Bloom Day!

Bloom Day - December 15, 2013

Door corsageThere is nothing in bloom outside at Ledge & Gardens. There is a coating of snow and ice and while it looks quite Christmasy, there are no blooms. The only items outside with color are the lighted Alberta Spruce and the Christmas corsage by the front door. Billbergia nutansInside, the Queen's Tears are blooming. Such a sad name for an easy care plant. I did post on this a while ago here. Flower closeup Queen's tearsThere are few flowers which are true blue and fewer which actually contain navy blue but this one does as well as pink, yellow and lime green. This plant needs dividing but I will wait until spring to get that task done. Queen's TearsAnyone want a piece? Begonia, setcreasea and mapleI also have a couple of begonias in bloom. The one in this mixed container which also contains an Abutilon in yellow and a Setcreasea which does have pink flowers but stands alone with spectacular foliage. One last bloomer is this white flowered begonia. It is Begonia listada. I love the foliage. The flower is a small bonus. Begon iaThis year I don't seem to have a poinsettia.  That's okay, they just languish after the holiday anyway. Many thanks to Carol over at May Dreams for hosting yet another Bloom Day. How many is this Carol?


Bloom Day - October 15, 2013

MonardaAnother Bloom Day is upon us and there is much still blooming in the garden. We have had just one light frost with no real damage on the tender annuals. Perennials such as catmint and bee balm are throwing a few last blooms. Fall foliage is quickly passing peak leaving the copper colors of oak leaves and pine needles to warm the days. The natural decline is well under way.  Masses of bloom are a thing of the past but there are some blooms if one takes the time to walk slowly and search them out. I do deadhead the bee balm and this one has several bright blooms. Spanish FlagNo hummingbird is coming by though. They have left for their seasonal vacation. The Spanish flag vine is blooming as is the Eupatorium 'Chocolate'. Eupatorium 'chocolate'The major bloom of the asters is past but there are a few blooms left on Professor Kippenburg who loves the companionship of the orange tithonia. Tithonia and asterThe deer are in search of food and they have taken their more than fair share of the tender tops of the Hydrangea p. 'Vanilla Strawberry'. Hydrange 'Vanilla Strawberry'As a result, there are only a couple of blooms on this shrub. This bloom is aging gracefully while the new bloom is a sweet, tender pink. Vanilla StrawberryI will do a bit better with the deer proofing next season. NicotianaNicotianas shake off both cold and low light and this one reseeded from last year. It should be a bit further back in the border but who am I to argue with Mother Nature. Lady faceThe fishpond has yet to have a skim of ice on the top but it is coming and the sleeping lady planter carries this sedum for crowning glory. She is resigned to the change in season and some days I do feel as she looks but most days I look forward to the changes. There is always something interesting to see and while it becomes more of a challenge as the days shorten and the cold descends it makes me hunt a little harder for the treasures of the season. It will be a challenge to find blooms for the next Bloom Day in November. I will find at least one although it may be an inside bloom. Thanks go to Carol at May Dreams for hosting this Bloom Day. You can find a multitude of other blooms from all over the world over at May Dreams.

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day - May 15, 2013

Sunny BorderIn May, the question is not 'what is blooming' but 'what is not' which seems more appropriate. It has been a very cool spring which has been easy on the flowers. They last much longer with cool temperatures and while many plants are blooming a bit later, there is more overlap of bloom and more time to appreciate those blooms. Prairie FireThe crabapples are blooming and none is prettier than this 'Prairie Fire' above. I love  the lipstick magenta color along with the subtle scent of the flowers. HalesiaThe Carolina Silverbell is blooming as well. Its white bells light up the garden it is shading. FothergillaFothergilla has a curious flower, don't you think? Lime green shows in the buds and they mature to a soft creamy white. Moving to ground, the bleeding hearts are off and running. I moved several white ones from the woods where there were seedlings growing. White Bleeding HeartBorne on the wind or carried by creatures, these seeds germinated twenty feet or so from the garden bed of their parents. They seem happy next to the forget-me-nots which were gifted to me by my neighbors, The Dynamic Duo. CamassiaCamassia are showing their blue in the 'Stonehenge' garden. They have been inundated with other perennials and a bit of cleanup will soon be necessary. Tulips PippitThe tulips and daffodils are fading but with such an abundance of bloom they will be remembered fondly. Thank you to Carol of May Dreams for hosting another Bloom Day. I do hope to visit your garden via her links. Do you have a favorite bloom for Bloom Day in May? 


