Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day

Welcome to Entwined Gardens for March Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day.   Last night it was a chilly 30 degrees.  The “Eyes Wide Open” Primula (above) cheerfully continues to bloom – planted in a pot,  in shade at my back door.

Today we welcome the sun and a Carolina Blue sky.    At 10:24 the temperature is 41 degrees and expected to climb to 63 degrees!   Tomorrow the prediction is for 75… but with  March  Madness anything goes! Continue reading

Horticultural Test of Time for the Holidays

So the true test…

Could I remember how to successfully use an O’dapter,  a month later to create a botanical whimsy for the holidays?

See the results and “How To”… Continue reading

Get thee to the garden… and bring your pruners!

O.K.  I know it’s cold out there for most of you.   But now is the time to get thee to the garden and bring your pruners.

On your way to the mailbox or walking Fido, take a few snips – your neighbors won’t mind. Continue reading

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day –

Welcome last days of fall!   We have had temperatures see saw – up and down – as low as 29 degrees last night for the Geminids meteor shower and back up to 6o’s this weekend.

Although our Zone 7b garden in Wake Forest, NC is experiencing a drought, it is continuing to produce a show of color and some freak sideshows in our Entwined Life!

Let’s begin the show! Continue reading

Step away from the glitter….

Often there comes a time… when you just have to step away…

For the past 3 years every holiday we celebrated was in a nursing home;  many of our family traditions  had to be put aside.

Although wonderful to be spending it together, it was never private; visits seemed far too short or confined.

There is only so much decorating one can do in a shared room with limited space.

A wreath for Jayme's Mom!

But there was nothing like the smile on my Mom’s face when the new Seasonal wreath appeared for her door, or a tiny Christmas tree which I decorated in all of her favorite colors was revealed!

Color co-ordination - pleasing to Mom!

Color co-ordination – pleasing to Mom!

The tiny tree was a gift from my friend Barbara – who’s husband had died.  Barbara understands the kindness of little things to delight, and the space restraints in these times of transition.  Continue reading

Bloom Day continued…

Let’s continue our walk around the Entwined Gardens to see what is in bloom.

Gaillardia aestivalis var. winkleri ‘Grape Sensation’
Purple Texas Firewheel

In its third year in the garden, it has increased to make a nice drift.  This was acquired from the JC Raulston Arboretum annual plant distribution a few years ago… they are correct when they say ” Membership has privileges.”

Not only do members get cool free plants, they also have access to all the wonderful lectures from some of the top horticulturists in the nation – online.

Hedychium – Ginger Lily

This one is so fragrant, one bloom will fill the house.  It should have been finished long ago…. but I am happy to find  it!  This was a division shared when a group of Master Garden Volunteers were working on a installing “The Water Wise Demonstration Garden” at Lake Crabtree Park about 12 years ago.

Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Endless Summer’

Because we had a lot of rain this summer – it was the best year we’ve has for Hydrangea.    The bushes were loaded with blooms.    I have had about 1 giant bloom a week for the last month!

Nicotiana tabacum, N. alata
Flowering Tabbacco

Just one little clump still blooming… charming little stars & still fragrant.

Prunus laurocerasus ‘Otto Luyken’
Otto Luyken English Laurel

This is a plant that I’ve been adding around for the dwarf size of 4′ x 4′ is great.

I love the blue glossy elongated leaves, and the overall vase shape.   Not a lot of pruning required.   The only drawback is  that they do catch leaves, so every so often must give it a shake which counts as  aerobic exercise.  A friend just gave me three more… am I feeling lucky or what?

Rosa ‘Don Juan’

This beautiful climber scambles up the stone wall on the front of the house.

Rosa ‘Radrazz’ PP#11836
Double Knock Out.

I also have yellow,  and a single light pink in bloom.

Rudbeckia hirta
Black Eyed Susan

Another last Hurrah… but charming and delightful nestled into an Abelia.  Perhaps that’s why they are there, the deer haven’t found them.

Salvia microphylla ‘San Carlos Festival’
San Carlos Festival Sage

This one keeps on going & going…  a great hummingbird attractor during the season.   Starts blooming in May and still going strong!

There are also some  surprise  blooms of  Serrissa and Spirea ‘Ogon’  so diminutive but so delightful, but didn’t have a maco lens for my camera to do them justice.

Verbena

This charming little Verbena by Proven Winners… just love the shades of peach… is still hanging on in a container…

I hope you enjoyed the this little Garden Bloggers Bloom Day stroll.

Taking the time to walk around the garden with my camera, always provides me with ideas for improving or editing the garden.

Enjoy – living the EntwinedLife

Jayme B

NC Certified Environmental Educator

Garden Conservancy Regional Representative

Hot Coral – Echinacea by any other name won’t be as Expensive!

