Friday, June 5, 2015

In the Garden and On the Roof

Thought I'd share a few garden photos and not because the garden is looking so fine. It was a rough winter and it has been a rough spring. Beyond that, I did a lot of culling last autumn so there are bare patches, odd clumps here and there, and thinned foliage. I am still not sure whether the azalea is going to make it. My darling was a bit overzealous with the angle of the cuts. My two younger azaleas are in similar shape from my attentions. The rhubarb has bolted to seed and I really need to get that under control. The lilacs are still here, but not for much longer.


The Bolero Lilies (Asian) are doing well and will bloom soon. I believe I have the pests under control this year by treating the soil and killing the grubs. 

I also have a new tool that is making gardening ever so much better for me. This tool weeds for me! It's a scuffle hoe, aka hula hoe, stirrup hoe, etc. 
It allows a bit of movement at the head and the blade (looks like a stirrup) cuts the roots below and lifts them out. I have created a nice rhubarb bed with it and I can keep ahead of the weeds in my small beds. We have a lot of baby oak trees trying to get a start. They have been a big problem because they don't pull out easily with that plug of an acorn at the end. The scuffle hoe works marvelously. No more endless tugging. My new project is creating a brick path for the mower to follow. This way, my helpful neighbor won't be getting too close to my flower bed blowing clipped grass back into it. That's the hope anyway.


A lot of purple just now with the bearded irises and various purple columbines. You can see the bare spots and just get a glimpse of the over-pruned azalea in the background at the near corner of the house.


Macro shots look better just now. I do love Columbines.


I know that some love Siberian Irises and, if I had one, I'm certain that I'd love it, too. I have bearded irises, which I love. I appreciate the fact that bearded irises look better with age. Not many things can say that!


Yes, it's something of a purple riot out there, but soon the roses will be blooming and the daylilies and the astilbe and, hopefully, the two lonely peonies. That's potentilla in the foreground, which blooms yellow, my personal favorite. It was one of the plants my mother brought to me one hot summer day saying that it wasn't doing well in her garden because a certain someone was bent on mowing it down. The story of her life!



John has been back on the roof fixing the entry way that a squirrel managed to create. That's right! We had a squirrel in the basement and it gained access from the roof. Ai yi yi! You've never known excitement until you've had a squirrel in the cellar. It's taken me weeks to get that sorted. In fact, Fioré has been so wound up that we may not ever recover.

Must scoot as "the kids" are having a yard sale today and tomorrow and I just so happen to have a bunch of stuff to donate to their cause. Yay for even slight progress! (I was going through the grands' toy box here and was overcome by all those Thomas the Train items that they don't love anymore. Apparently, I still do!)

A fun, relaxing, blessed weekend to you!  
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44 comments:

  1. Good Morning Precious Vee!

    Your images are absolutely beautiful and I loved reading about your garden! So gorgeous! I am envious as I do not have a green thumb and always struggle to keep things growing and alive. I love all of the purple hues you have.... just beautiful! I hope you have a wonderful weekend - have a great time at the yard sale! I wish I could come!

    Love,
    Me

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  2. Before I go any further, I must remember to tell you how much I love your header photo. It evokes such a peaceful feeling.
    Your garden is looking very pretty. The macro shots are gorgeous.. My irises are long gone so I'm loving how the season can be extended through blog sharing.
    John is making me a titch nervous on the roof like that and I'm trying to wrap my mind around a squirrel who makes his way to the basement via the roof. Yikes, that's a scary thought. Poor Fiore. That does sound like a very stressful time for all concerned.
    Hope the yard sale goes well. I understand your feelings on Thomas the Tank Engine. My son loved all things Thomas at one time and now his son (Jaxson) is just stepping into the world of Thomas. Makes me smile.

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  3. Vee, I wrote a comment and it didn't show up. Will be back later to re-write.

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  4. Yikes, I hope you were able to get the squirrel out of the house! Finding wildlife in our homes, while exciting, is not fun. I've had plenty. The gardens are purple here too, it seems most early flowers are that color, but I love anything I can get and since I have been a faithful attendant at the farmers market I have filled in with some brighter colors with hanging baskets. We lost a lot of things with the hard winter, The shrubs are a bit lopsided as one half got winter killed while the other half hung on, I can only hope they will fill out again with some symmetry. Your yard looks beautiful though, and isn't it wonderful to see all that lush green and color!? Good luck with the yard sale, I would blow all my gains on flowers and more yard sales!

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    1. It's long gone! However, there is much cleaning to be done once a squirrel gains access. It has been A Lot of work.

