5 plus 1: Please-Touch Plants

Solanum pyracanthum leaf at Hayefield.com

It’s fascinating to watch how people interact with gardens. Some are primarily spectators, staying carefully on established paths and walking with their hands at their sides, as if they are afraid to break the flowers and leaves by laying a finger on them. These seem to be mostly non-gardeners, but some gardeners too are mostly hands-off, seemingly content to admire from afar but not thinking to touch except for necessary maintenance. They’re also very careful to keep paths clear, sticking to the short-plants-at-the-front “rule” and staking or snipping off anything that’s inclined to lean over the edge.

Then there are the full-contact folks who think nothing of diving off paths and into borders to pet a petal, rub a leaf, or give a tree trunk a firm tap. Visitors who do this are a bit of a terror to garden owners who aren’t particularly tactile themselves but kindred spirits to those who view paths as a waste of valuable planting space. If you find yourself not minding, or even enjoying, paths that are more akin to obstacle courses than proper walkways–having to step over this, duck under that, and brush those aside to get through–you’re probably one of the please-touch folks.

Being able to physically interact with plants is pretty much the only thing I miss about gardening during the winter. But, it’s another reason to look forward to spring, and something I like to keep in mind when I plant my gardens and containers for another growing season. I have lots of favorites for gardening by feel, but I’ve tried to narrow it down to my top five. Continue reading

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – November 2014

November Blooms at Hayefield.com

Four acres of meadow and garden, and this is all the flowery goodness I could come up with Bloom Day this month. I suppose it’s not too bad, considering. We’ve been blessed with rather mild weather until two days ago, which has been good for the last few blooms but also good for tackling garden cleanup, and I’d been chopping away until I thought of a way I might be able to pull together one last GBBD post for this year. Continue reading

Mid-Autumn Miscellany

Autumn rainbow at Hayefield.com

Apart from two light frosts in October, the weather has been mostly quite mild here in southeastern Pennsylvania, but we’re getting a taste of Novembery chill today. Knowing that the bad weather was coming, I took advantage of lingering blooms and fall-colored leaves a few days ago to have fun with some scans. But first, some odds and ends.

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Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – October 2014

Calamagrostis x acutiflora Karl Foerster at Hayefield.com

Though we had a very light frost about 2 weeks ago, only the beans and sweet potato vines got nipped, so there’s still plenty to see. As I did last month, I’ve tried to limit myself to showing only what’s new this month. Continue reading

Three Neat Plants

Hibiscus acetosella Mahogany Splendor at Hayefield.com

It’s been a long while since I’ve picked out a few of my favorite plants to focus on, and the list of candidates is getting rather long. So, it’s high time to pick out three that happen to look particularly good right now, starting with… Continue reading

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – September 2014

Side Garden at Hayefield.com

It’s hard to believe that today marks the seventh anniversary of my very first Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day post. GBBD itself, the glorious creation of Carol at May Dreams Gardens, started six months before that (Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day Inaugural Post). Over the years, many other garden memes have come and gone, but as far as I know, GBBD is the longest-running regular event in the garden-blogging world. It’s a great excuse to show off what looks best each month, but even more than that, it’s invaluable as a sort of journal to keep track of the weather conditions, plant performance, favorite combinations, project progress, and garden development from month to month and year to year. I tend to use it as a visual record of everything that looks good in the first two weeks of each month, but at this time of the year, there’s so much going on that for this post, I’ve tried to include only things that I haven’t shown before this year.

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Better to Give

Earlier this summer, I said that I was going to list all of my seeds in my Etsy shop this fall instead of tackling a big giveaway. I managed to get the containers book done almost a week early, though,¬† and I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate before diving into the next one than indulging in some seed-sharing, even if it’s on a somewhat smaller scale. This time, I’ve also come up with something for those of you who don’t “do” seeds. Continue reading

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