Thursday, June 01, 2017

Time in the Garden

In the evening, after dinner and dishes, I pull on my gardening clothes and head outdoors for an hour or more. It's easy for time to get away from me there.

The Unknown rose bush is loaded is blooms that open in a deep pink that fades to paleness in a few short days. I took these photos before deadheading the bush. It will bloom all summer if I keep at the deadheading. It smells a wee bit like apple blossom, fragrantly sweet.

The first hydrangea blooms are opening, paler than I remember, but they, unlike the roses, will darken with time. 

On the floribunda rose, a green beetle makes himself at home. I don't see many of these beetles and although I think they are a type of "june bug" or scarab beetle, I don't know anything about them. 

We've eaten a couple of sweet red strawberries and more are ripening. Our warm weather went away this week and we're hoping it soon returns. The berries will appreciate the sun and respond with juicy sweetness. We try to eat seasonally, and I don't buy the imported crunchy, white centered strawberries that come from countries to the south of us. I'd sooner wait for these. We eat them fresh for as long as possible, and I freeze a flat or two of them (purchased from a local farmer). They make tasty sauces in the dead of winter. 

The David Austin Winchester Cathedral that I purchased last year is flourishing, almost ready to open. I look at it here in my own garden and remember seeing it in England, in the Queen's Rose Garden at Sudeley Castle. It's hard to believe that's almost a year ago.

I'm part of a Soup Club at school. Each Monday, one member brings soup and bread for the other members of the club. It's a fun way to start the week, and also to taste soups that others enjoy. This past Monday was my last turn, and since it was hot (the last day before a cool front), I made Gazpacho, a cold soup with tomatoes, cucumber, a bit of onion and garlic. It was delicious with a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar, a sprinkle of feta cheese, a handful of croutons, and a scattering of fresh basil. Wonderfully refreshing on a hot day. 

I planted a few bulbs of Siberian Iris (I think) quite a few years ago. I'd forgotten all about them, but this year, they decided to bloom. Unfortunately, they are right up against a rose bush, so I'll move them after they bloom, and hope they won't take another however many years before blooming again. I love their frilliness and deep blue colour. They are neater than the Bearded Irises I used to have. 

Faithfully, General Sikorski blooms each summer along the deck railing. This year, he's tangled up in the lilac bush, too. I think I'll let him stay there until fall and then coax him back where he belongs. 

Plants don't always do what I expect or plan in the garden. Do yours? Perhaps I'm a little too permissive in letting them trail around wherever they like. This evening, however, I seriously trimmed back the rosemary bush that was sprawling most ungracefully against the peonies and crowding out the lavender. Sometimes, one must be severe. 

How's your garden growing?


  1. Gorgeous pink & lilac delight! Those colors feel so good. I long so for peonies and roses and iris to bloom! Wishing you a lovely weekend Lorrie.

  2. We share some similar flowers in our gardens. Lovely roses you have and that soup looks really yummy!

    Mersad Donko Photography

  3. You're right, sometimes we had to be severe with our plants, and we do it for their health, of course, but I cannot often be sever with them, even when I have to prune them I'm always afraid to ... punish them !

    Anyway, enjoy all the flowers which thrive luxuriantly in your garden now, Dearie, and lift your spirits with them !!!

    Wishing you a most lovely weekend ahead,
    with sincere thankfulness

    XOXO Dany

  4. Isn't it wonderful to be able to potter in the garden in the evening. The best time of day. Somehow on a warm day the scents seem to intensify. Your hydrangeas are way ahead of mine although mine are in shady positions. Bet that soup was delicious. Have a good weekend, hopefully sunny. B x

  5. You have captured the beauty in your garden so well, Lorrie.
    Our strawberry season here went by so quickly this year. It was wonderful while it lasted.
    Oh my goodness, your gazpacho looks delicious. I'm going to check your recipe blog to see if it shows up over there.
    Enjoy your weekend.

  6. The soup sounds soooo good! And all the flowers are delightful!

  7. My garden is growing wonderfully - after those few days of delightful sunshine things have really perked up. Did you hear people complaining about how "hot" it was? Did they not remember our winter and spring? And now rain again - but soon sunshine I hear (I hope). Love the local strawberries too - the farmers here will have them available any time soon - too many deer that wander through our yard, often in small herds, for me to have any strawberries left for us, if I had planted some - so we'll watch the deer and eat the local berries. Your flowers are just lovely - especially the roses - I adore roses - and so do our deer. Happy weekend - on clear days we can see your island from the top of our hill. I'll wave next time we see it.

