I don't mean to rush things, but I have started to think about the coming shift in the seasons. There is still plenty of summer left in the warm afternoons, but fall has already laid claim to the evening hours. In the middle of the night, I awoke shivering and reached out for a blanket for the first time in weeks.
Perhaps because of all those early years in school classrooms, September seems like a time for fresh starts and new beginnings. I have begun to think about college classes and the directions in which I want to move my life.
Should I take a class in small business accounting? It is bound to be terribly dull, but has practical purposes. I have no idea how to balance the books or manage the money my jewellery making and photography has begun to bring in.
Maybe I should take a class in photography? That certainly sounds like way more fun. I do fine enough with my camera, but imagine what I could do if I really had a clue.
And how is gardening going to fit into my future? Though a life-long passion, gardening has always taken the form of a hobby, not a vocation. But as the years have slipped by, I have begun to feel a bit restless. Is blogging about gardening enough?
In the late spring, I investigated becoming a master gardener and I now must decide soon if I want to proceed. The challenge of mastering something I love to do seems very appealing to me. And even after years of practical experience, but there still are gaps in my knowledge.
The only thing that gives me pause is the direction. If you look at what I like to write about most in this blog, it is garden design that seems to capture my imagination. Maybe it is actually landscape design I should study?
Do you ever feel this conflicted about the direction your life should take? Tell me I am not alone!
Anyway... it is Garden Bloggers Bloom Day, the last such celebration of the summer and we should take a look at what is blooming in the garden.
My roses have begun to re-bloom. This one is an Austin rose: L.D. Braithwaite.
The phlox along the white picket fence have been blooming now for a number of weeks. They are just starting to fade a bit and will need to be pruned back to coax a second round of flowers before fall frosts arrive.
Garden Phlox, Phlox paniculata 'Laura': Has purple flowers with a cream colored eye that have a very subtle fragrance. Height: 90-107 cm, Spread 60-75 cm, Care: Full sun and average soil.
Garden Phlox, Phlox paniculata 'Eva Cullum': Has clear pink flowers with a maroon colored eye This phlox also has a very subtle fragrance. Height: 60-80 cm, Spread 60-75 cm Care: Full sun and average soil. My only issue with Eva Cullum is that the leaves are susceptible to brown spots. Both these phlox wilt if not watered during times of drought.
Ballon Flower, Platycodon grandiflorus: This star-shaped flower is one of my last perennials to emerge in spring. The young shoots look almost asparagus-like and the plant's carrot-like roots mean it is difficult to move. If you like this tall, late bloomer, there is also a white and pink colored single, as well as double varieties. Height: 45-60 cm, Spread 30-45 cm, Care: Will grow in normal, sandy and clay soils. Best in full sun, but can take light shade.
Daylily, 'Evening Gown'
Brown-Eyed-Susan, Rudbeckia fulgida 'Goldstum': I actually have a couple different varieties of Rudbeckia and find one as good as the other. They like morning sun and a bit of afternoon shade best. Height: 60-75 cm, Spread 45-60 cm, Care: Will grow in normal, sandy and clay soils.
Dwarf Calamint, Calamintha nepeta ssp. nepeta is a close cousin to garden mint, but without the spreading habit. The plant forms a neat mound of mint-scented leaves and has been covered in pale blue flowers for several weeks now. Height: 20-30 cm, Spread: 30-45 cm, Care: This is a flexible plant that will tolerate average, dry to moist conditions and will grow in normal, sandy and clay soil.
Calamint, Calamintha grandiflora variegata: I love this plant for the foliage, which is a beautiful variegated mix of cream and soft green. If trimmed, the plant will bloom with tiny mauve flowers for an extended time. Height: 30-45 cm, Spread: 45-60 cm, Care: This is a calamint will tolerate average to moist conditions and will grow in normal, sandy and even clay soil.
Agastache 'Blue Fortune': After admiring this perennial on several blogs last summer, I finally added 'Blue Fortune' just recently. The bees go mad for it! The leaves have a slight licorice scent and the flowers and leaves are supposedly edible. Height: 60-75 cm, Spread 45-60 cm, Care: Will grow in normal, sandy and clay soils.
Dwarf Perennial Sunflower, Helianthus 'Happy Days'
This plant is relatively new to the garden and is still very much on probation. Helianthus 'Happy Days' forms an upright mound of pointy dark green leaves and has daisy-like, yellow flowers on strong stems. Height 55-60 cm, Spread 45-60 cm, Care: Average to moist, well-drained soil. My plant is doing well in half-shade, but I imagine it would do fine in full sun.
Sadly, I have discovered that Porcelain Vine is a favourite with Japanese Beetles.
Sedum 'Purple Emperor': Height: 40 cm, Spread: 30-40 cm, Care: Full sun for good foliage color.
Happy GBBD everyone!
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