In keeping with yesterday’s post about the veggie garden, here are some pictures of the progress we are making in some of the flower beds. Four years’ neglect of most of the spaces has resulted in hardened, depleted soils and the loss of many bulbs and tubers. It is taking a lot of effort to weed, replant, replace and renew these beds. The heaviest digging is being done by Grant, as he has more leverage and strength. The trees are overgrown, too — a post for later this week, I think… Like yesterdays’ post, I wrote this earlier and scheduled it for publication on Tuesday. This way, I hope you won’t be overwhelmed by too much all at once. Enjoy!

I am not going to give before and after shots, there are a series of the front of the house and various locations around the garden on the page A Garden View under the About and Welcome tab. And of course, in the categories “garden” and “Gardens and Life.” Here are a few recent shots of the best blooms!

This rose blooms sporadically — it will benefit from the improved soil when we are done with the beds later this month. Meantime, it is not blooming at the moment, so I grabbed one from a month ago. Note the contrast between the white outside of the flower petals and the brilliant red inside. I love this rose. No idea what its name is, I call it “Lois’ Rose” in honor of the friend and neighbor who died 6 months after we moved in. Her husband transplanted it from their yard to ours.

June 15, Rose by the front door

The red poppies are now beginning to bloom next to the rose above. It’s a warmer red, and the deep black center makes it seem to explode visually.

Red Poppy

When we first moved in, I planted feverfew next to the fish pond which no longer has fish and will be the subject of a separate post later this month once we have rescued it from the weeds… Since that time 12 years ago, the feverfew has wandered from that location to various areas. Each year, I hope to find the feverfew, but don’t know where to expect it! This year, it found its way into several pots. This beautiful stand of it is in an old rectangular box that was lacking other vegetation.


The Edelweiss which is settling into its home, but still needs some companion alpine friends.


I bought this Korean dogwood (see the points on the ends of the petals?) many years ago. It languished in one location, and this year grew. At the same time the viburnum “snowball bush” next to it grew! I took this picture before we trimmed back the viburnum yesterday. All the flowers are facing away from the path and toward the sun, so this shot required some maneuvering.

Korean Dogwood

My mother in law gave me a small start of this 11 or 12 years ago… warned me it would spread… and so it does. It has spilled out of the large planter and into the lawn. One of our tasks this summer is to identify how far it (and a couple of other invasive groundcovers that arrived from who-knows-where) has gone and set up perimeters to contain it. I love that bright spot of sunshine in the lawn, though!


These are chestnut flowers. They are gorgeous from afar, like little feathers above the glossy green leaves. Up close they look like a cascade of cream-colored fireworks. Unfortunately my ipad doesn’t do the up-close very well. But you can see why I prize these amazing flowers, thousands of them, even though I am clearly allergic to the pollen!

Chestnut blooms

Another gift from my mother in law, this is a single spike of the crocosmia “Lucifer” so named for its amazing, fiery blooms. I also have native orange crocosmia in the back, but that isn’t blooming yet…

crocosmia "Lucifer"

Other flowers and garden parts (finally) doing well. Some of the dahlias survived. Some of the other roses. Many types of succulents. Some of the ground covers under the medlar. Strawberries, ornamental maple, and a rose germander.

Can you spot them in the larger views below? (My apologies, the pictures didn’t get loaded in time to post, they are being loaded at 4:45 Tuesday)

This is a different red poppy from the one above, but in the same location.

red poppy with white stamens near front door

looking toward front door from driveway

better view of crocosmia

This last bed should have had nine plants, but the six that have survived (once the weeds were removed) look healthy enough. I can hardly wait for them to bloom in a few weeks!

bare patch of soil with six dahlias