Merry Christmas from my Garden to yours……

XMas

My Visit to the Atlanta Botanical Gardens… Imaginary Worlds —a New Kingdom of Giant Plants…

This weekend my family and I visited the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, as my birthday present, to see the spectacular Imaginary Worlds exhibition. There we strolled through the gardens and saw giant plant sculptures such as; Gorillas, frogs, butterflies, cobras, an Ogre, unicorn and shaggy dog. Of course, stealing the show was the lovely Earth Goddess, being the largest of these sculptures at 25 feet tall!

These giant animal sculptures are planted with thousands of plants using a horticultural art called Mosaiculture, created in Canada by the International Mosaiculture of Montreal.  As defined on the ABG website, “Each sculpture is a living work of art. Thousands of annuals are planted in colorful, ornate patterns on steel forms covered with netting and soil. A combination of internal irrigation systems and hand watering help the plants to flourish. Each sculpture is meticulously groomed on a weekly schedule to maintain the artistic lines as the plants grow.”

 

Here are some of the fabulous works of horticultural art we saw…

 

Shaggy Dog

Shaggy Dog greets you as you enter the gardens…

 

Gorilla

One of the Gorilla’s…

 

The Ogre

The Ogre

 

Butterfly

Lovely vibrant Butterfly…

 

The Giant Cobra 2

The Giant Cobra’s were a hit with my boys…

 

The Giant Cobra 3

 

The Giant Cobra 4

 

Frog lily pad

Frogs on lily pads…

 

large frog

 

Unicorn

Loved the Unicorn…

 

 

Earth Goddess

Stealing my heart- the beautiful Earth Goddess, 25 feet tall, overlooking the Cascade Gardens Waterfalls. She is made up of 18,000 annuals. Amazing!

 

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family ABG

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Hope you enjoyed the tour of the spectacular exhibition at The Atlanta Botanical Gardens.  I know I did!

 

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ABG-Atlanta Botanical Gardens

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wordless Wednesday in my September garden…

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Julia Child

 

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Wordless Wednesday….in my garden

Evelyn

 

Amber flower carpet

 

The President

 

Princess Alexandra of Kent

 

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Mother of Pearl

 

Eden

 

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My Garden…a Country Gardens Award Winner…a ‘Labor of Love’

HONORED AND EXCITED…

that my garden and myself, Brenda Addington  (aka-The Graceful Gardener), are featured in the current fall issue of Country Gardens Magazine as one of their Country Garden Award winners!

They gave my garden the ‘Dream Country Garden’ award.  Heavens!  This is the first experience I’ve had at winning a garden award.

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 Included in the six page feature is a list of a few of my favorite roses that I grow in my garden….

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In the Resources section of this issue is a list of some of my favorite mail order sources for roses, organic fertilizers,etc.

 

Many thanks to the folks at Country Garden Magazine, especially the editor, James Baggett, and to Danny Flanders who wrote the wonderful article ‘Labor of Love’  about my garden. So Thrilled!

Glorious Hydrangeas in my garden…

 

H.arborescens ‘Annabelle’

My Glorious Hydrangeas

Recently, there’s been a glorious explosion of hydrangea flowers in my garden.  This month my hydrangeas (along with my roses) have taken center stage.

I grow several varieties in my garden which is a small collection of about 40 Hydrangeas.


Hydrangea arborescens:

‘Annabelle’

H. arborescens ‘Annabelle’

The blooms of ‘Annabelle’ are absolutely huge in my garden. Some are  nearly 12 inches across.

‘Annabelle‘ has big balls of flowers that start out green, then turn to white and eventually dry a pale green as the season progresses. The flowers are lacy and delicate, but don’t let that fool you, this plant is tough. Mine are massed in a bed around my fountain.

‘Annabelle’ in my white garden.

 

Hydrangea macrophylla:

‘Alpengluhen’ (Glowing Embers)

H. macrophylla ‘Glowing Embers’

 ‘Alpengluhen’- (Glowing Embers) is a new addition to my hydrangea collection this year. A compact 3′ tall hydrangea with beautiful pinkish-red flowers.

