Sunday, May 29, 2011

Stokes Aster and Shasta Daisies

What a desolate place would be a world with out a flower!  It would be a face with out a smile, a feast with out a welcome.  Are not flowers the stars of the earth, and are not our stars the flowers of the hevens.  A.J. Balfour

I went out on the morning of May 05, 2011 and found  buds on my Stokes Asters.   I was really excited!  The wait was over at last
     I bought my Stokes Aster in 2009.  I was in Shevesport with my daughter Charlotte.  I was beginning to think it would never bloom.  Well worth the wait.  The Stokes Aster  is a native flower of  Georgia and south eastern part of Carolina.  I will be planting more of the Stokes Asters.  The other type Asters that I have planted  were bad to have white mildew.  If the plant is not pretty without blooms, I do not keep it.  That is another plus for my roses, they are  green here,  even in winter.  Roses can have brown spots and turn yellow.  Carrel sprays them to prevent this.
I put iron on them,  to make them darker green.   I do have some small Asters that I have kept.  These smaller Asters are not in bloom at this time.  When they bloom I will up date with pictures.  One of my favorite flowers has always been a Daisy.  I do not think a garden would be complete with out one.   I love the single Shasta Daisy with the yellow center but they are either too tall or to short.  So I planted this one.  This Daisy is a full Shasta with out the center,  this one is not fully opened.  All the hybrid flowers today came from wild flowers.  Botanist Luther Burbank developed the wonderful Daisy of today.  It took him from  around 1889 until 1906 or 1907 to produce the snowy white Shasta Daisy.  He started with the common oxeye weed that grows in California.   After keeping and combining only the biggest and best for 6 years,  he was still not satisfied.  Mr. Burbank  then sprinkled the pollen of the English field daisy on the best of what he had.  It took 2 more years, still not completely  happy.  He sprinkled Portuguese field daisy over the best of these.  After 6 more years keeping only the best of this combination, he still did not have the snow white flower he wanted.  The Japanese field daisy  was whiter than the others so he sprinkled its pollen over the best he had produced.  At last he had what he had worked so hard for.  He named his Daisy, Shasta, after the California Peak.  So it took 4 weeds to make a beautiful flower.  They still come in white only.     
I like Daisies and lilies.  I hope you have enjoyed this  page of my blog.  Happy gardening to you from  me.  Thank you for watching my garden   "bloom" with  me.      Juanita                                                                          Juanita's  favorite.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

Friday, May 27, 2011

Lilies,Lilies and more Lilies

Day lilies that are now blooming


Now tell me don't they Shine
 I have a garden of my own, but so with roses overgrown, and lilies, that you will it guess to be a little wilderness.  Andrew Marvell 

 I bought most of my lilies from Brecks on line.  Nothings like shopping in the comfort of  your sewing room at your own desk.  No clerks telling you what you need, I know what I need.  More Lilies.   There is not but one thing wrong with the average Lily. They bloom only for a time then they are gone. Oh how they shine while they are blooming.  But you know the old saying there is a time and season for everything.   Brecks prides themselves in selling the finest  and largest bulbs from Holland.  Every year they have a sale I can  not resist. Spend $50.00 and get $25.00 off.  Sounds like half price to me.  So I buy.  When I got my order, they had written me a notice.  These bulbs are not up to our usual standards, so we are sending 2 extra for each 4 bulbs.  Half again as many,  great,  keep sending.  Where will I put them is the question.  Any where I can find an inch of ground.  Well some of the new ones only had 1 bloom.  They will grow.  Some of them had as many as 14.  Great the more the merrier.  So far I have only written about my Asiatic lilies. I have Day lilies also. My Sunday Teacher, Edna Bower, has a day lily farm.  I bought some from her in 2007.  My first Day  lilies.   They are not rebloomers.   Brecks sends out catalogs with reblooming day lilies so I buy.  What else can you do.  After all buy $50.00 get $25.00 off.  Hey do the math, easy half price,  twice the lilies half the money.  Sounds good  to me.             

Lily I bought from Edna Bower
 I  bought some in 2008 divided them in 2010. Started out with one 2008 in 2010 I had 10 now about 14.  Below you will see the collage.  This one is a rebloomer and it is shorter than most. Just Right to plant in front of roses.  The one at the left is the one I bought from Edna Bower.  It is taller than the rebloomers.  I have it in front of my red  roses.

