Friday, June 13, 2008

Good News

One of the estimators I have been entertaining lately paid a return visit this afternoon, to discuss the New Plan. I had drawn up a picture of my Dream Room, which includes a half-bath at the north end of the house. He checked out this and that and proclaimed my plan Good. Now we will see just how much money it will cost.

This is the back of the house. The Florida room is in the center, and it would go away. An added bonus of this amputation is the family room and kitchen will get more light. The new room would go on the left and be as wide as the gable on the right, but jut out deeper into the backyard, measuring 24' x 18'.

When I first went house hunting way back when, I said I did not want a well or a flat roof. I wound up with both. Last year I hooked up to city water (the outdoor faucets are still on the well). With this remodeling, the flat roof will be history as well. So, in a way, I was right.

Yesterday I moved some daylilies from the back fence to the south fence. These daylilies are supposed to be what I call tiger lilies and some people call ditch lilies. They grow tall along country roads and bloom a long time. I see them in other people's yards but I don't know where those plants come from because every time I bring some home from a nursery, they turn out to be not quite what I want. I planted these last year, and I can't remember if they even bloomed. In their new location, they will get more sun and rain, so hopefully will grow tall and strong and beautiful.

Today it rained again, but just enough to wet everything down.

Let's go for a walk around the yard:

Here we have the first blush of yarrow.

Butterflies like yarrow because of the flat surface. This variety comes in several colors.

And here is the first of the Stella d' Oro daylilies.

The ones at the shopping centers have come on strong, but mine are a little late, probably because they get less sun. Mine also don't bloom for very long. This year I am going to try to keep the blossoms coming, by daily dead-heading. (Does someone do that for the parking lot Stellas?)

The privat is filling the air with its almost-too-cloying fragrance.

The bees love these blossoms, which made yesterday's relocation of the daylilies, um, a challenge. No insects (or humans!) were injured, though. Well, except for one deer fly, but I killed him in self-defense.

Every year, some milkweed pops up in my front yard. Monarchs come to visit, but I have never found any eggs, caterpillars, or cocoons on the plants.

This year there are some volunteers in the backyard. Maybe the monarchs will like that location better.

I have been trying to capture the beautiful new growth on the barberry. This photo does not do it justice.

Other varieties are less subtle than mine. These are still luscious, especially when lit from behind by the setting sun.

What I am trying to show in this photo is how tall the yucca stalks are.

It's difficult to see, but the top of the yucca stalk is about three-fourths of the way up the asplenifolia. I don't think I fertilized this bed yet, so this must be a fighting-for-some-light growth.

The surviving Shasta daisies are doing well.

What makes daisies seem so cheerful and innocent?

And the roses are still hanging in there. The hot and humid days have been somewhat balanced by some fairly decent ones, so they haven't crumpled to the ground yet.

Hmmm. It just occurred to me that maybe I should try saving some of the petals. Do they hold fragrance? Could I use them in sachet or potpourri?

The pestemon is still in its beginning stages.

Last year I was impressed with the way it swept up against the fence. Hope we get a repeat performance.

Up close and personal, individual flowers show fascinating variations. This scabiosa has delicate stamens in the center.

Scabiosa bloom all summer long. The flowers are supported by nearly naked stiff stems, and appear to be just hanging in midair with no support.

The petals of the 'Jethro Tull' coreopsis are fluted.

Get it? Jethro Tull? Fluted? I guess you have to be (ahem) middle aged to understand.

No comments: