Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Summer Has Officially Arrived!

I could not have picked a better morning to welcome in the start
of summer. We were greeted with low humidity and comfortable
temperatures in the high 70's to 80's. It is indeed official, with
the Northern hemisphere experiencing Summer Solstice at
12:24 am EDT. 

We do note from here, the days will start getting shorter, but no
we'll enjoy the fact today is the longest day of the year! How 
about a couple fun facts for those scientifically inclined. The 
Arctic Circle has 24 hours of daylight. This only occurs on June
Solstice for those areas within the Arctic Circle. It won't be the 
hottest day of the year as you might think, it takes time for the 
oceans and landmasses to warm up. June Solstice is celebrated
around the world. In different cultures, many ritual customs
will occur to honor the Sun. Many festivals and events will
be going on to celebrate nature and new beginnings. My focus
is it's a beautiful warm day and I can be outside! That makes
me happy! 
Care to join me? Grab a cup of tea, or a glass of wine and let's
look at the flowering annuals today.

"Summertime is always the best of what
might be."
                       -Charles Bowden

Summer days of warmth and sunshine are boons to our flowers
and vegetables. Overnight we're seeing explosions of color and
growth. It's still possible to add flowers to your yard and reap 
the benefits of seasonal happy. Annuals are perfect for the non-
gardener. The local garden centers and big box stores still have
quite a variety of bedding plants that will give your yard and
containers instant color.

Annuals, unlike perennials, are temporary additions. They grow
quickly but live only one season and they like it warm. They don't
tolerate the cold. There are sun and shade loving varieties, so be
aware of location when you're making your purchases.

There are many ways to use annual flowers to enhance your yard.
Add summer color lasting the entire season to empty spaces in a 
area that just has shrubs. Perhaps you have a rock garden, a pond 
or other water feature that need clusters of color to balance that 
area. Combine annuals and green plants/vines in containers and 
hanging baskets and create garden art by using spray painted 
chairs, old bicycles with baskets etc. etc. Vintage garden junk 
decorated with flowers is fun and certainly create conversation 
when your having that outdoor party. With the 4th of July 
coming up, how about creating a red, white and blue arrangement
with a few flags.

I hope I've given you a some enjoyment or at least a little pause in
your day with my post this week.
Thank you, I appreciate you stopping by!
Visit me on Instagram dianarn2627

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Perennial Happy

Early June is a favorite time, loaded with lots of activity in our 
yards and gardens. It is also national Perennial Gardening Month. 
Have you visited your local gardening centers and nurseries? 
They are filled and overflowing with flowers and plants of all 
shapes and sizes. Perennial plants offer a wide range of blossoms
with different textures, varying bloom times and a rainbow of
colors. I want to share some perennial favorites from my garden.

June will be welcoming summer in a couple weeks and whether 
you chose to plant some perennial seeds or waited to plant 
individual containers of a larger size, you're suddenly seeing lush 
leafy growth and beautiful blooms.

For your  container perennials, dig your hole a little wider than
your pot with the depth being the size of the container. Loosen
the roots and spread them out gently. Fill in with some good
composted soil, add a granular fertilizer and water well. Mulch
well and consider the size and height of your plant as you may 
need to stake and hoop them for support. Examples would
include delphiniums, hollyhocks and peonies. Also be aware 
of sun needs for your plant. This is vital. 

Bare-root perennials are usually less expensive than the container
variety but with a little more cost than seeds. You're getting
just the plant root. You'll find them in early spring packed in
peat moss or other such material. Mail-order is an easy way
to find just what your looking for with detailed instructions.
Remember to soak the roots in water before planting them.

Perennials will reward you year after year if you are careful to
maintain properly. They grow bigger and better each year. Only
later as they begin to spread and crowd themselves will you have 
to think about dividing your plants. We'll look at that later.

If you like a cutting garden you'll find the perennial flowers lend
themselves to becoming beautiful bouquets and some offer a
wonderful pleasing fragrance as well. Think about roses, yarrow,
lavender, dianthus, lily-of-the-valley, just to name a few. Nothing
is more pleasing than stepping into your garden and enjoying 
their scents.

I hope your enjoying your June and all the beauty of perennial

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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Garden Spot

This morning presented itself a little differently... cool and 
overcast, possibly a few light showers, and wind from the 
north/northeast. I thought this day still held possibilities to
work my garden/landscape spaces. Yesterday was picture 
perfect and I certainly reaped the benefits of gardening for 
mental health. I expected the same for today...nope didn't 
happen! So after a walk, after FaceTime with Ben (son), 
Ethan (grandson), and Sam (the Pug), after lighthouse-
keeping duties, I planned an afternoon for picture editing 
and my blog. Here I sit gazing out the window looking for 
a way to be outside. 

Procrastination is, hands down, our 
favorite form of self-sabotage.
                            -Alyce P. Cornyn-Selby

Moving on...

When all your garden/landscape chores are done for the day, 
do you take the time later to wander around your outdoor 
space? Do you appreciate the effort? Do you admire the 
beauty you've created?

How lovely the silence of growing things.
                                   -author unknown

A garden/flower/landscaped part of your yard is a commitment;
it's physical, expensive, challenging and requires dedicated time.

Motivation drives us to get outdoors, pick up that piece of
garden equipment and work, and we all have our reasons 
for sprucing up the yard or putting in a garden. 

And whether you're a seasoned gardener or a non-gardener
enjoying the fruits of your labor has its reward. Come-on a 
little smile, it feels sooo good!!!

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Thursday, June 1, 2017

June Has Arrived

Keep Calm and Smell Lavender,
                                     ~Diana M.

I was hesitant to pull out my very old Lavender plants. Some
of them have been there at least 10 years. They seemed spent 
to me and I was ready for new growth and change. I'm so
glad I did. The blooms were amazing this morning. I cut for
two bouquets and the aroma...musky, soft with sweet floral 
undertones. Crushing a few buds in my fingers, I rubbed
the area under my nose to keep a lingering scent. It doesn't
take much to be happy for a bit. 

Lavender has been around centuries. A wonderful Mediterranean
plant used for its medicinal and beauty applications. More than
ever Lavender finds itself useful in our homes. There are more 
than enough reasons to include several Lavender plants in your
garden or container planting.

 It is the month of June,
The month of leaves and roses,
When pleasant sights salute the eyes,
And pleasant scents the noses. 
~N.P. Willis

Lavender is a hardy perennial. Loves the sunshine and dry soil.
There are several varieties and over time you will find your
favorites. Do a little reading before you buy. It will attract the
pollinators like the bees and butterflies, and you'll find you are
attracted to your lavender as well. For a stress-reliever, head
out to visit your Lavender... touching and smelling, a lot. At
some point when you are ready for some craft delight, save the 
flowers. Cut the stems long, hang to dry then fill a jar or plastic
bag with the dried blooms. I'll add a few drops of essential oil
of Lavender to a cotton ball and drop it in the jar. This will keep
for a very long time. You can then fill a little muslin bag with your
scented herbs. They are wonderful as gifts. 

My personal favorite is the Spanish or French Lavender depending 
on the variety. It remind me of a tiny pineapple but I find it very
appealing in the garden.

I hope you've enjoyed our Lavender visit and be tempted to
try a plant in your garden or container. I guarantee you'll
find a bit of happiness when you do....

Lavender will fill all your senses,
a flower for the soul.                                    ~Diana M.

Thanks for stopping by.

 Visit me on Instagram  dianarn2627