Okay, I’m not sure I can really limit it to ten, but I’ll give it a shot.
Generally speaking, July is my 2nd least favorite month (with February at the top of the list). In a “normal” summer (this summer has not been at all normal), July is hot, humid, dry, pest-ridden, and the late spring-early summer perennials have had their heyday and the borders are looking alot like the day after the party…This year, with all of the rain and cooler temperatures, plants are running a little behind bloom schedule and the Japanese beetles, bless their voracious appetites, have just arrived. As a result, this year’s July line up is a mixed bag with some early summer blooms still hanging in there.
In not any particular order, my top ten blooms for July are:
“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.” – Henry David Thoreau
I’m as guilty as the next person when it comes to an utter inability to slow down — to stop running from one thing to another, to stop the to-do lists from churning through my mind — to just slow down and smell the proverbial roses.
When I find my life getting a little too crazed, a walk in the garden or in the woods often helps to refocus my mind and allow me reconnect with nature; to really stop and see the world around me – and what a beautiful world it is!
“The earth laughs in flowers.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive — to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.” — Marcus Aurelius
“I’m so glad my window looks east into the sunrising…. It’s so splendid to see the morning coming up over those long hills and glowing through those sharp fir tops. It’s new every morning, and I feel as if I washed my very soul in that bath of earliest sunshine.” — L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
“When in the fresh mornings I go into my garden before anyone is awake, I go for the time being into perfect happiness.” — Cecilia Thaxter
“What humbugs we are, who pretend to live for Beauty, and never see the Dawn!”
— Logan Pearsall Smith
Thunderstorms are rumbling through right now, along with some torrential rain, so my gardening was cut a little short today. I love thunderstorms though, so I’m content to sit in my darkening kitchen typing this post, rather than being outside weeding and deadheading peonies.
Have I mentioned that it’s been an abnormally cool and wet spring and early summer? We’ve had rain 6 out of the past 7 days, and that’s been the norm since April.
The vegetable garden is less than pleased, but the perennials and newly planted trees and shrubs are loving it. So are the weeds, which have taken over every border I’ve yet to get to for “spring” clean-up (i.e., weeding, edging and mulching)…at this rate I might make it through the final border by fall!
Below are some photos of the plants in bloom this weekend. Enjoy!
We’ve been quite lucky this spring. We’ve been graced with an Eastern Phoebe nesting in our sheep barn; building her nest atop a light fixture. She successfully hatched 3 babies, who seemed to take very little time at all to go from tiny creatures to full fledglings flitting about the barn for a day or two, and then poof – gone into the wild.
We also had a couple of tree swallows who nested in the bird house situated between the orchard and sheep pasture. I just noticed a couple of young ones flying about with the parents the other day. They’ll be heading out soon as well.
Lastly, we had a female robin take up residence in an old robin’s nest atop out front door. She gave it a little make-over (everyone’s a critic) before settling in to lay her eggs. There were 3 eggs, but the babies have hatched and as of yesterday, I’ve only see two heads pop up whenever I’ve stepped out onto the porch to water the container plants. This morning, Nora noticed that one of the young ones (photo above) had left the nest.
Mom is still very much around, bringing a constant supply of worms and screaming vociferously whenever we even contemplate stepping out the door. I expect we’ll see the 2nd one venture out soon.