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  5. I truly enjoyed the tour of your garden this morning. Beautiful colors all around. The squirrel would drive anybody nuts, trying to find him and get him out! Hope the yard sale goes well, and they make lots of $$$, as well as cleaning out the house. We do tend to hoard at times....lol Happy Friday.

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  6. A squirrel in the house is way too much excitement--no wonder your Fiore is undone. Your flowers are lovely, Vee. Great tool you have there--I am always looking for tools that make it easier for me in the garden as my joints aren't what they used to be. I too am a little nervous when I see a man on the roof---be careful, John. I must admit to having many toys around here that the grandchildren have outgrown, but don't want me to get rid of them--what's a grandmother to do? ♥

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  7. Your purple flowers look so pretty! I have never had a squirrel in the house...bats yes, mice yes...that must have been something!

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    1. If it had made into the house proper....ackkk, I shudder to think. The basement was bad enough.

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  8. That darn squirrel! How in the world did he think to go from the roof to the basement? I've heard they can do serious damage ~ cunning little creature.

    Your flowers are lovely. How (with what) did you treat your soil to get rid of the grubs? If it worked, that's a good thing for all of us gardeners to know.

    The picture that shows the close up of the iris and columbine is gorgeous. It must be wonderful, after your winter, to walk out and breathe in fresh spring air and take in the green leaves and grass and all the beautiful colors.

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    1. Edible diatomaceous earth...do your own homework. Won't hurt you, your pets, etc., but it can hurt bees if you put it on blossoms. I don't. I do treat the ground and leaves, if I see the leaves are being eaten.

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  9. {giggling} DO NOT GET RID OF THOMAS --sorry for yelling. We still have Liam's--save them for their kids, wink. I could not part with Thomas--even though he said too...just couldn't. ANYWAYS--Waving to John...grr on the rodent. I loved your photos, always do. Blessings

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  10. Those squirrels - I am not a fan of squirrels. We had one once in the attic.
    I think your garden flowers are beautiful. Love all the purple.
    What a great tool that is. I just might have to get one myself.
    Hope the yard sale goes well.

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    1. You will love it! Check out some of the videos on hula hoes, scuffle hoes, stirrup hoes.

      This is the video that sold me: http://youtu.be/xEyFVnRy3sA

      I wish mine were from Johnny's Seeds, but mine is from Ace Hardware for $20 or so.

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  11. Yikes on the squirrel. We had a squirrel to have babies in the attic at one house - it was like living with the Harlem Globetrotters!
    I, too, adore your header picture. Your flowers are so pretty. I love the bearded iris. When we first married, I had a collection of irises in all different colors. It was exciting as they opened one by one. Each one unique. We saw a yellow blooming bush the other day and I just bet it was potentilla.
    I keep plugging along on cleaning out/donating stuff we don't need any longer. It is a great feeling to make room for what we do need! Wishing you a very nice weekend.

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  12. Now I have the Thomas song going through my head LOL My son loved him when he was little.

    All your flowers looks beautiful. I think I need that hoe in my life :)

    Have a great weekend.

    xo,
    rue

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  13. A tool that weeds for you....I NEED one of those! Your blossoms are so beautiful, Vee, and seeing their lovely charm brought a smile to my lips. Enjoy the weekend, my dear. Hugs!

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  14. You're flowers are beautiful and thanks for the tip on the scuffle hoe. I'll be hunting for one of those!

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  15. There's a lot happening at the Vee household. Your flowers are beautiful, thanks so much for sharing. I notice the toe of one of your new shoes :) Hope the boys make a lot of money on their sale. Have a wonderful weekend. ~ Abby

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  16. Well Vee, you're a gal after my heart with a new garden toy! They do work well but unfortunately mine is a hand held one so I have to bend down to use it. I have Siberian irises and although not as showy as the bearded, pretty as well with their scrappy foliage.
    It would not be the most memorable adventure with a squirrel in the house, glad everything is getting under control again.
    Say, are you and Pam meeting again this summer? She just met another blogger from Ontario and mentioned about hooking up with someone again. I'm meeting a gal tomorrow for the first time and will share photos as we're going antiquing.

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    1. Time for an upgrade, Judith! Get up off your knees!

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  17. Now that's an interesting tool- I can't see the working end of it, but if I don't have to pull weeds..I want one. Dang sneaky squirrels! :)
    Have a great weekend!

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  18. I've been working in the yard a lot lately too. Have to start early in the AM though because it's gotten hot and humid already. Our vegetable garden is pooped out and need to replant. On and on it goes. *grin*
    Squirrels are such a nuisance. They aren't called Tree Rats for nothing. Hope all the repairs are behind you now.
    Have a blessed day! ~:)
    PS: The blog is looking sweet. Good job with the graphics.

