My perfect day in the garden would include touring through the springtime yard to see what is coming up, what returned from last year, and which irises are getting ready to bloom. An extra bonus would be if a delivery truck stopped by with one of my online orders.
Hummers, Butterflies Stop for a Sip
While touring through the yard, a hummingbird whizzes by as it makes its way from the feeder to the fuchsia plant, then the trumpet honeysuckle and the native columbine, then to the fire pink, snapdragon, woodland phlox, lilac shrub, petunia basket, candytuft, and African blue basil. As the season progresses, even more flowers bloom to please their palates.
Another perfect addition to the day would be to stumble upon a butterfly laying eggs on its host plant or, as occasionally happens, I walk up to a plant in time to see a butterfly just emerging from its chrysalis. It hangs onto a leaf or flower while its wings quickly unravel and stiffen. It then sits and slowly pumps its wings open and closed till they are dry and ready to fly.
As I walk from flower bed to flower bed, I notice how quickly foliage is returning on my favorite plants such as the liatris, purple and pale coneflowers, monarda, azure sage, dianthus, hydrangea, butterfly bushes, garden phlox, coreopsis, daylilies, and tiger lilies. I previously have filled with glee at the blooming bleeding heart, daffodils, and tulips.
I wonder what has befallen one of my daylilies, which is barely growing. In the last few years, it has been the workhorse of the garden, blooming off and on all summer. I hadn’t figured on it becoming a no-show.
Another plant yet to break soil is Indian pink, one of my favorite native perennials, and one my garden can’t do without. It is happiest in dappled shade, and come midsummer, the red, tubular flowers appear with yellow, star-shaped tips. It’s also a hummingbird favorite. No matter, there is more where that came from, and I quickly place an order with a native plant nursery who makes several trips to this area in spring and fall with preorders.
My milkweed hasn’t pushed through yet, but it usually is late to break dormancy, so I shall wait patiently for it to pull through.
After finishing the rounds, I’ll head back to where I have some unplanted perennials in containers, and with shovel or spade in hand, find more spots where I can squeeze in one more plant.
And what is that? Do I hear a delivery truck out front?