Idyll#263: Friends, Plants and Books (NO Woodpeckers)

gardenbug(Canada zone 5)April 26, 2006

Open for business! You know what to do!

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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Well friends, DH is back and so I must return to a routine. Lately my routine has been protecting plants from frost. V knows about that too. I think your Anemones will return. Mine are insinuating themselves everywhere and the frost didn't bother them. They weren't as advanced as yours. On the other hand my tulips look mighty feeble. Some sun should help that I think.

As to Gillenia. There are two kinds I've heard of: stipulata and trifoliata. I think I may have both. The one I posted before may be stipulata. You can check it out below. There's a nice photo you can enlarge there.

On to Books: I was recently given Planting the Natural Garden by Piet Oudolf and Henk Gerritsen. It has gorgeous pictures and wonderful ideas. So many plants, so many combinations, so little space and time and energy....

I'm off to catch some zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzs. Good night Moon!

Here is a link that might be useful: Gillenia

    Bookmark   April 26, 2006 at 10:57PM
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T, you wont believe it but I heard this rat-a-tat-tat this evening and there was a woodpecker pecking at the top of the yard light pole that holds our wireless internet dish. If I lose service, youÂll all know why.

Taryn, I hope Devin is on the mend and that none of the rest of you get it. Is the back problem getting contagious around here? I hope the needle doc helps. I have thought of trying it. It sounds like you had a lot of fun in Christine.

Oh, what fun! Bella pictures in grammaÂs garden. It doesnÂt get any better than that. Those begonia plantlets are seriously cool.

Âbug, it looks like a pretty nice mower. I believe mine is about that size. Just remember larger deck = getting done faster = more gardening time;o)

Norma, bummer about your ÂSunriseÂ

Guess what I found at the grocery store greenhouse of all places? Rhus ÂTiger EyesÂ

More siding work. We will be finished tomorrow. Then it must be painted. Ugh! I did get some gardening. We got down to 28 last night but all looks well.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 12:11AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Tiger Eyes is the greatest in my book. Mine is small still, but it has not spread at all. I class it right up there with Sambucus Sutherland Gold.

No frost here last night but 24F expected tonight. GROOOOOAN!

Wondering about all the new forms of echinacea. This year we should see the results on many of them. They were so fast at pushing them that often the plants were weak little things in the nurseries. I see some of mine returning. Will they bloom? Stay tuned.

Tninking about DA these days. Do you suppose her garden is waking up? What is she stitching up? What is she photographing? Yoo Hoo!!!! Whassup?

I'm off soon to search for piles of newspapers for my next garden project in the veg garden. Also, seem to be having computer slow down. Hope things get fixed soon!

See you later!

    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 7:36AM
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Good morning

T - how did he find my toad? He's nice and bumpy like the real one:0)

Eden - Bella is adorable - what a perfect addition to such a lovely garden! Your rooting leaf cuttings are so cool - I've never had success with that, you'll inspire me to try.

GB - that's one mean grass cutting machine! Have you taken it out for a spin yet?

Michelle, I bought a Tiger Eye last year and just love it. Right now I'm worried the new buds were hit by yesterday's frost as it was about to leaf out.

I was wondering about Da too, and Jerri, Janie, Barb and Julie amongst others. Hope they give us a Spring check-in.

Book group the other night was one of our best. The book set of great discussions - many of us have family experiences of assimilating into a new culture. It was interesting that we were divided about actually liking the book and writer's style, but that always makes for the liveliest conversation.

Have a good day everyone


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 8:27AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good morning everyone,
Well, theyd originally predicted 38 for last night so I did the Great Nashua Plant Roundup and got everything in the garage only to wake up to 42 degrees. Grrrrr. Oh well Im sure they are happier for being indoors overnight. Tonight is predicted 34 so again they have to come in.

Eden, Yea!!!!! Thanks for posting those pics of your greenhouse. How cold does it get in there at night when the temps dip below freezing? You are 100% correct that Ive GOT to get something. It takes a good half hour or more in the AM and at night to get them all in and out and I havent even gotten the dahlias and cannas potted up yet. Im so put out with Charleys Greenhouse. My cold frame was supposed to be here two weeks ago and still has not arrived so Im going to probably cancel the order. I wont need it by the time it arrives. Originally Doug was going to build me something but I needed that trellis made so I thought Id save time by ordering the cold frame. Should have known better. ~~ I LOVE those baby begonias! That is just way too cute for words. There is something just wonderful about making baby plantlets. I know all the seed people will understand that. ~~ Those pics of Bella are so cute. I cant get over how fast she is growing up! It seems she was an infant just a week ago. ~~ Im glad to hear Im not the only one losing those new heucheras.

Yesterday I finally got back outside to the terrace gardens and really started hoiking stuff. Im feeling so free this year to eliminate things that have just been non-performers. I had a clump of old iris that were here when we moved in years ago. The form of the flowers and the color was pretty ho-hum. I left them because I always wanted one more season of bloom from them and then after they bloomed that bed was so crammed with stuff I couldnt get into it to dig them out then in the fall I was too tired to deal with it.. LOL I also removed a ton of hosta that Im just not in love with. There are hundreds of better plants I can use other than a plain leaved hosta so out they go. They were those hosta in the garden with that fabu Endless Summer from last year. Im thinking a grouping of Hellebores would look great there and add some much needed spring bloom to that bed.

I was so bummed out that one of my groupings of Agastache Blue Fortune has disappeared from that bed. Ive no clue what happened. The plant next to it is A-OK and I dont know why one would die off and the other be fine. Go figure? The Hydrangea petiolaris on the oak tree has lots of buds this year and I just cant wait to see that blooming.

I also am getting rid of some white Asiatic lilies that I had next to the Phlox Nora Leigh. They just were covered with lily beetles already and were pretty weak looking so they are going in the compost too. Im thinking Im going to replace them with some Iris Immortality. They bloom a month earlier than the Asiatics but that is fine. They should just be finishing up when the white astilbe start blooming. Id prefer for them to bloom at the same time but I think it will work out fine.

Bug, I agree with you about all those new Echinacea being a bit weak. My Prairie Frost is even less vigorous than they were last year and Im expecting they will fade away with one more winter. A shame as I love them but Im thinking Im going to get rid of them and replace with something that looks better and is more robust. I guess Im tired of dealing with weaklings in the gardens. I think a lot of those new heucheras suffer the same problem. As lovely as they are they arent really good perennials. Im thinking Im going to treat things like Amber Waves as an annual container plant. I think if had a cold frame to winter them over in theyd probably do better but most of my heucheras just dont do well for me regardless of how I mulch them. I think my raised beds warm up too much and they heave out during freeze/thaw cycles.

Hi Norma, you are 100% correct. Doug is a great guy! ~~ RE getting it all done I dont think that ever happens. Ever. And you are right that its the journey and not the destination that is most meaningful in gardening.

V, so sorry about the freeze damage. I know that sick feeling when things get damaged from a late freeze. That seems so weird that Robustissima took a hit from the freeze. And you lost asters??? Really strange. ~~~ Ill be thinking of you when I take my plants in the garage again tonight and out tomorrow and in tomorrow night and out again etc., etc. As Eden says I need one of those greenhouses.

T that cement toad you found is just too cute. Id love to have one of those for around my pond.

GB I forgot to tell you that I love that emerging foliage of the Gillenia, very unusual and pretty. How large does it get?

Taryn, great pics. Love that heuchera. Ill let you know when I get your plants in the mail. ~~ Sorry about the back issues again. I hope you all dodge the flu.

Marian, no worries, I didnt get the email from the GW page but I found your address so Ill mail those plants as soon as I get a minute to package them up. The orange one you like is Sedona and I have extra of that so Ill send it along with your order LOL.

Michelle, great score on the Gartenmeister. I have my two cuttings from Babs that are doing well so Im going to have to wait a bit for a large sized plant but that is OK.

OK must run to the gym and get my day started. Im hoping to be able to finish up the terrace border today and get that mulched. I also met a lady at the gym who is a hair dresser and goes to peoples houses so Im having her over today to do my roots. Ill see how it goes.

Have a great day all,

PS Mary, last night Doug worked on his weights and balance for the flight to Rochester and it is looking great for our trip. How far are you from that airport? We are planning on being there between 11:00AM and 11:30AM it will depend on prevailing winds. Is there anything from my baby plant stash you can't live without??? I'm allowed twenty pounds for baggage. LOL

    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 8:37AM
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Hi Deanne

We are about 25 mins from the airport. Do you know where abouts you will leave the plane? I only know the commercial part. I'll be there to meet you and will get there about 11AM. It's soooooo exciting. Any baby fuchia or a neat coleus would be cool. I have none at the moment having lost last year's collection.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 8:45AM
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Good morning!

Michelle, I am very sorry that a woodpecker has begun demolition on your property...but if you have to have a woodpecker there....I'm sure hoping it is the one that has been demolishing my house. Last night I found that he had been drilling holes in the area between our garage doors.....I'm thinking I'll become Elmer Fudd in the not so distant future. That bird has got to go! DH set out the wood putty for me to begin filling in the holes that the bird has made. The can isn't very big compared to the number & size of holes I need to fill. I guess a trip to town, to buy more putty, will be in my plans for the day.

Deanne, did the card make it there yet? Mt. Washington did bite the dust but everything else is looking very healthy & nice. Thank you again for sharing your plant propagating talents.

Mary, I was looking at that site & was so surprised to see your warty toad. :o) It does look quite a bit like the toad you had there.... Fun stuff on that site (I saved the link from when Eden ordered her Wish Fairy from there).

'bug, the new mower looks great. I hope the freezing temps don't cause much damage for your plants.

It is a coffee & Baileys morning....might just toss the coffee and go right for the Baileys if the day follows how the last 3 days have gone. :oP This too shall pass......

Hope the day holds only good things for everyone!


P.S. as I was previewing this that *&^%$ bird came back and began drumming on the downspout. I absolutely HATE that dratted fricking fratting bird!

    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 9:21AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Hi all.
I am feeling 'cruddy' again this morning. I think it may be my gall bladder...:-( ... along with all the rest! I 'really' need returned to the factory for an overhaul!

You all have given such good follow-ups on each person's posts. I need to copy and paste them as quotes. Some other forums have that option.

Deanne, don't you get e-mail from the member page link any more? I have your 'paint' address in my Address book. You are most generous to send me the cuttings. I want to reimburse you.
I am agreeing about a lot of what you said about unattractive plants. You have inspired me to want to move my plain green hostas. I don't think I am brave enough to toss them, but I can think of locations where they would 'fit' better. They would be more exposed to the deer, but that's okay...:-). They may be too far along to move them this spring.
I am surprised that Agastache 'Blue Fortune" would ever survive in your climate. The Googling that I did on them says they are hardy to zone 6. "Blue Fortune' is one of the ones Taryn sent me the seed of. The other 2 are 'Golden Jubilee' and 'Pink Pop'Mexican Hyssop. I am so proud of how well they germinated, and are growing.
'Our' weatherman made the same mistake as yours. Isn't that strange. I kept the woodstove going last night, but got up to warmer than predicted.

I need to watch for that "Tiger Eyes' sumac. It is lovely. But I am surrounded with 2 species of native sumac, so maybe it would be overkill.

Eden, that 'Belle of the Ball" is a doll! ( Hey..I'm a poet! ) :-)Your begonia plantlets are so cute. I have no luck with Rex Begonias. They seem to be in the same catagory as Fuchsias for me. :-(

Michelle, we have a red-bellied woodpecker that hammers on the power pole near our house. He isn't drilling holes, he is summoning a mate! ( He also eats the cat food from their dish on our front porch, but I think I already told you all

Re mowers, I prefer the narrower carrages. I have too many tight spots to maneuver through. I consider mowing ( with the rider)one of the more pleasant aspects to my gardening.I love the look of the yard when it is freshly mowed. I 'do' need a more yard friendly rider than I bought. I was influenced by the Consumer Reports, and I bought a White ( name brand). It was recommended as the one with the least problems. Well... that may be, for those who are not mowing in the conditions that I do. It isn't too great for all my 'lumpy' conditions, and tight turns, and backing up. I need to modify the parts of the yard that I mow.

Norma, yes, 'Molly' is a species peony,P. mlokosewitschii, ( now do you see why it is called 'molly', LOL. Who can pronounce that word?). Actually it is called "Molly the Witch"! I'm not 'into' witches, so prefer the shortened version. :-)

Hi Babs!



    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 10:45AM
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I just went out again to scare away the dastardly bird......and there were two of them on the end of the house! Then they flew to a tree and there was a third red headed bird!!! They are multiplying and I'm beginning to get a twitch like Inspector Dreyfuss(Pink Panther movies).

    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 11:01AM
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Top of the morning to you all,

It's sunny here and a little chilly, but looks to be a promising day weatherwise. I don't think I'll get much time in the garden though. We planted the cercis covey "stick" this morning. It's in the front garden and looking at it now I'm thinking maybe I should have sprung for the beautiful specimen I could have bought locally for $350. I hope it grows up quickly. Cindy no need to be jealous at this point, lol.

Deanne, I'm going to put a thermometer in the greenhouse and have Brad check it when he gets home tonight, around 1am. I'm curious as to exactly what the temps are in there during the night but I can tell you whenever I open it in the mornings it's toast warmy in there and I always love inhaling that greenhouse smell of plants and soil when I go in first thing in the morning. I'm betting it at stays in the 50s when the temps dip down below freezing. It is in a protected spot between my house and the neighbors and up against the house wall and gets sun from the south and east. I've never lost a plant in there, the plants just love it. Just think how excited I would be if I had a real greenhouse, lol, as much as I brag on this little portable one. It would be a perfect place for overwinter those new heucheras too. I'm telling you, you gotta get one.

Marie, I love the Piet Oudolf books too. My favorite it Designing With Plants but I love Planting The Natural Garden too. Didn't you get to hear him speak last year? I would love to have that opportunity.

Since part of the Idyll title this time is about books, I picked up a couple recently that look interesting, A Book of Blue Flowers by Robert Geneve and Rose Companions by Stephen Scanniello. Scanniello is going to be speaking at Great Lakes Roses where I picked up my roses last weekend and I'd love to hear his talk but have too many other things going on at this time of year.

T, funny that you should mention Carruth Studio. I just ordered from them due to the fact that I had a $10 off coupon on a $50 order. Let me know if you (or anyone else) wants the code for the coupon. They also have free shipping.

Wouldn't it be nice if missing Idylls could do a spring check in and let us know how they're doing and what's going on with them? I would love that!

Bella's got me on the run this morning so gotta go. Here's a link to one of the cuties I ordered from Carruth.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 11:18AM
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Deanne, what plants do you have outside? I dont have anything tender out yet. I really dont have the time to do the plant shuffle. I usually bring stuff out when there is little chance of frost. I think I will move some things to the garden shed soon though. The 8 windows face south and the new ones face east.
Im hoiking things too. Out went a large sedum Brilliant which I have so much of to make way for the new tree peony. It was such a perfect location for it. Also, gaillarda that is tall and floppy, all the shasta daisies, lots of nepta and a salvia that I dont like and reseeds too much. Im sure there will be more. I also moved an azalea that is an under performer to make a spot for the Sutherland Gold.
The Gartenmeister is a good foot tall with 3 branches. Im thinking I could take a few cuttings.

I was pleased to see that several of the brunnera Jack Frost is poking out.

Marie, I bought the Tiger Eyes because of the fabulous set of pictures you posted. DH was pleased as he likes the native sumacs in the fall. I told him this one would be lovely all spring and summer as well.

Marian, have the cats tried to get that woodpecker? I design my yard to make it the easiest to mow. The beds have to have wide curves. I dont mind mowing, trimming is the part I hate, but when I work full time, Id rather garden than mow.

T, maybe you should have a garden hose handy to squirt the pecker. Maybe he would get the hint. Or I could send a couple of farm cats over. They are pretty good at getting birds. The other day one must have gotten a bird and here she came with some little feathers sticking out of her fur. She looked like she was sprouting feathers.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 12:00PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Duh..."not the sharpest knife in the drawer" is right...LOL! I posted this in the wrong place, so now have copied it and re-posted it here:

Morning Guys!

Poor T! That rotten woody! I'm sure you've probably already did a web search, but I'll post a few links I found anyway. They suggest using mylar or bird netting to discourage the woodpecker. They say he may be staking out his territory and in that case you want to try to discourage him as soon as possible or you may not ever be able to get rid of him. Anyway, you can read it for yourself...hope *something* will work for you. It seems like I can only post one in the optional link section, so here is the other site:

You can copy and paste into your web address and it should take you to the link. BTW, really enjoyed seeing sweet, beautiful Boos pic...I *love* his name too and thinking if I ever get another pet, Id love to name him Boo its so cute! :-)

Im not feeling too well this a.m. I woke up in the middle of the night feeling nauseated and after about an hour had projectile vomiting...sorry about the visual guys! It was just awful. Im wondering if its something I ate at the Taco Bell. Dotty and I stopped there as we were both hungry. We were going to Sunrise Nursery (which is in the middle of nowhere) so we didnt really have any other choices. Or, it could be from the Mucinex which I tried for the first time. It says you should drink a lot of water with it and I tried, but Im not a big drinker. Im going to have to ask Dotty if she had any problems last night. In any case, I sure hope its not the flu, as were leaving for Arizona this week-end!

