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Monday, May 23, 2016

Clear Vision In A Vase On Monday May 23, 2016

Welcome to my blog, May is living up to all expectations for glorious flowering, indeed many flowers are 2-3 weeks early, like the roses.  So the easiest flowers to choose today for my Monday vase for the addictive meme, with the challenge to find flowers in your garden to plonk into a vase, hosted by Cathy of Rambling in the Garden, are of course roses.  15 or so years ago I collected a lot of Old Garden Roses (OGRs), from various sellers of own-root roses, including the fabulous Sequoia Nursery owned by Ralph Moore, hybridizer as well, who ran his nursery until over 100 years of age, and who had an amazing variety.  I also collected a lot of minis when Justice Roses went out of business.  I'm sad to say that I lost most of the mini's, I think rabbits ate many of them down to nubs in the winter.  For a while they made a delightful miniature rose garden.

Today I am linking with-

Today's flowers hosted by Denise

In a Vase on Monday hosted by Cathy

Macro Monday 2 hosted by Gemma and Mystical Magical Teacher

For my first vase I am using a newer rose, the very fragrant Scentimental, striped roses were another collection of mine.  Also newer Dublin Bay, a gorgeous deep red climber which also lasts a long time on the plant or in a vase but mine has no fragrance.  It was a slow grower but is big now.  Also in the vase is an OGR, Reve d'or, which gets paler as it ages.  The vase is Delft, not very visible, from a garage sale-


Reve d'Or outdid herself this year-

My second vase includes a red Rhododendron, another major May-blooming species.  The red ones bloom last and are not as vigorous for some reason, but are also planted in poor shady locations. The vase is one passed on from my mother-in-law, with its own rose decorations.   Also in the vase are the fragrant OGR Hybrid Perpetual Baronne Prevost- the larger bloom with the quartered pattern, and the very prolific but rather short-lived in a vase Old Tea Monsieur Tillier, which lives up to its reputation of being very tough flourishing in spite of being planted on our inhospitable front bank-

Another unbelievably vigorous and productive bloomer is Madame Plantier, an Alba hybrid.  She was hard to deal with but The Motorcyclist built me a large trellis enclosure for her with some cut tree branches that does well to hold the canes up.

Another tough rose that manages to flourish on my unwatered front bank is the OGR Rambler Celine Forestier, not only covered with small flowers now but one that will repeat bloom occasionally all the way to fall.  The buds start out a lovely peach color and fade to white-

 Here in a charming little vase from the thrift store-

The vase makes me think of weddings, so I am including a photo of my son when he was in my sister's wedding at the age of 5, I made his vest, bow tie and short pants-

He is now a computer programmer and has 5 kids ages 4-13.

Well, in closing I have to say that I've learned the hard way that the blue light of computer screens and TV's has a detrimental effect on the back of the eye, and have developed some problems related to Age Related Macular Degeneration, so an obvious thing I can do to help slow down or stop this process is to do less on my computer, though I try to use UVEX golden yellow glasses over my reading glasses to filter out the blue light, when I remember to use them. Anyway the result is that I am going to drop out of regular participation in the weekly blogging world, though it has been fun to have a creative outlet, and meet so many other fun bloggers.  To use my time otherwise I'm trying to get back into regularly playing my keyboard and even hopefully get better as an accompanist.  My paternal grandmother Edith was my childhood inspiration, she was a concert caliber performer of Chopin and Beethoven music, which I got to enjoy as a child when she visited.  She was my inspiration to play the piano.  She was also a church organist and taught music lessons, in fact she was walking home from her bus stop from teaching a lesson on the last day of her life when she fell and had a stroke and passed on at around 81, what a way to go.  She is probably making beautiful music in Heaven, one of my fond memories is playing my violin with her to the song, Jerusalem, the Holy City.  So have fun out there in blogging world, I appreciate all of you who have followed me and faithfully visited and commented here, I will miss you, and perhaps come back to write occasionally.   -Hannah

