A Visit To Our Garden

It rained all through April, so most plants got a late start. But everything is going great now. Vegies are in, but not much to see yet.

I thought I’d share an “album” of photos that I’ve taken over the past month or so to give you look at one thing I do when I’m not at the easel, which is garden. Great exercise and very rewarding, especially this time of year.

I have a special fondness for old roses, hardy geraniums and *most* of the critters who show up. Enjoy.

View of the front garden facing east
Rough-skinned newts doing what newts do in the spring, being checked out by a couple of mosquito fish. What was interesting is that they were doing it out in the middle of the pond in broad daylight. It turns out that they are so toxic that nothing messes with them.
Unidentified species of caterpillar that has colonized some Himalayan honeysuckle volunteers. And only those.
David Austin English Rose “Abraham Darby”
Lilac “Sensation”
Unidentified caterpillar. Might turn into a sphinx moth, but don’t know for sure.
Hardy geranium “Splish Splash:, which is merrily seeding itself around the garden and also hybridizing with Johnson’s Blue.
The Supervisors: Niki, our tri-color rough collie boy and Eowyn, the black kitteh
The reward: a nice big vase of fragrant old roses

And don’t forget to check out my WildArt Mongolia Expedition Kickstarter project. It ends July 15 and it’s all or nothing. If I don’t raise the amount I’m asking for then I receive no funding through them. I’d really appreciate your support!

An Album From My Garden (Lots of Old Roses)

My main hobby when I’m not in the studio is gardening. I love old roses and English style borders. It’s also really good exercise.

And it’s an art form, too, interesting partly because it adds the dimension of time. And also impermanence.

The orchestration of bloom through the seasons is fun and an on-going challenge.

I started this garden almost five years ago and there have already been a lot of changes.

What you’ll see here, with the exception of ‘Ispahan’, is the front “yard”, where most of the roses are. We killed off the grass in the middle a couple of years ago and put our vegetable garden there instead. The rose borders are coming along, but some plants are going to be moved this fall having already gotten too big for their allotted space. It’s hard to tell how a plant will do. Some never do well and some totally overdo it. The David Austin English roses are known to sometimes become vigorous climbers in California, but stay sedate shrubs elsewhere.

So here is an album of the front garden with photos I took day before yesterday, mostly the roses, but also a few other favorites.

Rosa mundi- a sport of Rosa gallica, ancient
Rosa gallica- The Apothecary Rose and the Red Rose of Lancaster, ancient
Rosa alba semi-plena- the White Rose of York, very old
Lilac 'Sensation'
"Leaping Salmon', large-flowered climber, 1960s; the closest to a hybrid tea rose you'll find in my garden
'Ispahan'-which has formed a HUGE bush; damask rose from Iran
'Golden Celebration'- David Austin English Rose
Hardy geranium 'Splish Splash', which is happily self-seeding around the garden
Duchesse de Montebello- gallica from France, pre-1826
'Crown Princess Margareta'- David Austin English Rose
'Citrus Splash'- Jackson and Perkins
'Abraham Darby'- David Austin English Rose
The vegetable beds- peas, beans, radishes, tomatoes, scallions, shallots so far
Bed with Charles Austin (David Austin English Rose) California poppies, orange wallflower, varigated maple, Citrus Splash rose, sisyrinchium striatum, backed by acanthus mollis