Well Marian, I tried to get pics the other day, but we also had Babs sleet! I see Taryn posted the myosotis for you (Thanks Taryn for picking up the ball). Im still going to post a couple too, since I already had them loaded...LOL! One is in full bloom:

and the other is still a tiny baby:

Hope it ends up you do have some of these. I think they should be blooming by you now though, as mine are just starting and I know your season is earlier than mine. Also including a pic of that bergenia I was talking about. It *is* called Pink Dragonfly and I think it may prove to be a pretty reliable bloomer. Here is a pic of it last year (its 2nd year in the garden):

I abused it last fall and divided it into three and look, here is one of the tiny divisions already trying to flower! :-O Poor pitiful little thing...shame on me for being so greedy and dividing it last fall. But look, below the flower I *do* see teeny tiny leaves beginning to form:

Anyway, it might be a bergenia you want to try if you have problems with them not blooming.

Eden! What a delight it was this morning to see Bellas smiling face! :-) She is adorable and it seems to me she is growing really fast now. I know toddlers can be a lot to keep up with... they are so *full* of energy, but Im sure she brings grandma a lot of joy too! :-) Really enjoyed seeing your Begonia adventures and very clever to use a plastic tub like that. I think I will try them from leaf cuttings next *is* very cool to see!

BTW, thanks guys! You are so sweet to say those nice things, but honestly, I am not doing much; certainly not more than sis would do for me if the situation were turned around and I know not more than any of you would do for your sister too! Anita has always been the most supportive, kind, generous big sister a girl could ever hope for.

Sue, ditto on the Obsidian. I *absolutely* love the foliage on that heuchera and it always amazes me how well it holds its gorgeous, shiny dark foliage, even in full sun! But you are right, it is *such* a slow grower. I would like to buy more and cram them all together to get the full look I want. I have three and spaced them correctly and unfortunately, they are *still* about the same spacing apart! :-( Lime Ricky seems a *little* better with getting some size on it, but the other one I *love* Peach Flambe, looks like it will be another wimp in the size department. I have three from last year. They all came back, but dont seem to be any larger than they were last year.

LOL Michelle! Glad you found my emails. Im only laughing because it sounds just like something I would do. There are just too many things to remember when you are busy and you are probably the hardest working woman I know! :-)

Hi Babs! :-) Youre wouldnt have to twist my arm at all! You sure do come from a beautiful part of the country and how nice to have that gorgeous place so close to your home! I think that is so neat that you want to make a scarf for Chriss CW. And a hand painted one sounds lovely and so personal. Im sure she would be touched that you would do that for her *and* it would be so unique! They had a pretty good selection at the store, more than I thought there would be, but nothing like what you describe and Im sure with your talent it will turn out beautifully! We got siss at a place out here called Naturally Yours. The scarves are kind of hard to describe. They are not "flat". They are formed in a way that reminds me of Amish hats, but you take the "tails" and tie them to the back...does that make any sense? Im not good at describing things. If you would like, I could get you one and send it to use as a prototype?

Taryn I have been perusing Ebay for about a year now and I can see why you do so well! Your posts are wonderful and I love your sense of humor...Heck, if I were an Ebayer Id bid on your stuff for sure because you are so honest, funny, creative and it really comes across in your listings. Christine looks great BTW! There seems to be a lot of interest in her and I hope she gets top dollar and a happy home! :-) Count me in as another hellebore hound yours is gorgeous BTW! Thanks for the link to your pics. Does that gorgeous deep pink one have a name? Have you tried the stinking hellebore? I had one out front before the addition, which is gone hoo. Not sure if it was caused by the move or just that it isnt hardy enough for here. I *did* see them at Sunrise Nursery yesterday and was tempted to buy. Maybe Ill get one the next time we go there, which will probably be next week...LOL!

Cool plant Marie! And congrats on the new mower...shes a beauty!

Deanne thank you for being such a sweetheart! :-) Well, Im certainly not going to say "No" if you really dont mind sending me a fuchsia! :-) BTW, I have a little confession to make. I have been holding out sending you your plants because I was *hoping* Freckles would be a little better groomed before sending him along, but Im afraid I just dont know how to pinch properly. Oh well, I know you will make him look like that happy fellow he really is; besides your Illustrius is getting too big and am worried about waiting much longer to ship him. I will send both next week when we get back from Arizona.

V sorry to hear about Anemone Robutissima, but it is a very hardy plant and Im sure it will send up new shoots very quickly if it is an established plant. Keeping my fingers crossed for you!

You guys are such enablers and really hard on my pocketbook...LOL! Now Eden has me nearly convinced that I need a portable greenhouse and should buy some begonias just so I can start doing those cool leaf cuttings and Ive already placed my order for the Hobbs books...LOL!

Okay, I guess I should be going now. Ive got lots to do to get ready for our trip, so best to get to it...TTYL! Ei

    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 12:05PM
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taryn(S Ontario Z6B)

Calling in the friends portion, for my friends...Prayers for Bruce please! He had a 3 hour seizure this morning (usually they are 3 minutes) and is in hospital. It was bad enough that the paramedics phoned Gigi to ask her, if his heart stops what do they do? She said, REVIVE HIM, he's a fighter! He was concious the whole time, and answering yes and no with thumbs up, thumbs down. After the kids went to school (mercifully they were asleep when the ambulence came for him) Gigi rushed to the hospital and was amazed at Bruce asking how SHE was! So am I, he's a fighter with a heart of gold...The seizure has stopped but I haven't heard any more yet.

Funny, Gigi returned my call from Friday late last night, but we were both too tired to chat so I said I'd call her early tonight. When I called Friday she was getting 8 yo Ryan ready for a hockey tournament, so I had a great chat with Bruce for half an hour. He sounded wonderful, was alert and funny and very proud of Ryan. But I know Gigi is worried because the 6-24 month life expectancy they gave Bruce hits the 24 month mark on May 29th. Last night after making sure everything was "fine" (as fine as it can be when your husband has incurable brain cancer), I said I'd call her back tonight. Yes, she said, they were all "okay", talk to you tomorrow. Things can change in the blink of an eye, so send that letter, hug your kids and phone your mother! And please send good vibes for Bruce...


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 12:08PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Oh Taryn! Just saw your post as I was posting mine. I will definitely be including Bruce and Gigi in my prayers...he's an amazing man and as you say, a real fighter. My heart goes out to them, as well as my best thoughts and prayers!


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 12:15PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Taryn, my prayers are for Bruce, Gigi, and the children. He certainly is an amazing man, and Gigi is a wonderful wife.
Also, you are a more than wonderful friend. Hugs to all....

Eileen, if I don't get back here before you leave for Arizona, I wish you a wonderful trip. ( Sorry, I am really into 'wonderfuls'.)

    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 1:18PM
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Prayers for Bruce and family. What a tough situation.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 1:55PM
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Taryn, prayers for Bruce & family. Please update us as you find out how he is doing.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 2:15PM
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Taryn, I'm so sorry to hear that Bruce has taken a turn for the worse. I'll be keeping him and Gigi in my thoughts and prayers too. Let us know how he's doing ok?


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 2:26PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Afternoon all,

Well Im having my lunch break at the moment and thought Id check in. Im so happy to see all the posts on the new thread. Wow! Things are picking up here. I had my hair done by the lady from the gym and she was terrific. It only cost me $25.00 for a color and it was done at my house. Cant beat it with a stick. She said it would be $35.00 for a color and a cut. Cool! I love a bargain, and it doesnt get any more convenient that this.

I just finished watering the orchids and I surely wish you guys could see the living room right now. The orchids are all covered with scads of flowers and they are simply beautiful. I just wish it didnt take an hour to water them. Oh well, anything that gorgeous is worth the work.

Mary, we will probably be leaving the airplane wherever the general aviation office is for the Rochester airport. We probably wont be anywhere near the commercial terminal. Ill check with Doug to see if he knows where you can pick us up. Please email me and Ill send our cell phone numbers so we can contact each other should there be any snafus or delays. Ive got tons of baby fuchsias so will be bringing them and coleus when we come. How about that for a special delivery? LOL

T, sorry for your continued woes with the woodpecker. ~~ Yes, thank you very much, I did receive your card and you are a naughty girl!!!! That was WAY too much $$$ for postage as you well know. I was going to send you change but I thought youd just send it right back and I dont think we need to add to the coffers of the Post Office sending the same bills back and forth. LOL Anyway, thanks for the lovely note. ~~ Baileys is good any time of the day or night.

Marian, please DO NOT REIMBURSE me for any postage or cuttings. It is a labor of love for me to make tons of baby plants. I enjoy doing it and it gives me great pleasure to spread them around. In fact, Id be sad if I didnt have you guys to share them with. Someday I wont have the time to do this and Ill be sad but it is not something I do to make $$$. ~~ Im guessing that in the mess with GW and the logging in etc. somehow the link to my email must have been messed up. No, I didnt get your email but the email address you have with paint in it is still valid and you can email me there. ~~ Yep Im pushing my zone with that agastache and with the Tutti Frutti but Ive successfully wintered them over the last couple years so I was surprised they didnt make it this year because it actually was a pretty mild winter.

Eden, Ill be very interested to see what your night time temps are in your little greenhouse. I think you need a real one too! Wouldnt that be fun. Im afraid that if I had one my orchid collection would expand exponentially. LOL Speaking of which, I think Im going to take a minute and grab a pic of the living room. You wont believe the flowers.

Michelle, I actually have a lot of my fuchsias outside already. They were getting so large I needed to get them out of the basement. I also have all the plants I got from the Keene, NH flower show out there, most of them were fuchsias. Id gotten two large nice flats of alyssum and that is already planted out in the gardens but Ive never had a problem with alyssum in the spring. It doesnt seem to mind some chilly weather. ~~ Great news that your Jack Frost have made it through the winter. ~~ Trading an azalea for a Sutherland Gold sounds like a good deal to me. Ill grab some pics of mine when the flowers open up. You would so laugh at me. Im a menace with pruners at times and I had to prune that sambucus up because it was a bit lopsided, anyway, after I was done I noticed there were two kinds of emerging buds and I wound up cutting off most of my flowers!!!! It has never bloomed before and I didnt realize those were flower buds until after I cut them off. It actually probably is a good thing I shaped it up before I knew better because Id now be the proud owner of a lopsided sambucus that was covered with flowers. LOL

Eileen, so sorry you were sick last night. Ill bet you ate something bad at the fast food place. ~~ OK so now Im really jealous of your bergenia. I cant believe that little stick of a thing is blooming for you. You must have magic bergenia fingers or something. As soon as I go outside today Im hoiking the plants I have. They arent worth growing if they dont bloom. ~~ When are you getting back from Arizona. I dont want to send your fuchsia until you are going to be home. ~~ I cant wait to see my Freckles!!! Im supposed to get my coleus order from Rosy Dawn nursery next week sometime and I cant wait to see those babies either. V was so right a couple threads ago when she said Eden and I need an intervention. LOL ~~ Have a great trip!

Taryn, that is just heartbreaking and all the positive vibes I can send are on the way. Im praying he pulls through. Bruce is an amazing man with a terrific family. You are a terrific friend to still be there for them. Many cant cope and pull away in those kind of circumstances.

OK time to get back to my hoiking in the garden. Later friends.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 2:27PM
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Oh my gosh Deanne! I can't believe how beautiful all of those blooms are. Your livingroom looks like an orchid show only better. How do you get them to bloom like that? I have one lone orchid, phal. malibu bistro which has been just sitting every since I got it over a year ago. I feed it with orchid food every 2 weeks and still nuthin. It does have some new rhizomes, probably not what they're called, at the surface recently but no sign of a flower stalk. If I could grow them like you I'd have a whole collection, lol.

I've hoiked quite a bit this spring too. With limited space I've come to the conclusion I want only things that are happy growing here, well except for a couple of things that are a challenge just to keep it interesting. I think it gets easier to toss out the underachievers once you get started doing it.

Sue, my musa is really starting to send up some new growth the last couple of days. I can't wait until it really gets going. I wonder how large these will get this year?

Norma, the greenhouse is 7x4-1/2 and has three tiers of shelves on each side. Brad did use a concrete mold to make the main path in the garden back in 99 or 2000 and it's held up really well.

I'm not getting much done today but am enjoying the beautiful day.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 3:01PM
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Good Grief T! Now they are multiplying. Protected or not Me thinks you need to blast those wascally red heads. We have some coming to our bird feeders, but they are not bothering anything else. I wish I knew of a solution for you.

So Deanne, if you didn't get Marians email through GW, did you not get mine either. I sent one a couple of weeks ago.
Woo Hoo! Those orchids are gorgeous. And the way you have them displayed really adds to them.

Marian, I think you could still move those Hosta. I just moved some. I divided a large one and got four big divisions. I left them in buckets of water for several days. Just got them planted this evening. We are supposed to have rain all weekend. I hope so, we need it.
I like ti mow too. I wish I had saved seed from my Agastache. I thought they would winter over.

Mary, neat that you got a Tiger Eye. Funny, I was thinking about Da too. And Yeona and VG.
I know you will have a good visit with Deanne,Doug, Sue and Tom.

Taryn,My thoughts and prayers will be for Bruce and family. I truly hope he will be ok.

Ei, I'm guessing it was something you ate. Your bergina certainly does want to bloom. I like the dark eye it has.

Take care everyone. Norma

    Bookmark   April 27, 2006 at 9:57PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)


These HTML color charts are fun for small amusement people like me-lol.

Today I'm on vacation from work for a day of fun in the garden. Yahoo! Lately I can't get much garden time in during the week. Last Sunday it rained all day and this Sunday we're flying with Doug and Deanne to visit Mary and her family. So what's a harried busy gardener to do? Bag work, that's what. I always get alot done on found days like this. My Klehm's order came yesterday-nice looking stuff-a dwarf japanese maple called 'Geisha', a white Lespedeza 'Avalanche', and a Clematis 'Avant Garde'.

Mackenzie got the full spa treatment with my groomer last night and boy does she look different-like a pretty little schnauzer. I'll have to get some pictures later. Her potential new family will be here to meet her tomorrow.

Eden, my Musa basjoo will soon be taller than the 3' wire cage I have around it. Temps are supposed to dip into the mid-low 30s the next few nights so I may toss a blanket over the cage. I can only imagine how big this will get. It was big last year as a first year plant. Deanne is going to laugh but I broke my own spacing rules in that bed so I could fit the crepe myrtle. Ideally I should move the Musa a couple of feet to the right but I'm afraid to do it. I guess I'll wait and see how big the crepe myrtle gets.

What fun to be able to vicariously enjoy healthy, well grown houseplants through Deanne's pictures. Deanne, I've got all the plants you gave me under lights in the basement but I'm counting the hours before I can put them outside where their chances of survival are infinitely better.

Taryn I'm sorry Bruce isn't doing well. One of the volunteers in our schnauzer rescue group has some aggressive, inoperable form of brain cancer. So far she's outlived her prognosis by at least a year. Cancer is a nasty disease.

Ei, I still remember your drifts of forget-me-nots from last year. I have some garden areas where that random seeding look would work well. I should look into scattering some seeds. Bergenia just doesn't do well for me. One of the plant moves I have planned this spring is my grouping of Bergenia 'Red Bloom' into more sun. I'm hoping this new cultivar 'Apple Blossom' will live up to it's billing and handle the humidity better. The Molly you sent me has three fat buds but it's not growing very tall. I put a peony ring around the area so I wouldn't step on it by mistake.

Mary, can you think of any plants from my garden that you would like to have? I should be able to sneak at least one through Deanne's security

OK, time to finsih my coffee, get some breakfast and head outside.


    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 7:50AM
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Good morning

Taryn - I'm so sad to hear about Bruce. He has done so well, and it must have taken a lot of stregth and courage to have got through these past 2 years. My heart goes out to them, especially the little ones. Please know my thoughts are there for them all, and for you as you continue to offer them unconditional support and love.

Deanne - your orchids are gorgeous beyond belief! They could be featured in the best Home Decorating magazine. Do you water them by sinking the pots in a bucket or with a watering can? I'll email DH and my cell phone. Sunday is getting close!

Sue - could you sneak a little piece of your Tovara Painters Paletter past security LOL! The one I brought home from IU2 doesn't seem to have made it through the winter and I have a perfect spot for it to spread and fill.

Is there anything you guys don't eat or drink? We should have perfect weather on Sunday - they are predicting sun and temps in the low 60's. We've just opened the pool so if you want to join the kids in a polar bear dunk feel free to bring your swimsuits :0)

Its going to be gorgeous today and I only have to work in the AM. I'm fighting the desire to do some real gardening - my back/hip is feeling a little better every day but I'm still scared of a set back. I'm allowing myself to spread one cartload of mulch a day (at this rate I should finish by Halloween).

Have a great Friday everyone

By the way, has anyone heard from Martie lately?


    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 8:48AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good sunny morning all,

Well, I'm skipping the gym today in favor of getting the entire rest of the terrace garden cleaned out and rearranged. The great news is that the 'Blue Fortune' I thought was toast is still there. I'd started to dig it up and voila! There was new growth starting up. It is at least a week or more behind the plant eighteen inches to the right of it so I'm doing a bit of head scratching here but happy it is OK. If I do well I'm planning on getting to the Mixed Border today to see whats new there. They opened on Monday and I can't wait. I've not been to even one nursery this year yet and I can't wait to slobber over all the new spring plants.