  8. I had to smile at your comment about being permissive in the garden. My "live-in gardener" is indeed permissive even more so. Sometimes I have to get out there and pull a few things out and do a bit of clean up suggestions.

    Thanks for the tour of your garden. I also love the form of iris compared to the bearded ones, which we removed. Ahhh, roses, I just love them. Now you have inspired me to make a gazpacho soon. I think I will take it to an upcoming women's gathering along with some cripy bread. Happy weekend!

  9. I was in a soup club at school and loved it...we would bring the reipe for the soup and supply bread as was a fun thing to do and it was surprising how many great recipes we were able to test during the school term.
    Your strawberries and hydrangeas are way ahead of ours...perhaps it is the cool ocean breeze that keeps our temperatures lower tan you area of town.
    Gazpacho is the perfect summer lunch soup!

  10. Your garden is so pretty, and fresh, and clean. So dusty here. I like a wild garden. Am just happy anything grows since we live in such a harsh environment. That beetle looks like a stink bug to me. I do love soup, any time of year. Sounds like a great club to be in. :) Happy weekend wishes.

  11. Not very well I am afraid, it needs some serious work, but we will get there in the end. Love the idea of a soup club such a versatile lunch. You have a beautiful garden.

  12. I, too was in Soup Club. I loved to try different soups at lunch hour. Your gazpacho looks refreshing. We're doing parking lot gardening in our complex. I've got 2 plots going. They're small and easy to maintain. I do like a wild but not unkempt garden.

  13. Our garden is having a rest this year--at least the veggies. The flowers are doing well, especially hydrangeas, which were disappointing last year. We'll see if we can keep the deer away from them. I haven't made gazpacho soup in years and now my mouth is watering. Your soup club sounds wonderful--what a good idea!

  14. Beautiful, beautiful!! This is our first real day of summer weather, but I did get the pond garden mulched. We'll be planting our tomatoes and peppers tonight. I'd love to walk around your flower garden. It must be lovely!

  15. Beautiful blooms Lorrie. Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

  16. Sounds as if the lilac bush is the common denominator. 🙂 I am looking at the lilac bushes here and thinking it's time to get out the stepladder and start pruning. You have many beautiful flowers and lots of variety in your garden. May the warmth return for you!

  17. I love the idea of a soup club! I'd rather have homemade soup than a steak.

    That unknown rose bush is fascinating, I love ones that change colors, but then I love them all except for red roses that have bluish tints. Do you smash the beetles? I can't stand the crunch sound but used to kill them mercilessly.

  18. Your flowers are gorgeous, Lorrie! I'm not much of a gardener so my garden tends to get a little jungley. I finally turned on the A/C this evening. Bring on the heat!

  19. Your flowers look amazing, what gorgeous colours they are.
    Soup Club sounds fun and gazpacho is a winner!

    All the best Jan

  20. Your plants are incredible, mine are wilted or just melted in the heat. Enjoy your blooms!

  21. Right now I have mini white iris blooming, my purples have finished, but they were lovely. I have some spirea in bloom and it will bloom all summer. Peonies are done, but they were stunning this year. I have great hope for my hydrangea this year, but nothing is in bloom yet. Poppies are still to come, and so are my hollyhocks, echinacea, black-eyed susans, and more.

    I love this season of blooming!

  22. Oh, I loved this post ... so uplifting, and I too love spending time in my garden. I had to stare at that rose for a full minute because I could not see that beetle! So amazing!

  23. What lovely photos of the flowers and there is nothing to compare with seasonal strawberries from one's own area.

    SOUP CLUB! That is a fantastic idea and yours looks amazing. I have not had dinner yet and unfortunately it is not soup ....which you have me craving now. A thunderstorm just rolled through and it got dark and chilly for awhile and soup would be perfect.

  24. As always, Lorrie, your photos are outstanding!
    What a fun idea of having a soup club and getting to try each other's favorites. Your gazpacho looks so tasty! I made it once, using Ina Garten's recipe.

  25. Harvesting lots of squash and cucumbers and a few tomatoes here! YUMMY Gazpacho. Would love to have a bowl of that today.


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