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  19. Love your garden and those purple flowers are beautiful Vee. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

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  20. Vee, when my husband bought a life trap I laughed...that thing has come in handy...thankfully we have not had to use it in the house.LOL. Squirrels and chipmunks are destructive even though they are cute. Well so are darned old rabbits...they have eaten all my high dollar Proven Winners. That is where my husband traps them they go to the big wood down the road...I sure hope they don't find their way back. I loved that new hoe thingy. The right tools sure help with the job. Blessings, xoxo,Susie

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  21. Your garden is so pretty! So many lovely plants. I am sure that your azaleas will recover, plants are a lot tougher than we give them credit for. Glad that you got the squirrel issue sorted, they really can make a lot of trouble can't they. xx

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  22. Hi Vee~

    I love all your beautiful pictures! Your garden is just gorgeous! Bearded Iris have always been a favorite of mine. My grandfather hated them, called them weeds, because he couldn't get rid of them, no matter what he tried!

    I'm so glad you got your squirrel problem under control - I can't even imagine what damage those little critters could do to a basement!

    Hugs,
    Barb

    P.S. Every day, I drink 1 tsp., twice a day, of food grade, Diatomaceous Earth. I also use it as a pest control, great on ants!

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    1. And fleas and parasites and slugs... I have heard about people like you! =D I may have to take this behind the lines.

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  23. Your garden looks so pretty, Vee. Beautiful columbine and iris. I like how you are creating a border with brick. Nice edging always improves the look of a garden bed. Good to see John taking care of things to keep the squirrels out! :)

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  24. Be careful on that roof John!!
    Scuffle hoe! Is that the hoe I saw on Cornish Cream? I need that hoe.
    I really like Irises, my sister doesn't.
    Enjoy the yard sale. Hope you make some good pocket change!

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    1. Every gardener needs a scuffle hoe!

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  25. Your flowers are very pretty now, Vee.........All my bearded iris seem to have disappeared, but I have lots of Siberian iris. They are very tough, though not as pretty......

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  26. Your garden is just lovely-
    I wish I had irises after seeing yours!
    I know it is a lot of work, and it is so hot already where I live (South Texas) but it is worth it, right?

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  27. Your garden is looking beautiful Vee - I especially love the purple columbine. Mine are pink and not nearly as pretty a colour as yours. I too am enjoying my iris blooms right now and the peonies are just starting. Finally, Spring has Sprung. Enjoy your weekend and the yard sale!

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  28. I love your purples in the garden!! Color is so welcome after a rough winter and spring, isn't it? I really like the saturated purple color of your irises. We have some very light purple and also a peach (?) color that I dislike. It looks so washed out.

    As much as color is welcome, a squirrel in the attic is not! We've never had a squirrel in our attic, although we have had a bat...and a snake. ~~shudder~~ Talk about UNwelcome!!

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  29. What you do have blooming is lovely! Nate and Kay gave me a purple columbine for Mother's Day! I love it!

    My peonies got pounded with rain this week! Oy! I have enjoyed all the ones that I cut and brought in!

    The girls saw baby mouse, yesterday in the corner cupboard in the kitchen. Sigh. We have a cat and he often appears to 'hear' something in that area, but as far as I know he's not doing any damage. Tim says he'll have to set traps. I don't know what we'd do with a squirrel in the basement!

    I hope the yard/garage sale goes well!

    Deanna

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  30. Your purple blooms are really pretty Vee. I expect your cut back shrubs will get a boost soon when the warmer weather comes....we hope! You had a squirrel in the house? Yikes! That would be awful. They are so destructive. I'm really interested in that scuffle hoe you got. I have one flower bed that I have barely touched yet for weeding and it's getting bad looking. Enjoy the weekend. The sun is just starting to come out this afternoon after a showery night and cloudy morning.

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  31. I love irises, Vee, squirrels not so much :-)
    Amalia
    xo

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  32. Just stopping by to say hello! My dumb computer isn't letting me see photos so I'm mad. Boo. I loved reading your descriptions, though, and had to let my imagination work a little harder! Hugs!

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  33. The garden is looking lovely...purple riot and all! Ay yi yi...is right. That was a very crafty squirrel. Here's hoping John manages to thwart any future access!

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  34. First, I would love to have a start from your white lilac :) try putting in elephant garlic in your flower beds. Also I have been trying to find stars for my fence; where did you find yours ? Lovely garden thank you for sharing your garden with us. duenml@comcast.net

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  35. So good we we find tools that really work and do what we need. We have problems with squirrels but they have never tried to ender the house!! The purples look good.

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  36. Love the purple. Squirrels entering the house! Not so good.

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  37. I also love Columbines and Irises! All are doing so well in your yard, even with less than ideal weather.

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