View of my yard

Shorter Aisatic lily bought at Wall Mart in 2007 now I have adout 12

I hope you have enjoyed my page on the Lilies in my over grown garden.  Happy gardening to you from me.  Pleased to have you watch my garden grow and grow.   Juanita

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Critters Sharing my yard

  I have a garden
   so over grown....

  The air is not just filled with fragrance from the many blooms,                                        

There's always a chorus of music from the many critters that croon. 

Lilies every color that I can find, but look not just mine.                               A beautiful butterfly futters down, takes a drink and flies away.                                                   Not to worry she'll be back another day.                                               

Listen, I hear a chat chat.

Look up you will see a squirrel.
He's looking down at me.
I have counted as many as five squirrels in my yard at one time.

You can see the birds in the bushs in the background.
One is quite an arobat.                                 He climbs the feeder pole                               and hangs down and eats.                                                                                                                                              
   God gives us beauty to enjoy and care for.
I do not mind sharing my Garden, not at all.

Many birds have shared my feeder with the squirrel and many more have shared the grain on the ground.

Black birds, red, blue and brown. 
Bees buzz and carry pollon from flower to flower.    

Mocking bird eating suet during the winter

In order to have a lot of critters to share you garden, you need to provide food, water and shelter.

                                                                                                                                                            Butterflies like lantana, lilies, verbena ,cone flowers,and no butterfly garden would be complete without a butterfy bush. 

Butterfly on Verbena

Birds need a place to hide.  Red tips are great I have two behind my feeder when they get upset, they fly into them and hide.

One October  morning Carrel and I were walking through our garden.  It had rained the night before and the roses were full of water.  Carrell lifted this one.
It almost touched the ground.              
There was a tiny green frog asleep.

Never go out to your garden with out your  camera.

Late in the afternoon we went out, saw the frog still there. 
He stretched and jumped. Missed an even better picture.
Toads are good bug eaters

Red tips in bloom


 I must not forget one more creature who shares this garden with me, my own sweet love, Carrel.  I was single when I moved here.  His wife had been killed in a car wreck.

My feeder quite a busy place
Missy was Carrel's dog so she came  along.   She love to chase the squirrels. .                .                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Wow! VaVoom

“I have a garden of my own,

 But so with roses overgrown,

And lilies, that you would it guess

To be a little wilderness.”

Andrew Marvell

 Most of my roses have a story behind them.  This one started in May 2005.  My granddaughter Tafta Rogers gave birth to a lovely little girl, Audrey Jane.

 When  Audry Jane was born I stayed with Matt and Tafta and helped with the baby.  When the Dr. let Tafta drive we went riding around looking at yards on the South side of  Shreveport.  We passed a yard with an orange rose bush, it had blooms top to bottom.  I had never seen a rose that color. I wanted to ring the door bell to ask the name of that beautiful rose.   We could see no one was home. Tafta was glad.

Later we went to Tafta's brother's house, Ben Evans, in north Arkansas.When we got there, we looked up orange roses, on his computer. We found Vavoom. I started looking every where. I did not find one until 2008. Carrel and I took a Master gardening class in 2008.  One of our classes, on making pot plant arrangements, was taught at Selman's Nursery in Eudora, Arkansas.   This is when I met Elizabeth and Mike. We have been buying most of our plants there every since.  I ask Elizabeth one day if she had a Vavoom rose, she said no but she could order it.  We built  the orange bed in 2008 and planted some roses we bought from Jackson and Perkins,  Laura Bush , Cinnamon Twist.  In August we ordered 3 Vavooms to plant in there also.  The Laura Bush did not make it, we bought a deal in August, bare root.  They shipped us 8 roses, 6 lived, 2 died.   It is hard to get, bare root, to live it August.  In 2009 we finally bought 3 Vavooms and an October Fest for this bed.  Replaced the Laura Bush, left the Cinnamon Twist. In 2010 we moved the Cinnamon Twist to the back yard ,wrong color.  We bought another Vavoom,  for the center of the bed, to replace the Cinnamon Twist.  The Vavoom has become one of my favorite roses.  Being a Floribunda,  it blooms all season, however it does not bloom in clusters.  I am never without an orange rose.
I need to tell you this bed is 8 feet square and 4 timbers high.  We planted 5 roses, one in each corner,and on in the middle of this bed.   Bordering this bed with orange Blanket flowers and in the middle 3 or 4 Asiatic lilies,orange.   We planted 1 orange double day lily from Elizabeth's Mother's yard.  Mike gave the day lily  to us.  Also on the left side we planted 3 Tiger lilies, a friend gave us.  Charlotte my daughter gave us a little bit of the Creeping Jenny.   As you can see my bed is, with Roses an Lilies over grown.This fall we will have to find a place for a lot of lilies.  It will be a major job, as all my yard with Roses and Lilies is over grown.  I also have Iris in this bed.
Hope you enjoyed my Blog about my Vavoom.  My next page will be about  the beings I share  my garden with. Happy gardening to you from me.   Juanita

