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

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

My August-2017 Garden

September is gaining speed, so I'd better post my garden's August pictures.
This was a different August. Summer came later than usual this year as
everything in the garden shifted to a later beginning.
So, what was usually blooming in July, was flourishing in August, making last month colorful and lush.
And now, to the garden, with numerous pictures and a few comments.
The pictures are in chronological order, so there will be the same plants and parts of the garden shown in different times throughout August.

This pic is a symbol of some kind. A symbol of an era ending in my life and in my garden.
The birdies have flown out of our family nest. Tests have been taken, applications submitted, acceptances received, bags packed.
Test preparation books are now free for serving as stands for bouquets...

White begonia basket in the Shade Garden.
Different time of the day, different lighting, different atmosphere...

Right border is getting more full and colorful with the lawn shrinking slowly but steadily.

Some new plants - Hypericum p. above and Canna below

Hakonecloa, Japanese Forest Grass, got lighter, more yellow tone after being moved here from shadier corner of the garden.

 Hydrangea 'Oregon Pride' and Liatris
This liatris clump got spared from rabbits which totally destroyed some other liatris plants.
Bunnies, probably, got distracted by alpine strawberries. Those strawberries got stripped of their leaves on a regular basis during summer.

It's nice to look at the garden from this sitting spot.

One of my best new plants this season: Calandrinia. 
Not hardy in our zone, but even as an annual, it was great. Constantly producing lovely flowers on long arching stems.

Echinacea got moved here last season but still looks hesitant to grow in my garden.

Abyssinian Banana trees love to grow in the sunny Terrace Garden.

Geraniums in the pots served well bringing some color to otherwise pure green spots.

American rabbits have babies from February till September.
It's September - hooray!
One female can give birth 3-4 times a year with 3-6 babies in a litter, sometimes 12!
No wonder, we've been seeing bunnies of all different sizes all over the garden every day!

Cages didn't help. The babies could easily fit between the wires. I started to cover the cages with bird netting, and only then, some plants had a break!

Rabbits' menu seems to widen on a regular basis and includes plants which were not eaten before.

 Purple Monarda was pulled out last fall because of the constant battle with mildew.
But, I got a new growth this spring with healthy new plants that looked good til late August.

Thank you, Karen, for this beautiful Tetrapanax leaf. Finally, I found a very prominent place for it!

Senecio candicans 'Angel Wings' is a beautiful container plant.
It won't survive winter though.

This is the first bloom on a small hydrangea plant grown from a cutting (below in a container).

My little Kitchen Garden with kale, cabbage, arugula, strawberries, peas, lettuce, parsley and other herbs.

Agave and succulents enjoy afternoon sun.

Perennial begonia

 This Verbena had a very short moment of fame: it got eaten the very first night after I planted it.
Now, it's sitting in a pot.

Potted Cercis can. Little Woody is proving that it's not so little and hints to me about finding a spot for it in the garden.

Hydrangea 'Oregon Pride', seen in pics above and below, is the mother-plant for the previously shown baby-hydrangea. 

A lot of pink in the August garden!

Two containers from Swanson's decorated the front yard. Did you notice that yellow appeared in my garden? I'm leaving my comfort zone and including it into my color palette.

 Gunnera is lowering its leaves. Some of them will be used to cover the plant during winter.

Hydrangea macrophilla 'Izu no Hana' from Windcliff is getting bigger every year.
Thank you, Rudell, for giving me this cool idea of paint-spraying dry Allium heads.

Somehow, I didn't take pictures of our dry area. This is the only one showing Lavender and Euphorbia.

I don't plant many annuals.  But if I do, it's geranium for sun and begonia for shade.

Scooby-Doo, where are you?
It was time when I put Chia seeds on your head, and, with our boys,  watched  them growing funky hair.

Clumping bamboo is behaving so far and is not spreading.

Kale is the queen in my potager. I am the only one in our family who eats it.
Since I have extra, I freeze it and use it in smoothies later in the year.
I should admit, I almost feel sorry to harvest it since it's so ornamental!

Several cabbage plants survived constant slug attacks.

Calendula seeds were planted in the pot in July, and pretty orange flowers now decorate the kitchen garden in September.

Mint, above, is under my constant surveillance, but I let ginger mint, below, to spread.
It spares me from weeding the space between the raised beds.

It's easy to pull out, but I know that I'll never get rid of it.

I planted tomatoes early, but we didn't have good summer heat in June so we started to have ripe tomatoes only in late August-early September.
The one in the above picture is Red Pear.
We had a good crop of cucumbers.

I like to have breakfast at this table.

Clematis from my gardening friend Karen is participating in an experiment: will it bloom here after never blooming in her garden?


Japanese Anemones are allowed to spread. Fortunately, it's easy to pull them out.

Tumbling composter, honestly, hasn't been tumbled for a loooong time.
I obviously prefer to turn over compost in my two compost piles.

