Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Spring has sprung!

Here's what's going gangbusters in my garden.

Coreopsis grandiflora 'Mayfield Giant' has returned with a vengeance. Its blossoms are larger than a half-dollar.
Coreopsis grandiflora 'Mayfield Giant'

Melinis nerviglumis 'Ruby Crystals' is a new addition this spring.
Melinis nerviglumis 'Ruby Crystals'

Salvia nemorosa 'Mainacht' is back. She's a passalong plant from my mother-in-law in Virginia.
Salvia nemorosa 'Mainacht'

This melampodium leucanthum 'Blackfoot Daisy' is blooming its little blackfoots off. I'm happy it's come back so strong; the one in the backyard didn't survive last summer's drought.
Melampodium leucanthum 'Blackfoot Daisy'

Lonicera sempervirens 'Coral Honeysuckle' is back; I planted it last spring. It's a hummingbird's paradise! [Correction: I believe this vine has been in the ground at least two years, maybe three, but definitely not one!]
Lonicera sempervirens 'Coral Honeysuckle'

Tetraneuris scaposa 'Four-Nerve Daisy' is a non-stop bloomer: winter, spring, summer and fall. It's reseeding like crazy.
Tetraneuris scaposa  'Four-Nerve Daisy'

Salvia greggii 'Autumn Sage' is evergreen and blooms spring, summer and fall.
Salvia greggii 'Autumn Sage'

Stachys byzantina 'Lamb's Ear' looked to be on death's door after our hard freezes. It's bounced right back this spring. (Another passalong plant from my mother-in-law)
Stachys byzantina 'Lamb's Ear'

Nassella tenuissima seedlings are popping up everywhere. I've passed along a few.
Nassella tenuissima seedling

The sedums I planted last summer are starting to look like their labeled species.

Sedum mexicanum 'Gold Carpet'.
Sedum mexicanum 'Gold Carpet'

Sedum spurium, labeled 'Red Carpet'. It turned bright red this winter; now it's reverting back to green.
Sedum spurium

Sedum 'Salsa Verde' (S. makinoi) & 'Baby Tears' (S. desyphyllum).
Sedum 'Salsa Verde' (S. makinoi) & 'Baby Tears' (S. desyphyllum)

Sedum hispanicum.
Sedum hispanicum

What's sprung in your spring garden?

Words and photos © 2009-2010 Caroline Homer for "The Shovel-Ready Garden". Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.

Friday, March 19, 2010

GGW Picture This Photo Contest: March 2010

After much consideration and another crop, I'm entering this photo of my baby dwarf pomegranate tree in Gardening Gone Wild's Picture This photo contest. The theme for March is "Awakening", which is exactly what this little tree is doing, much to my delight.

Dwarf pomegranate tree awakening

For more about the baby tree, and how I decided on this photo, click here.

For more on the contest, click here.

It's not too late to enter your own photo--the deadline is 11:59 pm Eastern time on Sunday, March 21, 2010. Good luck!

Words and photos © 2009-2010 Caroline Homer for "The Shovel-Ready Garden". Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Foliage Follow-Up: The Pomegranate Lives!

This month's Foliage Follow-Up is dedicated to the awakening of my dwarf pomegranate tree. I feared this little baby did not survive our temperature drop to 17° F this winter. But as you see, she lives! Hooray!

Baby pomegranate leaves

Pomegranate waking up

Pomegranate budding

Pomegranate leafing out

Pomegranate in spring

Pomegranate tree is alive!

I may enter one of these shots in this month's Gardening Gone Wild photo contest. The theme for March is "Awakening". The judge, Saxon Holt, gave some tips to photographers thinking about entering, to improve their chances of winning.

I will be looking for a broad range of entries and will give special consideration to unusual and creative interpretation of the awakening theme.
This leads me to believe photos of leaves sprouting from bare fruit tree branches might trump photos of, say, leucojum pushing through the winter-crusted earth.

When looking for your own garden shots, try to compose so that the backgrounds are simple and do not conflict with the main subject. If you can get a bit of garden context without confusing the main focal area, so much the better, but be sure to have critically sharp focus on your main subject. Use your whole frame, cropping any area that does not add to the composition.

This makes me think I shouldn't enter either of the last two shots, as the background in both shots is a bit distracting and doesn't add to the composition.

That leaves the top 4 shots as potential candidates. Hmmm. I have a favorite (can you guess which one?) but I'd love to hear your input. In any event, thanks to Pam Penick at Digging for hosting Foliage Follow-Up! Visit her blog to see the foliage frolicking in gardens around the planet.


Words and photos © 2009-2010 Caroline Homer for "The Shovel-Ready Garden". Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day - March 2010

Spring has sprung! Here's what's blooming in my garden.

Leucojum aestivum 'Gravetye Giant'.
Leucojum aestivum "Gravetye Giant

Cercis canadensis, commonly known as the redbud tree.
Cercis canadensis "Redbud"

'Mutabilis' rose.
"Mutabilis" rose

Blue anemones.
Blue anemones

'Old Blush' rose.
"Old Blush" rose

'Packman' broccoli, in full bloom...oops.
"Packman" broccoli in full bloom

Thanks to Carol at May Dreams Gardens for hosting GBBD; visit her site to see what's blooming today, all over the world.


Words and photos © 2009-2010 Caroline Homer for "The Shovel-Ready Garden". Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Starting Seeds

DIY Seed Starting System

Seedlings


Words and photos © 2009-2010 Caroline Homer for "The Shovel-Ready Garden". Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Signs of Spring

Cedar waxwing

Summer snowflake bud

Redbud tree is budding

"Blue Poppy" anemone

Meyer lemon blossoms

Passalong daylilies

Naturalized box store tulip


Words and photos © 2009-2010 Caroline Homer for "The Shovel-Ready Garden". Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.