May 15, 2017

Mid May Flowers - GBBD 2017


The backyard is slowly starting to show color.  I read in a recent article that Washington is the only state in the nation to have a cooler than average spring.  But the 'Millstream Daphne' creeping phlox and 'Gloria' aubrieta groundcovers are finally in full bloom above.

In this photo one of the 'Royal Raindrops' crabapple trees echoes the blooms of a 'Velvet Lips' hellebore below.

From this angle you can see the almost finished addition on the back of our home.  Eight months into our 2.5 month project, we're nearly done!  And yes, it went over budget as well.  That's just construction, I guess.

This photo shows the three 'Royal Raindrops' crabapple trees with buds fully open.  Green leaves are filling in the garden below.

A shot of the southeast corner of the backyard reveals a 'Spring Snow' crabapple that has dropped most of its petals by this point.  The 'Katherine Havemeyer' lilacs don't have as many blooms this year as last year, but there have been plenty for me to cut and share with neighbors.

The path directly east of the house features chartreuse leaves against mauve and sky blue flowers.  The crabapple petals cover the ground like snow.

Last summer I transplanted several 'Jack Frost' and 'King's Ransom' brunnera plants to this area, and their true blue blooms are a welcome addition to the color palate.  Brunnera is one of my favorite plants for shade with beautiful leaves that sparkle after the flowers fade.  A few 'Negrita' tulips are reblooming this spring after being planted a couple of years ago, and a 'June' hosta is colorful at bottom left.


A final shot of the east path includes 'Lime Rickey' heuchera, 'Red Sensation' aubrieta and a mauve creeping phlox whose name is forgotten.  It's an exciting time of year in the garden, as many more flowers will open in the next few weeks.  Thanks to Carol at May Dreams Gardens for hosting Garden Bloggers Bloom Day to help us document our flowers each month.

May 3, 2017

Tulip Season

The tulips are in peak bloom right now in the front yard.  I have a few later blooming types, but not as many as the 'Salmon Impression' and 'Jaap Groot' above.

A couple of weeks ago the front yard looked like this - turning green, but not very colorful.

This week it's full of color from the tulips and the 'Emerald Blue' creeping phlox.

I recently divided and transplanted several more 'Pink Tea Cup' Lenton roses (Helleborus) around the front flower beds.  They're at the end of their bloom season now.

Also blooming now are fluffy mounds of 'White Splendor' windflower (Anemone blanda).

A new 'Little Devil' ninebark (Physocarpus) adds maroon color to the scene.  I also planted several 'Mahogany' coral bells (Heuchera) around the front beds.  I like the way these plants connect the home to the yard by echoing the color of the shutters.


The 'Coral Supreme' peonies are lovely in leaf at the back of this photo, and in a couple of weeks they'll start adding their own bright color to the view.

April 18, 2017

Rainbow Tulip Scenes from Temple Square in Salt Lake City, Utah


Here are a few mores shots of the bulbs in bloom on Temple Square.


The bright red looks so lovely with a violet underplanting.


Many areas felt more formal, but this bed had the feel of a meadow.


Complementary gold and violet worked well together along with some airy white daffodils.


These tulips are accurately named 'Giant Orange Sunrise,' and they were the biggest tulips I'd ever seen.  Very impressive.


Here in Spokane the bloom season is a few weeks behind Temple Square, so I'm still looking forward to seeing the tulips bloom at the Spokane Temple and in my garden.

April 11, 2017

Pastel Tulip Scenes from Temple Square in Salt Lake City, Utah


We traveled to Utah last week and visited Temple Square in Salt Lake City to see the spring bulbs in full bloom.

I didn't have my good camera with me, so these shots are all from my cell phone.  I'm posting them anyway since I don't know when I'll be back to take better pictures.


The different displays just kept going and going.  We had limited time to stay, so I hurried around with a big grin on my face, madly snapping photos.


I liked how this area echoed the rusty-orange concrete with orange tulips in the bed.


Wall planters were filled with pansies and bulbs in colors that coordinated with the beds nearby.

The spicy-sweet fragrance of hyacinths wafted through the area.  What a lovely experience!
Next week I'll post pictures of the deeper rainbow hues.

March 25, 2017

Little March Beauties

It finally feels like spring with small bulbs blooming all over the front yard.  The photo above includes 'Golden Bunch' and 'Grand Maitre' crocus flowers, a 'Pink Tea Cup' Lenten Rose (Helleborus), and striped foliage from 'Jaap Groot' tulips.

The afternoon light shining through the petals makes a pretty scene.  Emerging daylily foliage creates a nice green backdrop for the violet flowers.


This winter wasn't the harshest one we've seen here in Spokane, but it was a lot colder and snowier than the past few years.  Seeing color in the garden again feels fabulous.


In the backyard east of the house, clusters of 'Harmony' miniature iris are blooming for the second spring since planting.  The drawback to these bulbs is that their leaves keep growing to reach over a foot long, so they are more noticeable as they die back.  But their gorgeous cobalt blue color and reblooming ability make them keepers in my garden.


'Ruby Glow' Crocus are a warm violet next to the blue iris.  I purposefully left leaf litter in this area to see if I can handle the disarray as it decomposes naturally and enriches the soil.

Nearby a 'Berry Swirl' Lenten Rose is starting its long bloom season.  It's a happy time of year as the sun regains some strength and the garden reawakens.

February 21, 2017

Missing the Green

It snowed again this morning, and I'm really missing our green backyard.


The other day it warmed up enough in the afternoon to sit in a coat on one of the benches for a few minutes, but the view wasn't this nice.

Grey and brown, brown and grey, white and more white . . . . winter needs to stop now!

I'll take some chartreuse along with the green, please.

And some purple leaves, too.  Any day now.  They're coming!

February 10, 2017

Snowy Winter, Slow Remodel

This winter has brought nearly six feet of snow to Spokane so far, with more likely to come.   My children have enjoyed sledding and building giant snow forts, but I think everyone is looking forward to spring by now.  I have to remind myself that these long, snowy winters are the reason we have water for the garden in the summers.
My boxwood shrubs have had branches flattened by the snow, but so far they have bounced back without breaking as the snow recedes.  The 'Otto Luyken' laurels are completely brown from subzero temperatures and frigid winds.  Thankfully no tree branches have broken from the heavy snow and ice.

Our remodeling project, originally to be finished by Thanksgiving, still lingers on.  We wait more patiently some days than others!  But after seven weeks with a gutted kitchen, we are very happy to have a functional sink and appliances again.  Backsplash, trim, roof, siding, vent hood, patio, an new pendant shade, seventeen holes in the ceiling to patch, tiles popping loose to be fixed . . . then we'll be done and I'll post more pictures.

 Meanwhile we are enjoying more light from all the new windows.  We hosted a big family dinner last weekend and the new dining room worked just as we hoped it would.  With seven windows, two skylights, and a sliding door, the new space feels like part of the garden.