Shade Garden is doing fine. It could do even better if not for the competition from neighbors' cedar trees with their long, thirsty roots.
The good thing is that they create a dense live border separating our properties.

Vines are doing their thing - decorating white walls.

Two terracotta ornaments in the above and below pictures were bought in Pisa from Sandra of Florence, Italy.
If you ever meet her at the Pisa market, say Hello from me. My many attempts to send an e-mail to her failed.

These anemones are spreading in the Sunken Garden.
Tall and thin, they decorate this part of the garden  where I don't have many blooming plants.

View of the Terrace Garden from the back porch

Two containers with ghostly Senecio  mark the entrance to the garden. 
It looks like a border, but it's pretty wide, more than 30 feet.

This garden functions like a self-sustaining entity: self-seeds, spreads, feeds numerous wildlife, including hummingbirds.

Japanese Anemone is shorter here, in full sun.

As I wrote in previous posts, Abyssinian Banana trees grow in the Terrace Garden for the first time.
For three years, I planted them in the Kitchen Garden and in front of the garage.
Two plants are doing great in the new place.
The third one is not so happy since it gets less water (sprinkler system is turned off here).

What can be worse than slugs?
This summer, there are so many of them, and they destroyed so many plants!

Those who know me well, also know that yellow is not my favorite color.
As you see, something changed: I allowed several yellow-blooming plants into my garden.
I work on my taste!


My Thalictrum, unfortunately, doesn't self-seed.

I started to plant more white-blooming plants, and it pays off: the white gives a nice fresh look to the garden.

Fuchsia 'Dollar Princess' is planted now in several corners of the garden.
It comes from one single plant that I bought 10-12 years ago as a 4" potted baby-plant.

I always thought that Nicotiana is an annual.
I planted several plants 3 years ago, and now have numerous plants growing both from seeds and overwintering.

You can tell I like these pots.

You are seeing the same parts of the garden, but the pictures were taken later.

I can't stop praising this Rose Regensberg Floribunda.
It has not hundreds, but over a thousand buds during the summer and fall.

Salvia 'Black and Blue' adds nice rich blue tones to the picture.

My first intention was to remove these volunteer mushrooms.
 Then, I looked at them again and actually liked them.
They will return next year I guess.

'Double Otto' Fuchsia is not as lush as it was last year but is still lovely.

 New dry creek

New in my garden - Sneezeweed. Two plants are multi-stemmed and produced so many flowers that it looks like there are more than two.

It is not only me who loves Helenium's flowers!

They are very photogenic, aren't they?

I pinched my old-fashioned Joe Pye Weed severely, but it still grows tall.

 It was time when I had only melon-red perennial phlox. Now, there is a white one and a purple one.
Much better!

This year, I covered grapes with a bird net.
Should I try the fruit of my labor or not?
There are many grapes left for the birds on my gazebo.
These I want for myself!

Lobelia tupa likes its dry spot in the Terrace Garden. It gets bushier every year.

This green spot near the back porch is getting bigger due to the shrinking size of the lawn...

We are in the Shade Garden again...
The garden wraps itself around the house so we are walking in circles.

 The fallen leaves of the red grapevine became the first sign of fall in my garden.

 The dry Hydrangea bouquet is keeping its shape for the second year. Yes, it's 2016's hydrangea.
It spent many months inside the house and was set out on the potting bench only in July 2017.

Huge heads of 'Oregon Pride' Hydrangea

 This is the mother of all 'Dollar Princess' plants

Two spontaneously-bought turquoise pots from Swanson's proved to be a good addition to the front yard.

 Beautiful, with lost name, Fuchsia is not spreading as its neighbor, 'Dollar Princess', so I have only one plant.

 Labrador Violet found a new home in the succulent pot on a pedestal. How? Wind? Birds?

 Wild Ginger from Windcliff

 'Izu no Hana' is changing blooms' color

Oakleaf Hydrangea also is changing - from white to rose

Aralia, in the foreground, is one of my favorite plants. I have it in different corners of the garden.

Gunnera bloom

Fuchsia 'Hawkshead', a generous gift from Faye and Ken, who were vendors in our garden during GH Garden Tour-2013.

Schefflera delavayi is getting taller and looks happy

Among all my aralias, only this one seems to have some kind of problem with leaves - they have dark spots and their tips curl sometimes.
The only noticeable difference in its growing conditions is a more wet spot.

Rabbits ate my fall asters, although I watched them all summer like a hawk and sprayed them with stinky liquid.
So, I bought a pot of similar asters and keep it in a vase on the table as a little comfort.

Finally, the end!
I recognize that I post too many pictures at once. Thank you for your patience.
Have a Happy September!

***Copyright 2017 TatyanaS


  1. WOW! I love your garden it is so pretty. How do you take care of it all. I would like to have one like it at our next home.

    1. Thank you Betty! There are busy times and there are easy times in the garden. Finally, I let someone else to mow the lawn. It saves a lot of time! Have a lovely September!

