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Last summer, it was my habit to work in my gardens almost every morning, early, before the sun rose too high and hot, for twenty minutes to an hour.  It was a good thing, for me and my flowers!  I deadheaded regularly and kept the weeds at bay.

I have not been so inspired this year.  There have been rainy mornings, hot and humid mornings, and mornings that I simply have been too tired to get up that early!  While the gardens have not yet fallen into a state of total neglect, it was no surprise that yesterdaymorning, with refreshingly pleasant weather, I found enough to keep me busy in the rock garden for over two hours.

The Moonbeam coreopsis has bloomed profusely for the past two weeks, and I think it has about a week of full beauty left.  I did trim out some of the spent blossoms, and I also sheared back the bright pink and white dianthus to the left of it.  I may see another bloom from that dianthus in the fall. 

These cleome at the right, self-sown volunteers from last year’s batch, are the strong men in the garden.  They are taller, sturdier, and have bigger blooms.  I hope they inspire the others!


 This white climbing rose (left) clambered for attention.  It had bloomed profusely earlier this month, and now needed to be deadheaded and pruned.   There are a lot of buds, so I expect another grand show in a week or two.

The two rose bushes below are recovering from being moved in early June.  The one on the right gave me a scare as every leaf it had shriveled and died, but then, one magical afternoon, I was overjoyed to spot just a wee little bit of red emerging near the base of its trunk.  It is a yellow hybrid tea rose which never bloomed in its former location, a small perennial bed that has been repurposed for vegetables.  The bush on the left is a pink floribunda.  It did not suffer as much from its move, and has rewarded me with a few blooms already.

        I cleared out the living spaces for both of these roses, cutting back old iris fronds near the yellow bush, and pulling ferns and annuals out near the other.  Five or six self-sown cleome were intruding upon the pink one, as well as the ageratum you now see in front of the yellow bush and a couple of vincas.  In my own defense, when I planted these annuals, the coreopsis on either side of the rose was still tiny, and I had forgotten how wide it can get!

The larger cleomes were unhappy with their transplant, and it was foolish of me to do it while the morning sun grew brighter and hotter.  I gave them a flood of water, and am sure they will recover nicely.

I love my balloon flower!  It has been blooming since the 4th of July, and still has over 50 buds.  Before leaving the rock garden, I deadheaded it.  I’m looking forward to a few more weeks of those beautiful blue balloons!

(Moonbeam coreopsis, balloon flower, bee balm, cleome, vinca, alyssum,geum, blue salvia, and an unknown variety of coreopsis)