31 July 2011

Who Says Hostas Are Only for Shade?

Hostas seem to be synonymous with shade.  At least that's what we've been told.  A few years back I was on a garden tour and saw a profound garden.  Profound in that she, the owner/gardener, was growing hostas in full sun!  When asked how she was able to grow such healthy looking specimens in the full sun, she said "water".  Don't let the soil dry out and they'll be fine.  That was the first but not the last time I was to see this.

This year, while touring a botanical garden, I saw several varieties of hosta planted in full sun.  They were not scorched nor wilting.  So much for the theory of hostas being solely shade plants.

If you decide to try growing hostas in the sun, there are some varieties that will do better than others.  Gold leaved plants and heavily variegated specimens, more white or cream than green, can tolerate sun if the soil is moist.  REMEMBER:  ADEQUATE MOISTURE.  Some hostas, though, may still scorch, even in moist soil.

Blue leaved or solid green varieties tend to scorch, even in moist soil.

I have two hostas that are very similar in foliage, the photo above is one of them. They are planted on the east side of a fence where they receive at least six hours of direct sun every day.  This is a moist bed, the last to dry in the entire yard, which could explain why both seem so happy here.  I only wish I could remember the names of them.  They were purchased a few years ago when they were new introductions but the tags have disappeared long ago. ("fire" is part of the name)  If anyone recognizes this variety, please let me know in the comments section.

Some varieties you may consider are:
Sum and Substance
Sun Power
Gold Standard
Fragrant Bouquet
August Moon

Check your local garden centre for further suggestions of sun tolerant hostas.  There are some varieties like August Moon that some direct sun exposure will emphasize more yellow tones.  

If in doubt, plant in a part-shade garden, with morning sun and afternoon shade, remembering the sun is at its strongest between 11 am and 4 pm. Note:   The southern states' sun may be far too strong for any hosta in full sun. 

* I am participating in Mosaic Monday today.  Stop by for more mosaics.  Mary's blog, Little Red House, has some magnificent photography.  Take your time and browse around.  You can tell her "The Gardening Life" referred you.

30 July 2011

Deep in Shadow

Shadows in photos can be intricate or vague 
but shadows on their own appeal to the creative senses.  
This was taken this morning in my garden.

Shadow Shot Sunday features photos from around the world, sharing unique shadowy perspectives.

29 July 2011

The Storm That Disappeared as Quickly as it Came

Earlier, just before lunch, it was rather warm and sunny.  The clouds moved in around 1pm and then about 1/2 an hour ago, this deluge.  It was gone as quickly as it appeared.  Now, sunny again.  :)

For more Sky Watch Photos from fellow sky gazers, see Sky Watch Friday.

28 July 2011

Summer Blooming

 It's time to flaunt the beauty of summer.  Included in bloom now are delphinium, above, tomatoes, radish!!, heuchera, hostas, columbine (not shown today), and a couple blooms still remain on the mock orange.  Come along for a garden stroll......

 Aphids are bad on the tomatoes right now!

 The very last of the mock orange blooms, above.

 I love that moss will grow in the crevices around the pond.  It volunteered here.

 Our favourite spot in the yard, above and below.

The amur maple samaras are turning pink already.

 Summer Wine Ninebark, above.

Bridal Veil Astilbe, above.

 Heucheras in bloom (coral bells), above and below.

 Fuschia, above.

This hare rests conspicuously in a neighbour's front yard just across the street from us.

 Fruits of the alpine currant, above.

Hostas are in full bloom now.

Even this silly radish is blooming.  All my radishes went to tops this year.  I seem to have terrible luck with them.  I planted near the end of May.  Any suggestions, anyone, on how to get radishes to actually grow?

What's blooming in your garden?  Please leave a comment here with a link to your blog or your Fertilizer Friday/Flaunt Your Flowers post.  I'd love to see what's blooming in your neighbourhood.  I'm joining Fertilizer Friday/Flaunt Your Flowers with Glenda at Tootsie Time.  
Come on over to see what's in season.

New Blooms

Jackmanii Clematis started blooming yesterday.

 Close-up of Hosta blossoms with delphinium in the background.

Stella D'oro daylily 

Radish, above, see what I mean about going to tops!  Silly things.

27 July 2011

It's Been That Kind of Summer...Rain, Wellies, and Mosquitos

Whether you call them Wellingtons, wellies, galoshes, rain boots, rubber boots, gum boots.... these have been a valuable accessory this summer.  Of course, these aren't the fashionable ones you might see around, and they have been quite a fashion trend of late, but they do serve their purpose.  Indeed, it's been a wet one.  While eastern Canada has been scorching hot, the prairie provinces have been cooler and wetter than usual.  What about mosquitos, you might ask?  Yes, indeed, there is a surplus of them. Compared to Winnipeg, which is known to have a large population of mosquitos every summer, we have had, in Edmonton, 70 times the number in our traps that Winnipeg has had!!!!  The city has sprayed twice the fields and areas where water pools, and still they persist worse than ever.  What do you do to keep the mosquitos away?  I know someone who sprays her yard with malathion!!  Would you?  

25 July 2011

Garden Blooms, or Lack Thereof. It's My Garden Update...

Jackmanii clematis, above and below.

Pink Diamond hydrangea, above.  Fuschia, below.

Geranium and sage in blossom.
Tomato with a nose, above.

Teddy enjoying the outdoors.

The garden is sadly lacking for blooms this time of year.  The mock orange has finished, the rose is taking a break after I had to cut it back following a storm, the peonies are done.  Only the following are blooming:  heuchera, hostas, delphinium, geraniums, columbine and fuschia.  The Pink Diamond hydrangea is beginning to form flowers, as seen in the photo above.

What's blooming in your garden?

Joining Ms. Green Thumb for Blooming Tuesday

21 July 2011

A Dawn's Early Light......

This mosaic represents changes in my garden and a magnificent sky.  Monday morning, my husband woke me at 5:30 am to show me the stunning yellow sky.  Half-awake, I stumbled to the window, gasped, and grabbed my camera.  In my bathrobe, I captured incredible skies as a storm came rolling in, but not before I managed a few shots of incredulous glory.  Now that's the way to start a day!!!

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