Sunday, June 30, 2019

Posies to Ponies

The early morning sunlight filters through the trees, the dew sparkles on the newly mowed lawn, and robins announce the new day. 

The heat is on. 

With June now spent, the plains of Northern Colorado are heating with the occasional thunder storm to wash away the dust and cool things down. Today we will hit 90 by 3 PM followed by a thunderstorm, according to iPhone weather app, but one never knows as the weather patterns change. The gardening plan then is to get out early to get the chores done and find some pesky weeds to decimate before they ruin the flower beds.  I've been down for a week with gout in my right knee. Still able to walk, the worst part was bending the knee, making sitting and getting up painful and nearly impossible, so I've lost an entire week, and there is much to do.

June's rains helped the summer bloomers to thrive. When it is so bloody hot, we can't keep up with the watering, so the rain gives everything a good start.  From bright orange of the Red Hot Poker, or Kniphofia to the Rozanne geranium to the Coral Bells, the back garden looks lush and colorful.

As the last of the peonies fade, I have a lot of fun photographing the after the early morning irrigation drips from their leaves. I've been trying to get the perfect water drop photo.

I do wish my June lovelies would last longer--all summer.  


Roses seem to tolerate the heat better than other plants, but even they are struggling with the 90 degree. New face appear: First Prize, which is always a heart throb with her giant bloom, Gertrude Jekyll has finally decided to come to the party, now with a profusion of blooms. I think the extremely cold spring stunted her growth because for a while it looked like we might lose her. I thing the has spent most of her spring trying to recover from the cold, building up the energy to bloom.  The third little rose blooms her sweet heart out. She was a Mother's Day gift one of the first years we were here at the Garden Spot. I don't even know her name, but she is a beauty, blooming abundantly.

This rose, also in the front courtyard was here when we moved and when we redesigned the front entry, it was the only thing to remain. Peachy in color, with a bit of florescent look, she blooms all summer long.

The roses are about to finish their first flush. I'll cut them back, feed the, and they will bloom again.

The Patio Posies

Pansies are cool weather favorites, cool weather being the key word. With a cool, wet June the pansies still thrive. Sorry for the poor quality photo, but you get the idea. It is really meant to show how we get double duty out of the patio drip system by placing potted plants underneath the hanging baskets to catch the drips.

From pansies to pink hydrangea, another garden favorite and a bit tricky to keep here in the dry, hot climate, but I keep trying. I absolutely swore never to buy another one last summer, but as I wandered to a local garden center, I could not resist these pink ones. Winter hearty--supposedly--, were only $12, so I bought two. I get giddy when I look at their big mob head flowers, edged with lime green in the early stages of the bloom and the luscious, sweet pink.

As if pink hydrangea are not enough, what about the pink fuchsia? The Head Gardener picked this one out. I spent a lot of money on hanging baskets for the patio this year because the patio has to look pretty for the next three gatherings here. I have some very exciting news for the next party that we will hold here, but I can't anything until the hostess announces it.

Our gathering with our teacher friends last Sunday was so special. The food was delicious, but the spirit of the moment was the best. We had never gathered as group socially before--some to the women get together occasionally for lunch, but the entire Lecturer faculty with spouses came, some of whom I had never met. 

I will not take credit for much because the other Hostesses brought food.

Brenda, our retired office secretary ordered this delicious poppy seed cake with raspberry filling. Delicious.

I had planned on holding it outdoors, but it rained. Even with the tents up, the grass would have been too wet, so I moved the furniture around and we had plenty of room.

We wanted to give them little gifts, so Brenda provided these potted herbs. They were perfect.

Party 1: Perfect

 Some Pretty Garden Flowers

Other Stuff

Brody has grown up. Now at a year, he weighs 92 pounds, a bit large for a short hair, but he carries it well.

Ponies, too.

The granddaughters tested Saturday for their 4-H horsemanship in English, wanting to move to Level 1 which is walk, trot. They are new to English riding, learning all of their riding skills in a western saddle. Isn't Hank handsome? He just gets better. I should write more about his journey. As a Boy Scout camp trail horse, this is all new to him, so sometimes he tends to be distracted as he takes in all of the newness. He's been in the arena twice before now, so he was settled and calm.

Mariah, the Mustang, an 18 year old lady, she is doing so well with her training and is learning new things too as Lucy pushes her forward. 

Leaving the arena with smiles on their faces after being told that they had passed. Their skills are growing and so are the ponies'

Pelicans Soar

As I left the fair grounds, I heard roar of jet planes overhead. Nothing unusual, except they were flying rather low in perfect formation--until I too a second look!

Have a wonderful week. 

Thanks so much for visiting.

Monday, June 17, 2019

As Storm Clouds Gather

Another busy week at the Garden Spot. Our first party for the summer will be Saturday as we host a picnic to honor my dear friends at UNC who unceremoniously had their contracts terminated. Those of us who are retired and had worked with them for years felt the sting of the unfair terminations, so we decided to celebrate our friendship and honor them in a way that only friends can do: with love and appreciation.