So Sue, I'd get all those plants out of the basement and into the garage. I don't think you'll get as cold there as we will the next few nights and they really need to get hardened off. I've got coleus in the garage right now and they've done fine. ~~ HOpe McKenzie's new family falls madly in love and she is off to a happy life in her new home. ~~ Have a great day in the garden!!!! ~~ LOL about the spacing with the banana and crape myrtle. You are really too funny but you are going to laugh at me. I've decided to give my dinnerplate dahlias lots and lots of room this year because they never performed well last year because I'd crowded them too much.

Eden, you NEED to grow phalaenopsis orchids (to start)Bwwwaaaa ha ha ha ha ha..... Picture me rolling on the floor in hysterical gales of laughter here because I'm going to enable you to collect yet one more thing..... In the first place they need as much sun as they can take without burning the leaves. That bay window in the photograph is facing south. In the summer I put that sheer curtain over the glass so the plants don't burn. The shortening days of the fall induce the plants to throw spikes. Phalaenopsis like to have night temps that don't fall below 60 and day temps that don't go over 80 or so. They also like a relatively high humidity, I have a humidifer in the LR that keeps it at 50% and that is adequate although they prefer up to 70% that really is too high for the house. If you grow them with lots of company it keeps the humidity higher in the vicinity of the plants and they do better. So you really could probably get a couple more at HD. You can normally get them for cheap after the spikes are faded and they have them on a sale table.

Norma, I did not get your email either. I'm usually very good at answering email so if you sent one and I didn't answer it would be because I didn't get it.

OKie dokie, time to mosey outside and spend a glorious day in the gardens.

Have a great day all

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 8:52AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Hi all.
I'm feeling better this morning. Yesterday I took several of the 'pink pills', that are equivalent to Pepto Bismol, and got to feeling better than I have felt in days. I presume that means that my problem is a digestive disorder. I'll have to tough it out until my next trip to town. I only have 4 of those pills left, and am saving them for Sunday.

No, Michelle, the cats do not bother the woodpecker, or the blue jays, or the crows. They do (rarely) get a small bird, but they are more apt to take rodents and grasshoppers. Little Tommy digs up and kills moles. He eliminates an awful lot of voles too.

Deanne, your orchids are fabulous! Mine are sort of puny compared to them, but I am getting a lot of new flowers. This is the first year I have had any put on more after the initial blooming. I am having a problem with a lot of leaves looking poorly. Maybe it is due to the house getting colder than other years, or maybe I am watering wrong.

I hope you are feeling okay today.
I guess you mentioned that you are going to see your friend in Arizona.... but I missed that report. I am so happy for you. I can just imagine your joy and enthusiasm!
I cannot detect any forget-me-nots in my bed....:-(
I don't understand that. The other plants in that bed reseed nicely. Lots of Balloon Flowers, and Sundrop Oenothera. Maybe 'we' can try it again this fall?
I love your Bergenia. LOL on that second pic. Mine have leaves and no flowers, it has flowers and no

OH NO, Teresa! Not 3 of them ! You may 'have' to declare war on them!

Norma, I may dig a couple of holes elsewhere and plop a couple of those plain green hostas in them. It is predicted to be rainy all weekend, so that ought to be perfect for eliminating any transplant shock.They are pretty well grown, but I really won't care if they don't make it.

Sue, Mary, and Deanne.....I am so envious of your get-together. The flight sounds really fun. Deanne, I haven't decided which is more talented, you or your DH. I hope Sunday's weather cooperates for the trip.

As others have said... we are sure missing the absent posters, and concerned that all may not be well... espacially with Jerry and Lisa in Oklahoma. I hope they will benefit from the predicted rains.

The forecast is for more rain than we have had in many months...several inches over the weekend. It is including the possibility of more severe type storms. I am lamenting the loss of blossoms on our red azalea. The last heavy windy rain stripped them all off. It WAS gorgeous. Thankfully I did get pics on my film camera. There was vegetation debris all over the roads on the way to town Tuesday, and trees down in town. Some people, in the Hill Top area between us and town, reported hail stones as large
as softballs, and damage to roofs and vehicles.

I just heard thunder, so better get this posted!


    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 9:18AM
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taryn(S Ontario Z6B)

Thanks for the prayers and good thoughts for Bruce and Gigi you guys. Update is good and I am cautiously optimistic. He had blood tests and an MRI done on Wednesday, the day before this happened, and bloodwork shows his Mylantin levels were VERY low. This is the primary anti-seizure drug he takes, and while it's a miracle drug, getting the dosing right is a nightmare, as stress, adrenalin and other hormonal changes can affect how quickly it wears off. So the good news is at this point they THINK the seizure was due to low Mylantin levels. But only when the MRI results come in will they be able to actually see if the tumour has grown. Bruce was on chemo for a year but they took him off in January to give his organs, especially liver, a break from the very toxic effects. So this MRI is the first since then and very important. He slept until 8:00pm recovering from the seizure but was able to call home and talk to Gigi for a bit, and also the boys before they went to bed. He seems stable and hasn't had any other seizures since.

Talked to Gigi last night for an hour and a half, until after midnight, and she was surprisingly relaxed and in good spirits. She is counting blessings right now, and was amazed and very grateful for the wonderful treatment the paramedics gave Bruce, talking TO him and not as if he wasn't there, and treating him with dignity and respect. She was also very grateful for being awake an hour early for "some" strange reason, and catching Bruce, still asleep, just as he started to seizure. She was able to get him to take a dose of Mylantin with water which the docs said helped him a LOT, and probably prevented a much more severe episode. A bit of serendipity there...I am awed by her strength and courage. Though this has been a very trying two years I can see how she has really grown in many ways, so even the hardest life lessons can sometimes have unexpected benefits.

Thanks again for all the support you guys, and keep the prayers and good thoughts coming. Haven't read since Wednesday night but will be back later to catch up. Acupuncture helped considerably Wednesday and I'm going for a follow-up shortly.



P.S. Also had a viewing yesterday and they want to come back for a 2nd time Tuesday, so am cautiously optimistic about that too...

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 9:21AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Morning Idylls! This will be a quickie as I am still not ready to leave for our trip.

Deanne! I could not believe your pics this a.m. Your livingroom is fantastic with all those *gorgeous* orchids! Honestly, the way you have them set up there on the window with those beautiful, elegant curtains...I swear it's like a scene set up from one of those House Beautiful mags. It's so amazing it doesn't even seem real! Thanks for sharing that! I keep on thinking of my neighbor and friend Brigette...omigosh would you two bond! :-) She has been growing orchids for ages (though doesn't have nearly as many as you) and I know she would love to have someone like you who could share her passion. I know I've been a great disappointment to her...LOL! She has shared some of her babies with me, but nothing has never lived for me! I am hopeless when it comes to orchids. I admire their beauty, but only from afar, as I just don't seem to have the touch. BTW, my trip to Anita's will only be a short trip (3 days) and we will be back by Monday night. I will mail Freckles and Illustrius out on Tues., no later than Weds. Poor Freckles, he can't wait to get home to you, I think he's had it with my clumsy fingers...LOL!

Hi Marian! Sorry those darn forget-me-nots were so forgetable...LOL! Would you like me to send you some more seed...or plants of it? I would be happy to send you plants of it, the only thing is I'm not sure how well they will do in transit...they are *very* shallow rooted, but would be happy to try.

BTW Sue, if you would like some seed, I'd be happy to send some to you too, just let me know.

You guys are ahead of me with Molly...she has buds, but don't look to be opening for another week or so. I hope that yours turn out to be a pale yellow, like they are *supposed* to be. I saw Marian's pic of them and they looked more white than yellow? I hope it's just a temporary thing? Anyway, I hope you guys won't be too disappointed. I've had them for at least 15 years now and they have always been yellow, a pale yellow, but definitely yellow, honestly. :-(

LOL Norma, it is a pitiful little Bergenia, isn't it? Oh well, in another dozen years he'll be big and beautiful again...LOL! P.S. I think you are right about *bad food*...I guess we should have known better than to eat at a Taco Bell/Gas Station...LOL! Anyway, I feel much better today!

Thinking of Taryn, Bruce, Gigi & the kids and hoping that today has better news. I'm so sorry they are going through can be *so* hard some times, but they are blessed to have you in their life Taryn! Still sending good thoughts and prayers!

Anyway, I best be going. I probably won't be posting again until we get back, but will be thinking of you all. Have a wonderful weekend! Ei

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 9:48AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Hi Taryn!

We must have been posting at the same time. So glad to hear today may be a better day and so glad that Gigi seems to be holding up too. Will be thinking of you all and sending good thoughts and prayers! Ei

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 9:50AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Hi Guys! Just checking my post one more time and noted Marian's post. HI MARIAN! :-) Thanks for the good wishes...I am very excited too! BTW, read my other post. I can send you plants or seed or whatever you want and would be happy to send them when I get back or in the fall, which ever is better for you...just let me know!

Okay, really going now...Have A Great Week-End All!


    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 9:56AM
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Im bummed out by our weather forecast. Rain today and all weekend. Possibly heavy rain. Iowa is under a flood watch. Maybe Ill have to check out a nursery or 2. I was going to take Monday off for a total gardening day but decided not because if we get all this rain it will be way too muddy. I may have to haul some stuff outside, as our temps arent supposed to drop below 40 for the next week.

Deanne, I saw some very pretty orchids the other day. I actually had one in my hand and then I said to myself "Stop! What are you thinking?" LOL What a fabulous display you have. That bay window is the perfect spot for them. They look like they are stars on a stage. I also loved the picture with the mirror. Your décor lends itself to the orchids.
Watch your mailbox today or tomorrow.

Ei, what a pretty bloom on your bergenia. Have a great time in Arizona.

Ive been wondering where the missing idylls are too.

Taryn, I hope the lookers are serious.

Marian, I hope you feel better.


    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 11:36AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Afternoon all,

Lunch break What can I say except it is a perfect day for being out in the garden. Some real headway is being made and Im hoiking or to use the more proper term Sue taught me shovel pruning like crazy in that garden and it is strangely satisfying. Just dig and put in the compost. What a feeling. Im free of a ton of stuff that has never looked good where it was and I was just too much of a plant mommy to get rid of it. Anyway, now I have all these delicious empty spaces in the border to fill in. (Picture me rubbing my hands together here in anticipation of my first nursery trip)

The dogwood is beginning to open its flowers and the mountain ash tree is looking particularly lovely right now with its flower buds forming and all the new leaves emerging. Ill see what it looks like in August. If it repeats last years defoliation in late summer the chain saw is coming out and the stay of execution will be over. Im also going to take our a very overgrown rhododendron that has suffered with one problem after another for quite a while and replace it with something that will make me a lot happier. Dont know what yet but right now anything will be prettier than that leaf scorched rhodie.

Michelle, bummer about your weather. We are supposed to get torrential rains here on Monday and Ill bet that is the same weather system you and Marian are talking about. Im hoping it doesnt arrive early and spoil our plans for Sunday. ~~ But you really should have picked up that orchid. They are incredible, satisfying and so much fun to have tons of flowers in the winter when they normally start blooming. I have a paphiopedlium with a flower on it now that has been open for a record two months! I situated it on top of the humidifier and it apparently is happy there. Most of the phalaenopsis started opening the end of January or so and they still have ALL their flowers. Just one plant is starting to let go of its first opened blooms. The rest of the flowers on the stalks will probably have flowers on them for at least another two months or so and a couple of plants that got a late start will probably be blooming until winter. Definitely worth figuring out how to make them happy. ~~ I cant wait to get my package. It feels like my birthday and that isnt until August. LOL

Eileen, you are just too sweet! Glad you liked the pics. I get so excited about the window when it looks like that I want to share my excitement with fellow plant nuts. I simply cannot believe you cant grow phalaenopsis. They really arent difficult. Mine dont normally require watering more than once a week and I feed them with liquid feed about twice a month this time of the year. The only thing that is time consuming is the fact that I have way to many of them. They seem to multiply when Im not looking LOL ~~ Do have a fun trip this weekend.

Taryn, thanks for the update on Bruce. Sounds like he is pulling through. ~~ Im crossing my fingers for you that you sell the house soon. Maybe this viewing will be the one

Marian, if your house got pretty cold this year the phalaenopsis would not really like that. They are a warm temperature orchid and resent getting too cold in the winter time. I have a species phal, Aphrodite that got some pretty saggy leaves this winter when my window got pretty cold then I didnt really pay enough attention to reducing the watering it got and it isnt very happy at the moment. Ive found that if I water very sparingly, wait until the potting medium is just about dry and only water then, the plant will most times come around. Ive had a few close calls with losing them to over watering them but if you are patient they normally come back. The phals are pretty tolerant of a wide range of conditions so Id think if you water sparingly for a bit they will perk up. ~~ I hope you dont have any damage from the predicted storms. I know when Doug worked in Arkansas and I was down there visiting him there were a few thunder storms that were stronger than anything Id ever seen here.

OK lunch is over and Im off to go and dig up a few more things.

Later all

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 12:18PM
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Just being a ditz here...I posted on the previous thread by mistake-here's what I said with some newer updates too..

Hi Ei: ) Thanks for mentioning about the type of scarves you were looking at. what you describe is exactly what I found when I looked online. I wondered if that shape was a better one than using a regular flat scarf wrapped on the head-maybe the type you talk about is easier to apply. No no-don't send me a prototype I most likely can find a pattern for the formed type-I was just curious what type your sister was interested in and what type was easier to manage.
Have a great trip!
Eden you are amazing: ) I love how you dabble in all kinds of propogating-those begonias are so cool! So do you just stick the sliced leaf into the medium and mist them till they sprout growth(do you cover them during the initial planting period?)?? What I love about the idylls is that I try so many different things because I get the ideas from you all. Fun!Gotta go buy me some begonias; )
Bella has just a sweet face! I'll bet she's not getting more teeth at the moment-she looks SO happy: ) It's neat to think of all the great stories she'll have about playing in her Grandma's garden. I love her boat; )

Has anyone had their Buddleia fried by a freeze? The basal foliage is blackened but underneath I still see green so it's alive at the roots but will this affect it's growth much?

I actually meant to comment two days ago but lost my post when I went to check the heuchera link-I always forget to not do that when I have a post being composed: ) Oh well.

Deanne-hmmm I lost one of my Blue Fortunes too one right next to it was just fine.
Yes-the stems left from the H.Pee Gee would be basal suckers. H. paniculata is a shrub so I expect a surge of new stems to appear but I will try to develop a standard. I will be really sad if this whole idea flops.

Taryn-I enjoyed reading up on Christine's life on ebay-you are the ebay queen: ) That is wonderful that people are so interested in her-I hope you get big money for her! She really does look good. Hmmm maybe I should sell my house and my family of four could live in her; )...and live off the land(!)
Ow-your back! Be careful and take good care of yourself. Crossed fingers that everybody stays healthy at your do you think Devin just wanted to play hookie? Amazing what healing qualities siblings can offer lolol.

Yeesh Ryan had his 5yr old check up. He needs his eyes checked by a specialist for possible lazy eye! And he had blood in his urine-even though they said it's not a problem I want to know why that happens. We go back in four weeks for a second hearing test so I'll ask then. AND Ryan had to get two shots...poor guy. He was brave though. He was sure the order for two shots was a mistake and didn't think they were necessary!(He's so funny when he tries to justify things he'd rather not do). Now I'm thinking he had the right idea-we had to put ice on his arm this a.m.-it's red and swollen at the injection site.

I don't mean to leave abruptly but I need to go buy food. Also, I might be here less because it's coming upon crunch time for the art show,I have some sewing to do for a neighbor,and I tell ya, track season just eats up my quality garden,idyll and bon bon eating time lol. I want my life back; )


p.s. Taryn I'm relieved that Bruce is stable-prayers that this continues and he's back on his feet quickly.

I was wondering if by now T might be covering her house with mylar to fool that pesky pecker...: )

That toad statue is adorable!!

Hi Marian!

Deanne-you'll probably have a decent sized 'gartenmeister' by the end of summer or sooner if I know how good you are at growing fuchsias. My first one was impressive by the second season.

To the Garden!!...

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 1:31PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Okie dokie....I dug up 2 good-sized green hostas, and plopped them into holes at the base of my young Bald Cypress, along with a couple of wayward cinnamon ferns. Looks pretty good, and the incoming rains should settle them in nicely.

This forenoon I burned a large brush pile out to the west of our yard. It took some coaxing to get it all burned. It sure looks better there. Fortunately I went out while dinner was cooking , to check it's progress... it had spread into the grass and leaves in the edge of the woods. Most of it had already burned out, but some was still going. I went to the shed and got a rake, and easily put the rest out. In case you think I was careless in leaving it in the first place, it was almost all burned up when I came in to cook dinner. The surrounding grass and leaves were still wet, but I guess the wind and heat from the fire had dried it some. I was thinking of the northern farm members when I was doing the burning. Sorry, I forget whether it was Norma, or if it was Brenda, who posted recently about their controlled burn.

Babs, I saw your post on the last thread. I was wondering "who in the world posted on there again"!!!! lol
Surprisingly, it didn't take half a day for it to come on. ( smile) Maybe it's because I had just done a disk scan and a defrag.

Deanne, I think I did let our house get colder than usual last winter. I wish I had seen your advice before I watered them... again ! I'll slack off for awhile. BTW, does the potting stuff that yours are in have pebbles in it? The stuff I bought (at Wal Mart of course) has pebbles in it. That seems rather dumb to me. The natural location of the orchids in the jungles do not have pebbles!!

Michelle, I am feeling MUCH better today. Thanks. I hope the 'pink pills' are the answer. Even my headache and neck pain is sooo much better. I think I recall reading that esophogeal disorders can cause pains in those locations, just like a heart problem. Weird!

I now have several clems blooming. Also Peonies and Iris. One absolutely gorgeous one from Jain. I can't show you a pic, but is is 'Jolt'. I love it. It is a rebloomer as well.

Nolon just told me that he found a redbird's nest in our Duchess of Edinburgh clematis. It has 3 eggs in it. The clem is blooming. It is on a (real) trellis out at the end of the wooden fence, about 20 feet from where I burned the brush pile. I had noticed the female acting anxious every time I went out there, but hadn't noticed her this morning.

Oh, I almost forgot. A bloom has opened on my Jan's Wedding rose. (Another plant that I love.) I bought it from Forest Farm a few years ago. It looks like this is going to be a good year for most of my roses. Louise Odier has more buds that it has ever had, and so does Scentimental.


    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 3:27PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Ryan, I had a lazy eye when I was very young. The sooner you get it fixed the better! They waited too long to fix mine so I only see out of one eye now. Back in those days they didn't understand eyes as well as they do now. It is a pretty quick fix these days!

I weeded in the veg garden today. What a perfect day! The nights are too cold though. It took me 40 minutes to remove pots and sheets that protected plants last night. I'll have to go through the whole process again tonight. What a waste of time...

Thinking of Bruce and his family. What can I add? Best wishes is all I've got.

The wild angelica is sprouting all along the creek. I love it! You see it mostly on the left side here:

Asparagus is starting to push through the surface too. (Please, no comments on what it looks like!)

Maidenhaitr ferns are popping up too:

Cheers to all! I'm sure you'll all be thinking GARDEN on the weekend. Especially Mary, Deanne, Sue.....


    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 3:28PM
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Beautiful evening here and a forecast for a beautiful weekend. I barely got out in the garden today at all, just a quick tour this morning. I spent the entire day just cleaning the livingroom due to Bella's "help". I guess it's a good thing I didn't plan on too many container gardens this year. David brought home a little playhouse for Bella this afternoon. All of her outdoor playthings are taking up my valuable container space but that's ok. Taryn, I'm glad the report on Bruce is better today. I hope he continues to improve. Marian, glad you're feeling better too. Michelle, you could use this rainy weekend to decorate the inside of your garden shed. Marie, I love the shot of the angelica. Babs, I'll send you some begonias when they get a little bigger. I did cover them with plastic wrap for the first couple of weeks but now just mist them and the way you described is exactly how you do it It was amazingly easy. Deanne, can't wait to see what new plants you select to fill in all of those gaps you're creating. Sue, hope you got alot accomplished in the garden today. Hope everything works out for McKenzie's new home. T, hope you haven't been overtaken by a gang of woodpeckers. I wonder what's attracting them to your place? I'm off to get Bella ready for bed, looks like she's about finished her banana, which I tell her is her dessert, lol. I wonder how long she'll fall for that one? Have a great Friday nite everyone.


    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 7:03PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Eden, I sure do understand about your changes since Bella came along. Even though my GDs are so far away, and seldom here, I had to give up on some of the indoor gardening I did because of 'their help'. :-) I used to start gobs of seeds. But the containers were all in the dining room window, or on chairs below the window, under grow lights. I had to quit doing that when the babys came along. Even now, the dining room ( below the window)is occupied with a second sofa, for a bed when they come. They are getting old enough to not bother the seedlings, but there just isn't room enough now.
Since I have had to cut back on planting it no longer matters. The agastache from Taryn are in the window now.:-)

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 7:35PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Evening all, well did I ever have a surprise today. Michelle!!! My package arrived. Too cool!! In my wonderful package with some lovely geraniums from Michelle was a beautiful, hand-made, stained glass, plant stake. Thank you, so much, my friend! It has a lovely pink flower with a hummingbird. Ill have to get a photograph of it tomorrow for you guys. Neat, neat, neat!

Hi Babs, My buddleias did that last year but came back just fine. Even that winter we had several years ago when I thought my Pink Delight was toast it grew back from the root stock. Im sure yours going to be fine. ~~ I hope your PeeGee does OK. ~~ I can tell already that the Gartenmeister is going to be a vigorous grower. The cuttings are looking fantastic.

Yea, Marian is digging and plopping hostas!!! ~~ Pretty scary about the fire. Glad to hear it didnt turn into a problem. ~~ RE the orchid mix, It is OK for the potting mix to have pebbles in it. Im sure it is just to improve drainage.

Bug love the photos, especially that emerging asparagus.

Eden, Id be in big trouble if I lost any space for my containers. Im going to enlarge that area in the front to add a few more containers. Im still uncertain where Im going to place all those new fuchsia and coleus.

OK Im out of here for the night. I still need to finish rearranging and mulching that terrace garden tomorrow and still get to a wedding shower by 1:30 Nite all..

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 9:46PM
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Deanne, I'm glad you liked it. Pink for you.

Bug, I picked aspargus last night, but then I don't have ferns that are that tall.

Eden, I'm like you, life has changed since I became a gramma. I'm going to watch her at her house for a bit tomorrow while Laura gets her nails done. They leave for CA on Sunday. My mom is watching Kenzie. I thought I'd hit a couple of nurseries that are in their town. Maybe there will be time for the garden shed then. It better stop raining as my pot ghetto is getting bigger. Since I can't get in the garden, I buy stuff.

We went to town tonight and had Chinese food. We did a little shopping but came home with a loaf of bread, a dozen eggs and some ziplock bags. What an exciting night. LOL

Have a good night

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 10:02PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

LOL! Michelle, your night on the town sounds about like mine! We ate at home though because DH was late and the town shuts down awfully early. Besides, there's no Chinese food here, too exotic I guess.

Good to hear the Marian is playing "musical hostas"! Most of mine are up but still little points. I see my baptisia is little points now too. My buddleia is nothing at all so far. I wonder...

Well EARLY this morning I got to hear the owl going HOOT HOOT HOOT. At least it wasn't Woody !

My server seems to be messed up at different no photos can be posted when its on the fritz.

Tomorrow I may hit the nearby nursery. I've been told that they have some amazing coleus there this year. You will recall however that I hate coleus!

Time to feed the cats again I guess. They are parading in front of the screen and making things difficult! Good luck to Sue with the puppy and the new family. Hope it is a good match!

A demain,

    Bookmark   April 28, 2006 at 10:43PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Morning, just a very quick good morning to you all. The weather is PERFECT for gardening and I've got to go to a wedding shower at 1:30.... Yikes, I love my friend and her daughter but I so wish the shower wasn't going to be in the best part of the day. Sigh...

Michelle, you are too much. I kind of thought you did the pink on purpose for me. I really do love it and the very best part is that you made it! Thanks again.

Bug, you do pretty well for someone who hates coleus. Interesting enough I used to hate them as well. I was astonished a few years ago when I saw some of these new cultivars.

Anyway, enjoy the day all...I'm eating up my free hours of sunshine and have to get outside.


    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 8:34AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Well it looks like another gorgeous day on tap here. Yesterday I was out in the garden all day and got alot done. When Tom got home from work I went out for my walk, made a quick trip to the grocery store, then came home and stretched and lifted weights, then made I've been packing alot into every day. Today will be more of the same. I do get tired but figure I can sleep when I'm dead.

Marian, glad you're feeling better-I can sense the change in your messages.

Speaking of ill health, I got an e-mail from my cousin yesterday. She wanted to tell me that my friend's husband just had quadruple bypass surgery. Egads, he's only 46. We all graduated from high school together. A couple of months ago I saw him at his father-in-law's wake and he had lost 40 pounds and looked great. At that time he mentioned he had quit drinking and had some heart problems but it was very nonchalant. I'll have to call and get the scoop.

Yes, the family who is interested in Mackenzie will be here this afternoon. She has totally integrated herself into our house to the point where you almost don't notice that there's an extra dog here anymore. If we were looking to add to the family she probably would be staying. This morning when I let her out of her crate she jumped right up on the bed and went under the covers and curled up with Zoe and

Marie, neat pictures as usual-love the little daffs. I won't be the one to comment on the asparagus except to say I bought some at the grocery store yesterday. It's one of my favorite vegetables.

OK, time to finish the coffee and get moving. Glad it's Deanne going to a bridal shower this afternoon and not me.


    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 8:38AM
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It may be rainy here, but I think we will go to Sioux Falls and hit a nursery or 2. I don't normally get there during gardening season so there are nurseries that I have never been to. Laura called and she doesn't need me for Kenzie anymore.

Sue, it sounds like MacKenzie fits in quite easily to your house so maybe she will do the same with the family.

I never cared for coleus that much either, but I have been growing the for the last few years too.

I was looking at all the plants and cuttings that I have in the house. Some are amazing me. The 'Gartenmeiser' is starting to bloom, the calla bulbs are shooting up, a few of the cannas have sprouted and the coleus from seed are looking great.

Brenda, if you are lurking, are you in the field yet? Not much going on here as it is just so wet.

To all who can garden today, enjoy.


    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 9:59AM
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Hi everyone

Its opening day today for Little League - photos were at 7.45 AM, parade is at 11 AM and the first game at 6.15 PM - whew! DH and I are able to share the driving but it's cutting into garden time, not to mention that I'm hoping to get the house presentable for the visiting Idylls. The kids are loving it though, and the little boys are so pround of their new uniforms.

Need to run - have a great day, especially if you are in the garden.


    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 10:36AM
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And life's whirlwind soon as Chris came home lastnight we scarfed down spaghetti(homemade sauce!)then hopped into the car to check out the progress of the mertensia hill and I took some pics. Going picture taking at 7pm is a mad dash to get the remains of good daylight-surprisingly I did get some softly lit shots-I'll post later. That damned garlic mustard is everywhere.

Oh Deanne you lucky duck-a hummy stake! Glad 'Gartenmeister' is doing well for you. I finally potted your cuttings into larger pots until I know how I'm going to use them. I wish those night temps would raise a little higher,though I think the coleus is as cold hardy as the the fuchsia-I had my coleus into fall.

Today we're going to the Westside market for meat and produce-nothing beats the quality/price of both at this place. Then we're going to the zoo to use some free tickets our neighbor gave us. Then we'll stop in to see MIL. Tomorrow's a track meet so that day is a waste for gardening: (

Sue-I would have such a hard time giving up Mackenzie since she fits in so well with your family...keep her,keep her: ) Once you have two dogs what's one more(it's like having kids)lol.

Marie thanks for your comments on lazy eye. I have a feeling if Ryan has this it's probably a less severe case. We go in a couple weeks for his exam.
That asparagus looks yummy...I've got some on the list for the market.and that reminds me....

I'm late! I'm late! For a very important date. No time to say hello.Goodbye! I'm late! I'm late! I'm late!


    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 10:53AM
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honey_mi(Z5 MI)

So many plants, so little time!!

Just checking in. I'm overwhelmed at how far behind I am with all you guys. I've skimmed some and am sending wishes to all to feel better soon!

The deck repair guy has just a little trim to complete and I've asked him to replace the top of the railing. So he should be done with the deck Monday. He was able to use the 4x6' posts from the front landscape that would've been discarded anyway. I schmoozed a bit and think I've sold the woodworking bandsaws, routers, drill presses and misc. (huge) power tools that are cluttering up the basement to him. DH had big ideas to use them someday but found he has NO patience for finished carpentry. thank goodness we didn't buy them new. So I'm thrilled to be rid of them AND glad someone else is carrying them out of the house!

I've been moving plants out of the way of the work area in the front of the house and have enlisted neighbors and friends to take the groundcover. The deck guy is going to use the rest of the 4x6" timbers to shore up a neighbor's deck so I should be rid of much of what is in the way except the dirt in the raised bed. I spent a whole day removing and cutting up all the old ratty plants in the raised bed. I'm waiting for the tulips to finish blooming before I pull them out of the work area sometime next week.

I had an arborist out this week to consult on the pear tree. He suggested moving the new walkway and retaining wall about a foot closer to the house to try and save the tree. He had good info. We were worried also about the big pine in the front b/c it's over incoming utilities and it's roots are close to the house. He think's it's OK and shouldn't cause any problems so we'll keep the tree.

Perhaps the new walkway contractor will start work towards the end of next week. Meanwhile, I haven't been able to get the roofing/gutter guy back out here to resolve the water problem next to our front porch. I need to call him again. I have the deck powerwash & stain guy scheduled and can't wait until he's finished so we can get the patio furniture and deck decor cleaned up and out of the basement. I also have the sprinkler guy scheduled. We have several repairs to do and I want to see if he can cap off some sprinklers in the front and get the system working and later, after we get the new stuff planted, come back out to adjust the rest.

I also have been moving plants in the back. As the bulbs are popping up, I've had several moments of "Hmmm, what was I thinking!" Most often tho, I just lost track of where they were planted. In misc. trips to the big box stores, I've picked up several buys. I just couldn't help it -- plants just hopped in my cart! Of course, when at nurseries looking at shrubs/prices for the redo out front, several other plants hopped in my cart there, too. It would be terrific if I had a plan, but I just buy them and see where I can fit them in. I'm incorrigible!

Sue, I saw your note re your friend. We've also had bad news from friends. When I advised a good friend from HS about another having a stroke and going into assisted living near her DS, she told me she's having open heart surgery to replace a valve! Then another good friend told us she's having a mastectomy/reconstruction/reduction of the other b/c of cancer. Lastly, my friend with pancreatic cancer is not returning my calls again and we're worried. This getting older is THE PITS!

Lastly on the health front, they discovered DH is borderline diabetic. He has lost 15 lbs. and now has the resolve to get more weight off so he doesn't have to use insulin. This also is giving me the incentive to continue with our healthier eating habits. I haven't lost more weight, but my clothes are definitely looser. I hope I can soon break thru this plateau. Deanne, you've been on my mind alot lately and I'm more in awe than ever over your weight loss accomplishments.

Since I can't use my little greenhouse on the deck my kitchen is filled with 40 pots of dahlias, cannas, and callas. The only ones that haven't greened up thus far are the Fascination Dahlias -- a fav thanks to Deanne. Today I'll drag them and all the misc. annuals I've gathered in the last couple weeks outside. Hopefully, the dahlias will pop up soon.

T, I feel so badly over your damage from those horny woodpeckers! I understand completely since that's quite common in our neighborhood. Thankfully, they'e left us alone since we painted the house with Duration paint. It's holding up really well and I don't think the woodpeckers can penetrate the plastic finish. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

That's the news from here. I'm off to catch some sales on misc. stuff and then will continue w/outside work.

I'm thinking of all and talk to you guys in my head, really! I'm off....


    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 11:40AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

A fly by-

DH was glued to the computer so I went off to the nursery. Yes coleus and other stuff landed in my wagon. In fact, 3 trays of things were filled! Then some lady I never met before told me I should go home! I guess she can recognize an addict when she sees one! So I bought 3 more primulas and then left....
When I got home, DH was asleep again. Guess I'll make some lunch, then head to the dump and do other errands. Really, I should be weeding the veg garden on a day like this! BEAUTIFUL!


    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 11:54AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

LOL, Marie! That is just too funny. Believe it or not, I've done very little nursery shopping so far this year. I decided I needed to deal with what I have-try to place everything in the most optimal spot. If I dig something out and don't know what I want to do with it, I pot it up for either later of the CT plant swap next weekend.

Oh right, I just hate coleus too...LOLOL!

Honey, great to hear from you. I agree the getting old stuff stinks. Tom and I must be living right because we're the only people we know who aren't on any kind of prescription drug. It's amazing how much type II diabetes I hear about lately. My mom has been on Glucopage (sp?) for a few years now. Diabetes runs in my family on her side. I grew up with a grandfather who was insulin dependent but who always managed his diabetes successfully. I tell people my grandmother used to make him "dietetic coffee jello". She used to dissove instant coffee and gelatin with saccharin (this was the 60s before the days of nutrasweet and all those other sugar substitutes) over the stove then chill it and serve with Cool Whip. Yummy, huh? lol

So, Mackenzie was a hit with her prospective family. Only the mother came but was so impressed with how gentle and loving she was with her it was an instant go. The actual adoption will take place next weekend. The woman left me with a bag of clothes from the family-a shirt from everyone and one their current dog's towels. I'll line Mackenzie's crate with all that stuff so she can get used to the smells. One of the changes they plan to make is her name.

Babs, Tom doesn't agree with that "what's one more" dog owning He's the one who complains about extra dogs in the house but every time I look he's got Mackenzie in his lap and is getting kisses.

Mary, the weather looks clear so I guess I'll be seeing you tomorrow. My track record in small planes is not stellar sp I'll be taking Dramanine just in case. Your Painter's Pallette' is all ready to go. This excursion should be fun-I can't wait.

Allright, time to get ready for bed. Nite all!


    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 9:20PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)


A sequal to this morning's adventure.

After lunch I went to the dump and the grocery store. Well Well Well! The garden center at the grocery store was just opening for business and I picked up 2 tiny shrubs and an annual grass. So then I went and bought dog biscuits, nuts, and then butter. By the butter section appears- yes, the same lady I'd seen in the morning at the nursery, and she saw my loot in the grocery cart! What could I do, hide? She had a good laugh and headed off to the garden section afterwards. This addiction is getting embrrassing. Why the lady who runs the nursery even greeted me by name. Well, if I look at it from a different point of view, perhaps I have a reputation to uphold! Right?

