Of Rainbows And Wildflowers

August 28, 2009

It was relatively cool early one morning this week, so I took a walk down in the bottom pasture to see what kind of wildflowers were blooming.

The field is full of Meadow Rue and Joe Pye Weed.  It makes a striking contrast of whites and rosy-pink, with a little green mixed in from the underlying leaves and stems.

Field with Joe Pye Weed (Eupatorium purpureum) and Meadow Rue (Thalictrum . .)

There are also yellow flowers blooming.  I’m not sure what they are, but they sure do shine in the shadows.

Yellow Flower

There are other splashes of yellow  mixed in with the taller plants, with tall goldenrods here and there.

Goldenrod bloom closeup.

A lot of the bottom pasture is a little boggy, as spring water oozes out of the hillside.  This makes a perfect environment for Cardinal Flowers (Lobelia cardinalis).

Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis)

I love these plants, and so do the hummingbirds.  It’s kind of hard to get a good picture though, as the camera doesn’t want to lock in on the red and the edges can be kind of blurred.

Around the outer edges of the pasture, there are patches of Jewel Weed (Impatiens capensis). 

Jewel Weed (Impatiens capensis)

The juice from this plant is supposed to be a good rememdy for poison ivy, but I’ve never tried it.

A whole bunch of these yellow flowers grow on a bank near our pond.

Yellow Flowers

In fact, I used them as a background for a picture of Ellie in her 2007 calendar.

Ellie in her Secret Garden.

There are also morning glories growing on a hillside near the pond.

White Morning Glory and Yellow Flower

Near the mailbox, there are some wild blue morning glories.

Blue Morning Glory

Of course the butterflies enjoy morning glories, and I usually see a few near them, like this Pearl Crescent Butterfly.

Pearl Crescent Butterfly

Then yesterday evening when The Farmer came home, he told me to come outside, because he saw a rainbow as he was driving home.

Rainbow

While I was outside with my camera, I took another picture of all the Meadow Rue and Joe Pye Weed in the bottom pasture, because the evening light gave it a different coloration.

Field of Meadow Rue (Thalictrum . .), Joe Pye Weed (Eupatorium purpureum), and Ironweed (Vernonia altissima)

I thought the colors were more vibrant and the white showed up better.  You can also see some purple Ironweed (Vernonia altissima) in the lower lefthand corner.

It’s a lot of fun looking around the farm for wildflowers!

Friday’s Farm Flowers

August 7, 2009

Here we are at the end of another week, and I decided it’s been a while since I put up some pictures of the flowers blooming around here.  So here we go:

First a couple of Daylilies. . .

Daylily - peach colored
Daylily - Red

At the bottom of the steps there’s some Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Aglaia’ – otherwise known as Fringed Shasta Daisies.

Fringed Shasta Daisy (Leucanthemum x superbum 'Aglaia')

At the corner of the porch, I have a Hosta ‘Blue Angel’ planted.  It’s supposed to get up to 70 inches wide and 32 inches tall, but it hasn’t quite made it there yet.

Hosta Blue Angel

Considering it was just a tiny thing when I planted it, however, it’s done pretty well.  Right now it’s about 60 inches wide, and 24 inches tall.  The leaves have a bluish cast to them, and get really big.

Here’s a closeup picture of the blooms:

Hosta Blue Angel blooms

All kinds of little bees and bugs and even hummingbirds like these flowers.

The butterfly bushes also get a lot of traffic from bugs and butterflies and hummingbirds.  This bug has orange eyes to match it’s orange and black body.

Royal Red Butterfly Bush (Buddleia davidii 'Royal Red')

While it’s an interesting looking bug, butterfly bushes are supposed to have, well. . . butterflies!

Buddleiadavidii 'Empire Blue' and butterfly

In the summer, all kinds of things are blooming, but that’s enough pictures for one post!

We Made It To Manitoba!

July 18, 2009

We did indeed make it to Denver, then on to Manitoba.  We weren’t impressed with the service of United however.  I tried many different ways to get seat assignments ahead of time, but it just didn’t work.  Not at the United desk in the main terminal, not at the desk at the gate our plane left from.

In fact, the guy manning the desk at the gate didn’t show up until maybe half an hour before the plane was due to leave, and there were at least a couple dozen people that needed help with their ticketing.  It was a mess.

At least the planes left on time, and arrived on time, so although we got to Manitoba later than originally planned, we did get there!

 The temperature is about 30 degrees cooler here!  We’ve been enjoying the milder weather here, and longer days.  And of course, visiting!

Yesterday we just hung out around the house.  There is a big field planted with soybeans behind the house.