 

‘Endless Summer’ and ‘Big Daddy’

Mass planting of H. macrophylla ‘Endless Summer and ‘Big Daddy’

My Endless Summer are planted in my backyard amongst a few other hydrangeas, ‘Big Daddy‘ and ‘Snowflake’ . What a spectacular show of blooms they put on every year.

 

‘Endless Summer’ & ‘Big Daddy’

‘Endless Summer’ is a very hardy hydrangea and blooms on both the current season’s growth as well as old growth, providing the advantage of a longer bloom period.

‘Big Daddy’, another H. macrophylla, has giant flower heads a foot across or more.

 

 

 

Endless Summer ‘Blushing Bride’

H. macrophylla  'Blushing Bride'

H. macrophylla ‘Blushing Bride’

Endless Summer ‘Blushing Bride‘ produces blooms throughout the season on both new and old stems. Huge blooms start out pure white and become more of an antique pink as they fade. I have several planted with H. macrophylla ”Mariesii Variegata’ ‘Blushing Bride‘ is very lovely…

Blushing Bride’ planted amongst H. macrophylla lace cap ‘Mariesii Variegata

 

H. Macrophylla  ‘Mariesii Variegata‘-LaceCap

Lace cap ‘Mariesii Variegata’

This LaceCap  ‘Mariesii Variegata’,  I must admit was a bit cold sensitive for my Zone 7b climate. The first two I ever planted, died the following year after an usually cold winter. Two years ago, I planted two more in a more sheltered location and am hoping they will survive. So far so good. The leaves are green with white margins and flowers either pink or blue lacecap blossoms.

 

H. macrophylla ‘ Blue Wave‘-LaceCap and ‘Nikko Blue

‘Blue Wave‘ (behind JMaple)’ and ‘Nikko Blue, H. macrophylla’ planted amongst ‘Autumn’ ferns and a variegated Japanese Maple ‘Oku Kuji Nishiki’.

 Many of my Hydrangeas are inter-planted with Japanese Maples and ferns in my backyard garden. I love this combination, especially with my ‘Blue Wave’ and ‘Nikko Blue’ hydrangeas.

‘Blue Wave’ Lacecap Hydrangea

 H. macrophylla, ‘Blue Wave‘ happens to be my favorite LaceCap hydrangea in my garden. A glorious sight when in bloom.The Lacecap flowers are a captivating blue that I love to photograph. Mine are planted in light shade under pine trees receiving late morning /early afternoon dappled sun and are thriving. Beautiful!

 

Hydrangea quercifolia:

‘Snowflake’

H. quercifolia ‘Snowflake’

Ok, if I had to pick a favorite hydrangea in my garden, it would be this one- H. quercifolia ‘Snowflake’.

This one is a stunner. “Snowflake’ has absolutely gorgeous clusters that are densely layered just dripping with showy white flowers. I have several planted with many of my H. macrophylla’s throughout my garden.

‘Snowflake’ planted with ‘Endless Summer and Big Daddy H. macrophylla.


‘Snowflake’ and ‘Annabelle

 

‘Snowflake’ starting to turn pink in color..

The flowers age beautifully and I love every stage throughout the season. Snowflakes flowers start out pure white, gradually fading to pink and then turning brown by late summer. I can’t say enough about this plant… 

 

‘Snowflake’ in late summer

 

While these photo’s I’ve shared with you represent many of my hydrangeas, there are some however that were camera shy…here’s a list of a few others that are gracing my garden..

 Arborecens ‘Radiata”

H. macrophylla ‘Painter’s Palette’

H. macrophylla ‘Fuji Waterfall’

H. paniculata ‘Vanilla Strawberry’

H. paniculata (PeeGee) ‘Tree Form

 

 Some Hydrangea links:

http://www.hydrangeashydrangeas.com

http://www.americanhydrangeasociety.org

http://www.Hydrangeasplus.com

 

Time to meet the Austins…in my garden

That would be David Austin— roses.