Anytime we have a garden party, we want the garden to look spectacular! Everything is very late this year. The roses are just beginning first flush, and I do enjoy them. The water lilies are really behind thus not providing much over for the fish. Mr. Blue Heron continues to visit and does his flyovers. Brady sees him, and will certainly run him off. My mom always said that peonies should be ready by Memorial Day, mind usually bloom the week after; they are just beginning to bloom. The columbine will finish up and have put on quite a show this year. They will be past prime by the weekend.

June is also hay cutting. I was too busy to take photos, but we did all ourselves this year except for the cutting. A neighbor bought a hay baler and the Head Garden pulled it with is vintage Case Tractor. I should have a photo of that somewhere. The Jennifer and her girls picked up the bales, loaded them in the horse trailer and stacked them under the eves of the barn, but got really tired really fast, so called her aunt and cousin for reinforcements. The hay is beautiful this year. It got cut, dried, and bailed in only few days without getting rained on. 

As storm clouds, gathered in the late afternoon, Jen was in a hurry to get the hay picked up as the Head Gardener moved to the next average to cut the next field of hay.

๐ŸŒฌ June Storms

June in Colorado brings the thunderstorms. Saturday on our way home from Ft. Collins after supper, I noticed this thunder head building and recognized a familiar emoji in the clouds. I kept snapping iPhotos of the cloud and we had fun watching the face of Windy Man emoji form. Once I downloaded them to the computer, I discovered that the photos were really beautiful, showing the landscape of where I live, how green and beautiful the fields are with a goodly amount of rain. 

Watch emoji form. 

Have a great week. Linking with Angie for Mosaic Monday.

Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Spring Blooms

I really goofed last week. Somehow I managed to delete my post. I hope I do better this week.

The garden is beginning to wake up after a cold, brutal spring. It is always such a pleasure to see old friends return to the garden. Like the aquilegia, often called Granny's Bonnet, or here in Colorado, Columbine. This one, is a favorite, as it resembles the wild ones that grow in the Rocky Mountains in the aspen tree groves, much like ours in the center garden. Here in the garden, however, we have no idea what color will bloom each year. They self seed, so we have a nice wild variety every spring. I do wish that they would stick around longer, but it gets too hot for them.

The pink columbine is new this year. I love the pink. She is just so soft and romantic.

Just around the bend from the columbine you will find the hostas. Take a really look because they while they are beautiful, even a gentle hail storm will rip their wide leaves to shred and they won't be able to recover.

The giant alums have reseeded yet again and they present quite a show of pretty little stars gathered in to a big ball.

There is so much purple in the center garden that this orange geum adds a lot of contrast. I love the orange.

Clematis are another favorite. This one didn't bloom early enough last week to be included in the mosaic that I did on the clematis. This one climbs the pole by the water garden.

She's a pretty one. 

Iris add to the flower show here. These are in the center garden, blooming late. I have two other clubs next to theses are still tightly closed. We might see them next week.

It's had to believe how much these clumps have grown out by the garden.

I more or less summarized the iris in this week's Monday Mosaic.

The one the end is our only Dykes winner, Edith Wolford. Isn't she lovely?
We are so fortunate to have a tree hugger daughter, Heather. Actually a very knowledgeable arborist, she gave us the bad news: one of our four ash trees is very ill and we will probably lose it. It's one of three planted along the driveway by the barn. The previous owner planted them and we have enjoyed them. Now with good size they provide shade, but in April, as Heather explains, the temperature dropped from 70 degrees to 30 over night and tress and plant life just can't take that drastic change, and this one froze. 

The second tree, a locust was slow to bloom last year, but this it seemed to bud out when the other one did, but it is struggling. Perhaps it will survive. 

Finally, take a good look. The hay field looks so good and tomorrow it will be cut

Finally a bit of grandma bragging on the grandchildren. I spent Sunday with the girls at a horse show while the Head Gardener took the boys camping to a an archery shoot. They are all growing so much. Lucy is 10, Ellie 11, Jacob 16, and Nathan 10

Top: Mariah, 18 years old now, an authentic mustang. Lucy has asked her to do things that I don't think she ever knew possible.

Bottom: Ellie with her Morgan, Hank, a handsome ten year old, learning new skills, too. 

 The boys love shooting their bow and going camping. They spent the week with us. While Jacob has gone home, Nathan will stay another week.

So, gang, that's about it for this week. Hopefully I can keep from deleting this post.

Lots to this week, starting with a root canal tomorrow afternoon. Ugh!

Just a Hint of Spring with a Dose of Cuteness

It's not safe to say that Winter has made his exit. He's still hanging around waiting to surprise us. We know the routine: freezing ...