Monday, May 9, 2011

Hydrangea Where to plant?

"Flowers are not made by singing "O How Beautiful" 
and sitting in the shade"  Rudyard Kipling 

Bridget gave me this one

Hydrangea  has always been one of my favorites. In 2007, my oldest Grandchild Bridget gave me a pretty pink Mop Head, my favorite type.
 I decided I would need 2 so I bought a blue one.  I love the pink, blue and mixed.  Love them all. Never had a place I thought was shady enough.  I planted them in what I considered "shady."  You need to know where to plant them.  They really like shade.  They will tolerate morning sun  but remember between 11:00  am to 2:00 pm is the hottest time, it is straight over head.    I had to water them every other day.   They did not grow like they should have.  Bought 3 more in 2008, yes I planted them in the same place, all but one.  I bought a Blue Penny, planted it up close to the house South side.  Did not get enough sun there for roses.  I really thought this would be a good place. I was wrong. Did not have to water this one every other day but every day.  Just enough hot  Arkansas sun got on them. Wilted every day.  When flowers wilt they are in stress.  Stress every day will keep them from doing their best.
We are adding Aluminum Sulfate to change the color back blue.
In 2008 a friend was looking at my yard.  When we came to the Hydrangeas she said "I have finally gotten a place that I can plant mine Close to the house on the North side".  Sometimes my friend can be sorta funny. So smart mouth me said, "Well I planted mine on the North side of somebody's house."  I did not understand until  2009.  We built a bed across the backside of my house. That's the northside, complete shade.  We moved the one close to the house in front, South side, to the new bed.  It bloomed and grew so we had to trim the limbs from the front, never wilted.. The limbs grew so that first year they lay on the ground.  The year before it did not grow 3 inches.   In the mean time, my Blue one in the "shade" had almost died. If they go into shock too many times they will.  In 2010 we moved  the blue one.  Carrel said it was dead.  It had only one green  leaf.  Now it is about 2 ft tall  and has several blooms. My friend was right. North side of the house is the best place for Hydrangeas.  No sun is best.  Sun until 11:00 might be tolerated if you water often.   Hydra means water.  Sun draws water out through the leaves.  I have come to understand you plant Hydrangeas on the northside, against the house.  Complete shade is best. I have one more, but don't have space enough in this bed.  We are building a new bed between 2 trees. I hope there will be enough shade. Hope you will watch my garden grow.  Happy gardening  to you from me.  Juanita

Thursday, May 5, 2011

First Rose

"It will never rain roses.  If we want more roses, we will have to plant more roses."
                                                                                                                  George Elirt
First Rose
My son, Frank Murphy, built this flower bed for me.  I call it the A bed. Frank built five beds that year and tilled three more.  My neighbor, Carrel Sheffield, now my husband, came over to watch.  Two roses were left behind for me when I bought this house.  Carrel said  they  had only  two or three blooms a year on them, because they were  in deep shade.  It was July, the hottest and driest  part of the summer, when we moved the  roses.    Frank dug a deep hole around the rose and when he lifted the shovel, all the dirt fell off!  Bare root roses can be difficult in the spring, but July is very difficult.   Carrel Sheffield said  "It will not live."  Carrel did not know me.  Frank  watered it well, no fertilizer, could burn roots at this time.  The same thing happened to the other one.  I now had two bare root roses.  I was not worried.  Carrel shook his head