 

Who doesn’t love a romantic garden? The fragrance, the charm, flowers billowing over paths. If you want to add some instant romance and Old World charm loveliness to your garden, then planting English bred David Austin roses is the way to go. David Austin roses have the look of old garden style roses, fill the air with lovely fragrance and with repeat blooming no wonder I’m smitten with these roses for my cottage style garden. I must confess though, it’s the full billowing fragrant blossoms of these roses draping from my arbors, trellises and containers that have me hooked. Also, my nose can’t get enough of them. These roses are so full petaled that sometimes people mistaken them as peonies in my garden.

Having added many David Austin roses about 2 years ago (many still considered babies), I must admit not all have been successful in my Zone 7b garden. I am a no-spray organic rose gardener, so a few did succumb to black spot and disease. However, having gone through several I have narrowed it down to these beauties; (Note: Some are new this spring that have yet to show their survivability).

Here are a few of my favorite David Austin roses in my garden today….

 

Evelyn

‘Evelyn’

The lovely ‘Evelyn’ is absolutely beautiful. This was my first David Austin rose purchase. I’m training mine as a small climber (6/8 feet) in a small corner of my garden near my back deck. Even though ‘Evelyn’ tends to get blackspot from time to time, due to a part sun location, I keep her in my garden for her grace and wonderful fragrance.

 

'Bishops Castle'

‘Bishops Castle’

 I love pink in my garden. I actually have a bed of just pink roses, one of which is ‘Bishops Castle’. This rose has lovely large pink blossoms with a delicious strong fragrance. I plan on planting another next spring. Mine is getting pretty tall about 5 feet. ‘Bishops Castle’ tends to hold its lovely color even in the heat of my summers.

'Bishops Castle'

‘Bishops Castle’

 

 

'Benjamin Britten'

‘Benjamin Britten’

 A lovely red rose with deep cupped shaped blossoms and a nice fruity fragrance. The red color does tend to fade to a reddish-pink when they age or perhaps due to the sun. I have mine planted towards the back of my rose bed since it grows quite tall (6 feet) in my garden.

 

'Princess Alexandra of Kent'

‘Princess Alexandra of Kent’

“Princess Alexandra of Kent’… a fitting name for such a lovely rose. New to my garden this spring I must say that I am impressed. It’s beautifully shaped pink blossoms have a wonderful lemon scent. So far it’s a prolific repeat bloomer and holds its color very well in my morning sun location.

 

'The Generous Gardener' climbing rose

‘The Generous Gardener’ climbing rose

 A new climber to my garden, so its still a baby, this David Austin climber is quite beautiful. It has pale, soft pink blossoms that fade to white and a wonderful fragrance. Very healthy, resistant to blackspot thus far. Looking forward to next spring when it will produce more blooms.

 

Huntington Rose

Huntington Rose

 One of my favorite David Austin roses -‘Huntington Rose’. I had two in my garden until early this spring.  Sadly, the deer devoured them both. I’ve included this to my list since I plan on planting more next spring. It is a prolific bloomer, wonderfully fragrant, good disease resistance and has exquisite pink blossoms. I highly recommend this rose.

 

'Jubilee Celebration'

‘Jubilee Celebration’

Another newcomer, ‘Jubilee Celebration’ has beautiful large full blossoms and an unusual color of pink/orange/apricot. Lovely fruity fragrance. Mine are planted in large containers. David Austins catalog notes this rose does well in hot and humid climates in the southeast (mine Zone 7b); we shall see how this rose fares through one of my summers….

 

 

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‘Tess of the d’Ubervilles’

‘Tess of the d’Ubervilles is a very lovely rose that I am growing as a climber in my garden.  Bright crimson red blossoms and a wonderful fragrance. Beautiful.

 

'Darcy Bussell'

‘Darcy Bussell’

 Oh my, the lovely ‘Darcy Bussell is probably one of my favorite. Beautiful rich red/pink rose blossoms with a mild citrus fragrance. One of the smaller DA roses,one of mine is growing in a large container, another in the front of my rose border. Rebloom is good and pretty resistant to blackspot.

