May 18, 2009

"How does your garden grow?'

Mistress Mary's garden may grow with silver bells and cockle shells but I'll tell you how mine grows: IT RAINS ALL THE TIME NOW! Every. Stinkin'. Weekend. Enough already.

On the bright side, the small front "yard" garden I started from scratch last year is looking pretty green and lush. With the exception of the red plum tree and the puffy wisteria vines, all of this was planted in May 2008. And if I do say so myself, it's not looking too shabby.

Of course there's no SUN, but you get the idea.

I complained about the wisteria quite a bit last year. We have to trim this sucker back substantially every other week. Or it may eat our dog. Or people will make it their home, like the bird family now squatting in its branches:

The neighbors say it has never bloomed, and I've read tons of books and advice on getting it to bloom ("Trim back often." Well, I've got no choice there...). So imagine my surprise when it managed to eek out two blooms, front and center, last week:

At this current rate of bloom production I should have a nice full vine of blooms...when I'm 87-years-old.

The Hydrangea I planted looked a little sad last summer but seems to have rebounded after a long winter's nap:

Not much is blooming yet but judging from the sizes of some of the greenery I'm in for some good Black Eyed Susans and Lillies. The Spider Wort is covered up by the spectacularly sized Iris that just finished blooming, so I have to get in there next weekend and reassign. I actually bought another Spider Wort plant last week. I was in the market for annuals to fill a large pot, but when I saw the Spider Wort for $6.99 I figured it would be a cheaper, easier way to do it...and since it's a perennial it should come back year after year (I planted some perennials in pots last year and they returned).

This Spider Wort is different from the others I have. The flowers are a bit darker, and the leaves are sort of blueish with a deep purple outline:

I potted herb seedlings early in the spring that are doing nicely. I'm especially proud of the mint I cultivated (there's not a word I'm able to use much!) from last year's plants.

The "sunflower incubators" are off to a good start. Here's one of them:

Look at the cute little seed hanging on:

In the next week or two they'll be ready to move into the garden. Judging by the number I've got this year (more than last) I'll be gifting neighbors. Spreading sunshine, if you will. BECAUSE IT RAINS HERE ALL THE TIME.

And...I won this amazing flower box this weekend!

I went on an absolutely
fabulous kitchen tour in Avon-by-the-Sea, NJ, on Saturday. The tour was insanely well organized and they had fabulous raffle prizes. I won the flowers and two gift certificates to local stores. Whoo hoo! I never win anything, so that was the icing on the cake of a wonderful day spent with my mom and aunt.

Then it started to rain again.


black eyed susans kitchen said...

Word has it that there will be no rain this week. Congratulations on winning that fabulous floral is gorgeous. I laughed about your wisteria. It seems we also have a wisteria vine growing on the back porch...I didn't know what it was until my husband told me because it has never flowered. I planted a honeysuckle next to it and that is when the conversation began. Why has it never bloomed? Who knows, but the honeysuckle is doing its job. Now I have hope that one day I will see flowers on that wisteria vine.
♥, Susan

Purple Flowers said...

Your garden looks great. I love the variety that you have. I don't have wisteria, but I've heard it can take over everything - very aggressive. Good Luck w/it. And enjoy your garden!

Leila said...

Your garden looks lovely!

I have never had a wisteria but a friend cut his (tree form) back to the trunk -- no leaves at all!! and it prospered.

His landlord almost killed him. But he was right.

Diane@A Picture is Worth.... said...

Hi Laura,
If it makes you feel any better, it rained all weekend here too. And it is a chilly 47 this morning. Very unusual for Ms. this time of the plants are wondering what is going on. LOL

Your garden looks great. Looks very professional...I love the rocks.

That is a beautiful planter that you won!
:) Diane

j.cro said...

Everything looks fantastic! I might have composted soil/mulch to give you as soon as I figure out how long it will take for my composter to start working.

We can swap plantings!

Caren said...

Everything looks beautiful! Wait until you see how quickly those sunflowers grow, we planted some last year and they wowed me! (Until we had a windy storm and they all broke... that was sad...)

Anyway, I think you're off to a great start this year!

Leigh of Bloggeritaville said...

Laura-it all looks so beautiful! Perhaps because of the rain and all its nutrients. I am so excited about your wisteria. LOve wisteria. And that little seed clinging to the sunflower seedling. How sweet! LOvely my dear, all lovely!

stacilynfeldman said...

love gardening posts - keep'em coming! as an apartment dweller - i need all the lovely photos of green i can get!

ps: looks like that window box is from ;)

Renovation Therapy said...

Truly, when did we become Seattle?

Everything looks gorgeous. I too am hoping for sun. Till then, my feet are freezing!

desiree said...

I can't wait to see this years sunflowers! Everything looks great. I have the same wild wisteria. I cut it back a little too harsh and thought I killed it,but it is going crazy again.

Keetha said...

I'm sure you are SICK to DEATH of the rain - - - but just look how LUSH and GORGEOUS all your flora is!!!!

We had frost this morning. May 18, and we had FROST.

Joyce said...

Laura oh how your garden grows!! After all the rain we have had the fortune I spent last week is well let's say down the drain. LOL...
Your yard is beautiful!! xoxo

Maureen said...

I have thought about your wisteria every since you first posted about it. I am thrilled to hear that it bloomed. I want to plant it in our backyard.

The sunflowers are just the best. I still haven't planted mine. It's the perfect project for Brendan.

Your front garden looks great. Happy Spring... and hopefully that rain will stop.

Sue said...

If you ever meet the "Boss" never let on that it actually rains all the time in Jersey...I told him it doesn't do that anymore...your blooms look glorious and it's always nice to win something in a raffle....daughter just won something at the new Pierre Deaux (is that spelled right?) store in Princeton..and is anything good going on around you that friday we are getting together?? any sales or tours? We'll check the princeton area to see what's happening....

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Laura your garden looks so lush and beautiful! Worth all this rain!

I planted this weekend and my knees are killing me --I may be getting too old to garden.. boohoo.

The planter is so pretty! You are so lucky!

Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality said...

Hey, Laura, welcome back from that extended vacation. Read you over at Sarah's today & wow, what fun yardsales you've been going to. Love that gossip bench & all the pretty silver pieces. I know you're having a ball, as I am too with the abundance of yardsales right now. Still hope to get up there in your neck of the woods eventually, but nothing firm yet. Might not be June, I'll keep you posted! :)

puck said...

i out my wisteria in a couple years ago and it has not bloomed yet either... but it is trying to take over the house, that is for sure.

i am going to try some phosophorus - which i hear can help them get out of grow mode and into bloom mode.

Kwana said...

It gorgeous! So lush. You are rocking it out.

Rue said...

I can't believe it's been a year since you were so excited over those sunflowers! That pic you took of the seed hanging on is amazing. The whole garden is and you SHOULD be proud :)