Friday, May 30, 2014

Gardening in the Northwoods- the flower edition (and a side trip of trilliums)

The seasons change quickly up here and low and behold, it was snow flurrying about 2.5 weeks ago and now it has suddenly changed to  summer - we've had *2* 85 degree days- in a row!  What in the world happened to spring? Oh right, that was last week.   Silly me, thinking we might have some mild weather.  BUT I am not complaining about the heat, one bit.  I will complain about the mosquitos- that is the drawback of not having drought conditions....

A magnificent scene

Beauty in the north

Anyway, I have some lovely daffodils this year, but many of my clumps are getting a bit sparse, so it is time to divide them.  Well, not right now, I have to wait until late summer.  You need to let the foliage all die back naturally and really you should wait until at least August.  Then let the bulbs dry down a while and it can get quite cold before you replant.


Now the trick is how does one figure out where one's daffodils are without doing a proverbial "stab in the dirt"??  The MA thinks that I can take good pictures of their location, which totally doesn't work.  For a variety of reasons.  I have come up with a good way, though, and that is to put a layer of pea gravel (or this year it will be sand) around the base of the flowers while I can see where they are and which ones were lacking in floriferous-ness.  It worked several years ago, so I have no doubt it will work for me this year.  My technique is to then dig up the clumps, replant a bunch of them, then toss the extras aside to get all mixed up so no one can guess which kind is which!  :D  Or I will attempt to perhaps put them in separate piles and try to keep them identified, but I wouldn't hold my breath if I was you.
Fritillaria or trout lily

I did some major weeding last night and tonight, and I have found that not quite as much stuff died as I thought.  I lost the usual amount of sempervivum and some of the fuzzy grey creeping thyme, and I imagine I am missing a few things that I have not noticed in the rock garden yet, but I found some of my favorite things.  And then a few of those things I realize in my hurry to escape from the mosquito onslaught I forgot to photograph.  Well, just  BOO.  I can catch them tomorrow.

Pheasant eye daffs under the lilacs

And I discovered this guy flying around!  I've not seen a sphinx moth quite like this

One of my mini evergreens

Sea Holly (ignore the weed remnants)
Rock garden Gentian

My fern leaf peony- not sure if this guy is going to bloom this year

Another sea holly- haven't finished neatening up this area- mosquito issues!

We also took a drive a few days ago, when the weather was a little overcast and cool (you know, that week of spring) to see the trilliums in bloom on Lakeshore Drive between Butternut and Schnur Lakes. So amazing this year- seriously it is worth the drive if you are within an hour or so of here.  It is like a carpet of trilliums that go on and on and on for a couple miles.  It is a pretty road anyway, but this is just spectacular.

I cannot tell you how wonderful it is to see all this green.  The leaves are almost fully developed, they are just a little on the small side yet, the crab apples and apple trees are starting to bloom and leaf out and the lushness that is the short season of summer in the Northwoods is upon us.  I intend to indulge in every moment of it that I can- at least until the mosquitos send me into the house.  But there is always tomorrow.

Until next time, find some joy and pass it along.

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