 

 

Darcy Bussell

Darcy Bussell

 

 So try adding some romance to your garden—you never know what might happen…

 

Wordless Wednesday…. Clematis in my garden

 

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venosa Violacea

 

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The President

 

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John Paul II

 

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Crystal Fountain

 

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Dr Ruppel

 

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jackmanni

 

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Wordless Wednesday Roses…in my garden

Climbing 'Eden'

Climbing rose ‘Eden’

 

Climbing 'Eden'

Climbing ‘Eden’

 

 

 

Hybrid Musk rose 'Belinda'

Hybrid Musk rose ‘Belinda’

 

‘Belinda’

 

David Austin rose ‘Tess of the d’Urbervilles’

 

Climbing 'Golden Gate'

Climbing ‘Golden Gate’

 

 

Climbing 'New Dawn'

Climbing ‘New Dawn’

 

 

Double Knockout roses

Double Knockout roses

 

 

'Julia Child'

‘Julia Child’

 

 

Hybrid Musk 'Lavender Lassie'

Hybrid Musk ‘Lavender Lassie’

 

 

Rose de Reucht

 

 

Climbing 'Lady Ashe'

Climbing ‘Lady Ashe’

 

 

Climbing 'Laguna'

Climbing ‘Laguna’

 

 

Climbing 'Iceburg'

Climbing ‘Iceburg’

 

 

Conifers and ‘Amber’ Flower Carpet shrub rose

 

 

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‘Buff Beauty’

Springtime Tulips…..in my Garden

My Gardening Friends,

It’s been a long time since I last posted on my blog and I apologize for that and the lack of pictures. The need to help others and myself dominated the better part of these last 4 months. I’m glad and hopeful things are finally getting back to normal.

My garden is bursting with blossoms everywhere. All my hard work in planting bulbs last fall paid off. The tulips have just about finished their explosion of color and my peonies, irises and roses are gearing up for their beautiful display. Right now the Japanese Maples and azaleas are in their splendor (pics to follow in another post).

Here’s a peek of some of my tulips blooming in my garden this Spring….

 

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Every year I plant this purple and pink combination ‘Strike Me Pink’ in this bed. These colors blend beautifully with my emerging JapMaples.

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Pink and soft yellow tulips ‘Pillow Talk’.

 

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I love the combination of maroon ‘Queen of Knight’ with the lovely white ‘Maureen’.

 

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White daffodil- ‘Thalia’

 

 

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Snowflake-‘Gravetye Giant’

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Daffodil- ‘Hawera’

 

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‘Angelique’

 

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Lovely ‘Angelique’- my favorite tulip.

 

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Till my next post…..hope you enjoyed!

‘Daffodil Drama’….in my garden

My Daffodils are taking center stage in my garden this week. Many I planted years ago; I planted 300 more last fall. Some of my daffodil choices are: Ice Follies, Carlton, Double Campernelle and Pipit, just to name a few.

Here’s a peek….

 

 

 

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Daffodils from previous years in my garden…

 

 

 

My son- Nicholas

 

Next post…my tulips in all their splendor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Garden Moments of the Year…Farewell 2013….

 

      As 2013 draws to a close, its time to reflect on my many garden moments throughout the year. 2013 was an exceptional year for my garden; blossoms galore, abundant rainfall, tolerable summer temperatures and shhh… magazine photo shoots, to name just a few. I’m hoping mother nature will bless my garden once again for 2014.

So, just sit back relax, and enjoy my 2013 garden virtual tour….Cheers and Happy New Year!

January/February

Camellia’s, the ‘Winter Roses’ in my garden….

Camellia japonica 'Nuccio's Bella Rosa'

Camellia japonica ‘Nuccio’s Bella Rosa’

 

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Camellia japonica ‘Nuccio’s Gem’

 

Assortment of Camellia's from my garden.

Assortment of Camellia’s from my garden.

 

March/April

Painting my garden with beautiful roses….

"Marilyn Monroe' hybrid tea

“Marilyn Monroe’ hybrid tea

 

‘Love Song’ Floribunda rose

 

'Don Juan' climbing rose

‘Don Juan’ climbing rose

 

'Mystic Beauty' Bourbon rose

‘Mystic Beauty’ Bourbon rose

 

Tulip ‘Spring Fling’…(finally finished my bulb planting for 2014 just this week)….

 

My alluring Japanese Maples and Conifers…

May/June

My Fringe Tree…

Fringe Tree

Fringe Tree

           

 

Captivating Clematis….

