Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – July 2013

The Lilium regale is the only one other than the Asiatics to have bloomed yet. Aaahh - the fragrance...!

The Lilium regale is the only one other than the Asiatics to have bloomed yet. Aaahh – the fragrance…!

Happy GBBD everyone! Well, things are definitely slowing down over here, or perhaps more so taking a break. The Asiatic lilies are spent while the orientals are coming, the crocosmias are on fire, as are the Rudbeckias. This year the agapanthus (which were new last year) are coming. During their first year in their new home, they didn’t bloom much. “How much did you water them?” asked the lady at the nursery when I compared the abundance of blooms on theirs to the paltry display of mine. “Uum…not super-much”, I admitted, feeling not so little silly. As it turns out, just because a plant originates in Africa doesn’t mean it is drought tolerant – duh! This year, they are returning the favor. There are plenty of buds, but only one is in flower as I write this. For more exciting fare than what I have to offer today, mosey on over to Carol at May Dreams Garden to check out her and others’ lovelies…

More lilies coming! In combination with the Star Jasmine, the end of July is going to be absolutely perfumy!

More lilies coming! In combination with the Star Jasmine, the end of July is going to be absolutely perfumy!

Lovely lace-caps still going strong.

Lovely lace-caps  in the front of the house still going strong…

... the ones in the back are fading to green.

… the ones in the back are fading to green.

The very last of the Asiatics on the way out... I really do miss them when they're gone!

The very last of the Asiatics on the way out… I really do miss them when they’re gone!

Rudbeckia 'Cherry Brandy' - currently providing a color explosion with its velvety red petals which will eventually fade to a more rusty color. I'm amazed at how many flowers it has - it is a single plant!

Rudbeckia ‘Cherry Brandy’ – currently providing a color explosion with its velvety red petals which will eventually fade to a more rusty color. I’m amazed at how many flowers it has – it is a single plant! Oops, and I just realized that I photographed a Daddy Longlegs in the process too!

Here it is next to Rudbeckia 'Green Wizard', which unfortunately is on its way out. I had hoped the two would be more in sync - they would look so cool together...

Here it is next to Rudbeckia ‘Green Wizard’, which unfortunately is on its way out. I had hoped the two would be more in sync – they would look so cool together…

The Agapanthus I thought was blue turned out to be white! No matter - I still love it!

The Agapanthus I thought was blue turned out to be white! No matter – I still love it!

And here is the 'Storm Cloud' version. This one is most definitely blue!

And here is the ‘Storm Cloud’ version. This one is most definitely going to be blue!

Crocosmia 'Lucifer' in the morning light.

Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ in the morning light.

It seems the black calla lilies I bought this year are all very floppy - as in they can't keep their heads up. My over-wintered ones don't seem to have that problem, but at least this one had the good sense to flop where it would still look good - resting its weary blossom on a cushion of purple fountain grass.

It seems the black calla lilies I bought this year are all very floppy – as in they can’t keep their heads up. My over-wintered ones don’t seem to have that problem, but at least this one had the good sense to flop where it would still look good – resting its weary, somewhat nibbled blossom on a cushion of purple fountain grass.

The surprise of the morning - a new flower on a Hellebore! I just moved it - it must really like its new location...

The surprise of the morning – a new flower on a Hellebore! I just moved it – it must really like its new location…

Speaking of new locations - this one needs to be moved. It's looking far too un-gangly in its current home, and deserves a better backdrop for its thistely glory, methinks.

Speaking of new locations – this one needs to be moved. It’s looking far too un-gangly in its current home, and deserves a better backdrop for its thistely glory, methinks.

These guys always make me laugh - they are so strange... Arum pictum.

These guys always make me laugh – they are so strange… Arum pictum.

Roses, fuchsias and clematis are still full of flowers, but you have already seen those in earlier posts – except for maybe one – Clematis Rooguchi. So far it has only given me one single blossom, and I think I know why. Everything around it has gotten so overgrown and big that I don’t think it’s getting enough light. I think it’s time to release it from its relatively confined existence and let it loose over some nearby, relatively more sun-drenched shrubs instead. Maybe that’ll do the trick… This is by far the most beautiful clematis I have, so I will do what I can to give it what it wants. Believe me – this is not one that I would like to see choked out of existence! But I really don’t want to move it in the mid-July drought…

A whole new level of Lovely, don't you think?

A whole new level of Lovely, don’t you think?

