Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – May 2017

The front garden in mid-May [Nancy J. Ondra/Hayefield.com]

So…Bloom Day, right? Then where are the flowers? Thanks to the relatively cool temperatures we’ve had over the last month, they’re taking their sweet time showing up. That’s not to say there aren’t any, just not many.

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Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – April 2017

The aptly named spring beauty (Claytonia virginica) [Nancy J. Ondra/Hayefield.com]

The aptly named spring beauty (Claytonia virginica)

As I’ve mentioned a few (dozen) times before, Hayefield isn’t really a spring garden, so pulling together a Bloom Day post at this time of year isn’t quite as easy as at other times. I did manage to find some blooms, though, and I have some other topics to cover as well, so perhaps you will find something of interest today. Continue reading

Working with Variegated Plants

'Evergold' sedge (Carex oshimensis) and variegated Solomon's seal (Polygonatum odoratum 'Variegatum') with ostrich fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris) and 'White Nancy' spotted deadnettle (Lamium maculatum) [Nancy J. Ondra/Hayefield.com]

‘Evergold’ sedge (Carex oshimensis) and variegated Solomon’s seal (Polygonatum odoratum ‘Variegatum’) with ostrich fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris) and ‘White Nancy’ spotted deadnettle (Lamium maculatum)

So much for Bloom Day here in southeastern Pennsylvania. We had flowers 2 weeks ago, even 3 weeks ago, but in the last week, May turned into January, and for the past few days, we’ve stayed below freezing and been buried in sleet and snow. In between shoveling sessions, I’ve resorted to pulling from my photo archives so I can write about another favorite subject: variegated plants. Continue reading

Scent-sual Delights

'Lady Plymouth' rose geranium (Pelargonium graveolens) with lavenders, 'Berggarten' sage (Salvia officinalis), and lavender cotton (Santolina chamaecyparissus) [Nancy J. Ondra/Hayefield.com]

‘Lady Plymouth’ rose geranium (Pelargonium graveolens) with lavenders, ‘Berggarten’ sage (Salvia officinalis), and lavender cotton (Santolina chamaecyparissus)

How is it possible that I haven’t yet written about one of my most favorite plant groups: the scented geraniums? Not the hardy geraniums (Geranium) that have aromatic foliage, such as bigroot geranium (G. macrorrhizum), or the ordinary zonal geraniums (Pelargonium x hortorum), which have funky-smelling leaves but are grown primarily for their flowers; I mean the scented Pelargonium species and hybrids grown specifically for their fragrant foliage. Continue reading

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – October 2016

The Front Garden at Hayefield - October 2016

Yes, FINALLY, we did get some rain: a few blessed inches at the end of September. We’re still about 8 inches behind for the year, and it doesn’t look like there will be more soaking rain for a while, but it was better than nothing. It was enough, at least, to freshen things up a bit over the past few weeks. Continue reading

No-Bloom Day – September 2016

Sadly, the extremely dry conditions we endured all summer have continued, with less than 1 inch of scattered precipitation over the past month, and the garden is suffering. There are a few stalwarts in flower now, including golden lace (Patrinia scabiosifolia), goldenrods (Solidago), narrow-leaved ironweed (Vernonia lettermannii), purple Japanese burnet (Sanguisorba tenuifolia ‘Purpurea’), and Japanese bush clover (Lespedeza thunbergii). The plants all look tired and droopy, though, and despite my best efforts, I just couldn’t get any images that were worthy of taking up your time to view. So, I offer my apologies for this month, with hopes that maybe I’ll have something for October, and encourage you to admire the efforts of the other participants in this month’s main Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day post at May Dreams Gardens.

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – August 2016

Tufted hair grass (Deschampsia cespitosa) and clematis arbor in the side garden at Hayefield [Nancy J. Ondra]

Despite chirpy assurances from area weather reporters that “everyone” in our region has repeatedly gotten soaking rains over the past month, a few of us, at least, have not shared in the bounty. Barely 1 inch of rain over the last 4 weeks, combined with an unusually dry June and July and long stretches of brutally hot weather, does not make for joyous gardening. To be honest, I was [this] close to simply skipping Bloom Day this month. Then this little guy changed my mind. Continue reading