Rooguchi

Clematis ‘Rooguchi’

Clematis 'Rooguchi' rambling on my garden bench...

Clematis ‘Rooguchi’ rambling on my garden bench…

 

 

C. viticella 'Etoile Violette' and 'Grande Dame rose

C. viticella ‘Etoile Violette’ and ‘Grande Dame rose

 

 

 

C. 'Victoria' and 'Etoile Violette'

C. ‘Victoria’ and ‘Etoile Violette’

 

 

Clematis 'Nelly Moser'

Clematis ‘Nelly Moser’

 

Yes, More Roses….

Climbing rose 'Don Juan'

Climbing rose ‘Don Juan’

 

Hybrid Musk rose 'Buff Beauty' gracing one of my three obelisks.

Hybrid Musk rose ‘Buff Beauty’ gracing one of my three obelisks.

 

 

David Austin 'Evelyn'

David Austin ‘Evelyn’

 

'New Dawn'

‘New Dawn’

 

 

Amber Flower Carpet rose with weeping Blue Atlas cedar.

Amber Flower Carpet rose with weeping Blue Atlas cedar.

 

July/August

Some of my Summertime containers…

Dragon Wing begonia window boxes

Dragon Wing begonia window boxes

 

Succulent Basket

Succulent Basket

 

All dressed in black container.

All dressed in black container.

 

Blue container's corner of my garden.

Blue container’s corner of my garden.

A Little Wildlife to amuse….

Woodpecker in my garden.

Woodpecker in my garden.

 

Bunnies in my garden. They loved my begonias!

Bunnies in my garden. They loved my begonias!

 

So much for growing cherry tomatoes for myself...Mr. Squirrel would have a daily feast!

So much for growing cherry tomatoes for family…Mr. Squirrel would have himself a daily feast!

 

 

Sept/Oct

 

Pumpkin time….

Pumpkin Spills adorning my front entrance.

Pumpkin Spills adorning my front entrance.

 

Roses and Pumpkins

Roses and Pumpkins

 

My fall potting bench.

My fall potting bench.

 

Nov/Dec

Christmas garden basket

Christmas garden basket

 

My Christmas potting bench.

My Christmas potting bench.

 

Evergreen Christmas garden arrangement.

Evergreen Christmas garden arrangement.

 

Goodbye 2013…..

2013

Happy New Year to All!

Health and Happiness for 2014!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Southern Style Christmas in my Garden…2013

 

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With all the hustle and bustle of the holidays, I’m a bit late in posting photo’s of my Christmas garden this year.   Here’s a peek….

Note: All Christmas arrangements, containers, wreaths and photos were designed and made by me (Brenda Addington) …The Graceful Gardener.

 

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My garden bench decorated with fresh evergreens from my garden…

 

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My potting bench all decked out for the holidays.

 

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Christmas arrangement made from magnolias and evergreens picked from my garden.

 

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A Christmas basket (my former succulent basket) embellished with evergreens, lenten roses and yes, a few succulents.

 

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My Outdoor room console table.

 

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My outdoor room mantel. Every year I have a family of birds nesting in one of these birdhouses.

 

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My Entrance that I decorate each year with my life size Santa and over-sized bell swags I made several years ago.

 

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My outdoor Christmas arrangement – ferns, berries and some faux and real evergreen sprays and magnolia leaves ( I have 6 huge magnolia trees in my garden).

 

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I love the Christmas wreaths I made five years ago. I spruced them up a bit this year adding more pines cones and evergreen sprays.

 Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from my garden to yours……

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A ‘Festival of Pumpkins’ …..in my garden

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I Love to decorate my garden for the seasons. Fall is no exception, especially when it comes to PUMPKINS!

Nothing enhances my garden more this time of year than their vibrant array of colors, shapes and warmth. Pumpkins combined with gourds, mums, grasses, Chinese lantern plants and other ‘fall’ accents bring a cozy and inviting feel to my garden. With little effort, (except for the effort of collecting all the pumpkins) you too can decorate your garden with colorful pumpkins.

