Sunday, June 01, 2008

I Was Right

The mystery plant is keys of heaven. I planted three of them several years ago, and two were hiding in the spreading bee balm. The third is looking wilted, and I have no idea why. The 1.25" of rain Friday night didn't help.

I moved most of the bee balm today. Three little plants that had turned into three large clumps are now a dozen small clumps along the fence. I left a little bee balm around the keys of heaven, just in case that is why the rabbits haven't eaten it (yet).

Yesterday I started listing all the plants/shrubs/trees I have in my yard (see sidebar) and realized just how much I have planted over the years that has not survived. The rabbits do a fair share of damage, but sometimes things just don't make it through the winter around here. Dry summers and too much shade may be factors as well.

There is an incredible bird racket this afternoon. Some fledgling starlings are learning to fly. Yesterday a litter of young squirrels were playing follow the leader in the front yard - six of them! And last night, ducks were roosting on the house.

We came back from walking the dog and there were ducks on my roof!

And I think I forgot to mention that a week or two ago, I spotted a woodchuck scurrying into the culvert under a neighbor's driveway. I'm glad some of the creatures of the wild can coexist with us two-leggeds.

Besides moving bee balm, yesterday I moved the chives, after clearing out the bed formerly known as the strawberry pyramid.

I'm not sure why, but after several successful years, the strawberries disappeared. Probably a severe winter and lack of diligence on my part (I forgot to cover them with straw.)

Strawberry pyramids are okay, but I decided to try using this area for herbs instead. Besides the chives, in one quadrant I planted some cilantro, parsley, and sweet basil from seed. If they sprout, I'll make successive plantings in the other three-fourths.

I hope rhubarb likes chives and herbs.

The honeysuckle vines are putting out the welcome mat for hummingbirds, but I haven't seen any yet.

I don't know why the yellow is so much more robust than the yellow. Might be a shade thing, but both of them will get plenty of sun this year.

Traveling around the yard, we see that it is almost showtime for the climbing rose...

... while it looks like curtains for these peonies...

... but not this one, a later variety.

And - surprise! - Betty Corning is blooming.

I planted two of these clematis two years ago, and have been disappointed with their performance. But I think they are going to make up for it this year. Both plants are tall and bushy. Like they say, first year sleep, second year creep, third year leap!

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