Bon Voyage ladies. I'll be thinking of the Rochester gathering with envy.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 9:50PM
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laurenlolly(Melbourne, Australia)

Hi all! Just thought I might use you guys as my guineapigs to test out some new hosting.......

Just so Autumn photos from around the garden.



    Bookmark   April 29, 2006 at 11:34PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Lauren! How nice to hear from you! I am so amazed to see Autumn approaching in your part of the world while here I am anxiously anticipating the growth of spring plants. I am having some computer problems these days and so your photos were very slow to appear, but worth the wait!

I just love epimediums. The raindrops on yours are captured so beautifully. Mine are just emerging from the ground. Here's a photo only a 'mother' could love:

The lilacs are in bud:

Our red maple is bursting forth:

And the hellebores are still in bloom-

Last night we went out to a nearby town for Chinese food. The place we intended to go was closed for a wedding, and so we tried the other restaurant- and it was better! I liked DH's fortune in his fortune cookie:
"A single kind word will keep one warm for years."

On that note, I'm off to prepare breakfast, find and attach the hoses, clean up the winter's mess from the pet rabbits and head for the compost heap!

Enjoy your weekend everyone! Sunny skies here for today and no frost last night! :-)

    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 7:21AM
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Good morning!

The Idylls in flight must almost be at their destination. I hope all has gone well for them during their time in the air and that their visit with Mary will be well documented with photos. Have fun!!

The morning is shrouded with fog & a very brisk 31 degrees. We had some unexpected rain yesterday and now the freezing temps......should be an interesting drive to church.

I was awakened (awoke?) by a woodpecker pecking at my house. Yesterday I didn't hear them at all and my hopes were raised incredibly that they were gone, done, finished or at least they had moved on to a dead/decaying tree instead of my home. But my hopes were dashed as soon as I heard that dastardly bird's beak drilling into our siding once again. :oP

Hi Lauren, it is nice to see you & your beautiful autumn pics.

Honey, you always sound so blessed busy!! :oD I'd be dead and dragging if I tried to keep up with you for a day! I hope all continues to go well for the renovations that you & Tom are doing. Good for Tom on the weight loss!!! Please tell him hello from me & mine.

'bug, your photos are so wonderful. Crisp, clear and you find the prettiest and most interesting bits of heaven to photograph. I'm so glad that you share your surrounding beauty with us.

I need to get myself out of this chair and preparing for the day (get dressed, lol).

My best to all!! I hope it is a very good day for everyone.


    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 10:39AM
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honey_mi(Z5 MI)

Oh, can't wait to hear about the Rochester trip! I'm sure you guys will have a wonderful time!

Lauren, great to hear from you and your pix are great! Hope all is well and that you check in again soon with chatter.

OK, what's with having to register to log in again?! Or the car video that you can't close?!!! Grrrrrrr.

The "plants on wheels" continues here. I dug out more hostas, glory in the snow, anemonies, etc., from the front yesterday and planted a gold azalea I got for $12 in the back. I also dragged the hose around and gave everything a drink. I have more to move, but it's a good start.

I was going to take a pic of a really nice Heuchera "Sparkling Burgundy" I picked up the other day for the discussions forum to ask if it retains it's color all season. I planted it Fri. nite and something ate it overnight!!! Probably wabbits. Whaaaaa.

There's a phenonemon in my garden -- there's actually room between plants! I'm just now realizing that I left room for some purchases this Spring after I saw how it actually looked. How fun. Now if I can only remember the imaginary plan.

Sue, I hear ya re health and health of friends. I'm one of the few who isn't on meds myself. I'm hoping some weight loss will help keep my blood pressure down, etc., etc.

I'm off to get outside. I need to acidify and fertilize trees and shrubs today and perhaps clean up the garden stuff in the garage among other things. Hi to all. Hope your weather is wonderful!


    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 10:53AM
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Hi Everyone

What a fun time we've had - I wish more of you could have been here. It was a perfect day for flying, eating on the patio and strolling outside.

The Idylls and spouses arrived bearing gifts - some Painter's Pallette from Sue a wonderful box of plants propagated by Deanne. It was like Christmas in April!

A group shot in the front garden.

We walked around the garden before lunch Al Fresco by the pool soaking up the sun. It was such fun to sist, relax and chat.

Afterwards we left the guys to talk airplanes while Deanne, Sue, Annie and I went one one of my fav nurseries that specializes in Japanese Maples. Now, it wouldn't be an Idyll get together without one nursery visit!

It was hard making decisions, especially as Doug could only take another 50 LBS on board.

I wonder if Doug was surprised when we returned to hear there were 5 trees flying back? The guys helped carry the bounty out.

All in all an excellent day - hope you had a safe flight home.


    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 5:24PM
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Good Afternoon,

Mary, how great to see all of your smiling faces! It looks and sounds like a great day, I'm so envious. BTW, you have the cutest of kids. They have such happy faces.

I did some nursery crawling here today. It was really windy, too windy for me to want to work out in the garden. I ended up with mostly tropical stuff but did get a thalictrum elin, sedum black jack and clematis minister. I also picked up Fine Gardenings container gardening issue.

Marie, I went to three nurserys and no one sent ME home, lol. Your experience made me laugh though I wouldn't have liked someone noticing how many plants I'm buying. My neighbors and family tell me I'm out of control enough to suit me, lol.

Honey, I've been having to log in everytime I check in here for weeks now and last night I couldn't get on at all. You sound like a busy girl lately. I almost bought h. sparkling burgundy at Tellys today. I had it in my cart and then put it back and told myself quite sternly that I don't need anymore heucheras at this time. It sure was a pretty one though. They had h. cinnabar silver too which was very tempting.

Lauren, your pictures are beautiful but I'm glad that it's you heading into autumn and not me!

Marie, loved your pictures. I have a few epimediums about ready to bloom. The hellebore picture is spectacular.

T, I can't believe your weather is so cold today. And why oh why won't that darn woodpecker move on?

Sue, glad you found a home for McKenzie. My plan for this year was reworking the plants I already have in the garden too. So far I'm not doing so well though...

Tomorrow is Jenni's birthday. I can't believe I have a 27 year old child. A bunch of us girls in the family are going out to lunch and then I'm getting my sister to go with me in her truck to pick up a couple of witch hazels and a little sourwood tree I've had my eye on for a couple of weeks.

I was thinking this morning how much I've enjoyed the spring flowers in the garden this year. I don't know if it's because it's been such a beautiful month or if it's just the influence of all of you and your beautiful pictures. I'm going to try to incorporate alot more spring blooming bulbs into the garden this fall for next year though. I was reading over on the other forum and Cynthia had a great idea there for using golf tees to mark now where you want to plant this fall. It's always so hard for me to remember in the fall where the bear spots were in spring that would be perfect for bulbs.

Enough babble from me tonight. Hope you all had a great weekend.


    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 6:06PM
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I keep repeating "April showers bring May flowers" Another wet day. 2.10" so far.

It may have been a wet weekend but I didnt let that stop me. We stopped at a nursery yesterday, it was decorated very cool, and they had a black and white chicken wandering around in the greenhouse, but like most around here they had just the more common plants. I did pick up hosta Guacamole, sempervivum Cobwebs and a cute little coleus Meandering Linda. I hauled all the plants that I overwintered upstairs out to the garden shed. I also did some repotting. It rained lightly all weekend. Needless to say I was drenched by the time I was done. The grass goes squish squish when you walk on it.

What a fun day the gathering Idylls seemed to have had. Good weather, conversation, food, a garden tour and a nursery. It doesnt get any better than that.

Did I see Babs whirling through here?

Honey, it sounds like things are really hopping around your house. Great news about the tools. Im sure that will help with the cost of the deck repair. Hopefully Tom can control the diabetes thing without insulin. My sister just got that same news. She is 38, but she did get the gestational diabetes during one of her pregnancies.

Bug, more great pictures, you sure have the eye.

Lauren, what fabulous fall colors you have captured.

Kenzie is spending the night here before she rides to work with me in the a.m. I will drop her at her GG house.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 7:07PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Whew, what a day! I got up just after 5 to shower and dress so I could relax with coffee before going to meet Deanne and Doug at the airport. The flight to Mary's took less than two hours. We picked a great day-the weather was sunny and warm.

As you can see by the pictures, we had a fabulous time. After touring Mary's house and garden we ate a delicious lunch on the patio. Mary prepared a variety of great appetizers and a ham dinner. Dessert was this luscious chocolate bomb. Yummmmeee! After lunch we went to this off the beaten path nursery just minutes from Mary's house that had the most incredible selection of Japanese maples I've ever seen outside of a mail order place. It was almost good that we had limited space and weight on the plane. I bought three trees (Kinran, Orangeola, and Villa Taranto) and easily could have bought more. All these hard to find cultivars and the gallon sized plants were only $19.95.

Unfortunately our time was limited and we had to leave shortly after getting back from the nursery. The flight home was a bit more bumpy than the ride out. Luckily I has taken some Dramamine and felt fine until the last few minutes. I was able to squeeze in a regular workout when I got home and we just had a light dinner of fridge odds and ends. Now I'm going to head up to bed and read those new Thomas Hobb's books you all talked me into buying last week.

Nite, nite.


    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 9:09PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Hi all,

Just a quick drop in tonight to let you all know what a great day we had and to let you know that we made it home safe and sound.

We started out this AM having to put all the plants outside again and also had to water all the plants in the terrace garden I moved around yesterday.

Doug and I hit the road and took to the skies to pick up Sue and Tom in Hartford. What a fabu morning we had for flying! It was absolutely smooth as glass all the way to Hartford then again all the way to Rochester. You can see how clear the air was from these photos. This first was just before we landed in Hartford.

And this photo was of just before we landed in Rochester

What a great time we had touring Marys garden, sipping our beverages (Marys DH made me a fantastic cup of coffee! As good as my Starbucks Blackeye)enjoying the sunshine and great company. Mary made us a wonderful luncheon and I do have to say that her guacamole is out of this world and into the next! I enjoyed a refreshing glass or two of homemade sangria. I easily could have eaten at least three or four pieces of the chocolate bombe dessert but limited myself to one.

After lunch Mary, Sue, Annie and I were off to the nursery. It wouldn't be an Idyll get together if we didn't visit at least one nursery would it?I contributed to two of the five Japanese Maples we flew home. How fun it was to return from the nursery and tell the guys we bought five trees!!! ROTFLOL.

OK Im turning into a pumpkin and Doug is snoring away next to me here so I think we have to hit the sack.

Nite all,

PS Sue is quite a good sport. The ride home was pretty bumpy and she didnt complain once.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 10:15PM
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Lauren, Pretty fall colors.

GB, my lilacs are starting to wind down already. I love the way you capture the intricancies of plants.

T, I was at my sons house the other day when DIL came in with six windsocks she had bought to hang on their house. I know I probably heard them say before but had forgotten they have been fighting woodpeckers for a couple of years now. They have cedar siding.

Honey, you go girl. I'm happy to hear you are getting so much done. And room for more plants. Woo Hoo!

I am trying and I can see progress, but it is hard to ignore what isn't happening. I worked in off and on rain today. I finally got a big clump of daylily dug out and moved. It was growing where we built the new swing arbor and was in the way. It also would have clashed badly with the Zephrine Douhrin rose that is growing there. the rose is a start from my other one that I had just stuck in the sandy gravel near the path and it rooted. It has grown to a pretty good size and has buds. This will be its first time to bloom. I also planted a Weigela that I had started from a cutting from an old one we had removed.

I'm surprised I have any plants left at all. We had 40 to 50 mph winds yesterday evening and last night. I thought V would wake up with a brand new garden from Missouri this morning.

Mary, How nice that your day turned out so well. Everyone looks so happy. I would have loved to visit that nursery too. The japanese maples are so pretty in a garden. I would love to have a couple of the smaller ones.

Eden, I saw that sedum Blackjack on a website. I have it on my wish list now.
I have really enjoyed the spring flowers this year to. They seem to really do well this year. And once they started it seems there is always something else coming along too. Now my iris are blooming and the peonies are ready to start. Oh and several of the clematis are blooming too. Sugar Candy, Fireworks and Elsa Spath all have blooms. Elsa Spath is such a pretty color. I can never capture it on film though. My camera just doesn't pick up purples very well. I think I should plant Fireworks with Elsa Spath. I think they would be a pretty combo.

Michelle, I bought "Cobwebs" last year. I like it. I need to move it though. A evergreen sedum I planted is really spreading over everything in that area. I would like to do a trough or container with some of the sempervivum.
My hostas are really kicking in and getting some size to them this year and I am really seeing the importance of giving things enough room to grow. Another thing I noticed in one of my beds where I had stuck the early purple iris here and there was that I had a nice drift of color there. I want to repeat that with a daylily. Maybe a white or yellow one that would blend well with any other plants that were blooming at the same time.
I bet GG really enjoys having Kenzie.

Sue how did you handle the flight? You don't look green in the pictures. LOL

Five trees? OK who bought the most? I'm guessing Sue has more space to put them than Deanne.
But Deanne could always hoik something. he he

Busy week ahead here. The floor guys are coming thurs, so I have some clearing out to do on top of everything else. Later, Norma

PS, Marian you are an enabler. I picked up clematis "Asao" the other day because I always admired your photos of it. Did you about get blowed away yesterday too?

    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 10:25PM
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Ah, I see You two girls posted before I got mine up and answered my questions.
Deanne thanks for posting those arieal(sp?) shots. They really intrique me. Especially knowing you took them.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 10:46PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Am I the first one up this morning? I doubt it, maybe the first on line though. I began May 1st with good intentions: treadmill, plants moved outside, clay pots located and moved outside onto the garden workbench for cleaning and maybe even planting later on. Now I really should get dressed and make breakfast for DH! There is tons of stuff to work on today and for the whole week actually!

Last night I was looking at the Fine Gardening container winners and discovered one of them was a nearby Canadian! Her town name was spelled wrong, so I guess I hadn't figured it out earlier. Anyway, it wasn't my favourite container at all....We'll see if I can do better. I guess maintaining them is the hardest part. I'm really a novice at this so I expect lots of help from you guys. How often do you fertilize them? With what? Who takes care of them when you are away visiting V in July??? ;-)

The birds have started making their noises at 4:30am. I know it is supposed to sound sweet, but I don't react that way at that hour.

The days really are longer now, so everyone should be able to fit in some garden pleasure at some point in their day! Enjoy!


    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 7:39AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Good Morning all!
Another lovely sunny morning, after more rain during the night, with t&l, but no wind or hail. Only 2/10ths this time. We got 2 and 1/2 inch saturday. The green is almost overwhelming! Lovely!

Michelle, Does that mean that mean that little Kensie will no longer be staying with you? You will miss her. Oh, I see she spent the night with you......What is her "GG house"?

Re: problems with GW. Saturday I had to take a really 'round-about way to get on this forum. Others would open , but not 'Perennials', When I finally got it to open, I replaced my bookmark with the newly opened page, and it has worked fine since.

Honey, that is good news about your deck. I hope it is many many years before you have any more problems with it.
You are having a very busy time in and around your yard. It will all be so beautiful.
Sorry that your DH and so many of your friends are having health problems. It is the same with my friends also. So much serious health disorders.

Marie, Your nursery experiences are so funny! ;-) I am thinking of taking a purchased plant to the cousin's wife that I encountered the other day. I'd hate to think any gardener wasn't going to buy 'any' plants this year. :-(
It's so good to see spring bursting out in your neck of the woods. You are fortunate to have that lovely large asparagus. The deer have keep mine ate down until it hardly gets any size any more. I have managed to get a small 'mess' for Nolon and I, and hope to get at least a couple more.
I was up at 6:30 but cook breakfast before reading/posting. My monitor has a problem, and has to warm up for a long time before the black streak goes away at the top, then it flickers an even longer time. I hope to get a new one before long.
LOL on the bird sounds. I love them ( except the blue jays).

Lauren, How great to hear from you, and see your advancing autumn. In our part of the world we are burgeoning with fresh green growth, and spring flowers. I wish you had kept us up on the summer season there. Don't stay away so long.

Teresa, That is so weird...freezing weather for you so late in the season. I hope your drive to church was safe. The head of our driveway has a gully across it, but I navigated it okay with my little car.

RE:Heucheras, I may give up on them. They are not doing well here. I sure don't like the way they raise up out of the ground...with bare stems.I put new potting soil around them, but it still doesn't perk them up too much. Too bad, because them can be very pretty. It seems all WalMart gets in is the Palace Purples. Only rarely do I find any other variety.

Mary, I love your pic of Doug's airplane. And the group shots are great! I specially like the first with your children.... and the 'pot' holders...:-) I'm glad your DH got into one pic.

Happy birthday to Jenni. Eden, just wait until your children are in their late 40s, like my son. I don't know how he can be so old, when I am not !!!!! LOL

Deanne, I love your aerial scenes. I never succeeded in getting such good pics from a plane.

So great to hear that such a good time was had on the Sunday trip. Good weather, good friends, good food, and good shopping. What more could you want! And Sue didn't even get air sick!( Well. maybe a wee bit.)