I must warn you though, it is fun and addictive!  Of course, I tend to go a little over the top with pumpkins in my garden, but that’s what makes it ‘festive’.

Note:  All photo’s, fall garden decor, containers and wreaths were designed and made by …ME…”The Graceful Gardener”.

 

Hope my ‘Festival of Pumpkins’ inspires you to add some to your garden…..

 

 

 Spilling down my Staircase….

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Every year, I always choose a colorful medley of pumpkins, gourds and mums to spill down my front entrance staircase. Many of my pumpkins were purchased from my local farmers markets or pumpkin farms in my area.

 

 

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My Potting Table and Bench……

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My Moongate…..

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Pumpkins in containers and spilling into my Garden….

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My Fall Wreaths and Entrance….HaPpY FaLL!

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Thanks for visiting…

Full Moon Maple

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Happy Fall…from the Graceful Gardener

www.thegracefulgardener.com

Wordless ‘Wildlife’ Wednesday…visiting my garden…..

 

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Summertime In My Garden…The Graceful Gardener’s Containers…2013

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Even though I’m quite late in posting this, I still wanted to share some of my containers with you this summer.  I took many of these photo’s around the 4th of July, but to my surprise, many of my containers are still looking lush and full due to the unusual abundance of rain and lower temps we’ve experienced this summer (usually temps are in the mid-90’s this time of year), and of course, with the faithful application of Annie Haven’s Manure Tea.

Having designed and planted all my own containers for years, it’s truly still one of my favorite ways to be creative in the garden. This year I played around with lots of different colors and I even dabbled a bit in miniature container gardening this year. 

Hope you enjoy the photo gallery of just a few of my containers…


 Romantic white…

Ingredients: Sun Parasol White Mandevilla, ‘Diamond Frost’ Euphorbia, Lobularia ‘Frosty Knight’, Scaevola ‘Bombay’, Supertunia white, White geranium, Dusty Miller ‘Silverdust’, trailing Mezoo, ‘Silver Falls’ Dichondra.

 

 Burst of Orange…

Ingredients: Canna ‘Australia’, Canna ‘Tropicanna Gold’, Infinity Orange New Guinea Impatiens, ‘Hot Shot’ Orange portulaca, Begonia boliviensis Bonfire, ‘Orange Marmalade’ Crossandra, Sweet Caroline Bronze sweet potato vine.

 

 Nearly Black…

Canna ‘Australia’, Cosmos ‘Choca Mocha’, Heuchera ‘Obsidian’, ‘Black Velvet’ petunia, Creeping Jenny ‘Midnight Sun’, Iris chrysographes ‘Night Ruler’ (bloomed in spring see below), Scaevola ‘Romeo’.

 

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Iris ‘Night Ruler’

 

 Succulent Fever…

I turned a non-functioning fountain into a succulent planter.

 

Ingredients: Variety of Succulents- Sedums, Echeverias, Trailing Mezoo and my favorite-Kalanchoe ‘Fantastic’. Dichondra ‘Silver Falls’ was also used in this planting.

 Cool Blues…

Blue and White Container Nook in my garden filled with: Plumbago, white scaveola, white petunias, Endless Summer hydrangea, lobelia, Angelonia and Lobularia ‘Frosty Knight’.

 Succulent Basket…

My favorite container in my garden- this huge cement basket- which I purchased over 15 years ago, is filled with an abundance of succulents. They thrive in this basket!
Ingredients: Assortment of succulents: Sedums, Echeveria, Sempervivums, Kalanchoe and my fav-‘Zwartkop’ aeonium.

 

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 Purple Vibes…

Ingredients: Petchoa SuperCal ‘Poppin Blue’, Calibrachoa ‘Double Amethyst’, Petunia Glamouflage ‘Grape’, Scaevola ‘Romeo’, Dusty Miller, Dichondra ‘Silver Falls’, Bourbon rose ‘Mystic Beauty’.

 

Ingredients :Perilla Magilla, Persian Shield, ‘Divine Lavender’ New Guinea Inpatiens, Calibrachoa ‘Double Amethyst’, Vinca ‘Illumination’.