©Weeding on the Wild Side, all rights reserved.   I enjoy reading your comments, and will visit your blog and leave comments there if possible, but I am not able to do so if google + is the only option.  I would like to return your visit so leave an URL to your blog or email address.  If you have trouble leaving a comment, you can let me know or comment at my email address-

Monday, May 16, 2016

Perks of Procrastination, May 16, 2016

It seems procrastination can have some perks.  Last summer I put my Amaryllis (Hippeastrum) in a sunnier place than usual and it surprised me with some very big strapping leaves.  I brought it indoors for the winter but left it by my south-facing sliding glass door and forgot about it until after Christmas, so it got put in the dark late.  But I did get it out and it rewarded me with 2 bloom stalks instead of one.  So for In A Vase On Monday, hosted by Cathy who challenges us to find flowers to decorate our homes, I posed it behind a Christmas cactus also with unseaonably late second blooms-

I also posed a pair from my duck collection and a Chinese boat I made with them, as though floating in the arms of the plants.

The Amaryllis is very Christmasy, but there was a lot going on then anyway.  It is fun to have it bloom now.

Another unusual bloom is from one of 5 Streptocarpus plants I actually grew from seed this year.  The seeds were very tiny, pelleted, and I was amazed that they actually sprouted, minute little green specks that grew and eventually all got transplanted into their own pots.  I was amazed to see a bloom already on one, and it proceeded to have one flower, which was fading when two more bloomed-

I like the green glow in the throat of the blooms.  A couple more of the 5 plants are also sending up a bud.  It will be interesting to see what the other flowers look like.

And now for a vase of roses from my group of once-blooming Gallica roses, Leda damask-

Tuscany Superb-

And Belle de Crecy-

So now for my actual Monday vase, Gallicas with a magenta iris-

It seems the Gallicas have rather floppy and uncooperative stems, thus this petulant pose-

A couple of other irises in the general magenta category-


For Garden Blogger's Bloom Day, visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens to see what is blooming around the world.  Here the roses and irises are a couple of weeks early, and the Rhododendrons, Geums, Geraniums, Columbines, and Calla lilies are blooming.  Spring bulbs are long gone, as well as the fruit trees.

And from the plant section that earns their keep, the hard-working bunch, are some Fava plants blooming and hopefully forming some nice pods, as well as some peas.  I planted some in February then  filled in some more in March, supported with tomato cages and bamboo-

I'm also linking today with- 

Today's Flowers hosted by Denise

Macro Monday 2 hosted by Gemma and Mystical Magical Teacher

Are any surprise flowers blooming for you today?   -Hannah

Monday, May 9, 2016

Everything's Coming Up Roses, May 9, 2016

Everything seems to be bursting into bloom at the same time, those fabulous May flowers.

Today I am linking with-

Today's flowers hosted by Denise

In a Vase on Monday hosted by Cathy
Macro Monday 2 hosted by Gemma and Mystical Magical Teacher

I Heart Macro hosted by Laura

My self-proclaimed Queen of my rose garden, Zephirine Drouhin, was first to bloom as usual, and soon covered herself with flowers-

So for my first vase for In A Vase On Monday, finding some lovely flowers to put in a vase, I had to use some Zephirine Drouhin and the matching Rhododendron-

This Rhododendron is a remarkable one, instead of the usual rounded or tree form, it makes a large triangle blooming all the way to the ground-

The many Rhododendrons were all original and already large when we bought the house 22 years ago. I enjoy trying to prune the centers of some that are suitable to interesting interiors like this one-

Irises are also blooming up a storm, especially the Siberian irises with their exuberance-

I'm amazed by the fancy patterns below the throats of the Siberian irises-

So a second vase features some older yellow and white irises and some Siberian purple irises, and a red-purple Rhododendron-

Champney's Pink Cluster is overwhelming its trellis which is tall enough to walk under-

But I got a shock when I looked at the tree next to the bed and saw many pink roses high up in the branches more than 20' off the ground, apparently Cecile Brunner is a tougher rose than I imagined, you can see Champney's Pink Cluster's trellis down to the left-

Roses used to be much later bloomers than this, I hope your Spring season is also filled with flowers.


