Wednesday, July 16, 2014

What's New in My July Garden?

My new mophead hydrangea, Hydrangea macrophylla 'Perfection', was in bloom when I returned from England.  H.H. did a great job watering the plants while I was settling my mother's affairs. It was strange going back to my homeland when she wasn't there, but I found the strength to do it. Going back will not be so difficult next time. Unfortunately, H.H. must have watered the weeds, too, because they were prolific. The daily down-pouring of rain this last week hasn't helped, nor the fact that we didn't have time to mulch before I left. At last, now I have finished mulching, just in time for Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day, which Carole at May Dreams Gardens hosts on the 15th of each month.

It is difficult to post new pictures each year when you have been blogging for a long time, but fortunately gardens change/evolve and there is always something fresh to see. In the shade garden the false hydrangea vine bloomed for the first time. The flowers are fading now, but you can see the delicate tracing of their white petals.

Schizophragma 'Moonlight' False hydrangea vine.

Near the swing, the rain knocked down the hostas in the large hosta bed that we call Connie's garden. I love this circle of hostas more each year.

Before leaving the shade garden through the arbor into the cottage garden, I stop to admire the white hydrangea, 'Pinky Winky', that has doubled in size this year. Its white blooms are beginning to turn to pink, and by fall they will be almost red.

White lacecap hydrangea at the end of the fence.

Lacecap Hydrangea 'Pinky Winky' turning pink

The cottage garden looks different this year because I removed all the echinacea when it was infected with yellow asters disease. I replaced it with cleome and started some monarda which I hope will fill out over the next several years. But the garden just doesn't look the same without the purple cone flower.

 The dusky-pink bells of the campanula are lovely. This plant spreads, but is easy to pull out when it becomes too bold.


There is a lot of white in the cottage garden this year, and I'm glad for the splash of red from the crocosmia near the pond.

The bright red Crocosmia 'Lucifer,' Montbretia makes a statement.

A new addition to the pond is the lotus plant which we bought for its enormous leaves. Our pond is in full sun and we look for ways to add shade. The flower is fabulous so I am hoping it will bloom this year.

Nelumbo nucifera is commonly called sacred lotus

Not many of the annuals I grow from seed were successful this year, but the snapdragons are putting on a fine show in the new addition to the cottage garden.

Snapdragon 'Cinderella Mix'

My favorite clematis has climbed over the arbor we installed last year at the entrance to the kitchen garden.

Clematis 'Tie Dye'

The perennial border that we call 'The Obedience Garden' is fuller than ever this year. The pink phlox are in bloom at one end and the red monarda at the other.

The Obedience Garden

I've had so many disappointments in the kitchen garden this year mainly due to the destructive rabbit who lives under the potting shed. He ate every single red beet and two types of Swiss chard when they first germinated, despite H.H.'s best efforts with deterrent. I was in England at that time. So there will be no pickled beets to enjoy next winter.

New this year, I planted borage for the blue flowers to attract pollinators.

Borago officinalis Borage planted in the nearest raised bed in this picture.

Do you see the colorful tin sculpture of a bird house in the picture above. I added this whimsical piece to my garden last year. A bluebird has taken up residence.

The bluebird waits patiently, on top of the shed, for me to leave the kitchen garden.

My favorite bloom in the kitchen garden is the blossom on the new (to me) variety of bush bean. Such delicate colored petals.

Provider Bush Bean

My garden is continually changing ...
A garden shouldn't just bloom and look pretty, it should develop like the rest of life. Otherwise it, and we, live only to be spaded under.  Emma L. Roth-Schwartz
Happy Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day,
Pamela x

Tea in the garden.

~~ I love reading your comments. I hope you leave one so I’ll know you visited!
I look forward to visiting your blog in return.


  1. Everything looks so lush and beautiful in the rain! Love the clematis, it's such an intense colour. I remember you posting about the rabbit before and I thought it was cute... not so cute when it eats all your produce though. Don't they know they're meant to stick to carrots?? Hope that bluebird is better behaved!

