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Sunday, January 15, 2012

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day - January 2012

I discovered gardener blogger's bloom day last month, too late to post. Seems like a pretty neat concept, the garden changes from month to month, if there isn't different flowers, the flowers we have look different.


First off, howsa bout some weeds?

henbit close-up
chickweed close-up
Chickweed and henbit, pretty if shot with a macro, but not something desirable...

I'm pulling weeds as fast as I can...



early spirea bloom
early forsythia bloom
Some early bloom on the bridal wreath spirea and forsythia.




The highlight of the garden is the hellebore.
They've produced additional open blooms since last month, and peak bloom is still a month or two away...

hellebore, blush

hellebore, bloom with streaks




The colours when the blooms initially open is always exciting.
Sadly, most people only know hellebores by those green displays at lenten service.

hellebore, spotted bloom
hellebore, white bloom








I'm unable to post camellia blooms from this garden yet. The freezing temps last week did those for me. While I'm seeing plenty of camellias in other gardens, I think it would violate the spirit of the post to post the plants that I'm not growing in this garden.

mahonia, past their peak

I still have mahonia in bloom, but it seems past it's peak...


Dalea pinnata
daffodils, lantana stalks

Daffy-dills blooming through the lantana stalks, and summer's farewell seed heads. Be sure to click the pictures on this post... Those Dalea pinnata seed heads look surreal when enlarged.


concentration
We could all learn a lot about concentration and patience from a cat... She can stare at a brush pile for hours...

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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Lichen

I was mentioned on a post yesterday.

After looking at her pictures of mosses and lichens, I went out and shot some of mine.

This feels like a Christmas post, and my apologies for not thinking of it sooner... Some people put out a bale of hay for Santa's reindeer, but I'm not sure that the reindeer would actually benefit from hay. Seems like they would get sick after spending the year eating lichens and moss.

brain lichenThis patch of Cladonia rangiferalichen looks like brains.

It felt like they were contemplating the nature of the universe, while I looked on.

Like the Douglas Adams computer Deep Thought, who gave us the answer "42".

I think these babies might come up with an answer that is more relevant to our day to day struggles...
I will admit that these guys figure prominently in my plans for the zombie apocalypse. If I led them past a group of brain lichens, they might get confused. If that doesn't work, I'll lead them through the saw briars and hawthorns.


lichen bloom
Lichens are a diverse group of plants, in just a small area, I was able to capture some wildly different forms.

Looks like this Cladonia cristatella (british soldier lichen) is blooming... Be sure to click the pictures to see them better.


lichen thread
lichen threads
Coupla thready ones.
(foliose)
The Dragonriders of Pern are expected momentarily.




plate lichen
plate lichen

Flat ones, plate-like

Parmotrema perlatum




lichen growing in moss


Small ones growing up through the moss.


river of lichen
Stream of lichen... Most gardeners produce the dry stream bed effect using rock...


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Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

I have hellebore blooming... Last year, nobody had any blooms until the middle of January.
It's been a beautiful Autumn, the rains finally came, and with moderate temps, everything has been growing like mad. We're still deeply in a deficit rain-wise, last summer was as bad as I can remember and we've had a series of droughty years, each one seeming worse than the previous.

I've been adding a coupla truckloads of horse poop a week to the garden since August, and that helps a lot also.




What's not to love about hellebore?
These guys didn't get a drop of extra water in the bottomless sand over the summer, and they are the best looking lenten rose in the area.

The drought was so bad last summer that I didn't get anything from the vegetable garden!




The vegetable garden is doing much better, thanks.



The mahonia is in bloom...



Homminy is hunting voles or something... Good kitty!



While hardy cyclamen blooms, a smaller version of the florists cyclamen...
I grow it for those leaves...

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Saturday, November 19, 2011

Mid-November

It's interesting that so many different ones were blossoming during October.
Comment from October's post.

Yeah... Middle Georgia is actually considered part of the sub-tropical south. We had our first frost last week, and there's still plenty of colour in the garden. I walked around with a camera today, in an attempt to record the mid-November garden...



To have butterflies, you need caterpillars.
Here's a coupla gulf frits.
(Be sure to click all the pics today!)



The butterflies they eventually become.




Close-up of the lantana that was so popular last month.






Sulfur yellow visits a turk's cap hibiscus





Zabulon Skipper



Buckeye Butterfly






Checkerspot butterfly



Catching grasshoppers.






Mustard greens.


Helianthus debilis




Spiderwort




Salvia coccinea







Monarda Punctata

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Another Autumn

The Monarch butterflies seem to be flocking in preparation for migration. Bushes full of butterflies that can hardly be distinguished from the orange flowers...

see how many butterflies you can spot on the below photo. These pictures are all clickable...

I count 5 orange butterflies... among the orange flowers.




The bushes are large enough that shooting the entire bush results in not being able to even pick out the butterflies...

Gotta love bushes that grow and bloom despite the drought, that you don't have to do anything to protect from the local deer herds...



The lantana also attract the night flyers.





The agalinis are in full bloom.

Agalinis purpurea are pretty, and are host plant to the buckeye butterfly, which makes them an asset to the meadow.

Their short-comings are that they are annuals and strictly Autumn bloomers, and need disturbed soil to come up each year.





Here's an interesting flower, 'Summer's farewell' (Dalea pinnata)

This cool plant has ferny leaves closely resembling moss verbena, which was what I thought I had when the babies initially showed up...

Later, when the plants grew upright, rather than prostrate as expected, I could see that it was something else. These little button flowers are interesting...

The plants appear to be biennial, which coupled with their short bloom time rather negates their value in the flower border.

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