 

Graceful Grasses ‘Fiber Optic’ surrounded by blue scaevola, dusty miller,blue salvia, sedum and hosta.

 Peachy Planting…

Ingredients: Miniature Rose ‘Cupcake’, creeping jenny, trailing Mezoo,Calibrachoa ‘Double Amethyst’, ‘Blackie’ sweet potato vine.

 Moody Blues…

Ingredients: Torenia ‘Purple Moon’, ‘Silver Carpet’ Lambs Ear, Barbara Sanderson glass Icicle.

 Variegated Foliage…

Ingredients: Small variegated English Holly ‘Argenteo Marginata’, Lamium maculatum ‘Beacon Silver’, surrounded by Japanese Painted fern and Golden variegated Sweet Flag.

 

 

I gave miniature gardening a try this year and love it!  So fun …

I designed a ‘scaled down’ version of my own backyard when I planted this miniature garden container. Lots of stone, dwarf conifers and texture. What do you think?

 

 

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Of course, I had to plant a Mini-Zen garden….

 

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Mini- Herb Garden with some cucumbers…

 

Probably my favorite of all- My Frog Prince Miniature Container.

 Purple Foliage…

A newly purchased container this year filled with ‘Black Magic’ Elephant Ear, Persian shield, Purple heart Wandering Jew and ‘Black Dragon’ coleus.

 Colossal Orange…

Ingredients: Banana Musa ‘Zebrina RoJo’, Begonia boliviensis ‘Bonfire’, Infinity Orange-New Guinea Impatiens, Dragon wing begonia,Coleus ‘Black Dragon’.

 

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 Do you enjoy planting your own container gardens?

Check out my post from last year here...

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The Potting Bench Nook…in my Garden

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Ahhh.. the potting bench, practically every gardener’s dream (at least mine) for their garden.  A place used for starting out young plants, storing our small garden tools, clay pots, soil and watering cans. Oh, and I forgot to mention an opportunity to unleash the ‘design diva’ in those of us who love to decorate!

I wanted my potting bench to be simple and functional, as well as, adding a bit of character to my garden. Mine is situated in ‘a sweet little spot’ between my garage and chimney wall under an overhang somewhat protected from the outside elements. The fact that’s its located in the coveted morning sun area of my garden allows me to garden in a wonderful shady spot during the hot afternoon. My garden spigot is located right next to my potting bench so watering and hosing down my dirty mess is super easy.

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My Potting Bench- Dragonfly hooks that I recently purchased from Lowes hold some of my garden items: watering cans,small hand shovels,etc.

 

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I made this wreath earlier this year specifically for the wall above my potting bench using garden items I rarely used. I did have a faux bird nest & eggs but the crows attacked it this spring. Oh My!

 

 

When my potting bench isn’t in ‘work mode’ I sometimes decorate it with the change of seasons adding a focal point to that area of my garden…..

 

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Fall

 

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Winter- Christmas

 

So do you have a ‘special nook’ in your garden?

 

The Wordless Wednesday Rose Blooms….in my Garden

David Austin-'Bishops Castle

David Austin-‘Bishops Castle

 

 

'Green Romantica'

‘Green Romantica’

 

 

'Green Romantica'

‘Green Romantica’

 

 

'Marilyn Monroe'

‘Marilyn Monroe’

 

'Mystic Beauty'

‘Mystic Beauty’

 

'Frances Meilland'

‘Frances Meilland’

 

'Frances Meilland'

‘Frances Meilland’

 

'Belinda'  hybrid musk

‘Belinda’ hybrid musk

 

 

'Bees Knees'  miniature rose

‘Bees Knees’ miniature rose

 

'Peach Drift' rose

‘Peach Drift’ rose

 

 

David Austin- 'Tess of the d'Urbervilles

David Austin- ‘Tess of the d’Urbervilles

 

Other roses painting my landscape in my garden ….http://www.thegracefulgardener.com/?p=2150

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Captivating Clematis…. in my Garden

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Oh, the lovely captivating simplicity of a clematis bloom. How can anyone resist this elegant yet tough vine growing up a trellis, embracing a climbing rose, or meandering through small trees, shrubs or perennials in your garden. This versatile vine can even be grown in containers, given routine care and choosing the right variety.  And to top things off, if you cut their flowers for indoor arrangements they will last for days. Of course, with so many beautiful clematis to choose from, I’m sure any gardener would likely be able to find the right one(s) to grow in their garden.