Finally, a visit to my friend Matthew’s stunning garden last weekend, inspired me to add to my daisy selection. Among his amazing and more exclusive treasures, he had beautiful African daisies, Enchianthus, Rudbeckias, and others whose names evade me. He said the African daisies return every year in his garden, so despite my vow to practically stay away from annuals (for the most part anyway – I made an early exception for a really interesting-looking Osteospermum), I picked a pretty orange one up. In the process, I found a few others I really should have left where I found them.  Where in the universe am I going to put them all? Annual or not, I have never managed to resist adorning my chaotic assembly with a black millet, and I couldn’t this year either. The little fuzzy, green heads of the Dianthus were far too cute to ignore. I think I have a thing for Dr. Seussian plants…  If I had room for a Truffula Tree, I would probably grow one… As for the yellow Rudbeckia – what convinced me was how it turns orange as it ages. I’m an absolute sucker for that rusty color, whether on flowers or on scrap steel…

New purchase, still in its pot - Rudbeckia 'Cheyenne spririt'. I found four of them looking awfully wilty at Lowes on Sunday night. There was nobody in sight to water them, so I grabbed the best looking one, and stuck the other three in their fountain display for a while, while I browsed. Hopefully they recovered somewhat - they looked pretty miserable. If not, someone else probably jumped for joy when they inventoried the clearance shelf the following day...

New purchase, still in its pot – Rudbeckia ‘Cheyenne spririt’. I found four of them looking awfully wilty at Lowes on Sunday night. There was nobody in sight to water them, so I grabbed the best looking one, and stuck the other three in their fountain display for a while, while I browsed. Hopefully they recovered somewhat – they looked pretty miserable. If not, someone else probably jumped for joy when they inventoried the clearance shelf the following day…

My African daisy! Here is to prodigious spreading of seeds all around! :)

My African daisy! Here is to prodigious spreading of seeds all around! 🙂

That black millet I can never stay away from - so cool!

That black millet I can never stay away from – so cool!

I had never seen this kind of Dianthus before - so very Seussian!

I had never seen this kind of Dianthus before – so very Seussian!

Osteospermum 'Whirlygig' - such an oddball! I love how the petals are pinched halfway out. Such an interesting flower!

Osteospermum ‘Whirlygig’ – such an oddball! I love how the petals are pinched halfway out. Such an interesting flower!

I like how the colors range from bright yellow to rust. But where to put it...?

I like how the colors range from bright yellow to rust. But where to put it…?

My favorite gardening buddy - Manneman TsoTso - affectionately named by my oldest son. Not sure what ninja adventure inspired that one...

Since I have showed a couple of other fuzzy beings today – here is a third one – my favorite gardening buddy – Manneman TsoTso – affectionately named by my oldest son. Not sure what ninja adventure inspired that one, but it fits him perfectly… Anyway, it should be obvious to all that taking care of a lawn is clearly not my thing.

I'll leave you with a gentle wish that he leaves the resident birds alone. Obviously, it is not for lack of food that he does it. He does wear a bell, but even that is not entirely foolproof.  Until next time - have a great month!

I’ll say my goodbyes with a gentle wish that he leaves the resident birds alone. Obviously, it is not for lack of food that he does it. He does wear a bell, but even that is not entirely foolproof. Until next time – have a great month!

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About annamadeit

Born and raised in Sweden, my aesthetics and outlook on life are strongly shaped by a culture rich in history and tradition. I care a great deal about environmental responsibility, and my aesthetic reflects the visually clean, functional practicality and sustainable solutions that are the hallmarks of modern Scandinavia. I was trained as an architect at the University of Cincinnati and as a color specialist at the Scandinavian Colour Institute in Stockholm. I'm obsessed with plants and gardens, and aim to take my skill set a step further by designing gardens as well as interiors. As someone so aptly said: " Architecture is the skin that separates the exterior from the interior". So true - you can't successfully focus on one without incorporating the other. I'm also an avid cook, and I love to ski. In addition, I put time and efforts into trying to rectify things that I feel are wrong in my immediate community. As you will see, The Creative Flux will touch on all these things, and more. For sure, it's all over the map, but then again - so am I! Welcome to my blog!
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32 Responses to Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – July 2013

  1. Alison says:

    Oh, I love that orange African daisy, how beautiful! I have a Clematis rooguchi too, out there somewhere, just planted this spring. I guess I’m not babying mine much, since I don’t even remember where I planted it. Such a sweet flower.

