September 9, 2009

It Was Time For Them To Go

I never enjoy cutting down my Annabelles, but it had to be done. By early September, these Hydrangea shrubs are overgrown and begging for a haircut. Every year I cut them down to the ground and the next summer they come back loaded with flower heads in excess of 10" in diameter. There was one white flower left, so I brought it inside along with one flower that had already turned greenish on its way to becoming a dried flower head. I've never used them as part of a dried arrangement.

Late last summer, my mother's neighbor introduced me to Euphorbia marginata (Snow-on-the-Mountain). Although its sap can burn the skin or cause dermatitis, I've become a fan. The foliage and flowers provide a striking display all summer into fall. This one is paired with Durango Orange marigolds.

These Stonecrop (Sedum x 'Vera Jameson') plants have been in our yard since 2004 and almost every year I move them because they don't seem to do well. They get more sun now and that seems to agree with them. The bees follow the Sedum wherever they're planted.

Can't think of the name of this plant, but every year I buy one and put it in a container. This year I put it directly into the ground and it's been one continuous show of blooms.

There's hardly anything I enjoy more than sitting on the porch swing watching the kids run around having fun in our yard. I hope to never live where children aren't playing outside.

It was a rainy day and these waterfowl had just crossed the road in front of my car, so I took a picture through the windshield. I'm using the word waterfowl because to tell you the truth I don't know if these are ducks or geese.


  1. Your Hydrangeas are huge. Love your post today, especially the kids in the yard.

  2. Donna girl ! You had a gaggle of geese cross the road and wow on that picture ! You live in such a lovely place .. closer to nature than I am (plus those neighbor's with the parrot from hell ..ugh !)
    Your hydrangea flowers are HUGE ! the contrast of colours is so pretty too .. that green is gorgeous : )
    I'm going to look for that euphorbia myself next year .. I like the colours and the way it will contrast with other plain jane ? plants ;-)

  3. The one you can't remember, is it Torenia? I had to look up that and Achimines because I couldn't remember which was which.

    Enjoying your fowl photos, too. DH and the dog saw a wild turkey the other day, and we saw one fly over a fence along the road, coming from town on Monday. I laugh when I see one fly, they land like a torpedo!

  4. Love the hydrangeas. I cannot make one grow in my soil to save my soul.
    Your yard is like a park! Did you all do all of the landscaping or was some of it there when you got that house? Do you water every day?

  5. Your yard looks lovely! Both Annabelle and Snow-on-the-Mountain are plants I've been planning to add to my garden. Love those big flowerheads on Annabelle!

    Those birds look like Graylag Geese, which can be gray, white, or a combination.

  6. Beautiful everything. That is torenia or reseeds everywhere in my gardens.........

  7. That Snow on the Mountain grows wild here...I never thought of putting it in the garden. Its just another of the many wildflowers we have. At least I think its the same, I can't tell from the picture whether those are just marigolds or also yellow upside down bell shaped from the snow plant.

  8. My hydrangea bushes are huge this year but I haven't had any flowers. The color of yours is beautiful. Love the picture of the geese on a rainy day. Thanks for sharing.

  9. As a former duck owner I think i can safely announce that you got GOOSED! Beautiful photos of your blooms, as always. Love your gorgeous scenery...

  10. Your yard does look like a park! So beautiful. I love that euphorbia. Those hydrangea blossems are huge. Love it!

  11. I love Snow on the Mountain. The white pops against the other annuals and perennials. My first plant came along as a hitch-hiker with a perennial my grandmother gave me many years ago. They re-seed themselves every year and bring with them memories of my grandmother's garden.

  12. Bonnie - Kids and pets....hard to resist taking pictures of them.

    GardenJoy4Me - So, they ARE geese. The parrot from hell, I must have missed that on your blog. I need to go back and look for that post.

    NellJean - Torenia, that's it! Thanks. Turkeys do not excel at flying, do they?

    Sue - We had someone do the stone about 5 years ago. There was a time in my life where I would never have included so much stone in the landscaping. We have it around the house, too. Keeps some of the critters away from that area. No, I don't water every day, but probably should. I'm pretty good with keeping the containers watered on a regular basis.

    sweet bay - Graylag Geese, thank you so much. How'd you get so smart about waterfowl?

    Darla - Torenia reseeds? Wonder if it will do that here in Zone 4.

    Joyce - You must take a picture of the snow-on-the-mountain that's growing wild by you. I'm still reading your blog but can only leave comments on blogs with pop up window comment sections. If the comment section is embedded below the post, then I can't. Make sense? I feel sure the problem is my dumb computer.

    Stella - Geese (and ducks) seem to enjoy rainy days, just like I do.

    Kate and Crew - Well, it's about time I was goosed!

    MissyM - The conditions in our yard must be perfect for the hydrangea because the big flowers are not because of anything I do.

    Marie - Oh, how special that your euphorbia tagged along with a perennial from your grandmother.

  13. You have such a pretty garden. I love the view from your porch swing! Those Annaebelles are gorgeous, that reminds me to bring in some hydrangeas to dry here.

  14. I only found your blog just now... and I love it! Great pictures and I shall enjoy following.

  15. Hi Donna my friend. Sorry I misses out on so many occasions meeting you here. Finally (after your mail) I sit down and read all there was left to read. How wonderful you still can enjoy your Annabelles. Mine are all gone already.
    I've changed my blog-comment-thing and it seems to work the way you might be able to leave messages so go see if it does and keep me informed. Love from here all the way to you out there. Happy hugs Dagmar

  16. Wow, your hydrangea flowers are wonderful! I just planted an Endless Summer hydrangea this summer, and the foliage looks terrible while it keeps blooming away. I hope it does better next year.

  17. Those hydrangeas are huge and so pretty. Your yard looks so spacious. Looks like you live in a beautiful place!

  18. Haircuts seem to encourage bigger blooms. Maybe I'll give some haircuts.

    You asked about magnolias:
    I'm seeing HGTV say that Magnolia, saucer (Magnolia x soulangiana)
    Magnolia, star (Magnolia stellata) are hardy to zone 4. I'm seeing Nurseries in zone 4 advertise Magnolia liliflora'Jane' and others. Check around. My M. soulangea always gets lulled into believing that the first warm day is really spring and the blooms get nipped by frost. They'd stay dormant at your place.

    Be sure to see the book giveaway at Cameron's Blog. I know the answers if you get stuck.

  19. Catherine@AGardenerinProgress - I do enjoy our porch swing.

    Barefoot from Heaven - Dagmar...I'm so very happy to again be able to leave comments on your blog. Happy Hugs back to you.

    Msrobin - Gardeners always look forward to "next year" when we'll do things bigger and better.

    teresa - If there's at least one bloom in a person's yard, then it's a beautiful place.

    Nell Jean - How nice of you to take the time to give me this information about the Magnolias. You'll make a Southern Belle out of me yet.

  20. Charlotte - How did I almost forget to welcome my new blogger friend from the UK? I made a visit to your blog and enjoyed the tour of the National Botanic Garden of Wales. Especially liked the photo of the pink/lavender flowers growing right out of the stones.

  21. I love hydrangea and yours are magnificent. Love the photo from the porch swing. Your yard is beautiful. No wonder the kids love running around it.

    I would have guessed geese, but I'm glad it was confirmed by so many people in the know.


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