©Weeding on the Wild Side, all rights reserved.   I enjoy reading your comments, and will visit your blog and leave comments there if possible, but I am not able to do so if google + is the only option.  If you have problems commenting, I would like to return your visit so I would enjoy hearing your comments through my email-

Monday, May 2, 2016

May Flowers Big and Small May 2, 2016

Today I am linking with-

Today's Flowers hosted by Denise

Macro Monday 2 hosted by Gemma and Mystical Magical Teacher

In a Vase on Monday hosted by Cathy

I Heart Macro hosted by Laura

When photographing my Japanese Maples for Foliage Follow-up last month, I took notice of their tiny flowers, which I usually overlook.

I even cut some flowers and foliage, which make an unseasonable fall impression-

The flowers are now forming seed pods, and the formerly orange-tinged Amber Ghost has become a paler shade of white.

Adding to my list of flowering carpets, a favorite little lawn flower is Bellis perennis, which I obtained by digging up a few from a parking lot soon to be paved.

It looks pretty in the lawn where it has to fight with the grasses-

 But does even better on the inhospitable gravel driveway where it shines for its drought tolerance-

Another carpet that basically only flowers a little in spring, but is a marvelously tough ground cover for dry shade and spreads wonderfully, always looking neat, is hardy Geranium macrorrhizum-

All this came from a single plant that spread all by itself, under a Bigleaf Maple!  Never gets watered through our dry season!  It will not do as well in sun.

And now for my Monday vase, answering Cathy's challenge to find flowers for a vase to enjoy, my Lily of the Valleys have started to bloom, and smell wonderful, so I couldn't resist plonking some in a vase with some remaining Forget-Me-Nots and a few of those rascally Herb Roberts.

I also, while out weeding every day, notice some very tiny "weed" flowers, which have a mesmerizing effect on me and compelled me to make a tiny vase, compared also with the larger tame version of the Forget-Me-Nots.  Some members of the Borage family have mystical powers to spread themselves far and wide.

The plate in this photo is from my original china my parents gave me when I got married, It is Lenox 'Melissa'.  My father's grandmother was a Lenox, but the business was run by male members of the family so was not part of his inheritance.  Lenox is my father's middle name.  A Yankee from New Jersey married a Southern belle from South Carolina, my mother, imagine that.  But the strange part is that both of their fathers were born in South Carolina.

The tiny white flowers tend to be highly invasive and make a tiny ground cover fine in the grass but seem to threaten some of my plants in the garden-

 The tiny flashes of deep blue are pretty, I haven't noticed any bad effects from this one, not as vigorous or invasive in the lawn-

A comparison of the tiny wild Forget-Me-Nots with the regular ones,

And regular FMN on the lower left compared with the slightly smaller and less varied in color flowers of another famous Borage family flower, Brunnera, which is very well-behaved but can self-sow-

FMN can make quite a flowering carpet,  which can actually act to slow down other weeds for a while in spring-
 but eventually turns into a mildewed mess here, and the tiny seed pods have a sticky quality from tiny hairs that cling to clothes and gloves, so this year I am waging full scale war on them and bagging all the plants and flowers I can find in hopes there won't be many next year.

Another extremely invasive flowering carpet is Herb Robert, though I have to say it is known for being a medicinal herb and also can suppress other weeds very well with its dense growth and perhaps a little allelopathy thrown in, so it can transform some weedy areas of my 2 acres into this-

And has very cute little flowers-

  I hope you have made fewer mistakes than I have in planting invasive plants out of ignorance.   What plants have become problems for you?    -Hannah