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."

Sun Day


Despite last night’s cooldown, it was hot from the get-go this morning, as we hit 81 around 9:00 a.m. I got right out to the watering before that, to make sure all my green friends were prepared for the day ahead.

This patch of dianthus is one of those flowers where it’s hard to capture the flower color correctly, depending on the light conditions. It’s actually, to my eye, just a little more toward the orange than the pink side of the spectrum, as reds go…but I’m having a heck of a time getting it right. Ah, well…lovely just the same.

I was happily surprised to see that this cleome seedling has developed so quickly. I think it’s benefitting from its location along the route of the soaker hose, not to mention the hot golden rays of the sun.

Here’s a pair of seashell cosmos seedlings at the feet of a clump of veronica (left). I’ll need to transplant them so they’re a little further apart, since they both look like good healthy plants.

Now, in the fish pond, you may have noticed we have a potted iris. You’d probably just have noticed the sword-like leaves coming up out of the water, really, but you might have guessed iris.

Anyway…the thing hasn’t bloomed for us for about five or six years, as it seemed to have gotten pot-bound…and also didn’t have a good strong sun location to thrive in.

When it bloomed last, it looked something like this, so you might imagine how psyched I was to see a pair of buds on the plant last week.

I didn’t mention it here, because I figured it’d be a great Purple Flower Surprise to spring on you (get it? ‘spring on you’…heh) when the time came.

Except, that time came this morning, and as you can see, the result was something different than anticipated, though clearly, there was still a surprise.

I’m not entirely sure what happened here. Plants rarely just change their mind about what they’re going to look like, after all. (Do they?) The results of my online searching have suggested that both are most likely Louisiana irises.

I wonder if maybe we got two different kinds of roots at the nursery and when I divided the overgrown plant a couple years back, I gave more room in the pot to a root which hadn’t been blooming before. Which makes me wonder if we’ll still see the blue/purple one.

Anyway, lovely, isn’t it?

Here’s a look what everyone else at our house was doing as I headed out for an afternoon at work.

No, it wasn’t exactly my first choice for a location on a Sunday afternoon, but there were things to be done and also, air conditioning!

The clematis vines on the lamp post really are an eager bunch. I wouldn’t want to try to untangle them at this point, that’s for sure. And they are covered in flower buds, which should be fun to watch over the next week or so.

It being June and busting out all over and such, there are plenty of things to see getting ready to show off just about now, like this foxglove flower spire, which is climbing and beginning to reveal its flower buds. It looks like there’ll be several other flower stalks rising from this same patch. Yay!

In another part of the border, the sweet William is showing its spikey little flower heads now. Have you noticed there don’t seem to be many plants named after guys? I mean, there’s this William guy, and of course, Narcissus…and maybe Stephanotus (am I spelling that right?) but who else? I’m not thinking of any others off the top of my head just now. The rest, I’m pretty sure, are all girls’ names. Doesn’t seem quite fair, does it?

In other news, look at this sunflower seedling. Remember when they were crowding my bedroom window, what seems like forever ago? This one is also very close to the underground route of the soaker hose, and clearly thriving for the regular moisture to its roots.


Not far away, it gives me great pleasure to point out that this carnation plant, which managed to avoid being nibbled by my long-eared friend, has some lovely flower buds bobbing on curling stems. The plant that did get nibbled, though, also seems to be giving it another go, since I also see some lower flower buds appearing there, too!

And here’s another look at that new arrival, the verbena bonari ensis, and it’s flower buds. I love these long, thin jagged leaves. And there really aren’t enough plants with square stems.


Meanwhile, summer seems to have arrived on Not Wisteria Lane. You can tell because these siberian irises down the street are now suddenly blooming. But there are other signs, too.

Now that everyone’s windows are open to catch the breeze, it’s become clear that almost everyone on the street watches “Jeopardy”, since you can hear the Ding tone that signals a correct answer in super-quadraphonic sound when you’re out in the garden after 7:30 p.m.

Also, the hard-of-hearing lady two houses down and over, watched Airport ’75 last night. I know because I was able to sit inside our own house and listen to all my favorite Karen Black and Helen Reddy scenes quite clearly. ; )

Oh, and the most important sign of the change of the seasons: the Ice Cream Man is COMING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I’m always eager to have a new photo of me, but am rarely happy with my results.

Tonight I was playing around with the bug-repellent tiki torches as a light source, and I thought this didn’t suck.

Hi everybody!!

I was still dripping a little from a brief visit to the hot tub, which, surprisingly, did help me cool off a little.

Great cloud formations at sunset this evening. This one caught my eye. It almost looked like there was (Great Hera!!)an Invisible Jet swooping down out of the sky.

Although I began this entry well before midnight, it’s now 12:28 and the temperature is still 74 degrees, so the sea breezes seem to have abandoned us. It looks like there’s a slight chance of a storm overnight, which could be kind of fun.

Meanwhile, I think I need another ice cream sandwich.

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