Well, I certainly couldn’t resist this ‘Queen’ of vines. Hence, I have once again embarked on another plant obsession, adding already to my rose, conifer and Japanese Maple one. These last couple of years I’ve planted more than 50 clematis (the majority I got from Dan Long, at Brushwood Nursery) and somethings tells me I’ll  be adding more of these beautiful charming vines to my garden in the future.

 

Naturally, since I already have several vertical elements in my garden, clematis seemed an obvious plant choice for me to explore—here’s a peak of a few of them….

 

Kordes climbing rose 'Laguna' and  Clematis "Gipsy Queen'

Kordes climbing rose ‘Laguna’ and Clematis “Gipsy Queen’

 

 

One of the most stunning and largest of the viticellas is Clematis viticella ‘Venosa Violacea‘.  Very dramatic in my garden with its contrasting purple-violet and white flowers. Lovely!

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Clematis viticella ‘Venosa Violacea’

 

 

Clematis 'Niobe'

Clematis ‘Niobe’

 

Clematis 'Niobe'

Clematis ‘Niobe’

 

 Clematis integrifolia ‘Rooguchi‘ has captured my heart…. lovely ink blue flowers shaped like a hanging bell.

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Clematis integrifolia ‘Rooguchi’

 

Clematis 'Nelly Moser'

Clematis ‘Nelly Moser’

 

Large flowering clematis "Crystal Fountain'

Large flowering clematis “Crystal Fountain’

 Wow!  Clematis ‘Crystal Fountain‘ is blooming beautifully in my garden right now.

The flowers are spectacular- 4 to 5 inches wide with a frilly center (resembling a fountain-like spray) against its rich lavender blue star shaped flowers.

Blooms May-September in my Zone 7b garden.

'Crystal Fountain'

‘Crystal Fountain’

 

Clematis 'Ruutel'

Clematis ‘Ruutel’

Large flowered Clematis ‘Ruutel’ has simply shaped red flowers that blend well with my autumn ferns.

C. 'Ruutel'

C. ‘Ruutel’

 

Clematis texensis 'Princess Diana'

Clematis texensis ‘Princess Diana’

Clematis texensis ‘Princess Diana‘ has stunning deep redish pink flowers.

The exquisite tulip-shaped flowers are a fine tribute to the late princess.

C.texensis "Princess Diana'

C.texensis “Princess Diana’

 

 

C. 'Victoria' and C. viticella 'Etoile Violette'

C. ‘Victoria’ and C. viticella ‘Etoile Violette’

 The striking combination of Clematis ‘Victoria’ and C. vitcella ‘Etoile Violette‘ climbing up one of my many large pine trees…makes for a nice camouflage don’t you think?

C. 'Victoria' and 'Etoile Violette'

C. ‘Victoria’ and ‘Etoile Violette’

 

Clematis 'Rouge Cardinal'

Clematis ‘Rouge Cardinal’

 

Clematis x 'Starry Nights'

Clematis x ‘Starry Nights’

Beautiful massive 8 inch bicolor blooms on a relatively new variety-Vancouver Starry Nights Clematis.  I have Starry Nights growing in a large container that’s placed next to a trellis.

C. viticella 'Etoile Violette' and 'Grande Dame rose

C. viticella ‘Etoile Violette’ and ‘Grande Dame rose

Growing up my stone arbor is C. viticella ‘Etoile Violette’ elegantly accompanied by the nodding blooms of Hybrid Tea rose ‘Grande Dame’.

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In all honesty, I’ve just begun my journey with growing clematis so I will confess that I’m no expert. I just plant them in good amended soil, give them reasonable moisture, a good organic fertilizer and shade their roots and they are pretty happy. At least that’s what works for me in my Zone 7b garden.

 

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For more information on selecting and growing clematis check out these links:

http://www.clematisinternational.com/index.html

http://www.gardenvines.com/

http://www.clematisqueen.com/