Saturday, June 15, 2013

June Bloom Day


It's been an extraordinary June, and an all-around extraordinary spring in the Chicago area.  It's been the polar-opposite of spring 2012.  Last spring was hot and very, very dry.  This spring has been very cool, with record rainfall.  

The garden is lush, full, green, and a little bit holey thanks to an old-fashioned thunderstorm complete with hail and a flattened garden earlier this week.  The photos were taken that day, before the hail that left its mark in the garden and on our patio furniture.  The blooms are all still here though, even the bellflowers the bunnies usually mow down.  The ones blooming are guarded with little fences.

  Purple alliums are done, and white ones are just starting.  The bunnies never touch the alliums.


The mini-rose the Lawn Man gave me years ago still thrives, and just gets better every year.  The bunnies prune it for us every winter.


 'Rozanne' is a little slow getting started this year.


 'Marmalade' has been here a long time.  'Mocha' is a more recent addition.  I will admit to a minor heuchera addiction.


Geranium 'Biokovo'  is winding down.  That old potted pelargonium in the background has spent many winters in the basement.


'May Night' salvia


'Blue Hill' salvia.  Might be time to divide these.


'Happy Returns' daylily is staying warm within the foliage this June.


'Black Lace' sambucus is blooming.  Elderberry wine anyone?


Three 'Pure Joy' sedums, for three granddaughters.  Last year at Walters Gardens Media Day, I won one for the pure joy of our identical twins' birth.  This year the nice people at Walters Gardens sent me three more to trial.  The one from last year is for my grandson now, because he's the oldest.  The new ones are blooming already, and the one I received last year is so cute with it's mounded self and pretty foliage.  Sedums do fantastically well in our part-sun, normally very dry garden.  It's not dry this year, and the sedums are equally as happy with all the rain.


I love lamium.  It really lights up a shady spot.


These Alpine strawberries were grown from seeds from Renee's Garden a few years ago.  From sometime in April, all the way through frost these pretty, runnerless plants bloom, and I eat a handful of little berries almost every day.


Geranium sanguineum var. striatum is native in Great Britain, and thrives in our garden.
 

Can't remember now which nepeta this is.  It's shorter than Walker's Low. 


'Husker Red' penstemon in a newer bed way in the back corner.  All the little fences thwart the bunnies.  They work, and we don't see them from a distance.


This gorgeous paniculata hydrangea came home with me from Walters Garden last summer.  It's even bigger and better this year.  Can't wait to see 'Quick Fire' bloom any day now.  It has a little fence too.  It's the only way hydrangeas survive around here.  I've lost a few hydrangeas to bunnies.


Winterberry hollies will be blooming any minute.  This one is the male.  I took this photo yesterday - you can see some minor hail damage on the foliage.  It's mostly unscathed though, since it's in a protected spot.


Dragon Wing begonias . . . love . . .even with a few holes in the foliage now.


We're doing less pots around here this year, and zero impatiens.  But the Lawn Man was looking back at old garden photos and found one of New Guinea impatiens and bacopa in a hanging basket.  He wanted to do that again.  I substituted Scaevola for the bacopa.  I think it  holds up better all season long.  He doesn't remember what that hanging basket looked like in August, but I do.  Next year I might do this again with orange New Guineas and blue Scaevola.  

It's been a very unusual spring in Chicagoland.  It's so, so green.  It's beautiful relief after last year's drought.  We've had more than enough rain so far.  We could do without the hail and severe weather.  I hope it will be a good year for farmers and gardeners. We all could use a break.

To see more Bloom Day posts, please visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens.

18 comments:

  1. Thanks for the trip around your garden, you have a lovely collection of flowers going. I must admit to a slight heuchera addiction too, but had to throw away all of mine after being sold two from a nursery which had a disease. I will start a new collection next year, a winter should get rid of any traces of the huchera disease. Your salvia ‘Blue Hill is gorgeous, would love to have that one in my garden. Happy GBBD!

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    1. Glad you enjoyed it Helene. Sorry about your heucheras - that would be heartbreaking!

      I love 'Blue Hill' - blooms all season, and doesn't get raggedy-looking like some other salvias do here.

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  2. Beautiful plants I love the salvia and I have some alpine strawberries that have been superb this year. I am a Chicago native currently living in San Diego. Lovely post. Jeanine

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    1. It's so fun to go out and pick a handful of berries I grew myself, Jeanine! Doesn't get any fresher than that.

      Thanks for visiting. You can take the girl out of Chicago, but you can't take this city out of the girl! San Diego - wonderful climate.

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  3. Your garden is looking lovely right now! The plants must love all the rain we've been having. That bellflower in the first picture is such a fabulous shade of blue. In my yard the bunnies don't just "prune" the roses, but eat them entirely to the ground. Have to surround them with ugly cages especially in winter.

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    1. Thank you! I love those bellflowers - the color really changes with the light. Sometimes they look blue, sometimes pink, and sometimes more purple.

      The bunnies sure are destructive. I've lost many perennials and shrubs to them. More and more are getting caged around here.

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  4. Your exactly right about the strangeness of the weather here in Chicago - and how different from last year. We have some of the same plants - Geranium, Penstemon, Nepeta, and Salvia. You garden looks good!

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    1. We've gone from the desert last year to the rain forest this year Jason.

      Good choices - tough plants! They have to be tough to make it here.

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  5. When you divide the Salvias, you should have enough for a lovely Salvia River -- like at Lurie Gardens.

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    1. I think so too Nell Jean - they are really getting big. Wish I'd had time to divide them earlier. Now it will have to wait - maybe in the fall.

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  6. Linda, your garden looks looks lovely in spite of the storms and hail. I watched the weather intently the other day, but we were spared here, not even a drop of rain! I do hope the severe weather will calm down as we move into summer. It is nice to have everything green this year and not have to drag hoses around, isn't it?

    I'm a heuchera addict, too:) You have to love a plant that looks so good for so much of the season.

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    1. We have a lot of holey stuff here Rose. But I'm not complaining. After last year the rain, and all the green, green, green are very welcome. Everything is huge and happy.

      I've met few heucheras I didn't like - so much variation in these in color and in size. I love that slugs don't love them too (unlike some hostas I could mention!)

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  7. Hey Linda, I was just thinking the same thing about my salvias. Normally, my garden is hot and dry, but not this year. We're getting every storm that comes up from Texas or out of the West. I'll take all that moisture in a heartbeat. I was thinking about how well they were doing in spite of the crazy wet weather. We had a huge storm last night. The wind blew around my house and back and forth. Simply amazing really. I found stuff down everywhere, but the shorter things like the salvias did just fine. Glad to hear all is well in ChicagoLand too. I hope you have a wonderful summer.~~Dee

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  8. Hey Dee, so glad you're getting rain! I know just what you mean - after our drought last year, I celebrate every rainy, or even stormy day - even the one that brought hail and flattened stuff in the garden.

    Hope you have a wonderful summer too!

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  9. Everything is so lush and beautiful in your garden. Your pictures are so pretty...some of them would be lovely framed and on a wall.
    Balisha

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  10. Just came across your blog and love the name, as well as the beautiful flowers. I am now following your blog :-)

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    1. Thank you Vicki, and thank you for visiting and following! :)

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