Norma, hee hee, so I am an enabler.... I hope your Asao does well. It is my earliest bloomer, and I have 2 of them. One is in shade, the other filtered shade, and they bloom at the same time. Ooooo, I'd love to have a swing arbor.That is funny about the rose. Weigelas are very easy to root for me. I am trying to figure out where to plant the last one that is still in a pot. It is a pink one. I have both pink and red, and a 'dwarf' red, now I 'need' a variegated. :-)

More severe weather is in our forecast for later in the day.So far I don't think anyone is complaining about the rains...after the long drought we had. I just more hail. A dear friend had her yard damaged,(again), a week ago). It was severely damaged about 3 years ago,... now again. The community building close to her had the same 2 windows broke out that were broken in that previous storm.
She must live in "hail storm alley"!

Okie doakie, I need to don my boots, and slog out to survey our yard.


    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 9:44AM
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Deanne, I really enjoyed seeing the aerial pictures.

Marian, GG is what we call Great Gramma and GP is Great Poppa. These are my parents. Your yard sounds like mine pretty soggy. We have had over 2" as of Sunday morning. I didnt check this a.m. because I was busy getting Kenzie ready. It rained lightly all day yesterday.

Norma, youll have to post some pictures of all your spring bloom.

Bug, if I am gone a few days, I water well and set them where they will be shaded. If it is more than that I have someone stop by to water. I have also set them in the shade in a kiddie pool with a couple inches of water and they can draw up that way. It somewhat depends on what the weather forecast is. If you only have a few containers, you could sit them in the house, where they wouldnt dry out anymore than a houseplant. I usually water once a week with Miracle Grow. Id be interested in what others do.

Have a great day

    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 11:52AM
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Zipping by to say I love seeing the Rochester group(hi Annie and David!) and the airborn pics(awesome)! You guys had a fabulous time;I know that even before I read the details: ) Poor Sue with the flying queasys-that must be so uncomfortable. I suspect you're worse in smaller aircraft? While you guys were having an enjoyable time I was sitting on my fannie at a track meet...and I bet I'm not exaggerating when I say the whole time you were visiting I was sitting on my fannie at a track meet(LOL).OK maybe a little; )

Michelle-I've been thinking of you as I see low pressure on the weather map rotating around you-I wish I could borrow some of that precip! While I love sun-right now I'd love a week of rain. So are you filling your rainbarrel?

Marian I hope the weather settles down for you too. It really is nice though to hear what you've got blooming so I know what to look forward to...assuming we get some needed rain.

Good to see you Lauren!! Thanks for the fall pics. I especially like that one of the grass plumes.
It's kind of neat to see Lauren's fall followed by GB's spring.

Sorry to dash off again. I have some sewing to do. Hemming pants for my neighbor and I have a new project making a costume for the school musical. We're doing a very small musical and I just need to make a band conductor's suit jacket-easy. Almost in tears I want to be outside(gardening)so badly!


    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 2:46PM
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Even though I don't like flying I really enjoyed your aerial pics Deanne. That's so great that you all had such an enjoyable afternoon together.

We had a nice lunch out at a french restaurant today to celebrate Jenni's birthday. The food was great but I won't describe it as I wouldn't be able to do justice to the great job Deanne always does describing food. We did have a great time though.

Marie, Last year I used a Miracle Gro on my container plants every two weeks but this year I'm going to shoot for every week. I've read where some people even do it twice a week with the tropicals. I just buy the little bags of powder and dump them into a hose end sprayer and water away. As far as watering goes if we're away I threaten my children with bodily harm if I come back to dying container gardens. So far that's worked, lol.

Marie, I'm so excited to hear that you're going to try your hand at container gardening. I know you will be great at it by the talent you show with the beautiful combos in your gardens. I can't wait to see what you do.

I was noticing today how dry the ground's getting here. We could use a good rain. The forecast calls for hit and miss showers and I bet they'll probably miss us. If so I'm going to have to drag out the sprinkler soon.

Hi Babs, hope you can whip up the jacket in short order so you can get out in the garden.

I had a chance to sit down and take a look at the Fine Gardening Container Gardening special edition this afternoon and I can't say that I was really too impressed with the ideas they had to offer. Guess I must be spoiled by what I see from all of you here.


    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 6:50PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

OK, I lined up all the pots I could find...some from the year '51 I'm sure! Now it becomes obvious what all the chatter about bargain containers was about last Fall. I need some bigger ones, but can't afford to spend another dime. I guess I'll have to think of something clever.

Today I cut back about 5-6 large wild maple clumps along the creek. I hate those things, they're weeds. I can't spray them or I'll poison the creek. All I can do is saw away each spring. DH had better not read this or he'll be annoyed. He thinks I should leave everything "natural". Then I planted a few perennials, a dicentra, a bergenia, some primulas, wallflowers and lupines. It is way too early, but gee, it is going to be above 40F at night all week they say. We'll see how it goes.

I also potted up a few things for the local plant sale: Aquilegia canadensis, white bleeding hearts, Jacob's ladder, sedum Bertram Anderson, Pulminaria, Artemisia Guizhou, Anthriscus Ravenswing and more to go another day.

Happy May Day!

Viola Dancing Geisha

Charlotte waiting for me to hurry up-

And finally, those *%$#@!! red tulips where I don't want them!!!

Need to soak my tired bones now... Night night!

    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 7:45PM
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Good evening

Lovely pictures GB - Charlotte looks particularly good in profile!

Another perfect Spring day here, it was hard dragging myself into work. I actually love my job, but being inside in such lovely weather seemed a crime.

Eden - I hope Jenni had a good birthday and your lunch sounds fun. Annie will turn 13 in ten days time - I'm having trouble believing I'm soon to be the mother of a teenager so in no way can I imagine what having a 27 year old is like.

By the way, Annie and David and DH really enjoyed our company on Sunday and everyone has been asking when we can see them again. In fact David has announced he's going to come to IU3!!!! - anyone want to share a room with a 9 year old boy LOL!

Sue - I'm glad you took that Dramamine on the way to the airport!

Babs - the track meets sound even longer than little league games! I was chuckling about sitting on your fanny (for us Brits it has a very different meaning). How is Ryan holding up? I bet the jacket will be a piece of cake. When do you find out more about Ryan's eye?

Marian - I didn't know you suffered from hail storms. I've read Lauren Springer's articles about hail resistant plants as hail is a frequent occurance in the mountain states. The idea of fresh spring growth being shredded is dispiriting. I'll hope for some gentle rain for you instead.

I've been thinking a lot about Bruce and hoping all is OK. Maybe Taryn will give us an update soon.

Well, I still have one more round of plants to to before sitting down for the evening. My treasures from Deanne are already tucked up for the night in the garage, but I still need to close the cold frame and bring a few tenders inside.

By the way Deanne - how often should I feed my Fuschia? Do you do a weekly liquid feed? I've become the custodian of the most beautiful plants and I'm determined to keep them looking fine. My pots are a rather motley crew so I might splash out on something to do them justice.

Have a good evening


    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 8:59PM
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Oh, but GB they are making a statement.

I barely stuck a foot outside all day. I was clearing out the kitchen-dining-living area for the floor guys on thursday. DH was home today so I told him I wouldn't mind pulling the fridge out and wipeing up so I wouldn't be totaly embarrased when they moved it. Then that led to doing under the stove. Both places were gross. How fun :(P
Also had to do the pantry and utility closet because they will have to get in there too. At least my pantry is reorganized and now I can see what I have in there. I will not need to buy paper plates-plastic cups or plastic utensils for at least two years LOL.
I am tuckered plum out tonite. Housework is way more tiring than gardening.
We have another storm coming in so I'm outa here for now. Norma

    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 9:23PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Evening all,

Well I had a busy, busy day starting with the gym, watering all the plants indoors and out. Things outside are all dry as dust again. The weather people are predicting rain here for tomorrow and Wednesday and I surely hope they are correct. Michelle, I sure wish we had some of your rain.

I spent the afternoon outside and finished hoiking the things I wanted our of the third tier of the terrace garden then got that all mulched. Then I cleaned the back side of the hill and the right side of the shed then got that all mulched. Doug got home from work and helped me switch out the compost bins and I had a couple lovely carts full of compost. I spread that over the shade area next to the shed in hopes the Astilboides tabularis will enjoy the extra boost and grow into a spectacular specimen this year. I also gave that area a nice coating of Starbucks coffee grinds so there is lots of good stuff for the plants. The soil in that location was so lean and rocky when we started out that it can use all the help I can give it.

Bug, lovely pics. Love the grape hyacinths. I LOL when I saw the pic with the red tulips. I took a pic of mine today too to share with you.

So now there are two of them instead of one. Ive tried for four years now to dig them out and all I succeed in doing is pulling the leaves off. So if Im pulling the leaves off how did it multiply??? Go figure. ~~ Last year I watered my containers every morning and gave them a ½ dose of liquid feed once a week. I also would pinch the plants and groom them every third day. When I go out of town DD comes and stays overnight to take care of the plants for me. The first time of each season I have to walk her around the garden and make sure she knows where they all are. Shes a real trooper and does a great job. Much better than Doug I might add. He always seems to kill something when I depend on him to water for me.

Eden, I agree with you about the FG Container Gardening special. Nothing there that gave me the Ive got to do this feeling. ~~ I also agree that I need to do more spring blooming bulbs etc. I didnt plant even one bulb last fall and Im now wishing Id taken the time. I was a bit burned out after the two garden tours last summer and didnt accomplish a thing after July.

Babs, I sure hope you get your indoor projects finished soon so you can get outside in the garden. ~~ I sure hope you like track meets. ~~ RE coleus and cold tolerance. They seem to do OK in the fall with quite low temps but I have problems when bringing them out in the spring. Mine really seem to resent the cold as well as the extra light levels. It seems to take forever to harden them off and they always look a bit bedraggled by the time I pot them out in their permanent locations. I wish I had a better way to harden them off.

Marian, my heucheras heave up out of the ground also and I wind up digging them up and setting them back down so the crowns of the plants are level with the soil. It seems to rejuvenate them. ~~ It is much easier to get shots from an airplane when you are in a small plane and low to the ground. Ive never gotten any good ones from commercial flights.

Norma, I only bought two trees yesterday and I have absolutely NO idea where Im going to put them. LOL I dont even know if they are hardy to zone 5 so I might just keep them in containers and put them in the garage over winter. ~~ BTW I emailed you from the GW link last week and havent heard back from you so Im assuming you didnt get my email either.

Mary, you sure got some great pictures!!! I especially love the one with the guys and the trees. Just tooo funny. What a great time we had yesterday. Thanks again for the lovely day! So happy to hear your family enjoyed our company as much as we enjoyed theirs. Your DH has promised me a lesson in PhotoShop the next time we visit and I plant to take him up on it. ~~ Yes I do a liquid feed weekly for my fuchsia. I've found they grow like crazy and really need the feed. If it looks like they are ramping up for some heavy blooming I'll even do them twice a week and they seem to enjoy the extra feed.

HI Honey, sounds like you are getting a lot accomplished lately. I LOL about plants on wheels. Im doing a lot of that myself this year. So sorry something ate your new heuchera. What a bummer! ~~ So what does Bullet think of 40 pots of dahlias in his kitchen? Ill bet he is a bit miffed about your using his space. ~~ Congratulations to you and DH on your continued dedication to a more healthy diet and lifestyle. It is not easy to maintain but so worth it. You just cant go buy a package of good health.

T!! I simply cant believe it was 31 degrees there yesterday AM. Holy cow, that is colder than it was here. That must be very unusual for you there. ~~ So sorry the woodpeckers are still at it. That must be making you crazy.

Lauren, nice hearing from down under. How strange to see your fall photos when we are taking pictures of tulips and spring blooming trees here.

So here is my gorgeous plant stake Michelle made for me and sent with the geraniums. Isnt it lovely?

Here are a couple spring pics from today.

Im in love with Sambucus Sutherland Gold. Just look at all the buds on it this year.

The Golden Hops Vine is pretty contented in its container. Ill see how it does over the summer.

I love this Brunnera variegata even though it isnt as vigorous a plant as Jack Frost those blue flowers with that variegated foliage knock me out

The dogwood is really looking nice this year.

OK I think Ive covered everything. Time for me to get some shut eye. Have a great evening all

    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 9:29PM
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I heard that we had 7.49" of rain during the month of April. I would say that we are well watered. This evening the sky finally cleared, although there is a slight chance of storms tomorrow night. It is supposed to get to 80 tomorrow. I worked outside this evening, but not in the beds.

Funny, but I have 1 red tulip also. Mine isnt in bloom, but I can see by the bud that it is the one red one. I was surprised by all the tulips that are coming up. I always forget what I plant in the fall.

Deanne, what lovely pictures. The golden hops is a pretty vine. I take it that it is aggressive. Great picture of Sutherland Gold I think Im really going to love that and the Rhus Tiger Eyes They are the closest I will probably get to a Japanese maple.

bug, thanks for the beautiful May day wishes.

Eden, I hope Jenni enjoyed her birthday. My DS turned 24 on April 12. I thought that was unbelievable too.

Ei, I just noticed new growth on the questionable dahlia. Woo hoo.

Oh Mary, how extra sweet that David would want to spend time with all us old fogies.

Norma, what kind of flooring are you getting?

I'll leave you with a few shots.

H. 'Keylime Pie' I'm loving this one. What a bright spot in the spring garden.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2006 at 11:45PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Morning all,

It is a raw and windy day, 45 degrees and raining. Yea! (Can you believe I said that?)We really needed this and it is looking like we are going to get a good soaking rain today so that is a good thing. I guess I'm going to have to paint today. LOL

Michelle, I love your garden with the paths and the benches. I agree, that H. 'Keylime Pie' is a real winner. How long have you had it? I'm wondering if it is more vigorous than 'Amber Waves'. I sure hope so. I think I need to run out and get that plant. LOL Is that H. KlP in the photograph next to the bench and what are the two purple plants next to it. I love that combination. Strong contrasts like that really appeal to me. It really does look like a spotlight in those gardens. ~~ So do you have a photo of your random red tulip??? I'm curious now as to how many of us have the 'Random Red Tulip Syndrome' or RRTS for short.

So I'd forgotten about this pic I took on Sunday, I know Sue said she wasn't air sick but what do you guys think?

OK I guess I'd better get my day started. Have a great day everyone.


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 5:49AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Ho, ho, ho...very funny, Did I tell you I hate you because you can grow Sutherland Gold that well? I wish we were predicted to get a good soaking rain here-just showers for us. It's so dry my mouth feels like it's been stuffed with cotton every morning when I wake up-just like winter only worse.

Ah, spring is here-the idylls are posting luscious garden pictures again!


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 8:10AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Yargh! Deanne , how could you do that to Sue! LOL!
But I am glad you are getting rain. We got a light shower during the night, and more in the forecast. Sure wish some of it would rub off onto those who need it.....spacially Sue ( maybe it would wash that color off of her face, Smile ).

    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 8:51AM
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Oh poor Sue!!! How miserable you must have felt! :oD

Very funny Deanne, good for you to think of it. (oh, glad the card had gotten there, thank you again).

Michelle, your potage garden looks lovely (did I get that spelt right and identified which garden it is?).

'Bug thanks for the May day pics.

It was another frosty morning....29 degrees. The pasture is still covered in frosty white......looks pretty.

Yesterday I finally ordered some material/mulch to finish off the new curvy beds and continue the work in the backyard. I bought 12 yards, I hope that is sufficient to do all I wish to do and not too much. I'm sure I can find places to put it if it is too much for the beds.....I have all those pots I bought last year although I hadn't planned on doing any annuals/containers this year (money going other places). They will deliver tomorrow and I'll see just how big of a pile 12 yards is......... LOL.

Our frosty mornings should be done soon. I cannot remember when the last frost usually is....I think mid-May is the latest we usually get them and they begin again in mid September. Today looks to be clear & dry....weekend expecting rain, so I guess I'd better get outside today and work on some edging & mowing. :oP

Hope it is a good one for everyone!


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 9:56AM
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honey_mi(Z5 MI)

LOLOL, Deanne. Sue, it sounds like you felt exactly as Deanne depicted! Wow, what a great time you guys had. Great pix. Mary, I can't believe Annie looks so much older than the last photos you posted! What a cutie. And David! He really sprouted, too!

We just had a minor drizzle but it was dried up already. I'd sure like to take some of Michelle and Marian's rain off their hands.

the deck guy finished up yesterday and we're real pleased with the job. He used the 4x6's from the front raised bed and huge bolts for the new supports. We could probably drive a car over it and it would be fine. In a way, it's good it will last quite a few more years and save us some bucks. Then again, I would love to do a patio with a stream alongside and a small pond. But I keep telling myself that I need a kitchen first!

I been trying to figure out what to do with the tulips I need to dig up this week. I think I'm going to put them in pots leaving the foliage on, label them and sink them in the back of my garden until fall and replant. I also need to move some creeping phlox out of the way but haven't a clue where to put it now or later.

I, too, am starting to think about containers. I'm really taken with Copperleaf plant (Acalypha wilkesiana macafeana) and bot 3 of them. Here's a pic from the IA U site:

Thot it would look great with Dahlia Autumn Fairy and coleus Stainglass Copper.

Deanne, yes, Bullet looks at my rack of plants in the kitchen with utter disgust, puts his head down and mumbles to himself as he walks away just like a little ole man. Thanks for the diet encouragement. We needed a kick in the patootie to get us going again.

