I love watching the mommy birds feed their babies in the birdhouses that are on the shed. (Gotta fix those lights. Haven’t worked for some time now and no, they’re not leftover from Christmas. We keep them up all year round on the shed.)

The Weigela blooms in May, along with the pink Roses and Climbing Hydrangea on the arbor. Apparently cats bloom in the Flower Garden in May, as well.

I wish the arbor looked this pretty all season, but alas, it is just like this in May.

I never managed to finish pruning back my Roses this spring. I did some here and there, but not all. The Roses didn’t seem to mind too much and bloomed away, just maybe a little taller than usual. The Catmint is a true workhorse in the spring and the bees and Cabbage White butterflies love it.

I always forget about this yellow Rose until it blooms, then I can’t stop admiring it. It is a David Austin Rose called Graham Thomas.

This is another David Austin Rose called Abraham Darby.

I admit that I like Roses this time of the year, but they always start to look crappy not long after they bloom.

A view of part of the Flower Garden from the back porch steps.

Spring wouldn’t be spring without my purple Columbine.

It self-seeds, but I try to gather them up before they drop and spread them where I want them to show up the next year.

The purple Columbine plays well with this magenta Peony.

My one neighbor comments on the color of this Peony every year. He finds it amazing. It really is a bright splash of color.

One plant that didn’t do as well this year was my purple Siberian Irises. I really think they need dividing.

The bearded Pass The Wine Iris did pretty well, though.

I had planted this miniature tulip-looking bulb a few years ago – a few in the Flower Garden and a few in front of the shed. They did well this year. I wish I could remember exactly what it was called, though!

Part of the Flower Garden, as seen from the entrance to the Kitchen Garden.

This is a view I don’t show very often. This is Winnie’s view of the garden (Winnie is the statue).

This is the path that I finished last year that goes from Winnie to the Kitchen Garden.

I planted this Rhododendron just last year, I think. It bloomed nicely this year.

It’s like I’m playing Where’s Waldo with my neighbor’s cats when I weed in the garden. You never know where you might find one. I almost weeded BJ (aka Stubby)!

Looking from the tree in the back towards the back porch.

My Tiarella Sugar and Spice (Foamflowers) did especially well this year. They are planted under the tree that is near the entrance to the Kitchen Garden.

I planted this Asclepia tuberos (Butterflyweed) on this side of the yard just this spring. Hoping it will attract more Monarchs.

In between the potted Boxwood are tall containers with Sweet Potato Vine and Cannas. If you look closely you’ll see a Molly growing from a pot inside the back porch. There’s and Izzy in there by the door, as well.

Here’s another shot of that Molly plant that grows on the back porch. It sure is a cute, fuzzy thing.

While we’re on the subject of pretty things on the back porch, I cut some Lily of the Valley and put it in vase on the back porch (where the girls couldn’t get to it, of course) and I loved how it filled the entire porch with its scent. Lily of the Valley is one of my mom”s favorite flowers. I can see why, with its dainty, nodding bells and marvelous fragrance.

Sage, Thyme, and Oregano grow along the edges of the porch. Makes it easy when I want some herbs with my dinner. I am also trying some Orange Mint in this area this year.

On the other side of the back steps is Chives, Lemon Balm, and Peppermint.

The Peppermint is a favorite in my iced tea and mojito!

Looking from the Kitchen Garden towards the Flower Garden.

The Kitchen Garden in May

Spinach that I planted last year! I have never had Spinach overwinter before. It still tasted good, too!

In fact, I was eating quite a bit of Spinach early in the Spring. Here I added it to my gluten-free pasta, along with tomatoes and asparagus (which were NOT from the garden).

I also had to make one of my favorite dishes, Scallops and Spinach with Gorgonzola. I posted the recipe in 2012.

One thing that comes back every year is the Sorrel. I sure do love Sorrel in my salads.

This year I made Sorrel Pesto, a new recipe from the book “Preserving By The Pint” by Food In Jars blogger Marisa McClellan. Bright and tangy and delicious.

I usually like to get my seeds planted under row covers by mid-April at the latest. This year it was more like the end of April - beginning of May. Much too late, if you ask me. April 23rd was my last night web design class of my certificate, which was a week later than it should’ve been due to snow earlier in the semester. I was so busy finishing my last project that I got behind with my gardening schedule by about two weeks or more. Therefore, things seem to be slow to come up this year - other than that Spinach and Sorrel, that is. 

My neighbor’s cats didn’t seem to care that I was behind with my gardening chores. They also didn’t seem to realize that the hose was on a timer and about to go off...

The Columbine and Peony in the Flower Garden seemed to be trying to hide the fact that there wasn’t much growing in the nearby Kitchen Garden yet. Thanks, guys!

There was stuff growing in there, I promise.

I have learned from my experience this year. I will never be so late getting my seeds planted in my Kitchen Garden ever again. I hope...I seriously hope...

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