It’s Hot, It’s August and it’s Buggy in the NC Piedmont, a good excuse not to be working in Entwined Gardens, therefore a good time to travel…

One of my Volunteer Jobs being a regional representative for the Garden Conservancy ‘Open Days’ Tour is not only to find great gardeners to participate, but also promote the tour.   One way is making sure posters are delivered & postcards put out and about.  Garden Centers are very kind to help promote the event, so off I went in a 50-mile radius.

Today’s first stop was at Fairview Greenhouses and Garden Center  in Cary, NC…

I love exploring garden centers, like a quest for the Jewel of the Nile or an unexpected plant combination…

Cute succulent roof top Garden for a lucky Pooch – Fairview Nursery & Garden center

Not only did I find this charming roof top succulent garden for a lucky pooch, I gathered up some reduced herbs for a herb planter to take as a hostess gift.

I headed out of the greenhouse to an outdoor covered area, and there it was… Heart be still… just in  –  was it love at first sight?  I circled the tall-shelved wheeled cart, and tried to walk away, but the colors tugged at my heartstrings again… I was hypnotized – lost in the array of hot fluorescent colors – an array of pinks, & corals.

Echinacea Sombrero ‘Hot Coral’

I tried to move away and be amazed at the size of the giant array of Hibiscus lining the next table.   Before I knew it I was back staring at the cart of recently delivered offerings.   A nice clerk who had been giving all the plants water on this 90 plus degree morning… walked over and said “Aren’t these amazing?  They just arrived this morning.”

Echinacea Sombrero ‘Hot Coral’ – Echinacea by any other name won’t be as expensive!

I had tried to be good all summer, limiting spending of any kind in these economic times, but this one I could not walk away from. I could feel the butterfly within circling around and around – flying off but then drawn back in… Oranges are HOT… It didn’t matter the price tag for this perennial – of a whopping $21.00.  My obsessive brain took over… It will keep these kind folks in business…   I couldn’t purchase a cut flower bouquet for this amount…   Well, I’m here and they will certainly be gone, and then there’s the gas if I drive back…  Oh the ecstasy of the color – I am color centric but that’s something to muse on another day – home it came with me.

As my luck would have it, Fairview also had Roses on sale. Again my eye spied orange and I was drawn in.

The great gals I volunteer with, at the JC Raulston Arboretum Mixed Border affectionately known as the ‘Border Babes’, are a diverse, opinionated, yet congenial group.  We are all gardeners, our styles are as distinct, as we are, but this is a plant we all agree on  Rosa ‘Paprika’ – delicate in size, but intense orange buds, that evolve to a soft coral when open with a sunny center – a real show stopper.  Disease & spot resistant.   When we first planted it in the Mixed Border several years ago, the official plant marker said ‘OSO EASY Paprika (R. ChewMayTime ppaf)’.  We were delighted when this plant hit the market! Talk about Smokin’!   We all like to cook and many of us are fond of Smokey Spanish Paprika – so this Rose like its spicy culinary counterpart is sure to Spice up your garden life.

R. ‘Paprika’ will be perfect further back in the bed and will color echo the ‘Hot Coral’. The eye will samba from E. ‘Hot Coral’ over to R. Papricka.   Supporting players will be Barberry ‘Crimson Pygmy’a dwarf Japanese Barberry.

I can visualize it from my deck butterflies swirling around.  No guilt, no shame, we’ll have Mac n cheese tonight – I’ll add some cherry tomatoes, a little cilantro and finish with Smokey Paprika!

Colocasia Royal Hawaiian®
‘Black Coral’.

Next it was off to Campbell Road Nursery  – a no frills nursery, but always cool, cutting edge plants!   I spied a  Colocasia ‘Black Coral’  – hardy black taro… I hadn’t had lunch and it looked the color of a dark chocolate bar – It would be great behind & to the left of the ‘Hot Coral’ … the bed anchored by a pink & yellow nesting box with ‘Hot Coral’ & ‘Black Coral. ‘  An analogous color scheme of oranges & pinks… Ahh…. I asked Plantsman Layne Snelling about ‘Black Coral’ and he mentioned it was part of the breeding program by John Cho (not to be confused with the actor of the same name) at the University of Hawaii Plant Breeding Program.  One of the benefits of Cho’s breeding work is short  or no stolons – which means no chance of invasive runaways… plus hardy to zone 7B… this went into the floor of my back seat!  I can’t wait to get home to plant this fiesta!

I love seeing folks with plants in their vehicles… always brings a smile to my face!   Sometimes I have thoughts of following them home to see their gardens, but alas as I merge into I-440 at rush hour, I am satisfied to see the chocolate elephant ears swaying in the rear view mirror headed home to an Entwined Life!

Joy!

Jayme B

NC Certified Environmental Educator

Garden Conservancy Regional Representative