Sue, I'm so glad you were able to find a good home for Kenzie.

Eden, I can't believe you actually have "holes" in your garden where you could squeeze in some bulbs, lol!

Well, my day is slipping away from me. Hi to all. My pea-picken' lil brain can't remember more specifics. Gotta go move more plants, vacuum and do something with the inside of this house for a change. TTYL,


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 10:11AM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Deanne, I can't believe you did that!

I'm still alive and will try a longer post later, but I can't stop chuckling over Sue's pic.


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 11:24AM
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We had sunshine this a.m., but it has clouded over again. The chance of rain was 20%. We need to dry up here. Rick hasnt been in the field yet and hes getting antsy.

Deanne, those arent Keylime Pie. They are Lamium maculatum Aurea. Another great chartreuse colored plant. The purple plants are just heuchera Purple Palace. I have had KLP since last summer, but it grew very vigorously and all 4 came thru the winter looking great. They are well ahead of all the other heucheras except maybe the purple palaces. The lower right hand corner shows the Amber Waves that I just planted. That bare area is where I dug out a large peony that just didnt get enough sun.
Maybe Sue is green with envy over Deannes Sutherland gold. LOL

This is actually the first garden that I planted. I think that it needs a little revamping. T, it isnt the potager, I call it the Perennial garden just because those were the first perennials that I planted. The potager will be more veggies and right now is a weedy mess. It has just been too muddy to work in there.

T, I usually keep a pile of mulch in the barn just because there always seems to be somewhere to use it.

Honey, Ive been eyeing that copper leaf plant on PW website. They used it in quite a few containers.


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 11:32AM
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Good one Deanne, that was too funny. Good thing Sue's a good sport!

I just got chased in by the rain. I'm not complaining though, we really need it and I did get Arnold Promise and Jelena planted this morning.

Michelle, I just love the garden stake you sent to Deanne. It's perfect for her garden and she'll always think of you when she sees it. It's important to me to have plants and ornaments in my gardens that remind me of the people in my life, past and present. Also love the pic of your garden. I like the closeup pictures of plants but my favorites are always the ones of garden views.

Honey, that's exactly why I'm wanting more bulbs. Spring is the only time I DO have bare spots in my garden, when all of the hostas and other plants are still small. That's great news that your deck repairs turned out so well. Can'w wait to see the container combo you described when you get it together.

T, wow, 12 yards is alot. I ordered 6 one year and never thought I'd get through spreading it all. You're going to be able to fit lots of cool plants into beds that big. I'm envious!Hard to believe it's still so cold at your place.

Marie, love the picture of Charlotte so patiently waiting for you. It's always nice to have that company when gardening. Bud does the same here and I'd sure miss him if he wasn't nearby when I'm out there. It would seem so much lonelier somehow. Dogs are great companions.

Mary, I think that's so sweet that David wants to attend Idyllunion with you this summer.

I'll contribute a few shots of plants from my garden that caught my eye this morning...

Bamboo and the mayapple grove

My favorite brunnera, Looking Glass

Variegated Leucasceptrum that Sue talked me into when we were at Variegated Foliage last summer. I think I'm going to really love this plant.

This is Syneilesis palmata, shredded umbrella plant.


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 12:04PM
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Monique z6a CT(6a CT)

Deanne-too funny! Sorry Sue LOL. Glad you guys had a great time at Mary's place. Great photos of the event. Deanne, what Japanese maples did you get? Hubby and I were up in northern MA on Sunday moving wooden liners and digging trenches for the liners. My allergy symptoms were off the chart when I got home-we were in the woods with all the pollen-need I say more?

Lovely spring pictures everyone.

Sue, I used to have my Sambucus Sutherland Gold in an area that was too sunny and dry; it was also on a slight slope so the water ran off too quickly. Once I finally planted one in a spot with some late afternoon/evening shade, level ground so the water would not drain away quickly, the plant does much better. Mine is about to bloom and is getting larger. I probably just jinxed myself though...

Eden, Brunnera 'Looking Glass' is my favorite also. I like that Leucasceptrum Sue talked you into.

Some of you have mentioned and shown your photos of the small Dicentras and Corydalis. I've tried multiple times and cannot grow them. For corydalis, I've planted lutea, ochroleuca, the blue ones-they either die w/n a few weeks or don't come back. Any advice-maybe I need better draining soil?

    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 12:42PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Been immersed in many things - more later - but have to say, Sue -- if it had been me in a small plane, I truly would have looked like Deanne's photo - i DO turn green on airplanes & other modes of transportation if I don't wear a transderm-patch.... eek! At least you're smiling thru it all!! LOL.

Lovin' the Spring Gallery --
Monique I can't believe there are plants you've been unable to grow.... that is encouraging for the rest of us!!

I am really loving this Spring this year -- my tulips have held up for over 3 weeks - I think that's a record. I've got the first clematis (President, Josephine, Niobe) blooming, iris & a couple of early peonies -- it's enuf to make me a veeeeryyyy happy woman......

check in later.
-cindy (in lurk mode).

    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 2:04PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Ah, it's great to be green, huh? lol

Actually, I felt fine for all but the last couple of minutes of the return trip.

Eden, glad that Leucosceptrum turned out to be hardy for you. I've got two and both are looking good. My Syneilesis look healthy this year too. Lost the fancy Mayapple though...Where in the world did you find room for two Witchhazels?

Monique you need more shade for the Corydalis-or at least to get a few established. After that they seed all over. My Sutherland Gold is actually all of about 4 inches tall right now and struggling. I moved it into part sun a few weeks ago. It may be best to just start with a new healthy plant.

Made my first greenhouse run today. This guy prides himself on finding the most unusual stuff he can at his wholesaler (who I also shop from on the retail side) and then showing it to me. Today he asked me about the Senecio I bought and I told him I had to research it and I would get back to him.

Here's my contribution to the spring pictures...Fothergilla gardenii and friends.


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 2:47PM
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We've been having a nice steady gentle rain here all afternoon which is just what we needed. I love how in spring when it's raining you can almost see the plants growing. I was checking what's going on with the seeds I sowed a couple of weeks ago and the ricinus, hyacinth beans and ornamental millets are up and growing. I tried something new this year and used the wintersowing method with them but threw them in the greenhouse. I usually grow these under lights which is much more high maintenance so I was really happy to see that this worked.

Deanne, I forgot to tell you that I did check the temps in the greenhouse the other night. It got down to 30F outside and bottomed out at 45F in the greenhouse. I've been checking it in the mornings when I open it up the last few days and by the time I get out there around 8-9am it's been up to 70F, but that's with the nights staying in the high 40s.

Sue, Oh I don't like hearing that you lost your fancy podophyllum. I've had Kaleidoscope on back order from Plant Delights since last year and just got an email yesterday that it's been shipped. Fill us in on Senecio. I don't know of that plant. I got a few new (to me) tropicals last weekend, a golden pineapple sage, a variegated salvia called Dancing Flame, a phormium called terracotta and a green and yellow variegated sweet potato vine that I hadn't run across before. I think I'm going to try to hold off on planting my tropical containers until later in May this year. Last year I did it earlier and they just seemed to sit and languish and even decline in the cooler early May temps, especially at night.

My Sambucus sutherland gold is doing ok this year. Last year it ended up taller on one side than the other so I pruned it back pretty severely this spring to get it evened out. It's probably about 2 1/2-3 ft. now but doesn't have as many buds as Deanne's. Deanne, yours is looking spectacular!

Hi Cindy, I wondered where you had gotten off to? I'm glad you took a moment to check in.

Martie must be busy getting her new gardens going. Marty, if you're reading I picked up a lemon verbena last weekend due to your influence. Let us know how the gardens are shaping up when you get a chance.

I've rambled on enough here. Guess that comes from being stuck inside because of the rain. If I don't spend my time here on the Idylls I'll have to go clean something, lol.


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 5:28PM
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honey_mi(Z5 MI)

Hiya Idylls.

Monique, I hear ya! I had to get some Visine Allergy and have been taking Benedryl. My eyes are so itchy, I cant decide if I need new make-up or if the allergies are from pollen. Bot new make-up anyway.

Eden, I also prefer Looking Glass to Jack Frost. I bot another one a couple weeks ago b/c the first didnt make it. Arent you lovin this fabu drenching rain!!! The garden is just drinking it all in and lovin it!

Rant, rant, rant. Well, Im just furious! We decided to pay a hi-end local nursery to design a landscape plan for the front of the house after the new meandering walkway was installed. I was not confident I could do it and have it turn out well. What I wanted was good "bones" that I could compliment with perennials and annuals and have it be a dynamite design. Of course I had ideas, made a list, told him and he didnt listen! Well, Im wrestling with trying to contain myself. Geez, Louise. What a bust!

I dont want to tear this guy a new one, but I told him I hate Yews! So what was sprinkled throughout the design Yews! I gave him a list of plants I like and wanted to use. He put sun plants where they wouldnt get any sun, ie, a Virbunium, Weigiela, etc.! I wanted a Bloodgood Japanese Maple -- it wasnt in the plan. I told him I wanted -- and on and on. You get the picture. He also suggested adding Vinca under the pine tree. Guess what Vinca was there and wont live in that environment. Further, he wants me to pay him to plant hostas in front!!!!!). I have given away clumps of the same hes proposing.

I walked him thru my garden, and identified stuff I have and could transplant. Hello did you pay attention?! I must be the client from hell. Im even thinking of going to the nursery near Eden for an alternative bid. Ill be darned if Ill pay for crapola.

Perhaps I should get Monique and Les, Sue or Deanne to design a plan. Or perhaps I need to calm down. What a disappointment! And for all that money. Ennyhoo, thats whats up in my world. I feel like such a schmuck!

Hi Cindy. Great to hear from you. BTW, I also had Sutherland's Gold on my list as well as Black Lace. GRRRRRR. Maybe I do need a new designer. Or perhaps that person is me!


    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 6:33PM
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Monique z6a CT(6a CT)

Honey, that is just awful. Jeez, if I was designing a garden, I would love to have a client's input as long as the plants fit the location/conditions. Less decisions to make. Did you have to pay for the plan upfront? If so, maybe you can complain and get some money back since he didn't listen to you. Or, make him redo the design encorporating all of your suggestions. BTW, I've seen photos of your garden and you have great design sense.

Sue, what greenhouse did you go to and who is the wholesaler/retailer you mentioned? You know I love to go garden shopping and an endorsement from you means a lot.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 8:05PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Evening all,

Well, well, well, what a wonderful abundance of gorgeous spring pics. So much eye candy. I just love it. ~~ Just for the record, Sue really was NOT air sick. I just couldnt help myself. So, the deal is I have to run like heck if I ever see Sue point a camera at me again. Ive heard paybacks can be really awful.

Honey, what a huge bummer about the garden design mess. Did you already pay for it or can you fire this person? What about canceling the check if you did pay for it. The designer didnt do his job, did not do as you requested and you should not be obligated to pay for something that isnt what you asked for. Seems like a zipper-head to me. ~~ Love the Acalpha.

Eden, I absolutely love all your photos. It looks like Im going to have to get that dicentra.~~ I completely agree with you about how fast things seem to grow when it rains in the spring.~~ Glad to hear that your seeds are up and doing well in the greenhouse. I never did get any seeds going this year and really wanted to see if I could get those Cleome Linde Armstrong to germinate again this year. ~~ Thanks for the information about the greenhouse temps. I really do NEED one of those. ~~ RE Sutherland Gold, mine was a bit lopsided also and I pruned it to three feet or so as well. We must have been thinking alike when we had our pruners in hand. ~~ That phormium is really nice. I think I need to get that! LOL

Sue, gorgeous combination. What are those blue mounds??? I love the fothergilla against the foliage of the JM. PS, what is it that Kermit the Frog says, It isnt easy being green. LOL

Monique, I cant grow corydalis either. Ive tried more times than I care to think about. ~~ I bought Acer palmatum dissectum 'Viridis' and I dont have the other tag handy but will let you know tomorrow. I was strictly going by Boy isnt this a pretty one so dont remember the name but Ill bet Sue or Mary would remember. ~~ OK now it looks like Im going to need Brunnera Looking Glass too.

Michelle, thanks for the ID on the Lamium and the information about KLP. I definitely am going to have to get that plant.

V. I cant believe I did that either. I think my evil twin must have taken over my brain for a bit.

OK time for me to hit the sack,
Nitey night,

    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 9:01PM
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I'm drooling on my keyboard. Lots of neat plants. And pretty gardens.

Deanne I did get your email, sorry, I just haven't gotten around to recomposing my email to you.

Michelle,we are getting hardwood(distressed hickory) and dura ceramic tile.
I love your garden area and that stake you made Deanne is so neat.

I'm wiped out tonite so will have to comment more another time. Norma

    Bookmark   May 2, 2006 at 11:46PM
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honey_mi(Z5 MI)

Deanne, Monique, the deal with the landscape design is that it's an upfront flat fee that can be applied to the plant material used. I might just get some plants and fire the guy.

We wanted the relandscaping done by professionals for several reasons: they have the equip. to get the regrading needed right; the muscle and equip. to remove alot of the clay soil which is like absolute concrete; and trucks to haul away the old soil and plants. Also, we want good sized plants and it would take us old folks forever to tear out and replant ourselves. Plus we'd need at least a 55 gal. drum of Biofreeze, lol.

I guess I'm so disappointed b/c the design was so hum-drum. There was no punch. He didn't even take advantage of the little courtyard by the front porch which is a nice architectural feature that could be enhanced. He only used one evergreen -- a weeping spruce in the corner (my idea)-- the rest of the plants were deciduous with no winter interest or color.

Perhaps I'm the client from H***. I'm just going to have to decide what to do next.

Thanks, Monique, for your comment on my design sense. I think I have that, just not the depth of knowledge of shrubs and trees to come up with a dynamite plan.

Well, instead of sitting up half the nite thinking about this, I'm going to get some shut-eye and go to the book store in the am and do some research. Thanks, you guys. I appreciate the support. 'Nite.


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 2:43AM
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Good Morning, The birds ard singing so loud this morning they woke me up. It looks like it's going to be a beautiful day. The rains gone and we're supposed to get into the 70s later today. I have Bella the rest of the week thru Saturday. Jenni usually takes her on Saturdays but she's on a flight to Richmond Va this morning and will be gone for 2 weeks. She's opening a new store in the airport there for Caribou. I got an email last night that my Brent and Becky's order has finally been shipped. It's mostly cannas and dahlias so I've been anxiously awaiting it so I can get those started. Hopefully it will be here tomorrow. The garden looks great this morning due to all the rain we got last night. I love this time of year. All the plant foliage looks so fresh.

Honey, That's too bad that this designer did such a disappointing job. Did you get to see examples of some of his work beforehand? I would think that a designer would have a particular style that you could see from his previous projects. I think you could do this design yourself with no problem. Your back garden design is beautiful! Maybe you could do the design and then hire out the heavy work to be done. You're not the client from h***, you're a creative gardener who wants a beautiful front garden, not just some unimaginative cookie cutter landscape design.

Monique, I can't grow corydalis either. I've tried a few times. They just fade away. I don't think they like my clay soil. I do have a couple of the small dicentras though, Luxuriant and King of Hearts. I'd love to see some pics of your spring garden, hint, hint.

Time to get things started around here. I've got lot's to accomplish today, as always. Have a great day everyone.


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 7:14AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good morning all, it is another 48 degree morning with rain predicted. I don't think the temps are going to go much higher than this for the day but I won't complain becauuse we really needed all the rain we can get. We are down by 5" for the year so far so even if it rained like this for a week we'd just be catching up.

HOney, I'd fire the guy. If this person is so uninspired that the only good idea he came up with was one you gave him I don't think he is going to come up with anything better the next time around. It totally sounds to me that he only put plants in the design that the nursery wants to get rid of. Monique is 100% correct - you DO have great design sense. I think it is time to put your superior intellect to the problem. I'd bet you will come up with a superb design that will please you more than anything this person would do. YOu can always ask questions about different shrubs/trees on the forums here. There are so many who are really knowledgeable. You are not the client from H *** you are a clilent who isn't getting what she paid for.

Norma, no worries, I was just wondering if you'd gotten the email.

Monique the tag on the other maple I bought says it is Acer palmatum Van de aker but when I Googled it it doesn't look anything like the pics on my search so I'm afraid it is mislabeled. It looks like Sue's Villa Taranto. I thought at the time they looked alike. Who knows? I now have a mystery maple.

OK I have to run, today is my marathon day with three dr's appointments and the cable guy is somehow supposed to be here between them. I can't see that happening but one never knows.

Later all,

BTW, question for all the compost queens out there. Have you ever put coffee grinds directly on the garden??? The used Starbucks grinds are now coming with a label for composting with instructions for recommended use, of all things, and they do say you can put them directly on the garden on nitrogen loving plants. I gave that a whirl on my hostas and I'll see how they like it.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 7:26AM
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Honey, when your at the bookstore look for these books:
Front Yard Gardens, Growing More Than Grass by Liz Primeau and Tauton's Front Yard Idea Book by Jeni Webber. I used them both when we were putting in our front garden a few years ago. Both have some great ideas to inspire you.