Field of soybeans in Manitoba, Canada.

On behind the field are more fields that were used for hay.

Rolls of hay in field in Manitoba, Canada.

Today there was a family wedding here, so our 4-year-old granddaughter, Ellie, had her hair done for the first time.  We went to a park to get some pictures of her.  They had some beautiful beds of flowers.

Flowers in park at Steinbach, Manitoba, Canada.

I realize I’m biased, but I think our our little princess outshone the flowers.

Ellie in front of flowerbed.

Ellie and The Farmer/Grandpa took a break and sat on a bench for a while.

The Farmer and Ellie.

And lastly, with a good lesson for us all. . .

Ellie sniffing a Black-Eyed Susan flower.

. . . Always take time to stop and smell the flowers!

In The Flower Patch

May 19, 2009

This time of year there are lots of things in bloom.  There are some pretty Bearded Iris plants in a flowerbed in the front yard.  They were planted before we ever moved here.

Yellow Bearded Iris
Blue Bearded Iris

In one of the flower beds in front of the house, there are still azaleas blooming.  In the same flowerbed, I have some Cranesbill.  I  have a couple of different varieites.  One is a pale pink with darker pink stamens.

Geranium 'Biokovo' (Cranesbill)

Geranium Biokovo (Cranesbill)

The flowers are so delicate, it kind of gets lost as a single specimen. I think it would be much prettier if there were masses of the same plant with flowers blooming all at once.

I like purple flowers and I think pink and purple look good together. so nearby is some Blue Sage that is dark purple.

Salvia nemorosa 'Caradonna' (Blue Sage)

Salvia nemorosa ‘Caradonna’

There are also several Coral Bell plants to provide more pink color.

Coral Bells (Heuchera sanguinea)

Coral Bells (Heuchera sanguinea)

There are even some daylilies starting to bloom now.

Daylily 'Stella d'Oro'

Daylily ‘Stella d’Oro’

I like the combination of roses with clematis growing through them. I took this picture one evening.

White Iceburg Rose with Clematis

White Iceberg Rose with Clematis

We’ve got patches of flowers all over the place these days!

Flower Power

May 4, 2009

This time of year we have an explosion of flowers around here.  It seems like everything has been brown and drab for ages and ages, then all of sudden it’s all green, green, green!  And there are flowers popping up all over the place!

The Mayapples have started blooming.  Here’s a picture of the first one I saw, which came from the big bud shown in a previous post, “Spring Is In The Air.”

Mayapple Bloom
Mayapple Bloom

At the same time I discovered we have some Jack In The Pulpits blooming in our woods.

Jack In The Pulpit
Jack In The Pulpit

The ferns have carpeted the forest floor and are growing quickly.

Forest Of Ferns

Around in the yard, the bearded iris have started blooming.  There’s a big yellow one by the back gate.

Bearded Iris - Yellow

And some purple ones in a flower bed around a huge oak tree in our front yard.

Bearded Iris - Purple

I have a tea viburnum bush planted beside one of the fences.

Tea Viburnum (Virburnum setigerum) Blossoms
Tea Viburnum (Virburnum setigerum) Blossoms

This shrub is native to China and grows 8 to 12 feet tall and about 6 to 8 feet wide.  Mine isn’t very old, so is only about 4 feet tall.  It had some lovely red berries on it last fall and is rather interesting looking.

There are several clematis vines blooming here and there.  I have some white ones on a fence, and a couple of vines hanging down at the end of a retaining wall.

Clematis Enest Markham (magneta) and Marie Boisselot (white)
Clematis Enest Markham (magneta) and Marie Boisselot (white)

 Another one is growing up into our fig tree.

Clematis

Speaking of growing UP!  Here’s a picture of a rambling rose growing up into a huge oak tree at the end of our driveway.

Rambling Rose
Paul’s Himalayan Musk Rambler

It hasn’t bloomed yet, but since it greened up before the oak tree put on leaves, it was easier to see how high up it’s gotten.  When I planted it in 1998 it was maybe a foot tall.  Here it is, going on 11 years, and it’s way up there!  It’s full of buds which will all open around the same time.  The blooms don’t last a long time, but when it’s in blossom, a rambling rose sure is impressive!

But I do have roses blooming!  Here’s a picture of one of them:

Country Lady Rose
Country Lady Rose

Of course, at the same time I have roses starting to bloom, I also have some azaleas blooming, which I think it totally weird.

Azalea Autumn Twist
Azalea Encore Autumn Twist

There’s also some coral bells (heuchera), salvia, rain lilies.  .  . and lots more varieties blooming right now. We’ve got some serious FLOWER POWER!