Who is in Charge of this Garden?

We are in the midst of a heatwave and haven’t had any rain in weeks and weeks. My clematis are mostly surviving but they would prefer rain over what I can provide with the hose. The roses have loved the heat, but they desperately need some good dead heading before any guest appears here. So for the last week or so, clematis and roses are on the decline. There are a few plants (who am I kidding? “Lots” of plants) that need to be placed in the ground but the weather prevents me from doing so. Things are a bit discouraging out there with the brown crunchy grass and all the “I should…” tasks.

Suddenly yesterday things changed — as if I were no longer in charge.  I think of our property as ‘my’ garden, but really, nature has taken charge with a will of its own. The summer plants and blooms appeared, seemingly from nowhere. Some of them are back whether I want them or not! I do nothing to cultivate them. For example, take a look at my laneway. It is gorgeous at this moment covered in weeds. I’m supposed to hate it. Common toadflax they say…a noxious weed. But what’s not to love here?

Similarly the pink poppies.  My friend Judith gave me a little seed for them years ago when we lived in a different home in the city.  They seem to have followed us when we moved here fifteen years ago. I remove many each year, but a few are quite nice I find.

Other mysterious poppies show up too.

And the Gloriosa Daisies are back! I’m supposed to treat them as annuals they say, but this huge patch has delighted me for many years. I believe they are Rudbeckia hirta ‘Prairie Sun’.

I’m pleased that these darker forms re-appear as well.

The larkspur is here again too. Seemingly overnight it appeared! I thought I’d removed that! But I’m glad to have it back…in moderation!

I’m also happy to see a FEW of the yellow foxgloves mingling with blue delphiniums, campanula and daisies. Those too had been removed in a tidy-up campaign…or so I thought. Welcome back!

Tradescantia (Spiderwort) seems to find its way here. A little is lovely. This purple form is removed annually, leaving us with just the right amount!

Astrantia spreads everywhere. It weaves its way into every shady spot and enhances things.

A real treat are the wild Turk’s Cap Lilies that grow in the area. They certainly are cheerful! We have fewer this year and I don’t know why. A mystery for sure.

We always have surprise hollyhocks next to the barn. We never know what color will appear. So far this year we have white, deep pink and pale pink.

Closer inspection turns up other treats:

Ferns, Dodecatheon (shooting stars), Goldenseal and Jack-in-the-pulpits may turn up anywhere. Always something to discover!

Sweet native orchids appear near our veranda. I love their form. Their bloom is brownish in color.

And here a pink mystery plant that arrived somehow. With a purchased plant? From a bird?

This year there were a few other surprises. This tiny nest for example. Did it belong to a hummingbird perhaps? It was knocked down by wind I believe.

And then recently this sign appeared in a wildish area where I mow a path.  I suspect I’ll never discover the resolution to this story! The sign looks very official, but it has a wooden stake, not a metal one. For now it is propped against the Clematis/vegetable garden fence.The message to slow down is a reminder that gardening isn’t only about weeding and watering, but pausing and admiring what nature created – with just a little coaxing from us. But beyond this, I see the garden as a partnership with  memories, emotions, and discoveries.

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About fromourisland

Gardener, knitter, wife, mother of 2, grandmother, and lots more.
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2 Responses to Who is in Charge of this Garden?

  1. kathy says:

    Such an oddity it would be to me to have poppies and gloriosas blooming at the same time…our poppies are long long gone…

  2. Gayle says:

    Such nice pleasures! I’m envious of your poppies and hollyhocks. The poppies bring back memories of my aunt and I don’t see a hollyhock without thinking of my grandfather. Sweet memories!

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