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."

Archive for the ‘sky’ Category

May’s End Garden Report: Fragrance, Flowers and Friends

Well, take a look at this fantastic new addition to the iris family here at the Midnight Garden.   This one springs from a gift tuber sent by my gardening pal Theresa in Alabama, part of a package of assorted roots and bulbs and seeds that arrived last fall.   Stunning, isn’t it?   A tiny bit of research suggests this might be the hybrid called “Charleston.”

By any name, it’s a delightful addition to the garden, and it has a pleasantly sweet fragrance, too!   In fact, it’s currently residing in a pot with some daylilies on the deck, waiting for new ground to be broken downstairs in the yard.

Hey, speaking of garden gifts from friends, check out this cool iris lolly from my workpal, Lisa.   That’s right, it’s chocolate.  Was chocolate.   Mmmm, delicious chocolate.   Thanks, Lis’!

Recently, the postal service delivered a gift of wonderful river rocks from my pals from Texas, Heidi and Margo.   They make me smile every time I see them, just like those two do.  I’m thinking they’ll be the perfect centerpiece of a butterfly watering dish for the deck garden.   The rocks, I mean.

The irises come and go so quickly, but the show’s always great fun as we race headlong into the summer.   The heliotrope’s in bloom now, too.  That plant seems to have stayed on the Memorial Day weekend blooming schedule, whereas the irises really are a week or two earlier than usual.  (But – I know, I know – global climate change is just a myth.)

I can’t help wondering how quickly we’ll be seeing all the daisies coming into bloom.  They often are just getting started around July 4th, but they’re getting awfully tall.   The Casa Blanca lilies (no flowers yet, but towering stems) seem far ahead of schedule, as well.

They’ve certainly grown well these last three years and are in serious need of division.  Hopefully, by late summer there’ll be a new garden bed to give them a little more space to grow.  I’ve identified a terrific spot for a new bed, now I just have to make it so.  It’ll be fun to have a little fresh real estate to play in, which will give me the luxury of a clean slate to “design” on, choosing some of my favorites from other spots around the property…not to mention key players like Charleston waiting upstairs for their new living spaces to be ready.

Meanwhile, things on the deck are pretty exciting (in addition to the potted irises), as my seed sowing earlier this spring appears to have been quite successful.  So successful, in fact, it’s hard to keep up with current pics of how quickly the seedlings are growing.

Sulphur cosmos, morning glories (both seen above, about four days ago, now twice this size, with some of the cosmos needing to be transplanted elsewhere), moonflowers, nasturtiums, zinnias, four o’clocks, marigolds, herbs, radishes (almost ready to harvest, in fact!) and of course loads of allyssum are growing all over the place…and every time I look at a photo I’ve taken of them, it seems out of date already.

Wee, what an exciting time of year it is!  I note, with little surprise, that some of the morning glories from last summer have seeded themselves into some of the flower pots who grew near them last year.   Some eager seedlings have appeared in unexpected – but not unwelcome – places.  Last year’s morning glories were so beautiful and so much fun to train around the deck that I’ll welcome as many as show up this summer.

The roses are also a little ahead of schedule.  All the wild roses – the rosa rugosas (above and below right) and the tiny white rosa multifloras – are in full bloom in wild spaces all around us, and sometimes you can taste their lovely fragrance on the air.   I like it best when they scent the fresh salty breeze off the bay in the morning, especially the way it drifts in through the kitchen window while my coffee’s brewing.    We don’t have either of these species growing in our yard.  YET.   At least in the case of the rugosas, this is another thing I hope to address with the new garden bed.

There’s another bit of Natural World excitement around here this past week, with the appearance last weekend of a black bear on the Cape.  It’s suspected he may have swum across the Cape Cod Canal.  No matter how he’s gotten here, he’s arrived just in time for the running of the herring and I’m sure there are some gulls along the herring river in Brewster who were not happy to see him there this afternoon.

Authorities haven’t decided to take action yet, but are monitoring the bear’s movement carefully.  After all, except for some bird feeders, he isn’t necessarily dangerous.   Quite the contrary, I’d say he’s got more to fear from us.   It is Three Bean Salad season, after all.

It seems Br’er Bear is moving east and, of course, lots of us are watching with some amusement to see if he makes the turn toward Provincetown.   Bear Week doesn’t start ’til July 7th, though, so he has plenty of time to explore the local attractions on the way there.

Having welcomed (note how I create the illusion of choice) black bears to my Long Lake garden one especially memorable summer years ago, it would be sort of cool to have one pass through my Cape Cod garden this year, you know, for old time’s sake.

Check it out – digging around in an old photo album turned up an image (above) of that bear in the garden back in July 1995.  Cool, eh?

You just never know what Summer might bring your way.   Try to be ready for anything!


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