Saturday, March 16, 2013


As the dandelions can attest,
dandelion seeds

my garden's been terribly neglected lately.

(And my blog has been, as well.)

My fall garden has bolted, and I haven't had a chance to clean it up.

Not that the bees mind.
bee and broccoli

I read somewhere that flowering winter vegetables are a critical food source for bees at winter's end, before spring's flowers arrive.
broccoli and bee

However, the spring flowers are out now, so it wouldn't hurt the bees to pull these out.

But I'm in the midst of a DIY kitchen remodel, and at the end of each day, I feel rather like this flopped-over iris -
cemetery iris

- and so the garden will have to wait.

They call these "cemetery irises" because they're often found in cemeteries, thriving on neglect.  Well, that's what they're getting in my garden - a whole lot of neglect.
cemetery irises

In the garden in front of the house, I managed to get the boxwood house "mustache" trimmed, but I didn't get this lanky lantana cut back before it burst into bloom.

 (Aaugh, is that a sprig of Bermuda I see?)

I got the salvias cut back, including this 'Cherry Sage',
cherry sage

but not the globemallow, because it insisted on blooming all winter, like a freak.
globe mallow

I didn't get the leaves raked up before the blackfoot daisies sprung up,
globe mallow & blackfoot daisies

and I didn't get the gopher plant cut back, either.
gopher plant

Well, it's too late now.  Daytime temps have hit the 80's this week, and this Caesalpinia mexicana thinks it's in the tropics.
Mexican Bird of Paradise (Caesalpinia mexicana)

Looks like it's going to be a short, dry spring and a long, hot summer.

Happy (belated) Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!  Visit May Dreams Gardens to see what's blooming in gardens all over the world.

Words and photos © 2009-2013 Caroline Homer for "The Shovel-Ready Garden". Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.


  1. I guess I'd better clean up my winter vegetable garden before it bolts too! I so envy you for that globemallow. I've been trying to grow a very similar-looking one, but the last big rainstorm appears to have drowned it.

  2. Beautiful!
    Love the Dandelion photos! (and all the others, too!)
    Let us hope and pray that this Summer is not as hot and dry as last.
    Lea's Menagerie

  3. I fear you're right on the spring and summer to come (even up here), but for now, I enjoyed the globemallows you had going all winter and now iris. Wish I could be there right now. Except pulling Bermudagrass sprigs...

  4. Caroline! A neglected garden is just perfect for our native bees and other beneficial insects. You are not neglectful, you are conscientious. :-)

  5. HA! - Blooming like a freak! LOVE IT! I wish my iris would bloom...okay, okay, they've only been the ground for...ummm...I don't remember if I got them in the fall or in the spring...but the point is, I wish they would have bloomed this year...oh well, guess I'll have to wait for next spring.

  6. Aren't those globe mallows fantastic? I did finally cut mine back, but it wasn't easy when they were in bloom! It all looks pretty to me -- lots of beautiful flowers. My own garden is buried under a foot of live oak leaves right now.

  7. Lovely blooms...and don't fret...there are always going to be things that get in the way of gardening from time to's always there waiting for you, though, once you have time again :-)