Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Let's Step Back A Bit.............

The next several posts we'll be a stepping back into May and early June on my garden progression.
This week I will be talking with you about my Iris bed.  This bed was the first to be completed and I was transplanting Siberian Irises and wanted to get them into the ground first. 
In my Iris bed I have Bearded Irises, Siberian Irises, 2 Tree Peonies, a Peony and a intersectional Peony as well as 3 Balloon flowers, 2 Lamb's ear and 2 Euphorbia "First Blush", also known as the cushion spurge.

 In this photo I've just transplanted. From the foreground to the background Balloon flowers, Lamb's ear (on the corners), Euphorbia (middle), and the Siberian Irises, and behind them are the Bearded Irises, which were originally there.  The Lamb's ear looks a little weak here, but has improved greatly.  When I transplant I make sure to add some composted manure to help feed the plants and the soil.

This is the back side of the Iris bed which here you see the Bearded Irises and one of the Tree Peonies.  This Tree Peony was just planted and is yellow and probably won't see any blooms til next year.

In this photo You can see the other Tree Peony (the dark pink flower) which has been there a few years too.  I've also started mulching at this point, which will help keep down the weeds and retain moisture.
My goal was to get all the transplanting done first then work on mulching.

In the above photo you can see the finished Iris bed.
This photo shows my Bearded Irises blooming as well as the Tree Peony.
To tell you a little bit about the Peonies I have in this bed.  Tree Peonies are grown on wood, like a tree, but only get between 3 to 5 feet tall and the woody stems don't die back in the winter.  But the blooms are as large as your hand.  About 5-6" in diameter.  Gorgeous, gorgeous blooms!  The shrub Peony is just that a shrub and does not have any wooden branches and are also known as herbaceous Peonies which do die back to the ground in the winter.  Which are also the most common Peony.  The intersectional Peony (also know as Itoh Hybrids) is a cross between the Tree Peony and the Herbaceous Peony.  The Itoh Hybrids produce a Tree Peony flower and leaves while having many of the same characteristics of a Herbaceous Peony.  This is my first Itoh Hybrid Peony.  It's suppose to have a yellow blossoms.  When it blooms I will show and tell......
  Everyday for the first couple of weeks I watered to make sure that these plants get a good head start.  This should be done will all transplants. 
As of today all the transplants are doing well.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Almost There............

I know it has been just over a month since my last entry, but I've been bound and determined to get this garden looking good and ready for blooming this year.  And now I'm within days to finishing up at least for the first half of the year.  I will still have plenty to do in the fall for preparation of next year.
So if you refer back to my first post, you will see what I started with this year and in that month and a half since then I've gotten to this point. 
June 14, 2014
Granted most of the garden is under black plastic, but this is part of the garden that is being prepped for next spring.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do with those sections so instead of watching the weeds grow and creating extra work for me, I just decided to cover them in plastic which will in turn burn any weed seeds that are there.  In the fall I will be tilling all of those sections.
My 2 dogwood trees, eastern redbud and my 3 brandywine viburnum all did not make it.  I had really hoped they would, but I think the winter was too harsh for them.   I did replace the eastern redbud with 2 more.  These are much taller about 6-7 feet and did have buds on them as seen below.
I think these 2 trees will have a much better chance of survival than the last one.  As of today they are doing just great!
After a lot of research I don't think I will be replacing the Brandywines, because they may not do will in my neck of the woods here in Maine.  Although I did notice we got a shipment of them at work.  So maybe in the fall if they are still there I may give them another try.
As far a my 2 dogwoods, will still thinking about that too.  I did plant one in the front yard last fall and doing great, but not sure what happened with the other 2. 
So for the next couple of weeks I will be posting what I've done with the garden and what's been planted.