Saturday, June 27, 2009


When we first moved to our current home (almost 8 years ago, and we chose it for the yard!),
I was surprised to see these bright blue blooms. I hadn't seen borage before, and was glad to figure out what it was, eventually.
It came back for a few years, and then I didn't see any more borage plants. It is an annual, and somehow must not have successfully reseeded.
So, this spring I bought some seeds and planted some, thinking I'd like to have these pretty blue blooms - and they attract bees.
My 2nd child has a veggie garden this year, too, and so I gave her some borage for her garden. The pic above is from HER garden, my plants look like this:
Love those chewed up leaves, eh?
hard to tell if that is a result of snail snacking or hail damage, probably both.
Her borage plants are about a foot high, and lush looking, with buds and blooms.
Mine are still struggling along, as you can see.
This last pic is the other borage plant that I have.
It is looking a bit better, and even about to bloom!

Guess I shouldn't complain.
According to my Sunset Western Garden book (love this reference book!), borage leaves, although bristly, are edible, 'with a cucumberlike flavor.'
It also mentions that borage tolerates poor soil, as do many herbs.
The flowers are also edible, I remember seeing something about candying t
he flowers in another book, I think.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Nature and Photography

One of the blessings of my life is my family,
and today I want to let you know about two new blogs -
one is by my 10 year old grand daughter, who is learning about nature,
and the other is one of my sons-in-law, who has a great talent as a photographer.
So... take a minute and check out these new blogs:
Go see nature from the perspective of the young,
and some awesome (and award winning!) photos.
You'll be glad you did :)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Garden Blogger's Bloom Day - June 15, 2009

It is hard to believe it is June 15th, already.
Here in Utah we've had very cool weather, 60's, mostly, which is forecast to end this week. My irises are almost done blooming, and the roses are just beginning to bloom, along with a coreopsis I'd forgotten I'd planted -
This is a new spiderwort, I have a nice pink and the 'fuchsia-pink' colors, too.
This bed is a battleground. you can't see the (white) yarrow that is marching in from the north, or the ajuga coming from the west. They will have a tough fight with this red valerian. It has spread into the gravel walk way , and I am going to try and exterminate that white yarrow. There is a yellow siberian iris I'd forgotten that I'd planted there, too, and you can see an iris in the upper left.
Some penstemon in a bed that has been overtaken by grass.
California poppies, just about to 'pop' their little hats off.
Nigella, or love-in-a-mist . This stuff spreads everywhere, but I like it anyway.
Sage - love the purple/blue combo
Caribbean crush verbascum! a new addition to my spring bed.
Those are my highlights for June.
Head over to Carol's May Dreams Gardens to enjoy everyone else's garden.
Thanks to Carol for hosting this fun event in the blogosphere!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Iris week, last day- Royal Ballet

The last day of iris week corresponds with my last 'new' iris in the yard to open -
Royal Ballet,
a Dykes Medal award winner (the Oscars for Irises).
(waiting, waiting, waiting for it to open!!!)
It is very much like another iris I have, a bicolor that is blue and white called 'Dover Beach' - it is very similar to Royal Ballet, except the latter is much rufflier.
The roses have begun to bloom, now, which almost makes up for the fact that 'iris season' is winding down. It is fair to say that roses are the queens of the plant kingdom, but I would say that iris are the grand duchesses, with their stately elegance.
Thanks for checking in for iris week!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Iris week - Periwinkle Iris

Today's iris was a find by my DH (and Craigslist!).
The lady he got the iris tubers from said they were 'periwinkle.'
I wasn't sure if periwinkle meant light blue (eh) or what, exactly.
This year they bloomed, and I have enjoyed the deep, rich periwinkle color immensely.
A keeper for sure!
Love the white w/ slight yellow tinged beard.

Even the middle is exquisite, don't you think?

Monday, June 08, 2009

Monday of Iris week - Space Ager ?

This iris is not a fave of mine, the light yellow and odd blue beard don't do much for me, but I'm sure there are those who do like this.
I am not sure where I got this particular iris from, or what it's name is :(
Probably the most notable thing about it is that it is a 'space-ager.'
Space agers " have horns that extend from the end of the beard. The horn is a spear like appendage that emerges from the fall at the end of the beard." (this description from Prevost gardens in San Jose, CA)
You can see it better on the first picture than on the closeup -
the end of the beard sticks out some. Odd.
It's not all bad. Pretty with a fresh coat of rain on it!
Happy Iris week!

Friday, June 05, 2009

IRIS WEEK - Saturday and Sunday - Titan's Glory?

I got a 'new' Iris at my county's annual master gardener sale- a Dykes medal winnner - Titan's Glory !
This pic is off of the internet. It is described as an intensely deep blue iris.
And mine even bloomed!!!! Here it is ....
uh. wait, that looks purpl-y.
Not intense blue (not that purple isn't desirable, just not what I was expecting) at all.
Here is my comparison -the 'Titan's Glory' is on the right, and on the left (I am holding the stem!)
is my deep purple unnamed beauty from the yard.
They are not identical, but my new purchase is definitely more purple than blue.
hmm. Time to move that iris... to the purple bed!
Have a great weekend, will post again on Monday.

Iris week continues - Role Model

Do you love irises? I surely do.
I have been accumulating them faster than I can throw them in the ground.
I love them because they are a 'low maintenance' perennial, with little fertilizer, trimming or other needs. Ignore them all year, and they will still reward you with beautiful blooms.
The color range for irises is enormous!
This one is called 'Role Model' - it is kind of a peach-rose-melon combo that is wonderful.
Here is a closeup of the beard.
cute, huh?
I keep thinking, 'this iris is my favorite'.. but then I think of another. I love red-purples, blue purples, blues, raspberries, whites, ruffles... there aren't too many that I don't care for.
Let me know in comments if you have a favorite variety or color of iris!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

IRIS WEEK (finally) begins

So, I have been busy.. every morning there are new (to me) irises blooming in the yard,
and I have weeds that are out of control .
But I do want to share my love'o iris, so here goes....

This was a 'first time ever ' bloomer in my garden. It is labeled 'Beverly Sills'
(the most perfect pink iris ever, according to the hype)
doesn't look pink, does it?
Nice, though.
I like it.
Still need a Beverly Sills, though.
Will move this surprise to the purple leaning towards blue bed when I get a chance.
any guesses as to what iris it really is? let me know.
see you tomorrow!