April 30, 2010

May - The Growing Month

"You are as welcome as the flowers of May"
Charles Macklin

The flower in my blog header is a Trillium grandiflorum. It's a native plant that grows in the natural area on the west side of our house. They do well in wooded areas with dry to moderate moisture. The blooms are found May-June and the large white flowers turn pink with age. They're blooming early this year, like almost everything else.

My lovely Lamium 'Beacon's Silver' with its pretty pink/purple flowers and silver/green foliage spreads nicely, but never too aggressively. It's my pleasure to have it in the garden.

Muscari armeniacum, winter hardy and
easy to grow. Lovely fragrance.
The day after this photo was taken,
50 mph winds blew the bench
over backwards on top of the flowers.
They survived.  

Blue River, Keukenhof Gardens in Holland.
I bet my friend Dagmar from
Barefoot from Heaven has seen this drift
of Muscari armeniacum in person.
The photo is from The Plant Expert.

False Rue Anemone?
Wood Anemone?
I'm not sure which one, but they grow
in the natural areas of our yard
and I'm always happy to see them.
Does anyone know what these are?
It's hard to see in the photo, but
they are about to produce pink flowers.
I didn't plant them, they magically appeared. 

The beautiful Brunnera macrophylla 'Variegata'
continues to show off it's blue flowers.
The foliage prefers a rich, moist soil, 
but will tolerate dry conditions. 

I discovered this newly built robin's nest
in one of our cedar trees. Is it my
imagination or is it heart-shaped? 
A couple of love birds about
to lay eggs and raise a family.

Ending this post on a comical note.
Doesn't everyone have a pink, concrete
pig sitting out next to their antique tractor?  

April 23, 2010

Sweet White Violets

Sweet White Violets (Viola blanda Willd)
Viola is the classical Latin name for violets.
Blooms April - June.

I found them growing up against these
old, cracked, concrete blocks.

Look carefully where the grass meets the building
and you'll see the Sweet White Violets.
Deep blue/purple Wood Violets are common in
Wisconsin and have been the state flower since 1949,
but I very seldom see the Sweet Whites.

I looked in the window and liked what I saw.

Moving on to my bathroom.
You're thrilled, right?
Pumpkins, cucumbers, peppers,
zinnias and nasturtium.
All thriving in the sunny bathroom.

Planted the seeds in clear plastic cups
so that Phillip could see the roots
and understand better what goes
on down there in the dirt.

This lazy duck was sitting in the
middle of the road enjoying the sun.
The honk of my horn got his
attention and he was on his way.
Made me smile.

Maybe I share too many turkey photos.
I can't help myself.
They beg me to photograph them.

In case you're wondering about the header photo,
that's my shadow standing in the
ditch with the Marsh Marigolds.
They are one of the first flowers
to bloom when spring arrives.
Also known as Cowslip.
Caltha Palustris is the botanical name.
 They grow in low-lying, wet areas.

April 15, 2010

It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

Andy Williams was referring to Christmas when he sang "It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year", but the beginning of each new season always feels like the the hap-happiest season of all to me.

Today is Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day -- a day when garden bloggers from all over the world share what's blooming in their gardens. It would be difficult to find a nicer garden blogger than Linda at Slow Growing in Scotland.

I went back and checked my GBBD post for April '09, and found that the none of the daffodils or hyacinths had bloomed, the anemones had no flowers and there was only one crocus bloom. The lungwort, brunnera, and glory-of-the-snow were barely out of the ground.

Come and see what's in bloom this year on April 15.

This is P and N's view of Star Apple Orchard.
Spring and summer will fly by quickly.
September will arrive and we'll be picking apples.
I know, I know...I'm rushing the seasons.

Please visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens to find out how to join in the fun on the 15th of each month. Carol is a great host and everyone who visits your blog will make you feel welcome. I read blogs for a long time before I felt confident enough to share my own garden. Some people may be thinking that I should have waited a while longer until I had something more substantial to blog about. So sorry, couldn't wait.

April 11, 2010

Before and After

April 8 - Snow Day

April 11 - Day of Sunshine

April 8 - Snow Day

April 11 - Day of Sunshine

April 8 - Snow Day

April 11 - Day of Sunshine

We're back to spring and it's all good.

This brown-eyed boy turned 8 on Saturday.

April 6, 2010

April Is For The Birds

I wondered if ducks were considered birds and the answer is yes. Duck is the common name for a number of species in the Anatidae family of birds. So says WikiAnswers. Phillip and I were at Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary yesterday and while he was feeding the geese, I couldn't keep my eyes off this Mallard. As common as they are across the country from the wetlands to the city park ponds, I'm always in awe of the male's iridescent dark green head and yellow bill, especially in the sunlight.

Last year was my first time to have a bird bath in the yard. It's an inexpensive plastic model that I bought at Stein Garden Center. The birds didn't seem to like it and I was disappointed, but this spring they've shown an interest in stopping in for a drink and an occasional bath. It looks like there's no water in the bird bath but trust me, there is. They lowered the water level with all their splashing.
This male cardinal was nestled in behind some daffodils, sitting on top of what will soon be the Black-Eyed Susans.

It pays to make the bed in the morning and while doing so, take a look out the window. You might see a wild turkey walking through the backyard. Wild turkeys are native to parts of Wisconsin and are common to abundant in the northeast part of the state. Spring is a good time to see and hear turkeys because it's their breeding season. I think this is a young male, as he was traveling alone and had a twinkle in his eye.