Bloom Day - March 15, 2013

Clump of snowdropsThe blooms have finally begun. The snowdrops have been tightly wrapped until temperatures hit the 50's on Wednesday. I always get muddy knees trying to get a good photograph of the little bulbs and their flowers. TommiesThe tommies have popped up. These were planted the fall before last so it is their second showing. The newer plantings have not shown their tops yet but they are in a bit less sunny position than these. They are showing color but are not yet open. DSC_0008The winter aconites have started with bright yellow blooms as well. I see daffodil foliage popping up but it will be a while before they bloom. DSC_0015Spring is a few days away and the temperature today was in the low 30's which keeps everything in suspended animation but that will change. It has to as spring is in motion. I can't wait to see what is blooming in your garden. Thanks to Carol of May Dreams for hosting yet another Bloom Day.

Bloom Day - January 15, 2013

Helleborus foetidusJanuary is a challenging month for a New England Bloom Day post. The snow has receded as temperatures rose to 58F the day before Bloom Day. I did check for little blooms but there are none. Well one. The reliable Helleborus foetidus is seen above and it has a good long bloom time in spite of its bedraggled, winter damaged foliage. Moss and helleborIt started blooming prior to Christmas and will continue for another couple of months. Yes, you will see it here in February if the snow is not covering it. Allium seedheadI am also counting this allium seed head. It looks like a flower even though it is just the ragged remnants of one. Inside is a different story and there are a couple of houseplants in bloom. Begonia flowerThe begonias don't even need to bloom since their leaves are so very interesting. These little pink flowers are pretty though and if I keep this plant appropriately watered, more will continue to develop.Violet in terrariumThe violet in the glass terrarium is still blooming and the Amaryllisamaryllis flowers are brightening the windowsill. WoodpeckerI am going to petition Carol, hostess of Bloom Day, to take pity on us northern gardeners and call it Birds and Bloom Day. I think this woodpecker is pretty enough to count as a bloom. How about it Carol? No worries, thank you for hosting Bloom Day through the dull days of winter. I can at least visit other garden blogs to help get me through these short days.

Bloom Day - December 15, 2012

Billbergia nutans - The Queen's Tears
Billbergia nutans
There are a few blooms in the indoor garden this December Bloom Day. The most unusual and noteworthy is the bloom of the Billbergia nutans or Queen's Tears. These blooms are lime green, pink, yellow and black light blue. They are just coming out. Really, nature does some magical color combinations doesn't she? This bromiliad is very easy to grow and thrives on neglect. Who wouldn't love these flowers? In addition to Queen's Tears, the begonias are blooming along with the abutilon, a pink poinsettia and an African violet in a terrarium. DSC_0020
Pretty standard blooms with the exception of The Queen. Outside, the frost is blooming. Allium seedheadFrost on the ground, the grass, the seedheads and the heuchera leaves. Heuchera 'Caramel'Upon close examination I found a frost flower. Gail of Clay and Limestone fame posted about her large frost flowers on the Verbesina virginica here. I have been lusting after them since but this morning I did spy these tiny yet perfect frost flowers on the blue plumbago, Ceratostigma plumbaginoides. Frost FlowerI would have missed them if Gail hadn't posted so recently about frost flowers. Thank you Gail. I am not sure how Bloom Day arrived so quickly after the last but thanks to Carol of May Dreams for hosting yet another BD.   

Bloom Day - August 15, 2012

Sunny borderIt is Bloom Day once again and there is a wealth of color here this year. August always makes me realize the value of annual flowers in beds and borders. The perennials blooming in August don't carry the show quite as well as those of June. I love the blue of these petunias which do require a bit of deadheading but then how else does a gardener acquire a green thumb?  I was generous with planting annuals this year since there was a garden tour here in June. I have found that it doesn't pay to be stingy with the annuals if you do want a good play of late color. Of course there are perennials blooming as well. Helianthus 'Lemon Queen'The Helianthus 'Lemon Queen' is quite large and stately and the little oregano, Oregano 'Kent Beauty'Origanum rotundifolium 'Kent Beauty' is subtle but interesting.  Phlox is in color at the moment and this one has re-seeded in solid purple from the original 'Laura' which has a white eye.  Garden phlox - Phlox paniculataIt is fragrant and more vibrant than many of the self seeded phlox. CalaminthaCalamintha is small but has a profusion of flowers which add texture and contrast to the garden. Echinacea purpureaThe coneflowers are blooming in abundance with tattered flowers on the same stalk as the fresh newly opened blooms. Time to deadhead. Deadheading is really the name of the game in August to keep colors fresh. Torenia 'Yellow Moon'I tried this new torenia in Lady Athena's crown and I am quite pleased with its performance. Such a shallow container requires quite a bit of watering and this torenia sulks a bit to let me know I have been ignoring this task. Blue Morning GloryThere is nothing quite as heavenly as the clear blue of the morning glory. The color is breathtaking in the morning light. I have sometimes forgotten to plant some of these but not this year.  I hope you remembered to plant some as well. So, what is blooming in your garden? I do hope to visit and see for myself. Many thanks to Carol of May Dreams for hosting yet another installment of Bloom Day.  Click on over to say hello to her and visit gardens from across the world on Bloom Day.