  2. Oh Tatyana, your garden is so beautiful. I love everything about it. Scrolling through the photos is such a treat. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Grace, I hope you can visit one day! Then, you'll tell me if pictures tell the truth!
      Thank you so much for your comments; you have always been very supportive and kind to me and my blog!

  3. Hello Tatyana. I love your garden. It's beautiful. I love all of it . I have follow you for a long time.
    Greeting from Hanne-Lise in Norway.

    1. Fruens Flora, thank you so much for your kind words! I really appreciate long-time readers of my blog and I'm very glad when they leave a comment!

  4. I always enjoy your home garden tours, and your lovely photography.

  5. All these images are amazing, Tatyana! I can only imagine how incredible your garden is in person! I have many of my plants caged with fine wiring, too. It worked for a while, but the tiny baby rabbits can fit under the edges. So, my next plan of action for a few select plants is to dig out the soil and plant caging into the ground. I'm also planning to plant quite a few Alliums this fall, to try to repel them. Rabbits are so frustrating! I don't even thing they're cute anymore.

    1. Beth, thanks! Bunnies are out of my favorite animals list too!

  6. Hi Tatyana, your garden is really wonderfull place. I´m so glad that I can look at your beautiful photos. It must be fulfilling to live among so many flowers.

    1. Michaela, thank you so much! I have some corners in my garden that are just green. I like different shades of green combined together.

  7. This long post was a joy to read and a feast for the eye. I really love your garden, can you leave the many not so hardy plants to overwinter in the garden, or do you have a huge greenhouse? For many of your plants it is too cold over here, or too wet. Wet soil and frost don`t go together that`s the problem. I have the same problem with the bunnies, they look so cute, but......I have caged lots of mainly young plants too. Most sad is that they destroyed my autumn asters over the years, I had a beautiful border with a great variety of asters, they all have gone, such a shame. And I was so proud on my many Delphiniums, growing and flowering so well, but they have gone and that`s strange because I have read bunnies don`t like Delphiniums because they get stomach ache of them. I have to take action to get rid of them or I have to adjust my garden with only rabbit-resistant plants.
    Greetings from Holland, Janneke

    1. Janneke, thank you! Our winters a pretty mild, so I bring inside only several plants, for example Abyssinian Banana trees, some succulents.
      As for your asters, I am so sorry! I didn't see any asters this season, and my campanula was also damaged badly. Bunnies, go to the forests, please!

  8. August was good to your garden. Beautiful!

    1. Thank you, Lisa! We are having some rain at last! We need them!

  9. Your garden and photography skills are always such a treat! Your garden is at once serene and exuberant - so much beauty. You are a master of style as well as planting. I enjoyed this tour through your garden with touches of whimsy among the incredibly well-grown plants. That big begonia basket is incredible! Bunnies are so cute but the damage they do is not so adorable.

    1. Thank you, Peter! Your own garden is a real inspiration for me! Your Open Garden made my summer!

  10. Hello Tatyana,
    your garden is beautiful. I really admire combination of your plants and huge conifers, it has to be a challenge for a gardener I suppose... But it looks so romantic and "secret"! If your camera doesn´t lie and the shown colour of rosa Regensburg floribunda represents its real colour, it is absolutely gorgeous! I think it resembles David Austin Boscobel rose which I dream about :-). Hela

    1. Thank you, Helena! I'm glad you lik the garden. That rose's blooms have different tint depending on certain weather and light.

  11. Your garden was so lush and lovely in August, not scorched to dust like mine, and your photos are so beautiful. What a treat to look at them! However....a bird in the bird cage? Didn't your visit to Peter's garden teach you that cages are for trolls? Or disembodied heads and hands?

    1. Alison, thank you so much!
      Shame on me! Next time, I'll think better whom to put in the cage, ha-ha!

  12. What a botanical wonder your garden is! I always enjoy tours of your garden, Tatyana. August certainly was a good month for it. The rabbits are cute. We once had many rabbits in the garden, but eventually the red foxes moved in and apparently ate most of them! Now a rabbit is a rare sight.

    1. Hi Deb and thank you! I've never seen foxes close to our neighborhood, but there are coyotes here. Somehow, they don't come close to our garden. Probably, they know that German Shepherds are bigger and stronger than them!

  13. My goodness what a tour....I would love to spend days wandering your see that hydrangea blue and the amazing kale to name a few....we had 4 nests of rabbits this year....far too many....i expect fox will be back now that there is more food.

    1. Donna, thank you! You and Deb have foxes; lucky you! I hope all these rabbits will move somewhere else next season!

  14. Another big wow for you Tatyana! Loving all the green. Even though I love all the sunshine I get here, it does tend to be dry. That means green is harder to find at the end of the summer.

    1. Thank you so much, Robin! It's October, and our garden still looks green, although we had extremely dry summer. Pacific Northwest has its perks!


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