Early Spring After No Winter

I guess I shouldn't be grumpy about Climate  Change. The fact that the weekend after Valentines Day should bring temps near 60, seems to delight the tv weather-person, just as it does when we have summer drought & they announce yet another hot day with no rain. But, I am a plant advocate, not to mention animals & some humans who aren't out to destroy the planet. And so, it was with mixed emotions that I greeted the first Snowdrops in the yard. Their reappearance for decades, many many years after my garden mentor planted them and many years since she died, gives me hope in the persistence of life in face of many challenges.

The Light Strengthens...

The Light Strengthens...

Luckily: we have had rain over the winter. 

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First Snowdrops! 

Rain in the garden

On the heels of record rain in Aug., we've had even more this past week. Not only have many plants loved the combo of heat & water, but some have grown larger than normal & overstepped their bounds. 

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One client texted me that he was unhappy with the unruliness in his garden as the result of the rains. I suggested he stake the plants until they dried out. I, coming from a family of artists, experience a different response & find the pushing of borders, welcome.

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So, I was delighted to be on-site at another client's garden & see this wonderful ecosystem mingling & growing towards its fall/winter, critter-friendly habitat. 

Community Garden

In downtown Detroit, near Wayne State. Looks highly maintained. And locked... 

Nice to feel uplifted by the stature of sunflowers & corn. Hope the food is nourishing to the soul, as well as to the body.

 

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Good Bones

Visited a garden we did in '03. Right Plant, Right Place is the ticket, plus excellent maintenance. 

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Drainage drove Design. 

 

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Huge overhangs on a big slope in short distance further shaped Design. All these plants like moist and this year's rain made the garden quite lush &  especially brings out the variations in texture & greens.

 

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Favorite Tree in Summer

This is the fruit from one of my favorite native trees, Ostrya virginiana. You can see why its common name is American Hophornbeam.  This fruit comes from some very old ones nearby on a parkway. They are stunted by years of full sun (they are a lowland, dry shade tree) and the neglect that comes with being city property on a rental building...not that any multi-owner building would do any better, in my opinion.

Being in its last legs, the plant is fruiting heavily. 

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No picture of the parkway trees, but they are about half the size of this better-placed and managed one in our backyard. 

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Life amidst Decay

At a garden a friend inherited, almost everything was weeds, except for these few: 

 

Poppy  

Poppy

 

Purple Coneflower    

Purple Coneflower  

 

Water Lily

Water Lily

The petals attach to the seed so uniquely.