Sunday, May 23, 2010

Mountain Laurel & Critters

GGG keeps telling me "get some pictures of the Mountain Laurel." Okay, finally. Quite a few of them up the driveway. Most are white, whereas I thought there were more pinks. Plenty of them at the turn in the driveway near the bottom where the location of these pics were taken.

Let's see what else is new. Besides the chiggers that are now out we had a different critter visit a few nights ago. I'm assuming it was a bear by the looks of what happened to the bird feeder. Not to mention the grass is beaten down around the base of the feeder...and black hair found on the barbed wire.

Another smallish critter slinking around. It surprises me considering how much I've been turning over rocks the past few months I haven't seen more snakes. I'm guessing this is an eastern milk snake according to my brief research.

Oh I forgot those dirty birds that made a nest on the porch under the rain spout. Eastern Phoebes They love to crap all over stuff. They flew the coup Wednesday. I can't imagine them actually being able to live in the small nest shown. These guys were piled on top of each other. Five in all. And no, that's not momma bird in there either. The nest itself is almost flat instead of cone shaped.

I'll have to keep an eye or ear out for these things next year. They aren't invited!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Great Granny Gardener Video

I've been meaning to put something together, so I grabbed the small Sony still camera that has video capabilities. Not the best quality. Each time there's movement on top of the tripod it can be heard. You can also hear a zippering sound when the zoom functions, but hey it's just a thrown together video.

So here we have GGG talking about trimming plants. Considering I'm still kind of clueless on the subject,  now I have something of reference. Incidentally a few new areas have been developed in case you're wondering.."I don't remember those..." In particular are some new bushes in front of the downstairs storage area seen in one segment of the video. The name is Nandina and they can be kept in check easily. Come fall they do offer some great autumn color. I wanted to extend them all the way across the back but one buried stump prevented that effort. Now it's filled in with Snap Dragons and Zinnia.

Endless Summer Hydrangeas planted about a week ago down by the creek. They should reach 3-4 feet in height and width. They're actually beginning to flower! Same with the climbing hydrangea in the next photo.

Enjoy the video. Hopefully a few more in the coming week.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

A Trip Up The Back Hill

Across the creek and a trip up the hill in the backyard. Something I've been wanting to do since moving here. Not much of a struggle at all, considering I've cut down on the smokes from two packs to about a half pack per day. I'm itching for one right now...ack!

Looks like a deer trail about half way up the hill. I've seen them in the area before, but they never hear me because of the rushing creek water.

White Mountain Laurel or Rhododendron, whatever you prefer. Plenty of those coming out all over the pace, but more pinks than whites.

Lot's of ferns on the hill...

Made it to the top, but forget trying to get through. Heavy with small pines and thickets. The area on the other side had been logged with what could have been the last ten years or so. It looks like if I want to see the other side (and the view) I'll need to do some clearing or wait until winter.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Morning Glories At A Snails Pace

Planted April 4. Considering how much these things are supposed to grow during the season I thought they would be doing better than this. But, I'm impatient for sure. The plan is to have them climb the side of the house. Types planted are Heavenly Blue and Crimson Rambler. For now I've constructed a low chicken wire face for them to climb...whenever. Once they pass that point it's fishing line tied to eye hooks in a grid pattern up the side. Expected height 12 feet.

Yea, they're barely visible. Half to one inch tall. Dwarf morning glories (MG) are planted about six inches away (in front) from the regular MG.

The ladder has been leaning against the house for three days now. Damned carpenter bees have had a drill-a-thon this spring. Busy plugging holes with two way up top left to be done. I've never been fond of extension ladders...chicken.

Driveway getting colorful with Dianthus...

A close-up near the front steps..

And a late spring bulb bloomer. Dutch Iris with some Allums behind. They don't impress me for some reason.

