There is a lot of waiting in gardening.
And then there are the surprises both good and bad.
I have been patiently waiting 3 or 4 years for the Chocolate Vine, Akebia quinata on the backyard arbor to bloom.
I actually picked this vine because I liked the foliage and the fact that it was a vine that didn't mind a bit of shade.
At the time that I bought it, I would even have been content if it never ever bloomed...
but after a while curiosity began to kick in and I started to wonder what the flowers on a "chocolate" vine were like.
Finally this spring, there were a few tiny flower buds. "At long last!", I thought to myself.
Hopefully this is going to be good!
Imagine my utter disappointment when the tiniest, most drab colored flowers opened up a few days later. There are no pictures here because there was simply nothing worthy of a picture!
Maybe when there is a greater abundance of flowers I'll be impressed, but for now, I have gone back to liking Chocolate Vines for their foliage.
Early this morning I was picking roses for the house when I got another surprise. The first of the Japanese Beetles were lurking in among the scented petals!
They are late to appear this summer and I even started hoping they might be a no-show. Maybe that full-on Canadian winter we had this year did them all in?
That has proven to be a bit of wishful thinking!
Sadly, this Canadian Explorer Rose above happens to be one of a Japanese Beetle's favourite snack foods.
The surprises aren't all bad though.
There is a climbing rose on the same back arbor as the Chocolate Vine. For years it has been rather pathetic and scrawny, but this summer it has come into its own and it is simply glorious!
Then there is this Agastache 'Blue Fortune'. I was pleased that it took off so well in its first summer. This is it blooming last August.
OMG! You should see it now! It is the size of a small shrub after just one year.
What was I thinking when I put it in a tiny spot in a narrow flowerbed!
'Blue Fortune' is not the only thing out of control. There has been so much rain that the
garden at the side of the house is a veritable jungle.
There is actually a path leading to the front door in there somewhere!
This clematis on the picket fence is reaching skyward.
I have always found the view along the front of the white picket fence lacks a little color in early July and so last week I added some hot pink Veronica, 'Red Fox' to the present mix of soft pink 'Fairy' roses and cobalt colored Meadow Sage, Salvia nemorosa 'Caradonna' .
I also bought this beauty to add in there somewhere. This roses start of deep maroon and fades to a deep mauve. ( Wild Blue Yonder Rose, Rosa X 'WEKisosblip')
Along the driveway, these two roses have been putting on quite the show this summer.
(The deeper pinky-red rose is Hybrid Musk rose 'Marjorie Fair' and the lighter pink
is the Hybrid Musk rose 'Robin Hood')
Close-up of Hybrid Musk rose 'Robin Hood'
Who dosen't like that kind of surprise?
Here is wishing that all your gardening surprises are happy ones!