Saturday, August 9, 2014

Adding élan

My mom and I decided one of the gardens needed 
something extra.

For a new garden, it's doing pretty well with mostly transplants 
from family members' gardens:
Shasta daisies, 
another daisy that flowers early and then self seeds like crazy, 
purple loosestrife, 
tradescantia, wood aster, chives,
garlic chives, 
which also self seed like crazy,
 blue columbine and a number of different  hostas.

And a couple of purchased plants: 
a Knock Out Rose that sometimes gets eaten by the deer 
(but so far so good this year) 
and some heuchera that don't have much to show
in the way of flowers.

We were in town this morning, going to the library's book sale, 
and saw a great display of Russian sage in the library's garden.

I told my mom - that would be a great addition to our garden, 
and the deer don't like it.

Late this afternoon we went to the local nursery 
to buy a Russian sage. 
As we got out of the car, 
we passed a woman pulling a wagon full of plants. 
One of the plants stopped us in our tracks: 
a yellow coneflower.

So guess what we came home with.

Makes a nice pairing, don't you think?

We also bought a daylily called Cosmopolitan.  
There were several with blooms, 
but the pot that had the most plant in it 
(which we figured we could divide into 3 when transplanting)
had no blooms, so I don't have a flower to show you.

But here's the description:
miniature, rosy-red round blooms, 
excellent bud count, 
very floriferous,
a bit of fragrance and reblooming.

Very floriferous!
Doesn't that make your heart sing?

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Closing days

 It's almost time to go back to reality - 
vacation is nearly over.
Not that this isn't reality, too.

Just a more beautiful, relaxed form of it.

Oscar and I sat on the pier
watching a small plane soar overhead...

And swallows darting and swooping
over the water.

The occasional speedboat would set Oscar barking.
(He barks at noisy machines.)

I missed taking a picture of him:
at the edge of the pier, legs braced,
barking until the speedboat faded from view.

I decided I'd get a picture of the next encounter.

But when the next boat went by, there was no barking.

Camera ready, I looked around.
Oscar, where are you?

He'd had enough of the pier.
He's afraid of stairs, so could only go so far
and was waiting patiently for me to carry him up to shore.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Flora. Fauna.

We planted milkweed in our native garden in Wisconsin,
not because we love the plant particularly,
but to provide habitat for Monarch butterflies.

The first year of the garden, we observed Monarch caterpillars
feasting on the leaves of the plant early in the summer,
leaving  just stalks behind.

Several years went by without a repeat performance.
But the plants survived, so that was good.

This afternoon my mom paused in her garden work
to call over to where I was weeding:
"A Monarch!"

I came over to look  
and debated whether I should run inside for my camera.

She (he?) was all by herself.
Lighting on one bloom, 
then flying away to another part of the garden 
before coming back to another bloom.

While waiting for her to come back, 
I took pictures of a bumble bee

and a golden dragonfly (a color I haven't seen before).

Twenty pictures later, 
she opened her wings just long enough for me to catch her 
before she was off again.