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Saturday, August 16, 2014

What's Blooming Now: Plus Critter Adventures on the Verge August 16, 2014

Today I am linking with-

Garden Blogger's Bloom Day hosted by Carol

Today's Flowers hosted by Denise

Saturday Show Off hosted by Hakan

Saturday's Critters hosted by Eileen

I Heart Macro hosted by Laura

Macro Monday 2 hosted by Gemma Wiseman and Mystical Magical Teacher

Blue Monday hosted by Smiling Sally

This week I'm trying to finish planting my cool season vegetables, I'm late since my deadline is supposed to be July 15 to get them planted in order that they will be big enough to withstand frost and make it through the winter.  But I'm trialing 4 varieties of Broccoli Raab this fall, which mature in 2-4 months and are not very hardy, so I hope to compare them. I also am planting some fall radishes, particularly the incredibly wonderful Round Black Spanish Radish, and a mix of fall radishes, all from Gourmet Seed, an Italian company.   I used part of a bed where Kale had been going to seed to plant them, only to find a few days later that a mole had come in and made numerous tunnels and mounds in my bed, nearly half of the bed, heaving seedlings out of the ground or burying them.

I retaliated with some repellant solution of a couple of tablespoons of Castor Oil per gallon water, with a squirt of dishwashing detergent and some Cayenne pepper for a little zing.   I will have to repeat since there is one mound recurring.   It works pretty well but is not a permanent solution.

I've also been trying to get the verges of my vegetable beds cleaned up for fall of excess grass, weeds, etc.; it is the strip too close to the deer/rabbit fence for the mower to reach, a lot of it had grass clippings piled up on it to keep down the weeds.

I started to find woolly bear cats (caterpillars) as I cut weeds and grass so had to go more carefully, apparently they particularly like verges.  Isabella tiger moth cat-

Orange woolly bear, possibly Virginia Tiger moth, Spilosoma virginica-

Yellow possibly also Virginia Tiger moth cat-

And last year when I was clearing my beds of spent radish stalks with seedpods, I threw some over the fence to deal with "tomorrow," resulting in a nice unplanned row of radishes, one the size of a softball-

I was pulling out some Canadian Thistle, a terrible weed very hard to eradicate, and found a couple of miniscule 1/8" / 3mm larval forms of a biological control, the Tortoise Thistle Beetle, Cassida rubiginosa, with spiny edges to repel predators-

Here is a link to an image of the cute adult beetle, which has an appearance reminescent of a tortoise, hence the name.  It is still very tiny and moves fast so I haven't yet seen one, photo taken from Bug Guide.

I admire the tiny larvae for trying to help me with the thistles, though they don't kill the plant or keep them from going to seed.  The smaller larvae have an 'adorable' habit of hiding under some dried "frass"-

Meanwhile for What's Blooming Now in the flower garden,  my Rose of Sharon, Minerva, is blooming for perhaps the first time-

A purple Gladiola-

A peachy Dahlia-

Pink and peach Dahlias-

Zephirine Drouhin                                                       Awakening
Dublin Bay                                                                  Cardoon

Part of a red table runner quilt from the fair-                                            Anemone japonica                                                   

A portion of the quilt I have been using for squares-

We had temperatures in the high 90's, ~37ÂșC for a few days but then had some thunderstorms
and cooler weather.   How is summer treating you?    -Hannah

©Weeding on the Wild Side, all rights reserved.    I enjoy reading your comments and like to return your visit, but I am unable to comment if restricted to google+, so will comment here instead, or can email you a comment if a link is provided.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Continuing Bloom: Containers Plus August 9, 2014

The summer doldrums continue, but so do the flowers blooming.  Today I am linking with-

Today's Flowers hosted by Denise

Saturday's Critters hosted by Eileen

I Heart Macro hosted by Laura

Macro Monday 2 hosted by Gemma Wiseman and Magical Mystical Teacher

Blue Monday hosted by Smiling Sally

My container garden on my deck is blooming dreamily, this year I felt like growing the plants from seed instead of buying the usual pansies, Calibrachoa, or Petunias.  This is Browallia speciosa and 'Alaska' Nasturtiums-

Petunia exserta, Browallia speciosa, and Ageratum 'Blue Diamond'-

Ageratum 'Blue Diamond and Heliopsis helianthoides var. scabra 'Sunburst'-

Nasturtiums 'Alaska', small Salvia lyrata, Browallia not yet blooming-

So vote for one if you like.

From my trip to the fair, another quilt square-

And a really cute little rooster looking strangely startled, blue table covers-

From my trip to the Seattle Aquarium, some giant clams, with wonderful mantles that look almost like flowers, nearly closed in the first photo so you can see the shell, the blue inhalant aperture leads to the gill chamber where food is collected from the water-

Mantle open, inhalant siphon on left, side view of tubular exhalant siphon or aperture to the right in the center lengthwise area-

With some anemones, corals, fish, similar smaller blue clam to bottom right-

One of those old faithful perennials, Phlox paniculata, pink, I added about 4 more, different colors, last year.-

My ground is like concrete, the PNW is in the dry season and I had company and trips so didn't get my watering done.   A couple of my new non-established plants probably didn't make it.   How is the heat and drought of summer affecting you?      Hannah

or cameras are macro

©Weeding on the Wild Side, all rights reserved.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Continuing Bloom, Miscellaneous Perennials August 3, 2014

Welcome!   Today I am linking with-

Today's Flowers hosted by Denise

Macro Monday 2 hosted by Gemma Wiseman

I Heart Macro hosted by Laura

Blue Monday hosted by Smiling Sally

We seem to be in the doldrums of summer, so off to the local county fair running now, here is a Silkie with a blue band holding in her pompom head-feathers.  No petting allowed!   Isn't she tempting?

One square of a quilt, I'm glad someone has the patience to do this-

A few roses are getting a second wind, daylilies are almost over, but some perennials are popping up here and there.  Crocosmia 'Montbretia' which stays short so can flop with impunity and still impress-

Knautia 'Thunder and Lightning'-

Coreopsis 'Sunburst' coming into its own-

Many-toned Dahlia increasing in bloom, with Browallia underfoot-

A gladiolus in a screaming magenta to match the Knautia-

Hosta, small-leaved but a good bloomer-

Borage, self-sown, fuzzy, and beloved of the bees-

A very full and effective border plant, Oregano-

What have you found at your local fair?   Hannah

                                                       or cameras are macro

©Weeding on the Wild Side, all rights reserved.