Six on Saturday – 03/07/2021 – Doe, a Deer, a Female Deer

Why is it that when you’re on holiday, no matter how much you relax, or how much you cram into each day, come Friday it’s still hard to believe the whole week has gone by. It’s been like that for me this past week, but at least I was able to experience a few fabulous things: having lunch with friends on the patio of a restaurant in a neighbouring town; swimming in Lake Ontario for the first time in several years; lifting a pint with (different) friends on a (different) patio in a (different) neighbouring town; watching flowers bloom on plants grown from seed for the first time (Calendula and straw flowers); savouring a delicious home cooked gourmet meal. It’s so wonderful to be able to spend time with friends, sharing good food, again. It’s something I’m sure a lot of us will never take for granted anymore.

The garden’s abloom of course, and it’s time for Six on Saturday – when The Propagator encourages gardeners around the world to share six things that are happening in their garden. Here’s mine.

It’s a great year for the Yucca filamentosa ‘Mor-Blue’ in my garden. I have four flower stalks this year – a record!

Hollyhocks are in full bloom; I’m happy to report that this year I’ve seen very little rust on the leaves. Here is the main colour palette in my yard:

New to me this year is this Verbena. I tried to grow it from seed but had zero germination, so I bought a few plants at a local plant sale. The vendor was “pretty sure” this was V. bonariensis, when I asked, and it looks like it is to me. Still waiting for the butterflies to discover it…
I took this photo on Wednesday because I loved the orange Echinacea behind this patch of Allium sphaerocephalon. The little drumstick Alliums have since started to open. They reproduce like crazy – I find tiny bulbils wherever there’s one or two in bloom, so I gather them and plunk them in here and there.It takes just a few years for them to get to full, blooming size, and, although small, the stems are quite tall – 40 – 50 cm – and kinda take the place of the larger Alliums then they fade.
Another Allium just starting is the Nodding Onion – Allium cernuum. It’s native to a big chunk of North America, including Ontario. and I’m trying to split, spread, and start from seed small clumps in spots all over the yard.
This is what they call a Zonal Geranium – or, an annual geranium, or, a Pelargorium. I kinda love these and try to have several every year, in various colours. I just realized yesterday that this particular one, called ‘Geranium Tango Velvet Red,’ has several stages of blossom on each flower stem. I was thinking about deadheading it when I saw the clusters of unopened buds beneath the main flowers. Kinda cool eh? I past years I’ve had success over-wintering them (by shaking the soil from roots, then hanging them upside down in the basement…so weird…) and may try again this year…

I know that was six, but I have a bonus shot this week. We’ve had visitors this year whom we haven’t seen in many years. They’re shy, and don’t like dogs of course so that’s likely why they haven’t been near. I believe they’re the reason my King Tut ornamental grass was unceremoniously beheaded (every single stalk!) a month or so ago, and why, before that, the tips of my Fothergilla were all nipped off, leaving nothing to bloom this past spring. I know they can be quite destructive in many areas, and I’m possibly inviting disaster by just ooohing and aaahing, but I don’t mind, really, as long as they stay away from the artichokes! I spotted this one Thursday morning, she seemed to be nibbling on some dogwood leaves, and I took the shot through the window, Have a great week everyone!

30 Comments

  1. No way! I know that Yucca filamentosa lives in some unexpected places, but I would not expect to see it there. For a while, I grew all but one of the 49 species of Yucca. I do miss them.

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    1. 49 Species! I had no idea…we generally see the same four here, large, small (like mine), and with a white or yellow variegated leaf. Do the other species look different? I imagine many would be less hard than Y. filamentosa…

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      1. The popular cultivars that are variegated with white or yellow are likely Yucca filamentosa, although I do not remember the names of the cultivars. Nor do I know what the small species is there. However, if your small yucca is the same size and form as the variegated cultivars, than it would likely be Yucca filamentosa also. It could have always been greed (non-variegated) or reverted from a variegated cultivar. Anyway, the larger species would likely be Yucca recurvifolia, which might actually be a naturally occurring hybrid of two other species. Anyway, Yucca is a weird genus, since there are no two species that will not hybridize if they get the chance, as if all 49 species are actually the same species! The primary reason that they do not hybridize is that they are each pollinated by a specific species of yucca moth, who only pollinates their yucca of choice. Some yuccas are from tropical jungles of Central America. Others live in the Mojave Desert and other deserts. Yucca elephantipes is the common sort here that gives the genus a bad reputation. It gets so big! Joshua tree can get about as bit, but instead of being from jungles, it is from deserts. It does not do well in home gardens, where it gets water through summer.

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  2. Such a pristine yucca! Love the alliums, too.
    Oh, deer! Not a welcome animal in my yard, but this year it is the rabbits and slugs that are eating everything in sight. Oh, yeah, and a yearling black bear just approached me while I was out in the garden. Maybe I ought to turn it all into a zoo, instead of a garden!

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      1. Yeah, we’ve been lucky being able to keep the feeders up, to feed the nesting birds this year up until a few days ago, now he’ll remember this yard forever… they have long memories when it comes to food. Hopefully, he’ll also remember our barking dog, who alerted my spouse, who came out yelling as I was innocently unaware of how close he had come to me – glad he ran!

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      2. πŸ˜€ Black bears, particularly first yearlings, don’t worry me at all, they are actually quite timid. Now a mama with cubs is a different story, I’m a bit more circumspect. πŸ˜‰

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  3. I’d bet a dollar that your Verbena is V. rigida. It’s introduced here, but it’s everywhere along the roads. See? One of the articles I read said that it’s quite common in the nursery trade, so…

    Your yucca is native here, and quite common. I’m not sure how many yucca species we have, but there are several. I should post some photos of their buds and flowers — they’re glorious!

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      1. Two of my favorite books on Texas wildflowers say 2′-3′ tall. They’re usually shorter when I find them, but alongside the roads, that’s no doubt because of mowing. They have a long bloom period, so they’ll come back after the mowers have done their thing, and probably are shorter because of it. It’s interesting that British sites tend to describe them as only 1′ tall. Maybe environmental conditions make the difference.

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  4. Your garden is brimming with beauty. I admire those hollyhocks. Great photo of the deer. We finally had to fence in our back yard years ago to discourage them. Rabbits are becoming a big nuisance here. Have a good weekend.

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  5. Your alliums are lovely, my drummers are not that advanced and I do seem to have a lot more much smaller ones this year! I found that my verbena bonariensis attracted bees more than butterflies and then during the winter when it was full of seeds the Goldfinches came in to eat all the seed – so I haven’t got any this year except for one little seedling that ended up in a container!

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