Wednesday, June 8, 2011

By the Yard

 When you look at the front of my house, you see the porch to the right side, and at the back of that porch are two big windows.  Behind those windows sit three sad, neglected, dust-bunnied looms.  But leading up to the front door, you see why those looms are neglected.
  For me, this is the summer of the yard!  I have been toiling in the rain, cold, heat, sun, blazing sun, hot sun--you get the idea--since last October to bring my yards into order.  I still have a long way to go, but there are parts I love and want to share with you.
  These amazing flowers to the right are Cleomes.  They bloom like crazy, and are currently the stars of the front flower beds, only because there are so many of them.  The hot pink Echinacea are about to show them up, but these guys aren't deterred.
  On the other side are some gift flowers, Gladioli that my piano teacher gave me last year, mixed with some that I bought in Rugby, an amazing little village in east Tennessee, during their Rugby Days festival two years ago.  These guys spread like crazy, and I'm hoping they have a good summer, spreading their corms all through that corner of the garden.

Here is the best section of my poor little median garden.  It's trying so hard!  First, the sewer guys dug it all up and filled it back in with hard, nasty red clay.  Then, the fill dirt I used had weed and grass seeds in it.  I caught a Roller Blader using it for a braking area when the hill got too steep for him.  The sun bakes it all day; people use it instead of the sidewalk.  The zinnias have taken hold, though, and I'm going to go buy them some little friends this afternoon to fill the rest of the garden in.  I'm hoping it keeps people from walking in it anymore.

 I apologize for the fuzziness of this photo, but I'm still having downloading issues with my real camera, and this is from my phone.  Here is my vegetable garden, bursting forth and having a good time.  The beans are just today starting to flower, and the tomatoes are trying hard, too.  The herbs are thriving (why did I plant so much basil?) and the cucumbers and cantaloupe are dreaming big.
  I planted one row of okra and one row of eggplant, didn't remember which was which and only one came up.  It has now been revealed to me that it's the okra that won.  You might laugh at my planting okra, but you should see the beets!  I guess I just didn't get enough of either last year.

 I'm not sure if you can see this photo closely enough to help me, but I can't figure out what this is.  It's a volunteer, in the lettuce row.  It looks like a cucumber, but it's on the opposite side of the garden from where I planted them, and it looks much more vicious!  It has very, very sharp thorns, long and plentiful.  And no sign of fruit, yet.  I'll keep an eye on this guy.
 Today's chore is to weed the back flower bed and put down the mulch.  It's such a daunting task that I actually bought the mulch two weeks ago, and still hadn't started the weeding.  So, of course, the weeds carried on, and had a good time.  To the left is my first half hour of work, but it's the back of the bed, the widest part that is the worst.
  To the right is the "before" picture of the back of the bed.  There are Japanese Anemones somewhere in that mess, as well as false indigo, foxglove and shasta daisies.  Most of it is now weeded, but not all.  I ran out of gas!  I didn't want to be found face down in the clover, crab grass rooting around me, becoming fertilizer.
 As I cool down and rehydrate, I will leave with parting shots of plants that don't ask as much from me.  I planted this Knock Out rose the first fall I lived in my house, and it blooms and blooms, no matter how bad the weeds get around it, no matter how little I pay attention to it.
  The day lilies were in bloom when I bought the house, and have surrounded the long-lamented black walnut tree with blooms every May and June.
  This Queen Anne's lace is a beautiful weed, gracing the unweeded back corner of the yard.  As long as it makes itself beautiful, I'll give it a reprieve.
  And now it's time to weave.  I'll spend the afternoon working on the shawl on the Artisat, gazing out the window at my flowers.
  Happy weaving, all!  Maggie


Linda said...

Your yard and garden are coming along so nicely! I had some cleome years ago. Did you know that George Washington had them in his garden, too?

LA said...

I don't know what the mystery plant is...but if it has thorns, I think I would pull it up before it makes more!!!! The garden is looking great!!!!

Tina J said...

It all looks so good Maggie. I'm with you about getting the work outside done early and then indoors for the hot afternoon!

Bonnie said...

I am with LouAnn on the mystery plant. The gardens are showing the hard work you put into them. Beautiful.