GGG hard at work planting Shasta Daisies, Catnip, and Lavendar. Also some Mexican Heather in the foreground. Notice those pain in the rear daffodil stalks? The consensus points at cutting them back after six weeks past blooming to return next year. GGG disagrees.

and this guy has been showing up like clockwork since GGG has been spoiling him. That's Lewis the neighbor dog.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Will Work For Beer

Funny how not much was getting done around here when the fridge was nearly void of beer! A trip to the local liquor store for this rare Miller product and the problem was solved.

Yessir. Great granny gardener (GGG) is in town until later this month. At least we have a plan this time around. Last fall not much got done, but then it's not a planting time of the year for the most part. It will be different this fall considering how well the Violas did. They look to be the longest blooming plants around. Still going strong since late September.

Above is GGG surveying the hoop gardens for survivors. All sorts of snapdragons in there. I thought they were misc weeds. Some Hollyhocks made it..six or so. And finally some healthy seedlings are appearing in those roasting trays I started 6-8 weeks ago.

Give her beer and see what happens? Work, work, work!

Planting Petunias along the wall area again this year. No pinks this year... White and deep purple...The lawn is awesome in this area as expected.

Two lower rocks gardens done...Hostas survived from my spring tilling. White Impatiens and red Begonias are new this year

Several perennials made it here...Newbies include Begonias and Coleus.

Moving down to the creek. I did the rock area about two weeks ago along with the hanging planters. GGG handled the black barrels today with White Impatiens, Red Salvia, and some Zinnias. Not sure what'll happen here as the area gets quite a bit of shade.

More barrels! Hibiscus, Shade Petunias, Ageratum,Variegated Vinca Vine, and Angelonia.

It's Miller Time...

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

West Side Garden

I started this entry three weeks ago.

What to do? It's separated by shade and intense mid day sun. Add dry and wet to the mix too. Part of the area is on top of the drain field. One reason why some leftover fencing has been laying on the ground for two weeks. I can't go down more than 18 inches on the extreme left part of the pic.

Let's see what else is going on here? Calla Lillies (9) in the small area next to wheel barrel, along with two Stella De Oro.

Left of wheel barrel:  Canna President  (7) on each side with Princess Di  lilies(5) in between. President is supposed to get four to six feet tall and loves the wet stuff with hot sun. This one could be a good choice, but time will tell.

Above that in the second area...Gladiolus (25) with seven Cancun Lilies(4 +3 on the ends) Those three areas should get about 6 hours sun.

Rear- Shade garden #1. Elephant ear in center where orange flag is.Two types of Caladiums and about a dozen Coleus. None of that stuff interested me whatsoever last summer, but they look interesting now.

May 3..Salvia and Lantana (3) next to wall below window. Four wallflowers planted in with Salvia.

Gladiolus and Cancun Lilies...with Coleus and other no shows in background. With recent warmer soil temps(apprx 70 degrees) something should start happening soon.

Lawn always looks great in May...

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Wilkerson Mill Gardens Visit - Palmetto GA

Off the beaten path about 15 miles west of the Atlanta airport. Lot's of roads named mill on that side of town.

Anyway lot's of stuff to see. I was disappointed in that one of the hydrangeas I wanted was sold out. I did settle on a climbing hydrangea called Moonlight Climbing Hydrangea. Going to have to be patient with this one. Real patient. Woman at Wilkerson noted some of these may take awhile to bloom depending on what you want out of them.

So that means if I want blooms and height it could take 5-10 years! Oh my gawd! She had mentioned one she had (different variety I think) took seven years. It's a matter of training them to what height you want I reckon. So this one can climb to 40 feet, perfect for this location next to the creek, but a few small trees trees may have to be cut back (another angle below). Moonlight likes the shade too. Another perfect match for this spot.

Looking further back, or this pic taken from the porch a good view of the location behind the two small Hostas...and it has a number of buds on it already seen above! Blooms in summer.

Here's a peak of what it's supposed to look like in bloom...from

The other selection is Popcorn Viburnum or Japanese Snowball. I chose three of these that may be planted behind the fence line near the yard (below). Blooms in the early spring (done already) Grows to 8 foot by 8 foot.

Fenceline area...

What they look like in bloom and larger..from

I hope I have the patience for these.

More pics...