Just cleaning up a little… (weekend part one)

Blooming Shamrocks

We did a LOT of yard work and garage cleaning here last weekend, and I just wanted to put some pictures up of how our front yard is supposed to look like when someone lives here (not completely overgrown).

Front View

Front View of House

It makes such a nice difference to mow the lawn and weedwhack.  We wonder why we don’t do it so often (I bet our neighbors are wondering this too).

Here you can see some lillies really getting big:

Growing Lillies

Growing Lillies

You can also see the snapdragons are still doing well.  It is harder to see, but there are light pink blooms on the bushes at the very ends– this is another plant that waited until the first round finished and then shot up and got some sun of its own.  The smaller pink and yellow flowers in the middle are new snapdragons I planted earlier this spring.  I hope they will end up being big and bushy like the others.

New Snapdragons

New Snapdragons

The flower bed in front of the porch still has lots of primrose blooms.

Front Flower Bed

Front Flower Bed

The larger green plant on the right is a salvia coming back for the fourth year in a row!  I love this plant, and wish that its siblings kept coming back, but it alone has lasted.  Some of the primrose has started trying to escape the bed.  If I let it, I’m sure it would take over the grass.  Eventually, I want to get rid of the stones, and make the entire section between the house and the sidewalk a planted garden.  Less to mow, and more for the birds and bees!

One last thing that surprised me–my Aunt gave me a Shamrock plant when I went out to visit her last.  I thought it wasn’t doing too well, but then bam!  Flowers!

Blooming Shamrocks

Blooming Shamrocks

I didn’t even know shamrocks bloomed like this.  It makes me so happy when I see it!

 

Springish Showers Bring Lots of Flowers

Foxglove Detail 2012

It has been so warm and rainy, this March and April saw an explosion of color in our front flower beds.

Front Flower bed

Front Flower bed

The snapdragons- which are supposed to be annuals according to Home Depot- have survived another winter and are HUGE!

Lovely Pink Explosion Snapdragon

Lovely Pink Explosion Snapdragon

For a couple of weeks, the pink snapdragons were just bushes of color.  I loved it!  If they act like they did last year, they will rebloom again later in the summer, and again in the fall.

Giant Blooming Snapdragon

Giant Blooming Snapdragon

I have a couple different pinks, and a few dark reds.  The dark reds are going crazy right now, now that the pinks have dialed it back.  Over Easter weekend, I planted a bunch more snapdragons in the beds in the hopes that within a few years, they will be just as big as these.  I’m not exactly sure what I did to make the snapdragons stay alive and get so big- but I hope I keep doing it!

Columbine

Columbine

In the center front flower bed, I also planted a Columbine.  I think it’s really beautiful, and should hopefully grow to be about 2 to 3 feet tall.  Although right now, it is sort of hidden by the mass of primrose.

I also have a foxglove that has come back again for the third year, and it is just as tall and lovely as last year.

Foxglove 2012

Foxglove 2012

One subtle difference I noticed this year-  the flowers are a creamy, pale yellow and not lavender!

Foxglove Detail 2012

Foxglove Detail 2012

For a comparison, here is last year’s foxglove:

A Detail of Foxglove blooms

Foxglove 2011

Does anyone know what would cause this?  I did a quick search but did not come up with any answers.

One other flowers that has been doing very well in the front is the sweet william:

Sweet William

Sweet William

It never really stopped blooming over the winter, but it looked very meek compared to the number of blooms now.  It looks a little messy in the bed right now, but there are very few weeds in there.  Most of the weedy looking greenery is the primrose.  I pulled a bunch of the primrose out this year, to make room for the columbine and to try to make it look a little neater.  It is a very aggresive plant!

In the back, the daylillies I transplanted, along with a salvia I planted are doing OK.  They are not looking great, and I’m a little worried about them.  I think my soil might be too heavily compacted clay.  But, the bee balm next to the house is coming back well.

Emerging Bee Balm

Emerging Bee Balm

I love looking at all the color — and this fall I think I’m going to start doing some serious planting in the backyard meadow so that I will have some more interest out there.  Gotta keep those bees happy!

 

Linking up to these parties:  Centsational GirlFishtail Cottage Garden Party

An Early Spring

Daffodils

Spring is well on its way here in Fredericksburg,  if not here already.   (UPDATE:  More Daffodils are blooming!)

Daffodils

Daffodils

Daffodils have been blooming for a few weeks now, but the bulbs I planted just this fall were a little later in coming up.  Now they are really starting to pop!  Out of the 50 or so I planted, I’ve counted 48 stems.  I’m not 100% sure that they will all flower this year, but I’m very happy with how many have come up.

Blooming Daffodils

Blooming Daffodils

Two plants that never died back this winter were my snapdragons and Dianthus.  The snapdragons stopped blooming sometime in December I think, but the plants are still full, bushy, and green.

Massive Snapdragons and Tulips

Massive Snapdragons and Tulips

And the Dianthus never stopped blooming all winter!  Crazy!  From what I can tell this is a short-lived plant (two years maybe?), but I’m really hoping that it will last longer than that.  If not, oh well.  I think I planted it originally thinking it was an annual anyway.
Still Blooming Dianthus

Still Blooming Dianthus

I’m also starting to see tulips, mums, bee balm, and foxglove starting to grow.  Someday, I’d love to have a cottage-style garden full of naturalistic swaths of color throughout the front and back yards.  I threw out some seed bombs this winter, but I have no idea when or if I’ll see anything from those.  And finally, some dear friends gave me some daylillies they divided this spring.  Mr. Lucky and I planted them along the back yard on the edge of the unmowed “nature preserve”.

Daylillies

Daylillies

I know they are hard to see in this picture, but they are the little green shoots in patches along the edge of the unkempt area.  I am so excited to have them!

I noticed on Friday that all the trees started blooming in Richmond.  It feels too early for it, but I still think it’s beautiful.  It’s almost unbelievable how warm it has been, and today it is supposed to get close to 80 degrees.  I hope this doesn’t mean the summer is going to be unbearably hot…

Tell me, what do you have coming up already?