    • annamadeit says:

      Alison – if it multiplies, I will save some for you! Also, you will LOVE the Rooguchi! It seems a gentle soul, and right now mine needs a little help. Someone said an epsom salt solution to increase magnesium levels (its leaves are a little yellowed) and unfettering it from its screen should do it! Fingers crossed…

  2. Beautiful Lilium regale. That Cherry Brandy rudbeckia is fabulous! I had no idea they came in such deep colors. Your sweet kitty is a lovely end to a flowery post!

    • annamadeit says:

      Thanks Jane – I was just complaining to Ricki about how hard it is to photograph reds. The Cherry brandy somehow looks much pinker in the photos than they really are. I bet you it’s my camera skills – or lack thereof.

  3. Peter/Outlaw says:

    Love your Seussian dianthus! Osteospermum ‘Whirlygig’ and your Arum also fit nicely into that category. You’ve shown a lot of good garden surprises. Rudbeckia ‘Cherry Brandy’ is gorgeous! I must look for that one. My favorite rust colored offering is your four legged one! Happy GBBD!

  4. Never saw a Rudbeckia like that ‘Cherry Brandy’ – love it! Also that African Daisy!

    • annamadeit says:

      Yeah, I found it at the Hardy Plant Society’s spring sale a year ago. Instantly fell for it! I’m astounded it is as prolific as it is – it languished in a pot for most of a year before I found it a home. Perhaps it is gratitude… Anyway – it has won my heart!

  5. Linda coombs says:

    Lovely blooms all, that Clematis is special, I’ll be looking out for it ,even though they don’t care for my garden. Your ginger Tom reminds me of my dear old Campbell .

    • annamadeit says:

      Orange tabbies are wonderful, aren’t they? I think it would be hard to find a more laid-back cat! I think Rooguchi would look fantastic climbing on your cool fence!

  6. I like the variety in your garden. It’s given me some good ideas to look for when expanding mine!
    By the way, I am also not a lawn person. Can’t keep grass alive for anything. Probably because I just don’t care about it that much!

    • annamadeit says:

      Thanks Linnae – I suffer from a severe case of oneofeachitis – there is something in my garden for everyone! I’m totally with you on the lawn-thing… Although I like the green expanse it offers, I think I can achieve that effect with a different groundcover. A low-growing clover would be nice, stay green year-round, and the bees would no doubt love it! Plus, I wouldn’t have to mowe it (which obviously I don’t do often anyway)! 😉

  7. Dreamybee says:

    Hmmmm…I’ve had agapanthus go from purple to white too, so don’t start doubting yourself just yet! 🙂 I’ve never been able to figure out what makes them change though. I love your ‘Whirleygig’–I can see why you’d make an exception for that in your yard!

  8. Hanne Bente says:

    Great pictures you show both the flowers and your beautiful cat 🙂 Hanne Bente

  9. Ricki Grady says:

    As Lawrence Welk would say: Beautiful, Beautiful! I especially love the single Clematis blossom against all that green background.

  10. Scott Weber says:

    ‘Rooguchi’ is so super gorgeous…I’m always trying to find a spot to plant one 😉 Your kitty looks so sweet…give him a kiss for me 🙂

  11. Kris P says:

    I thought my ‘Cherry Brandy’ was overachieving until I saw yours! It’s an amazing plant – one of mine has bloomed almost continuously since last fall and the color is unmatched. I was surprised to see that Agapanthus are just getting started while mine are largely over the hill but that indicates how different our climates really are. I wish you a belated happy GBBD!

  12. Klausbernd says:

    What amazingly healthy plants! Great pictures.
    Have a fine evening
    Klausbernd

  13. willisjww says:

    So what is that green Dianthus? I looks very intriguing.

    • annamadeit says:

      Cute, isn’t it? It is called Dianthus barbatus ‘Green Trick’. I had no idea it existed, but ran into it in the garden section of our local grocery store. What a fun surprise!

  14. Janie says:

    I’m not sure what you called gangly but they are fabulous!

    • annamadeit says:

      Thanks, Janie! It’s a Cardoon – a kind of thistle which is a cousin of the artichoke. It gets pretty ratty looking eventually, but the bees are having orgies in its flowers so I leave it alone. I was thinking I might plant a Melianthus in front of it. It has fabulous blue foliage too, and is tall enough to isolate the Cardoon’s flowers and properly show them off, minus the tall, bare stems.

  15. WOOW….. your photos are amazing 🙂
    and do not miss…

    SATURDAY SHOW OFF

    it is FUN 🙂
    WELCOME
    Håkan ( The Roseman)

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