Saturday, June 15, 2024

Late Spring: Roses & Cornflowers


Hello! My gardens looked pretty nice during early June this year: we had significant rain nearly every week during May, so the lawns have looked lush and green, and the annual flowers I planted have become established.

But the main stars have been my roses, and the self-seeded cool-season annuals that have looked great this year: the snapdragons, oxeye daisies, and in particular, the numerous bachelor buttons or cornflowers that have filled in empty spots with a blue haze of lovely little flowers.

The roses have bloomed beautifully this year. I've been sprinkling All-In-One Rose & Flower Care on the soil under them four times a season since spring a year ago. They had been completely defoliated in early spring the previous couple of years, due to the rose sawfly larvae that appear in April and totally munch the leaves. I think preserving the leaves, together with the fertilizer, has made the shrubs much more vigorous and they look great this year. (It's too bad the Japanese beetles will destroy them starting next week when they arrive on schedule.)

These snapdragons seeded themselves here, and the dianthus has survived several years in this spot (the only one left of a dozen I planted about five years ago. It's just random chance that the snapdragons match the dianthus and the David Austin English Rose next to it.

You can see how the batchelor buttons have filled in and added color at a time when not too many annuals are blooming yet. I'll pull them out after they've finished flowering and seeded a bit.

This rose, 'Lovely Fairy,' has tiny hot pink flowers, and really does look lovely with another randomly matching self-seeded snapdragon, as well as the batchelor buttons and a deep purple Wave petunia in a pot.

And in the most unusual color matching incident, the batchelor buttons under the pergola are not the usual cornflower blue, but instead an inky deep blue, matching the clematis growing above them (click to enlarge). I remember that the original packet of seeds I planted more than a decade ago was a mixed-color selection, but it's almost a bit.... unsettling that so many randomly self-seeded combinations match so well....

My Paradise Garden has really outdone itself this year. This is by far the best garden area I've ever made. Sometimes I'm astounded by its beauty, and it's really pretty easy to maintain and to enjoy.

The blue batchelor buttons look beautiful with these bell-shaped 'Rooguchi' clematis too. Their friendly blue faces, like the snapdragons, are welcome anywhere in my gardens that they want to plant themselves!

The Yellow Garden behind my house looked very nice when the Bartzella peony and the yellow baptisia were blooming. The marigolds have already grown much larger than when I took this picture a couple of weeks ago. (The secret to allowing them to establish is the mulching to prevent them from drying out before they can establish--I found a new mulch supplier nearby who sells finely shredded wood and bark chips, much nicer than the free coarse wood mulch from the landfill.)

And this year, I further reduced the nearby border against the back of my house, and seeded new grass in the removed area this spring, which is filling in nicely. This area began as one large garden that swooped out in a curve, with a stepping stone path through it. It was too difficult to maintain, so I've been reducing it over the past 6-8 years. I think this will be much easier to keep tidy.

Anyway, that's what's been blooming in my gardens during early June. I'll write another post soon about several of the other parts of my garden that are looking much improved this spring: my new front deck with pot arrangements, my tropical garden, and others.

I hope you have been enjoying beautiful blooms in your own gardens this June. Thanks for reading! -Beth

1 comment:

  1. Nice to see some posts from you! Your gardens are looking fantastic, bummer on the arch being trashed by wind.