One gardener's observations, discoveries and random thoughts whilst simultaneously worshipping and dallying in a Cape Cod garden. "A garden," said Ralph Waldo Emerson, "is like those pernicious machineries which catch a man's coatskirt or his hand, and draw in his arm, his leg and his whole body to irresistable destruction."

A Garden’s Comfort

While I don’t really care to blog about the specifics, Friday evening saw Life handing out a fresh helping of Disappointment, making Saturday’s time off a little less fantastic than I had originally hoped.

Still, the garden’s looking quite lovely this year over-all, and I found plenty of quiet pleasures to bring comfort and distraction out there.

As the days get a little warmer and longer, we are seeing a few more pollinators, such as this bee digging around in one of the wild daisies who’ve begun to pop into bloom here and there throughout the back gardens.

I found this blue columbine where I hadn’t expected one, in the woods between the gardens and the house. It’s got that brilliant deep blue color I’ve loved in the one or two plants near the foundation of the house, but the shape and upright form of the pink columbines of the back garden. It’s just fascinating to see the various combinations that are resulting from cross-pollination.

In the long central bed, a great clump of The Oregano That Ate Eastham is nicely incarcerated in the grapevine fence I built last summer.

Some of the morning glories I planted on Memorial Day weekend will trail up through here as the season progresses. Those seedlings, by the way, have emerged and are looking pretty decent.

I also spotted today a great many tall sword-leaves where recently I planted gladiola corms (bulbs?).

Well, they are growing on me. I must admit I wasn’t the hugest fan of these yellow and maroon irises at first, since the maroon sometimes reads a bit brown and blah in certain lights. But they are flowering like mad, and over a pretty lengthy amount of time, both of which are helping to endear this particular variety to me more than I’d originally thought possible.

At the foot of the former TV antenna grape trellace, the wild strawberries have begun to reveal their fruit. These are barely half an inch across just now, and not really ripe just yet. Still, they taste pretty nice and once the birds discover them, well, it’ll be “see you ’til next year!”

African daisies, back-lit by the late day sun.

More and more spires of foxglove are coming into bloom now. The new bed in progress where the poison ivy ambushed me remains to be finished (that affliction, by the way, seems finally to be fading…), but a great array of pink and white flower spikes there, glowing in the sun.

That southern end of the “garden field” also hosts a great many stalks of milkweed, which are so important to the monarch and other butterflies. Since they are so prolific there, I didn’t feel badly about selectively weeding some of the great shade-making monsters from the southern edges of some other parts of the garden, where they were competing with some of my favorite things (but we won’t sing about it, okay?).

Not far away, this bumblebee plied his trade through the flowers of some berry canes.

In addition to simply exploring through the latest blooms, I also finally got the canna and daylilies from last weekend’s plant sale into the ground down at the southern end of the central garden bed. And another of those fancy-lookin’ picotee cosmos blossoms opened today.

As I was wrapping up my day out in The Green, I was very happy to see the rose breasted grosbeak again. It seems he wasn’t just a migrating visitor passing through on the holiday weekend, after all.

It would also appear that a pair of chickadees have staked a claim on one of the nesting baskets I hung in the apple trees last summer. This could hardly make me happier.

Returning to the house, I couldn’t resist stopping for a moment to enjoy the purple columbine blooming against the tree by George’s rabbit cage. It’s blooming more heavily than the original blue-flowered plant in that area, promising plenty of seeds to be scattered around later in the season. Now that I’ve seen how easily these guys cross-pollinate, I’m very interested in introducing a few new color variations, just to see what sort of permutations pop up!


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