Deanne, I get Rubbermaid tubs of coffee grounds from Caribou to spread on my gardens. I once asked Janet Macunovich, the garden guru in these parts, about using them during a soil class I took from her. She said they were great for your garden soil. I spread them on a tarp and let them dry out before I use them. It makes it easier to spread a thin layer that way and they will tend to mold if you spread them too thickly. I've read that there may be some benefit from them in detering slugs too. I don't think that's been proven but when it comes to slugs I'll try just about anything. I know that the earthworms just love them. I'll be thinking of you today while you're doing the Drs. appts. It'll be good to get those behind you.


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 8:00AM
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Good morning

Such much lovely green here in our Spring pics - including Sue on the plane LOL! I'm with everyone who've commented on how much they've enjoyed their spring flowers.

Honey - many designers would learn from YOU - your back garden is as gorgeous as any I've seen. I'm hoping you'll give the front a go yourself. There must be laborers/contractors available to hire for the heavy/schlep work. You are such a superb organizor you could easily direct operations and get to enjoy tree shopping and the creative part.

Deanne - hope your multiple Dr's visits go well today. We too need rain, but Sunday's weather has continued and I'm enjoying it too much to complain.

Eden - its wonderful the way your family are helping raise Bella together - what a lucky little girl she is to spend time with so many loving relatives!

I think today will be a good day - I have a lunch date with Hub - he has an appointment near work and we're going to meet at mid-day. Even though DH works from home when not travelling, to have lunch together during the week is VERY rare!

Still hoping for news of Bruce and a quick word from some of the missing Idylls.

Have a good day everyone


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 8:37AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Good morning all wow, Honey, how maddening & disappointing I guess thats a hard lesson to really check on someones work and references before giving them money for even a consultation, uh? My blood pressure would be in Danger Zone after getting something like that from him!!! I concur from what Ive seen of your gardens that you have a great sense I imagine though you were hoping to pay for some "inspired" ideas perhaps something you had not thought of, that might be more unusual, right? I concur with Eden that the 2 books she mentions has worlds of ideas as well as the Outside the Not So Big House (that Ive peeked at) so maybe you will get your inspiration from those as well....

Re sambucus I managed to get the Black Lace last summer and mine is all of about 8 inches tall but it sure is lovely my contribution to the "japanese maple" look since it takes more sun than most of the j.m.s can take in my area in full sun. But Im looking forward to it growing a lot this year (I hope).

Thats interesting to hear about the coffee grinds, Eden I have used them on my garden (particularly azaleas) but did not really feel I saw any particular difference I found I could gather my grinds (in combination with leftover tea leaves/bags) for a week (without them starting the mold) and throw them out into the garden. If nothing else, I think they may help lighten the soil.

Ive managed to grow several dicentra but have not tried the corydalis because from what I had read they require a lot of shade (& moisture?) so I figured w/ so little shade in my gardens Id be throwing good money out the window but they sure are pretty!! So delicate, like so many of the "woodland" things. On my wish list if I ever achieve more shade in the gardens!

Eden I love the look of that Variegated Leucasceptrum looks like a good purchase! Your garden is looking lovely

Michelle I love your garden paths lined with stones really enchanting.

Hope the allergy sufferers feel better Ive got em too & take a prescrip for them but discovered it makes me feel tired, so its not so great but on the other hand, if my allergies get out of hand without it, I get vertigo from my ears filling up, which is even worse that puts me out of commission for days! A no-win situation allergies are, arent they?

I broke out the hose last nite to water some things because its so dry here too and it actually hit 79 degrees no rain mention til maybe Friday, so things really need a "hit" I forgot to mention that Ive got a pretty new clematis Matka Siedliska blooming (planted last fall) its got huge blooms twining thru a Viking Queen rose thats getting ready to "pop" so many things are blooming now its hard to know what to photograph!!

Have a great day, everyone.

-Cindy (wishing she were in the garden doing green things)

    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 9:49AM
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Good morning!

Yesterday my German Shepherd was barking wildly and I looked outside to see what was bothering him so much. I saw a lot of flying insects so I opened the door & listened. There were thousands of bees swarming. I brought the dog inside and grabbed my camera. My DH & DD are highly allergic to bees so we view them with some trepidation. We do have a cedar tree, not far from the front of the house, where a colony was living since last year. The colony emptied in mass amounts last year when DH was using the tractor and brush hog nearby. We knew we needed to get them to move on soon, if possible.

When I saw the swarm I had hoped it was the 'Cedar Tree Bees' heading out to find a new home. I took my photos of the swarming bees and decided to watch for a bit.

When we were feeding the animals last night, I walked towards the home of the Cedar Tree Bees (sounds like an exclusive club when I write it like that and I'm being a bit 'odder than normal' this morning). I was showing DH where the bees had been swarming earlier in the day and WOW! There they were! Thousands of bees all in a lump on my rose bush. The 'lump' is about the size and shape of a football. I walked over to the cedar tree and no activity there at all. Hmmmmmm. I got my camera (of course) and took some photos.

This morning, 33 degrees, the Cedar Tree Swarm is still congregated on the rose bush and there was no activity at the cedar tree. I took some foam insulation (the kind that you dispense from an aerosole can) and filled the entrance to the Cedar tree. I feel badly closing up the entrance to the Cedar Tree hive as there is probably still a queen, some workers & some drones in there, but I'd feel much worse if my DH or DD were stung by the bees and died (DD carries a bee sting kit but DH is too macho--I'd love to thump him over his foolishness on this subject, but that is another story).

I'm hoping that the entire colony has swarmed and left the Cedar Tree hive....but after reading on line, it sounds more like the colony has spit. I'm hoping that the swarm/colony that is on the rose bush will move far enough away from the house that they will not be considered a danger to DH & DD. Honey bees are too important and I do want them to stay on our property, just not so close to the house and outbuildings.

Here is the swarm......kind of hard to see them, just look for dots on the photos:

and here is the swarm clustered on the rose bush:

From what I've read this morning. There are a few scout bees out and about, looking for a new site appropriate for their hive. I ran outside and removed the lids from my 2 new compost bins. The bins are round, with ventilation holes and a solid sounded a little too close to a 'nice' home for some scout bee to come across. ;o) I'm hoping to keep an eye out and watch when they begin to move to their new location.....I'd like to know which direction they head and I hope they don't use one of our outbuildings. Hopefully there is a very nice tree or stump, far away from the areas where we visit, where they will set up housekeeping. :o)

Today my mulch is to be delivered! I'm excited to get moving on the project again.

Hello to all!


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 9:59AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Good Morning Idylls!

Well, what a pleasant visit to the Idylls this a.m.! You guys had me laughing and smiling all the way through...what fun pics!

I knew Deanne was feeling her oats as soon as I saw that pic of her holding the little maple tree! You looked so cute and what a mischievous look on your face..."Psst...Mary...look at this little maple...isnt it lovely?" "What?!?...smuggle it on the plane, Moi?!?...*Never*!" LOL! Youre too funny! Loved all the beautiful pics of your spring garden and your Sutherland Gold is doing wonderfully! I hacked mine way back last fall and much to my relief, is also doing well this spring. Its a gorgeous shrub and Im very happy with it too!

Thank you Mary for sharing the pics of your get together. It was wonderful to see all your smiling faces and it looks as if fun was had by all. :-)

Really enjoyed the spring walk through Maries garden too. The unfurling fronds on your Maidenhair fern were wonderful to see...nature is just astounding, isnt it? BTW, is that Bruces White phlox divaricata in the one pic with the grape hyacinths? What a gorgeous picture. I just planted Bruces White in my garden last year and they are still very teeny tiny plants, but one managed to flower and the flower looks very similar to those in your pic, so Im hoping yours is p. divaricata too. If it is, I am in for a real treat when my plants mature!

Marian so glad you are feeling better dear friend! :-) I can hear the laughter in your voice and the smile on your face and it warms my heart! BTW, dont forget to let me know what you want to do with the myosotis...i.e. plants/seed, now or in the fall.

Babs sorry to hear Ryans physical was worrisome. Like Marie, I also have a lazy eye (which the doctors didnt treat), but I have been lucky in that it has not affected my vision. Most of the time I dont even notice it, but if I am over tired, I do lose control of the muscles in that eye, which is more embarrassing than troublesome. Also, when I get pics taken, often I look like I am drunk and thats because that eye will close if there is a flash or the sun is too bright. Anyway, have you talked to the doctor yet about the risks and or the benefits of having surgery to correct the problem? Well Im sure you are doing your research (youre such a good mom) and I know you will make the right decision for Ryan, whatever that turns out to be. Re the blood in his urine. My son had that too, when he was just about Ryans age. Cant remember a lot about it anymore, but I do remember the doctor referring to it as "spilling sugar?" He told me that it was not uncommon in children and serious joggers too! I took the doctors word for it and as it turned out by the following spring Paul didnt seem to have the problem anymore. In retrospect, I wish I had been more informed and I think you are wise to find out more abut it too, if you can. In fact, if you *do* find out, I would be curious to know why it happens too and why, as the doctors say, "its nothing to worry about".

Michelle your garden is looking lovely too! So tickled that T.E. has made an appearance at your house. BTW, I meant to tell you before, I like my street name too! LOL! It was great when I had the biz cause we used my home address as the biz address and you would be amazed how much confidence it instilled in our clients...LOL!

Honey! It was great to see you! :-) And I am in love with your Acalypha! A few of us garden gals are making our second trip to Sunrise Nursery this week and I am definitely going to be looking for that plant! Cant wait to see how you combine it in your always lovely pot combinations! Sorry to hear your landscape designer was such a disappointment! Stick to your guns and/or find another landscaper. It makes me very unhappy when I hear about designers who dont listen to their clients...its just wrong! I always think of one of my ex-bosses clients, who loved the color red. I always felt sorry for him because every year he would ask to include red in his garden and every year my boss would refuse to listen (just because *she* hated the color red)! I thought that was a terrible thing to do to a client and always thought she should have compromised. I mean, Im sure there was some way she could have included some red in his garden, without insulting her own tastes. Okay, Ill get off my soap box now, it just that not listening to your clients needs and wants has always rubbed me the wrong way...I find it insulting! Of course, you hire a consultant because you want their knowledge and experience, but that doesnt mean that the *client* cant have good ideas too!

BTW...we will be seeing lots of pot combinations here, wont we? Please? I so loved that last spring....what inspiration I found here!

Did I mention too how much I enjoyed all the eye candy here today? Just beautiful everyone.

Eden...Im so tickled a gardener whom I admire so much also loves Dicentra Gold Heart! I know some people feel it may be a little to bright, but not me! I think it is gorgeous and I absolutely swoon when in a good spring, it blooms with my Redbud tree! :-) You and Marian have mayapples too die for. Though Ive had mine for several years now, they still have not made a great show like yours. When I was working for a gardening service, one of her customers had a huge stand of them in the woodland part of her yard and it is an image that I carry with me all the time...just lovely! Well, maybe one day I will have a stand too! :-) Enjoyed seeing all your unusual plants. It amazes me how many plants I have yet to discover...LOL!

Lauren! So enjoyed your pictures...just beautiful and the pic with the droplets on the leaf is really a work of art! Boy, we are so lucky here at the many wonderful photographers!

Gorgeous pics from Sue too! My fothergilla is finally recovering after a couple of bad years where my husband completely buried it during snow removal...GRRR! BTW, Sue is that your new "do" I see? You look fabulous! New do or not I think your hair is beautiful and I need to know what you are doing to have such fabulously chiseled arms! Youre looking fabulous dahling!

Well, Im going to keep this short, as I want to come back later and post pics of the trip to Arizona and my surprise on coming home in a separate post. I was going to post it all here, but then realized I had way too many pics. Ill be back here later, to do a better read! Have a great day all! Ei

P.S. T that is *so* encouraging and a joy to see the honey bees! :-)

P.P.S.S. Meant to tell you all I read "Shocking Beauty" while flying...wonderful book! Can't wait to get to my "Jewel Box" now! Thanks for the recommendation!

Okay gotta go now...TTYL! Ei

    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 10:37AM
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honey_mi(Z5 MI)

Thanks, you guys. Most of you hit the nail on the head. I was looking for an inspired design and dont feel he even scratched the surface.

Ive been trying to determine the problem(s). He has numerous awards and lots of photos of nice designs mostly back yards -- in his portfolio. Contributing factors may be

· Hes limited by plants from his nursery
· Warranty issues he mentioned that several times.
· Constraints from us working around 3 existing trees
· Site and exposure limitations.
· Perhaps poor communication and/or listening skills.

Im going to meet with him Fri. to look at his stock, see if this assn/plan can be rescued or if I need to form an exit strategy. Mary, your idea has merit and Im thinking in that direction, too. Theres an incredible nursery about an hr. west that has every plant imaginable. They dont have design services as in formal drawings, but will help you plan, deliver and plant. I was out there a couple weeks ago and they have the most and largest conifers and uncommon plants in the area.

Cindy, Eden, thanks for the book suggestions. What I havent been able to find and would like to have is an encyclopedia with pix and descriptions of evergreens and shrubs that do well in this area.

On the coffee grounds discussion, I just dump bags of it around my evergreens. It really helps the soil and the kitties next door think it is the very BEST litter of all, lol.

T, BEE CAREFUL! Wow, that is some swarm. Both DH and I are highly allergic so I share your concern. I know youd like to keep them on your property, but if they build a hive in the wrong place its worth the $ to have a critter control company remove them.

Well, Im off to Barnes and Noble. Hi to all. TTYL,


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 11:37AM
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After work yesterday I stopped at a nursery that I drive by each day. They dont have a large selection, but what they have are nice size and some neat annuals. I bought 3 coleus, Plum Frost, Red Ruffles and Show and Tell. I also got an ivy geranium called Merlot so you can imagine what the color is. It looks great with the Red Ruffles which says its a full sun plant. The Plum Frost was such a huge plant that I took 7 cuttings off it when I got home and it still looks great.

So Moniques Sutherland Gold didnt do well in full sun. Where do you all have yours planted. I of course planted mine in full sun. Mine is already about 2 tall and has flower buds.

Monique, my pic was of Dicentra eximia, which is quite easy to grow. It was one of the first perennials I planted.

Sue, Im curious what the blue flowering plants are in your picture.

Honey, I echo what everyone else said. You back garden is gorgeous and it sounds like you know what you want, but just need the grunt work done for you.

Deanne, I hope all goes well at your appointments.

Cindy, thanks stones are very plentiful here.

T, those are awesome pictures, but I sure hope they find a more appropriate spot.

Ei, glad that you returned home safely and Im looking forward to pictures of you trip.


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 12:01PM
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Funny, when I copied and pasted, I missed this comment:

Eden, Ive been wondering when my Brent & Beckys order will come too, but I havent gotten an email yet. I got all my dahlias and cannas potted up last night. My your garden is sure looking good. You have such interesting plants in your garden. That dicentra would look very good in one of my gardens, I will have to look for it.


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 12:04PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Very quickly...Honey you will never be happy with a canned landscape design from a nursery. You are a gardener with an eye for design and a desire for the unusual. Their target audience is average joe homeowner who wants everything everyone else has and no maintenance. They have to work with only plants they sell...hence the emphasis on yews and other common foundation plants. Have a party-invite Eden, David and Ruth over and see what they come up with. You can always source out the plants and pay to have large specimens delivered and planted on a per basis. The process is good though-it makes you think through and see that your ideas are far better.

For all who are asking, the blue mounding plant in my picture is Veronica peduncularis 'Georgia Blue', an excellent edging plant for lots of conditions including part sun. It doesn't bloom all that long but after flowering you shear the foliage and it looks good all season. For the season extenders, it gets a reddish fall color.


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 12:13PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

aaah, I'll "second" the Veronica Georgia Blue - it was one of the first things to give me real color in the garden this season (& w/ the cool weather it held up a long time) - it seems to take full sun in my area really well also and has remained healthy despite the heat challenges.

T- that is amazing w/ the bees! You are definitely 'critter central' this year. Wonder if they would chase off woodpeckers????


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 1:28PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Uh oh! Looks like I scared everyone off! LOL! Just popping in to see what's new. Hope everyone is off having a beautiful garden day! Ei

    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 6:07PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Hi Ei ! Nah, you didn't scare anyone off! Anyway, 4 of 'us' posted after you did!
Glad you had a safe trip, and I am waiting for that thread with your news and pics. :-)
I have been busy hauling indoor plants outdoors. Then I was too tired to post.....:-(
I did a little mowing this eve. All the rest needs done as soon as it is dry enough.
More storms are in tonight's forecast, and into tomorrow.
I just hope they are not accompanied with more hail,( and strong winds).
It would really make me sick to see all my gorgeous iris and peonies distroyed. A lot that have never bloomed before are blooming this year.
My Henry clematis has huge blooms, and lots more to come. Also MultiBlue, and some others are blooming. Most of my roses have more buds than ever before. The spiderwort is opening, and some types of pinks. The Mockorange and red weigela are in full bloom.
Nolon has spent the past several days cutting down all the 'weed trees' that have came up on the other side of the fence out front. It sure has opened up the space better, and turned the sun onto the things that I have planted this side of the fence. They needed that.


    Bookmark   May 3, 2006 at 8:37PM
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Honey, it's a busy time of the year for landscapers and designers. The person who drew up the plan may not even be the person you talked to. To ensure the designer gets the message on likes and dislikes, try putting the likes and dislikes in two written lists or point out the unsuitability of the plants for the location, again in writing, and preferably in advance of the meeting so the designer can consider the points.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2006 at 10:13AM
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