Living in a cool, arid climate (in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains) means that gardening is a serious effort! Our season is late and short. I am an avid gardener, but doing battle with the climate can be rather exasperating. However, with a lot of patience and experience, one can get a garden to prosper by say...late June!
For the curious (all those of you with peonies and hydrangea already), I thought I would share with you our truly SPRINGTIME garden, just come into bloom...
The last of the snowdrops:
My clematis is going strong now that the sun has come 'round this side. This is a Group C clematis, the kind you cut back almost to the ground each spring. We really need to install a proper trellis (next year I will get my gardener to do it!). Yes, that is a hydrangea struggling in the foreground:
Clever little chives have seeded themselves on the wrong side of the fence. I think they are wonderful, so I will leave them here:
This poor little Masterwort has finally come to life after I moved it out of the shade. I love the almost ancient-looking Masterwort flowers, so pretty in a cut arrangement:
Next are some pots of annuals. Due to my terribly bad back, David does most of the "potting up" for me. Oddly, I like to put smaller flowers in the big urn as they are elevated and I can see them better!
One of my favorite annuals is the English daisy, which I call English Daveys as David loves them. These will overwinter (supposedly), so I will move them to a bed come autumn:
My favorite pot in the yard was handmade by a potter friend. It weighs an absolute ton and sits in front of the potting shed. The red flowers in the basket on the shelf were not chosen by me (I don't care for reds) but are loved by someone else who lives here:
Our shade bed is thriving. It is full of several varieties of ferns and hostas, including Japanese painted fern and Ostrich fern (from which fiddleheads come...). There are pink bleeding hearts at the near end:
One of my favorite perennials is the tiny Sweet Woodruff (the little white flowers), a meadowland ground-cover that does phenomenally well for me. It does NOT like to be trampled underfoot (and will promptly die off and not return next year if you do):
This columbine has arisen from the dead. I planted it four years ago and it did nothing (no flowers, almost no growth) and now has suddenly sprung to life, flowered, and seeded itself in a few other places in the bed (the lesson here...don't give up)!
I planted a couple of white bleeding hearts last year in hopes of giving some interest to the space beside the tree. I like that the shade bed is mostly green and white!:
I love this little pot of bright annuals in the Mayday tree. If you look closely you can see David's rhubarb behind the tree and goatsbeard (not yet bloomed!) to the left:
Here's another batch of chives in our herb bed. So far I've only planted basil and rosemary but must plant more next weekend. Behind the chives is our long cedar box full of dwarf conifer shrubs planted for winter colour (an ornamental graft caragana sits in the middle):
Here's a final happy container, on the window sill of the garage. I convinced David to let me buy a white geranium (which he thinks is boring)...so we snazzed it up with some pink double-flowered petunias (which are absolutely bulletproof)...
I hope you've enjoyed your little tour of our back yard! Happy gardening...and special thanks to David who keeps everything watered and fed while I come home with something new every week...