Bloom Day - May 15, 2012


The ledge bedThis May's Bloom Day finds the garden lush and green with many flowers blooming a couple of weeks ahead of their normal scheduled bloom. Certainly the green growth is weeks ahead and you can see from the overall picture above that green is the predominant color. The bleeding hearts are still blooming quite heavily and I don't tire of them as I do the daffodils and forsythia. Perhaps it is the color pink which is much more soothing than bright yellow of early spring. Or, perhaps, the leafing out of the trees softens the light in the garden.   DSC_0013The flowers are a bit jarring on the gold form but its yellow foliage brightens up the shady border. The tree peony is a rather soft yellow and the first of three buds has opened. Tree PeonyThey are sumptuous, seductive blooms and entice this gardener to want to plant more tree peonies. TiarellaThe tiarellas are blooming and while somewhat insignificant their blooms, en masse, do brighten a border and are an added bonus to the great foliage of the plant. Variegated Solomon's SealSolomon's Seal is one of my favorite ground cover plants for dry shade. That would be the variegated form which grows about fifteen inches tall and covers quite a bit of ground in a season. It doesn't really misbehave as it is easily kept in check with division. Someone always wants a piece of this plant so if you come to visit, don't be afraid to ask for a division. Exbury azaleaThe Exbury azalea languishes in my garden but has thrown forth two flower buds. I don't pay any attention to it and perhaps it retaliates by just surviving. I would love masses of orange blooms and these two may encourage me to give it a bit more care in the form of a shovelful of compost and a little mulch. The poison ivy twining around its base has warned me in the past to stay away. I think it is time to tempt fate with appropriate precautions. Geranium phaeumThere are other interesting blooms this Bloom Day such as the small flowers on the Geranium phaeum. This plant does go astray if you let it go to seed. Seedlings come up everywhere. The foliage of this plant is pleasing as it has a green, rounded lobed leaf with a dark, blotchy maroon marking around the center of the leaf. Worth the trouble in my book.  These are just a few of the blooms in an effort to try not to repeat those of last year although the tree peony must always be shown. Viburnum plicatum tomentosum 'Shasta'I must also feature the doublefile viburnum as it is in full glory. Its layered branching is a wonderful addition to any garden. Many thanks to Carol of May Dreams, whose month has finally arrived, for hosting another Bloom Day.  Thank you for visiting the blooms of my garden. I would love to visit yours so please leave a comment. Enjoy the day.


Bloom Day - January 15, 2012

DSC_0003Bloom Day in January means inside blooms here in Rhode Island. The temperatures are in the single digits today after a mild week. I even picked carrots two days ago. Things change fast this time of year. There are a few plants blooming with the pink cyclamen shown above leading the pack for number of blooms. I love this little seasonal plant and I don't stress over its short life span here. There is not enough room on the shelves to nurse it after all the blooms have faded so into the compost it will go. It was a gift and one I love. DSC_0008I have a few paperwhites blooming and these have little fragrance. I know some do not like that scent but they rarely spend the time to pot them up. Really, if I am going to the trouble of forcing a  paperwhite, anticipating the scent of spring with each new inch of foliage, with buds forming full of the promise of sweet fragrance and then...nothing, the disappointment is great and hugely out of proportion to the act of plunking a few bulbs in pebbles in a pot. This could be a sign of cabin fever. I need to get out more.  DSC_0005Here is a Phalaenopsis orchid blooming. This is one I have had for a while which speaks to its ease of re-bloom. I need to pick up a few more of these. The flowering maple has a few flowers and while this is a dismal shot taken in less than ideal light conditions, I love these scarlet bells. DSC_0001This variety is a bit gangly and loose. I will cut it hard next spring when it goes outside to summer on the patio. Summer is a long way off but the sun is rising earlier and setting later and that is very welcome. Many thanks to Carol over at May Dreams for hosting yet another Bloom Day. 


Garden Bloggers Bloom Day - December 15, 2011

DSC_0007It is not often that one finds flowers in New England on December 15th. This year, there are two here in the garden. The above calendula which is tattered but still holds color and this Helleborus foetidus. DSC_0004
This hellebore holds its lime green flower buds through the winter to open just around St. Patrick's Day. You have seen it before and you will see it again but I never tire of it. The deer do not eat it and the foliage is fabulous all year long. I am looking forward to seeing your December 15th blooms. Hop on over to May Dreams and thank Carol for another Bloom Day. They sustain my need for color at this time of year.