  2. Oh, yes. And he ate all the carrots, too. P. x

  3. That clematis sure looks happy! I had a hard time starting stuff from seed this year too, even the ones I started indoors in early spring. I swear they seemed to sense that it was just miserable outside! Your hydrangeas are lovely. I hesitate to plant any here because of our large deer population. Your 'Tea in the Garden" picture reminds me of being a little girl playing tea party with my grandmother in her garden! She had a table and chairs very similar.

  4. Hi Pam, I'm going to have to come back later to read your post more carefully but I wanted to say the photos are delightful! I feel the same way about posting pictures of the same things as other years....but you are quite right...nothing is ever the same two years in a row! xx

  5. Clem. Tie Dye is beautiful over the white arbor! We too have a rabbit problem this year. never before had rabbits in the garden but this year every now and then there are two eating buds, strawberries and so on. it is a real nuissance.

  6. only just learning to recognise Monarda. A spectacuarly beautiful flower. Well able to take the place of the Echinacea?

  7. I hope so, Diana. It is native. It is, however, prone to powdery mildew so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the one I bought is resistant -- so they say. P. x

  8. What a spectacular sight Clematis Tie Dye is over that white arbour and fence. Great choice of plant to grow there Pam.
    glad to read your HH managed his watering duties whilst you were away. I hate leaving watering duties to others, they don't often do such a great job.
    I replaced Echinacea with Monarda a couple of years back and although it suffers a bit with powdery mildew, I find a good mulch helps keep it to a minimum.

  9. I like lotus flowers too and hope you get your blooms. I agree, it is difficult to show something different every year. Plants grow and change, but so much stays the same. At least you have a large garden. My Monarda has not gotten powdery mildew in all these years. Phlox gets it bad each year though.

  10. I always love seeing your garden, Pam; it is always so pretty! Your pink Campanula is gorgeous, and I love your crocosmia there. So sad about the bunny and your kitchen garden! We have bunnies, but our veggie garden is pretty well fenced in (knock-on-wood). They have been getting some of my flowers, though. Your lotus looks amazing!

  11. What a beautiful garden! So wonderful! I love your colorful garden. The pink hydrangea is so stunning, I only have a blue version hydrangea. Thanks for sharing the beauty from your garden.

  12. Beautiful, as always. I do love the lacecap hydrangea with its pink blush, so pretty, and the clematis Tye Die is such a gorgeous colour.

  13. Such a romantic looking garden with your white picket fencing and every inch teeming with gorgeousness x

  14. Sorry to hear about your mother Pam. Your garden looks tremendous despite the missing beets. My veggie garden always has a plant or two that didn't work each year - I figure that's just part of the bargain. There's usually some other plant that makes up for the loss.

  15. Your July garden is looking sensational Pam. We have a different form of the Pinky Winky Hydrangea, ours is a paniculata form.-, I actually have a preference for Lace caps.

  16. Hi Pam. You were asking me if we could hear the creek from our little 'serenity deck'. It doesn't really make any noise near us, it's kind of a plain little creek that has slippery banks (I'd love to get a canoe into it, but not sure where I could). The idea is more about looking at the creek bank it's self than the actual creek! There's lot of bird and little animals down there! I'm going to start looking for turtles, because there is a group studying them on the creek and looking for 'sightings' of two specific kinds...the Snapping Turtle and the Blandings Turtle!

  17. Hugs to you Pam as you made the difficult journey home. But your garden bloomed with love for you on your return. Sorry to hear about your veg garden. I have to cover mine against deer and rabbit with netting. This year the deer ate the tops of the beets and carrots and 2 tomatoes...the rabbits seem to like the clover better than the veggies thankfully!

  18. Even though your left hubby in charge back home, I'm sure you were worried about your garden. I always worry about watering, because depending on rain around here is a very iffy proposition. But it sounds like all went well except for the beets. I guess you'll have to buy your beets this time!