Friday, May 21, 2010

New Plants from Earth Tones

Planted some new plants from Earth Tones nursery today, thanks to a gift certificate from Jones Family Farm & the Olde Ripton Garden Club, as well as a balance carried over from last year.

New Species:
3 Blue Curls
3 Hardy Ageratum
5 Canada Anemone
5 Wild Bergamot
5 New York Aster
2 Wild Red Columbine

Adding to existing collection:
1 Dwarf Crested Iris
2 Virginia Strawberry
1 Wild Stonecrop

I couldn't resist tasting one of the Virginia Strawberries. The flavor was amazing!

Here's one of the new Columbine. This is the color scheme that is found in nature. They were blooming earlier this year at the very top of Sleeping Giant, right out of a rock.

A pair of Barred Owls is nest just outside the gate and they are heard frequently. Last year we had the Ravens nearby, but they are gone this year.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

In Bloom; Mulch Pile

This is a Pinxter Flower, a native azalea that is often seen blooming in the middle of the woods, even right here at Shelton Lakes.

Wild Geraniums are also a common wildflower in Shelton. Widespread, possibly at the edge of your lawn.

This is the unexpected flower of Wild Ginger, a plant that I have never seen growing in the wild, possibly due to over harvesting (it does smell exactly like the ginger you buy at the store).

This solitary Pink Lady Slipper looks like it's going to bloom again this year. This flower just coincidentally happened to be growing on our garden site. We did not plant it (never, ever, ever, try to transplant a Pink Lady Slipper - they are guaranteed to die over the next few years rather than live for up to 50 years in the wild).

Here are some Spring Beauties and Dwarf Ginseng. These grow along the Far Mill River and many other low, cool places.

Merrybells. I don't remember seeing these in the wild.

Woodland or Wild Blue Phlox, another one I've never seen growing wild, probably because it is so very tasty. Some of our Phlox were chewed down this spring, possibly by chipmunks.

Mayapple can form huge patches in the wild. I don't see it very often in the wild but it is said to grow at Sleeping Giant State Park.

We built a mulch pile today, which was much more work than expected. The ground was full of rock and it was hot and muggy out. For the mulch pile walls, we used leftover deer netting, so it is nearly invisible, as you can see below.

Now we don't have to dump our leaves and garden waste over the bank, but can mulch it and reuse as compost.

While working, we kept hearing the call of Gray Treefrogs. And the vernal pool down below was just seething with life.