This month our Outdoor Hour Challenge focus is on garden flowers and crop plants. There will be no lack of subjects to study this month right outside our front and back doors. As the spring weather warms up and we have abundant sunshine, I am eager to get out and start digging in the dirt. It was easy to check off a few of the Garden Grid Study ideas as went worked in the yard this weekend.
So I will give you a tour of some of the interesting garden flowers, crops, grasses, and bushes we have in our yard right now. Enjoy!
|Heart shaped leaves…
My latest garden acquisition is this lovely, lovely lilac bush. If only you could smell the delicate fragrance of the flowers! I am hoping this is a winner in my sunny backyard. We planted it where it will have plenty of sunshine and room to grow.
We had this spot already prepared from last summer when it was part of my experimental veggie garden expansion…we weren’t all that successful so I decided that my beloved lilac would find a home here.
|More heart-shaped leaves…
Here is my latest experiment….hydrangeas on the shady side of my house. I decided to leave them in pots to see if they survive and if they look like they are liking it here then I will plant them in the ground. The birdfeeder has now been moved to the other part of the garden where the squirrels might not find it for a bit.
|Watched the bees in the flowers…
The backyard lavender is blooming now and the bees are busy already. You can never have too much lavender….or at least I think so.
This is definitely the year of the rose in our area. All my roses are blooming and this one is my favorite…the Disneyland Rose. It has a spicy perfume fragrance and the blooms are peachy-pink. I cut this all the way to the ground last fall because it was an odd shape. I wasn’t sure if it would bloom well this spring but I have to say that I may just cut it all the way down every fall if this is the results. Awesome!
|Look at those leaves!
This is another new arrival in the back garden. We have a super sunny hot spot up next to my backyard retreat. Nothing has been very successful here except the Jerusalem Sage. I am taking a chance with the Moonshine Yarrow and it has probably doubled in size since we planted it. I am hopeful that it will do well here.
|These leaves are fuzzy and soft.
This is our Jerusalem Sage…I looked it up and it grows to be about 48″ wide. It needs very little water and it blooms long into the autumn season. I watered it three times a week last summer (the first summer) but now I am going to be only watering it twice a week and see how it goes. It looks like it is pretty well established. Where I live in Northern California, we get very little rain from June to November. Our first significant rain last fall was November 27th. Now you know why I use lots of drought tolerant plants in my yard.
So here is my surprise squash plant that is growing in the cutting flower garden box. I am not sure where it came from but I am going to let it grow since it seems so happy where it is. I did not have squash growing anywhere near this box last year so we will be surprised when it matures to see what it is exactly.
I had to include an image of my clover since we are focusing on Garden Flowers and Crop Plants this month for the Outdoor Hour Challenge. Clover is included in the Handbook of Nature Study so if you have some in your yard…take advantage of the nature study opportunity.
Our Smoke bush is so very pretty right now with its airy little blossoms that make it look like it has smoke. This has doubled in size since we planted it two years ago and I love the way it looks right now.
See the tiny little flowers? This is what makes it look like “smoke”. Later in the autumn the leaves turn a deep purple…love it!
One last image of our sage that is growing like crazy with our warmer temperatures and sunshine. This will be covered in delicate purple flowers during the summer…loads of bees visit these bushes in our front yard during the summer.
There you go… a visit to my garden, a few new things, and some close observation as part of the Outdoor Hour Challenge. My boys helped me finish preparing the garden boxes and we planted seeds this weekend too so there will be lots more to come as the seasons flow by.