Sunday, May 22, 2011

Back in the yard

It's really spring here in Maryland and edging towards summer. The pink peonies are blooming (they were supposed to be a pink, a red, and a white, but they are 3 very similar pinks). We've seen a few butterflies this month (dark comma, tiger swallowtail, cabbage whites) but their peak is yet to come. The bronze fennel is growing and fluffy. Today we saw the first baby mantises in its fronds. I've planted a few more annuals, which I managed to buy at a little garden center on Rockville Pike, in spite of getting so bewildered by Montrose Parkway as to end up circling the same new and empty parking lot twice, in search of the southbound lane.
The overgrown mugho is on its way out. It was too big and I was tired of dealing with the annual sawfly infestation. So far I've lopped off the top as far down as I could manage with my ratchet pruners. The rest will require a saw. It looks odd right now but just having it shorter improves the proportions of that area.
Photos later, after I coordinate my multiple gadgets.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, April 17, 2011

More about Spring

The first lilac blooms mark the transition from early to mid-spring. The tulips and second wave of daffodils are blooming too. Birds are finding their turf; the house finches are back, nibbling on the sedum. And the first butterflies (cabbage whites) are out.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Spring at Brookside Gardens

Highlights of our walk at Brookside Gardens this afternoon: spring bulbs, flowering trees, and hellebores.

-Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone; my first attempt at mobile posting.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Out in the yard again

With a new iPhone and a new computer come disruptions of old habits and the sometimes puzzling fun of working out new ways of doing things. I thought I could blog from the phone and use photos but I'm guessing I need  one more app to complete the equation. But getting photos to my Picasa web albums from the phone is easy, and getting them from there to Blogger on the computer is easy, so maybe it's ok that it's less easy to work the complete process on the iPhone.
I'm spending most of a nice weekend pottering around the yard, cleaning up here and there and rejoicing that my knee has decided that squatting occasionally is ok. Maybe it likes spring too.
I have several different varieties of sedum out front (no longer or never labeled) and was surprised to notice differences in the location of their first spring shoots. I thought of the plants as roughly similar in form but  with different flower and foliage colors. So I expected that they would all sprout from a rosette of leaves at the base of the plant. I was diligently removing old dead flower stalks and stopped just in time on the last plant, when I realized that, unlike the others, it had no basal rosette, but was starting to sprout new leaves on the old stems.
I expect plenty of praying mantises this summer, if the number of egg cases are any indication.
I'm seeing a lot of bird activity. A male house finch seemed to be inviting a female to assess the attractions of our forsythia bushes. One surprise is that, although many migrants have returned, the juncos are still here.
Here's a daffodil:

Spring and a Full Moon

Last night's grand full moon seemed like a celebration of spring. We've had two nice days and the forsythia and early daffodils are in bloom. Spring is yellow!