I have rooted many plants before, anytime of the year. So  I thought at least these 2 rose bushes do have  roots.  I filled  two one gallon milk jugs with water, let them stand over night and watered both roses, everydayAnytime you root or plant anything, water daily until the plant gets a good start.  Everyday Carrel would come over and check on the two rosesOne day he told me it needed cutting back; that it was too tall. He asked, "May I cut it for me?" ( We should have cut it back when we planted it.)  "Sure," I said "Go ahead."  I need to tell you now Carrel had a line of roses across his yard.  They were beautiful.  So he cut them back, but he also started spraying them.  My boss and niece called wanting me to work every other week, to care for her Mother.  I asked Carrel if he would water the Roses while I was gone.  This started a wonderful friend and a new love.
We were married on December 27, 2007.
Roses have been with us 35 million years according to fossil evidence.   They have been symbols of love, beauty, war, and politics.  Garden cultivation of roses began 5,000  years ago, probably in China.   The Romans planted large public rose gardens in the south of Rome.  After the fall of Rome the popularity of roses would rise and fall with the trends of the times.
.      There are many types of roses. I  will show and  tell you about them as my blog goes along.  I hope you will follow and read my future pages on my blog.  The  floribunda Rose is  medium height and rounded growing habit. They make great hedge rows and bloom in clusters of many medium blooms.  Grandaflora roses are a  combination of the floribunda and the tea rose. They are tall and slender, with fewer blooms on each stem.  Both the floribunda and the grandafloras are repeat bloomers.  The tea rose is tall and slender with only one bloom on long slender limbs. Tea roses are repeat bloomers but are slower to bloom  again and are more subject to disease.  I plant mostly floribundas because they bloom more abundantly and are easier to maintain.  We fertilize 3 times a year early spring, summer, and fall. Our leaves are usually bright green and healthy; but if they start to yellow or began to dull, we give them iron.  Do not use too much iron. Usually an eighth of a cup will be enough on a fully developed rose.  Hope you will watch my garden grow.  Happy gardening to you from me.  Juanita                                                                                                                                            

Monday, May 2, 2011

Iris the Rainbow Flower

The Iris as far as I can find out has always been with us. They grow naturally in Europe, the middle east, Northern Africa and North America.  The Pharaohs of ancient Egypt had the gardens filled with purple  Iris meaning royalty.  They had the symbols of the elegant Iris on the walls and they adorned their scepters with them. The Egyptians  associated the Iris with the Falcon head god Horus, god of wind and sky.  The Iris for them stood for elegance and power. The Iris root was used as medicine for coughs, colds, liver diseases and snake bites.   Perfume was also made from the root, it was dried and pounded into a powder and burned to the god Horus.  The Greek associated the Iris with the goddess Iris the messenger of love.  Her sacred flower the Iris was considered the symbol of communication and messages.  The Greek men would plant the purple Iris  on the graves of  their beloved women so that the goddess Iris, whose duty it was to lead their souls to eternal life.  Early Christians associated the Iris with the Virgin Mary. The  ruler Clovis adopted the Iris as his symbol, upon converting to Christianity in the sixth century.  In the year of  1137 French King Louis XII incorporated the lovely Iris or "Fleur de Lis" as his personal standard . The Iris is still the symbol of France today.  New Orleans claims the " Fleur de Lis " for their city.  In Jordan the black Iris grows on plateaus.  Because it roots are so close to the surface, the Iris is easily  uprooted, therefore the black Iris is an endangered species. Picnickers on the plateau are the biggest threat to the black Iris.  I have never liked the way some people plant the Iris, in beds by themselves, my Mother didn't either.  When the blooms are gone you have a bed of cut off green leaves,  no color.  I plant mine inside my beds with the other flowers as did my Mother, guess we were rebels.   When they finish I cut off the bloom stem.   My daughter, Charlotte, gave me at least fifteen different Iris.  We both bought the "Fleur de Lis" reblooming collection from Spring Hill nursery.  
Yes, I said reblooming.  To my delight I had Iris to bloom in October and November.  In fact the first frost caught one bloom and ruined it.  So plant the new Iris, it is nothing like the good ole days'  Iris of your Grandma's time. Hope you have enjoyed the legend of the Iris I had no idea it was as important to the people of old. A flower of many colors, rainbow flower.The purple Iris, stands for royalty.  When you feel passionate send your love Yellow Iris.  No wonder my favorite color is yellow,  just kidding.  When you send flowers the color sometimes represents something, check it out. Hope you will follow my blog and watch my garden grow and bloom.  Happy gardening to you from me. 
                                         Next post the Rose.