lblanchard: (swannfountain)
I floated the Class of 2013 in a container of water today. I'm kind of hoping I get fewer than 12 viable seedlings. I'd like to cull the collection, and this cross (supermarket selfed) isn't anything I'm wildly excited about.

EDITED TO ADD: I did a little planter maintenance out front. First I pruned the spent flower heads and some other branches from the Aunties' Rose, which I thought was just too big. Then I noticed that there was powdery mildew on the seedling apple. Off with its head -- I yanked it out. Rummaging in the planter full of dusty miller and swiss chard, I spied what I thought was a seedling locust tree. Out with you, I said, and realized that I was holding quite a wisteria seedling, with three leaf segments and a seed that was still encased in its seedpod. Ooops, says I, and I brought it in and potted it up. I may have my wisteria-to-go after all!
lblanchard: (swannfountain)
Didn't I just say, a few days ago, that when we move I want to get a wisteria with lovely showy hybrid flower clusters, not the smallish things my vine produces?

Yes, I did, I'm sure of it. So why did I pick up three little wisteria seeds while cleaning on Sunday? And why did I scarify those seeds and put them in to soak? And why, oh, why, am I going to plant all three of them tomorrow? Because I'm a sucker for seedlings, that's why.

Maybe they won't come up. I haven't seen hide nor hair of any little Golden Rain Tree shoots -- fair enough, the seeds were left over from 2006. Nor have I seen any Liriope muscari, a famously touchy seed that I collected and then winter-sowed.

Nothing much to show from the garden, so: here, have a couple hippeastrum photos and a silly one from yesterday's bike ride:


Class of 2006, which I may pollinate with Michael Valentine


Does this hippeastrum look pregnant to you? It does to me


Poor little dragon. A pretty extreme punishment
for picking a few daffodils, don't you think?
lblanchard: (Default)
I just started some rudbeckia seeds. I hope they bloom this year.

Yesterday I noted buds all over the wisteria.

We are noticing that the leaves on the red maple are thicker -- it must like being in the ground (what a surprise).

I'm ordering a new refrigerator today for delivery Tuesday.
lblanchard: (Default)

Originally uploaded by lb_philly.
Pardon me while I pat myself on the back. I collected a seedpod of our native Wisteria frutescens at Bartrams Garden the winter of 1995-96 and scarified a seed the day we made a deposit on this house. Finally, after thirteen years, it has bloomed in a serious way.

It might have done so years earlier if it hadn't spent its first six years in a pot. Or it might not have. The horticulturist at Bartrams Garden told me it takes anywhere from 6-12 years for them to bloom from seed. It bloomed lightly in fall of 2007 and again last spring. In the scheme of things, it's not a big deal to have grown a plant that self-sows all over the south and is an invasive thug there, but I'm still pretty happy about it. If we ever move, I will take some seedpods and start over, although there's no guarantee I'll live to see a second vine bloom.

This is an imperfect photomerge.

And a note to myself: I put Miracle Gro on all the plants in the third floor rear, especially the basil seedlings. (Does not include the hippeastrum seeds, which aren't ready.)
lblanchard: (Default)
The first peony flower is getting brown around the edges and will probably drop its petals later today, if I don't cut it off first. I think the plant needs to be repotted in something larger.

The wisteria is just about in full bloom and is attracting bumbling carpenter bees and some fierce smaller bee thing that chases them.

Something has happened to my sense of smell -- neither the peonies nor the wisteria smell especially pleasant. There's a something they have that's common to petroleum products and I am noticing it more this year. Perhaps next year they will all smell better.

Last evening I moved some plantlets that are prone to self-sowing and nestled them in around the hostas. That would be rose campion and feverfew, as threatened. I also pulled up the couple of puny Martian Invader daylilies that never flourished in the Wisteria Pit, and put them where they'll get more sun and (I think) less competition.

