Friday, August 24, 2018

August Garden Review

I just cut the back lawn; to me, it looks as good as a golf green even though reality is that it is crappy grass.  But, despite this very dry summer, the grass is green and lush. Usually in August, it is yellow and burnt. So is it really true this has been an extraordinarily dry summer?

This is a view of the raised beds, the apple tree, a few dahlias growing along the back of the garage, and a new raised bed. I began layering cardboard and newspaper in it yesterday, then put in some leaves from last fall and soaked the whole thing. I looked out an hour later to find Tekla picking up wads of newspaper, shaking them with delight, and running all over the yard with them. She did the same thing with the carrots two weeks ago when she realised she could pull them up and eat them.

This is the other corner of that same side of the yard, for the most part shaded by an enormous red pine. It is the coolest spot to sit on a hot day as there is always a breeze wafting through here.

This is my favourite combination at the moment: purple echinacea and black eye susans. I find this colour combination incredibly appealing and will expand this spot next year with more of the same plants.

This is the Strawberry Sundae hydrangea that was planted a few weeks ago. Along the fence are planted four vines in the hope that they will cover it completely; so far, the growth has been rather slow.

Annabelle hydrangea planted last August. It is doing really well and has fourteen gigantic blooms on it. Last fall, this was nibbled down to almost nothing by the deer, which goes to show that these hydrangeas like to be pruned.

This is a weigela planted two months ago; it has sent up some long shoots and there are a couple of new blooms on it. It is looking good and it seems to like this protected corner of the yard. Here it gets about four hours of afternoon sun. It just needs to survive Tekla's running into this corner, as this is where she gets a view of the neighbouring cats and the occasional deer.

Another photo of the echinacea and black eye susans. There are 3 black eye susan plants here, as well as a shasta daisy that has stopped blooming.

Some snapdragons that were started from seed. I love these perky little flowers and the various colours are a nice surprise. Next year, I am going to have one raised beds with just cutting flowers planted in it. These will be in there for sure, along with some zinnias, marigolds and cosmos to name a few.

A closeup of one of the snapdragons, the colour is so delicate. 

And queen of the back yard - Tekla who will be turning one in 2 weeks. She is very high energy, too much for us at our age (but we won't admit that publicly) and a wonderful happy personality, very affectionate.

Another view of the raised beds and the apple tree.

This bed has 15 tomato plants and 6 runner beans. I know that is too many for this space but what did I know when I planted them?  I have also found out that I planted cherry tomatoes. I thought these were regular tomatoes, but obviously not. So there won't be any canning going on, but instead lots of popping fresh tomatoes into our mouths over the next few weeks.

Here you can see the runner beans which have climbed way past the bamboo tripod that I tied together and are now reaching over the tangle themselves over a metal pole. Lots of beans but I grew this for the flowers only.

A closeup of some of the tomatoes. There must be about 300 cherry tomatoes in all.

In this corner, the crocosmia have come up, not all ten plants, but about four.  I seem to have a lot of orange flowers in my garden. This is not done on purpose, as I favour pink and purple flowers more, but they do brighten up a corner.

One of the dahlias that survived Tekla's digging episode, just a day after the bulbs were planted.
I planted about 30 dahlias, but only 10 survived the pup's dig. She was after a squirrel that had found its way under the garage wall.

Another orange flower. This dahlia hasn't stopped for over a month now. It just keeps on putting out new flowers, every one perfect.

Four of the dahlia survivors. I will be sure to dig these up and store them well for next year's planting.

When I look at the garden, it doesn't seem very full of flowers to me. But this is year one really. We were only here for August last year so that doesn't really count as the first year. It has been a lot of work digging in what I have planted so far, and I hope to expand the beds next year. If only I could figure out a more efficient way of watering them all.