MySecretGarden

U.S.A., Washington State. USDA zone 8b. Sunset climate zone 5

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Vacation. My Picture of the Day


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Copyright 2011 TatyanaS

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Slope Garden Extraordinaire - 2

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This garden has never been on a garden tour. Nevertheless, I consider it to be one of the most beautiful gardens which I’ve seen in my life. I’ve been watching it since we moved to our neighborhood. In this post, I included pictures which I began taking in 2005. This garden never disappoints me!

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The garden of Mrs. S. is located on a slope. I think she created a masterpiece and managed to showcase each and every plant on this slope.

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There is no lawn in the garden. All the space is taken by trees, shrubs, ferns and perennials. This is a perfect example of a garden with good bones. Winter or summer, autumn or spring, the garden attracts and excites.

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Being of oriental descent, Mrs. S. uses dozens of plants belonging to the Far East which gives a certain oriental flavor to this place. Regular and dwarf conifers, aralias, Japanese maples, shrubs including rhododendrons and azalias create the garden’s core. Meticulously trimmed, they look good all year round, but the garden has the most color in the spring when the shrubs are blooming.

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I love the variety of poodle trees and topiaries.



Ground covers, bulbs and perennials are not overwhelming and serve as colorful accents between the shrubs.

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Garden decor is limited and very tasteful with most of the pieces located in the back garden.



White on white – why not?


The back garden can’t be seen from the street. I felt privileged to be invited to see it.


It is not one bit less exciting than the front garden.


Rocks creating dry creeks are as decorative as practical.



A fountain is the only big piece of garden decor there.


Sedums, Japanese anemone, crocosmia and ferns together with shrubs surround it.



Hydrangeas and some dahlias add excitement to the autumn garden.



Fuchsias, including tall tree fuchsias, in the front and back gardens are spectacular:





I think the autumn garden is absolutely gorgeous:



Japanese maples are stunning.


What not to love here?



Mrs. S is a hard working lady. A passionate gardener, she does all the job herself without any hired help. Can you imagine pruning and trimming all the plants? I take my hat off to her.

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My previous post about a garden on a slope is Slope Garden Extraordinaire. It’s interesting to see how two gardeners approached their slopes. The gardens are very different, but both are oh so charming!

***Copyright 2011 TatyanaS

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Amaryllis Blooms Twice in 2 Months

Can I brag a bit? I want to show you my Amaryllis arrangement which is blooming for the second time in two months. The first blooms were shown here: Amaryllis. My Picture of the Day and this is the photo taken in January:

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Photo: January 2011

It is early March now, and this is what I have:

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Photo: March 2011

Two of the same three plants have blooms again. The plant in the middle has five huge blooms. Actually, they look even larger than those in January. The second bulb shows one unopened bud so far. The third bulb doesn't have buds yet.

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Photo: March 2011

Want to know my secret? How I forced them to bloom again? I won't share my secret with you. You wouldn't want to follow it. It's too complicated and time-consuming. It involves calculus calculations, chemistry and a bit of voodoo. Just kidding. I am just pulling your leg. Do you use this expression often 'You are pulling my leg"? No? Yes? For me, it is one of those expressions in American English that stands along with 'Raining cats and dogs', ' You are in the doghouse' and 'Couch potato'. Oops, I got carried away. Back to our Amaryllis. What is usually recommended? When amaryllis finishes blooming, they recommend the following: 1- cut it a couple of inches above the bulb; 2- do not remove leaves since they provide nourishment for the bulb; 3- place the bulb in a sunny window til the danger of frost has passed; 4- water when the soil dries; 5-move Amaryllis outside when temperatures are above freezing.

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Photo: March 2011

My secret of making these bulbs bloom a second time is: Leave it alone! I mean it. Do nothing. I left my container with three bulbs alone where it was standing all the time while blooming: on the breakfast table. Nothing special about that place, just no direct light. I didn't water the bulbs after the blooming ended. I cut down the stalks with the spent flowers. Several nice green leaves were so pretty, I enjoyed watching them. If all the leaves got yellow, I'd cut them down and kept the bulbs til spring when I would plant them in the garden and let them grow til fall. In fall, I'd follow the tips which you left in your comments here. Because the leaves looked so nice, I left the container alone. New leaves grew, and then I noticed bulbs! What fun! Actually, I recall one special thing I did: I was very excited with those three amaryllises and kept showing them to my family, praising them and asking: Aren't they beautiful? Aren't they gorgeous? I hope the third bulb will show a bud soon. In the picture below, it’s on the left.

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Photo: March 2nd, 2011

I just took another picture that shows the second bulb's flowers opened. They are smaller than the January blooms and almost twice smaller than the flowers on the middle bulb. But, it doesn't make them less special.

Photo: March 6th, 2011

So, what do you think: do I have bragging rights or is the consecutive blooming of an Amaryllis typical in your experience?

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Copyright 2011 TatyanaS

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Birds in One Show Garden


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Love it! A bird! And not just any bird. A bird with laces, a crown and jewels for a wedding party! And not just a wedding party, but a wedding in the garden! And not just a garden, but a garden at the Northwest Flower and Garden show. There was a whole flock of these birds! 'Garden in Verse' reminded me of a theatre. It even had walls! And the flowers, of course, were all white:




To learn more about these romantically funky bird sculptures please check d4collective blog posts here and here.


‘Caprifolium’ and McGilvra Elementary School created this flock of Ibis. All the birds have names: Dudley, Emmett, Paris, Gloria, Mrs. Wentworth, Beulah Margot, Maria Rosita and Florence B (check their blog to see what else they call this lady on the right):

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Copyright 2011 TatyanaS

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