On the windowsills, my seedling basil are just starting to put out their first true leaves. In a couple days I think they'll be far enough along to get a shot of Miracle Gro. There are about a half-dozen rooted coleus cuttings that I might as well pot up. Perhaps they'll go in the window boxes after all. Plus somewhere between a half dozen and a dozen looking glass begonias.

My friend Ann is returning a lilac to me some time this weekend. It's pink and not fragrant. Perhaps I'll pass it on to my sister. EDIT: Here's what it looked like in 2002. It's much bigger now:


The Schlumbergera 'madisto' that [ profile] clindau brought me last spring is clearly pot-bound, so I'll upgrade it to a 4" round pot today and hope that it gets pot-bound enough by fall to bloom for me. I took the Nopalxochia outside the other day. It got really bleached out from its time in a sunny window this spring -- lesson learned, and I'll move it next April.

EDIT: I was given some Jobe plant food spikes, so I pushed three in my big 'Looking Glass' begonia today.
lblanchard: (Default)
Two peonies are blooming (one is approaching its sell-by date) and a third is looking ready to pop. Memorial Day weekend starts in a couple of hours, so I guess I'm going to have peonies on Memorial Day, whee!

There were a few crisped up and dead leaves on the small maple. I have no idea why. They were all in one spot so perhaps there was some reason -- bird with particularly corrosive droppings, perhaps? I may repot it this weekend just in case the pot-to-root ratio is off again.

It has occurred to me today that now that I have some, you know, actual soil that's not being peed on in the backyard, I could plant some daylilies amid the hostas. Also rose campion and oenothera and feverfew. I think I have about 10 rose campion volunteers. They won't bloom till next year, being biennials, but their fuzzy silvery foliage is decorative. And I have tons of feverfew. Oh, and I still have blue flag iris in my front bucket. I didn't send it all to [ profile] pameladean and [ profile] clindau.

Now that it's blooming abundantly, the wisteria is a little disappointing. The flowers at one end of the cluster are fading before the ones at the other end have come into being. Not festive like [ profile] kightp's at all. But it's the wisteria I've got. I must take its picture this weekend.

I look at the hippeastrum seeds a couple times a day, even though they aren't likely to start sprouting until Tuesday or Wednesday at the earliest.
lblanchard: (Default)
Much better today. Still a little swelling and the occasional twinge. I'm taking stairs with extreme care, especially going down.

The knee thought about locking up when I got on my bike today, but I babied it by not putting any power on the stroke for about half a mile and then cautiously adding it back in, a little power at a time. After that it was fine on the bike.

Here's hoping that tomorrow I'll be able to walk on the level without any kind of weirdness to my gait.

In other news, one peony is fully open and another is about to open. Just in time for Memorial Day. And the wisteria is on the brink of full bloom. Photos will be posted.


May. 12th, 2009 08:11 am
lblanchard: (Default)

Originally uploaded by lb_philly.
Going to have some flowers this year....

Edit: O bother. I forgot to start basil seeds! I did it just now.

lblanchard: (Default)
We saw the sun for an hour or so this morning; now the high clouds are moving in.

This year the wisteria appears poised to bloom more prolifically. I stopped counting at 30 scapes. That's not prolific by [ profile] kightp's standards, but it's a great improvement on the six or seven scapes we had last year.

We have ants on the peony buds this year! Teeny tiny little black aunts, not the big ones I recall from my youth, but ants nevertheless.

I think I will be gardening passively this year -- not going out and acquiring new plants, but accepting what comes up. I have a lot of seedlings: corydalis, four-o-clocks, aquilegia, rudbeckia, and what I believe are rose campion. I also have enough feverfew to medicate the eastern seaboard if I let them grow. Then, of course, there are the coleus and begonias I overwintered.

We moved the hostas, in their boxes, to a spot where they would get rainwater. They are tremendously happy after the rainy spell and should have a good start on life this year before we move them back to their regular place. I am also thinking of dividing them and putting them in the ground. All of my variegated hostas have sported out to plain green, but that's all right.

stages of grieving for a large dog )


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