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Summer Bouquets

July 20th, 2017

The cutting garden is providing a lot of flowers for both our home and for the homes of friends. Every few days I head out and cut annuals and perennials.

The cosmos, dahlias, and cerinthe started blooming last week. There are a few annuals I want to add to the garden next year just for cutting, especially bupleurum.

Along with the annuals I seeded for the vase, a few climbing and spray roses are starting to really start blooming. The speedwell is also really putting on a show this year. But really, it’s the cosmos that are the queens of the bouquet at the moment.

What’s your favorite annual flower to grow for cutting?

One of These Things…

July 19th, 2017

When I replanted the front foundation garden, I wanted a hedge of ‘Annabelle’ hydrangeas across the front of the house with a row of boxwood below the rock wall in front of the hydrangeas. The goal was a monchromatic garden with only a few varieties of plants to make this area by the front door more calm and peaceful.

I had one hydrangea that I brought from Ohio. Since I wanted the garden to mature quickly, I decided to buy two more to fill the space rather than wait for ones I propagated to mature.

Annoyingly, one of the hydrangeas is not an ‘Annabelle’ at all. In fact it has golden foliage and lacecap flowers. It stands out between the two ‘Annabelle’ shrubs. It’s not an ugly plant, in fact I quite like the golden foliage and the little flowers. It will have to be moved though, because it doesn’t complete the look I was going for.


The good thing is that the flanking shrubs are large enough that I should be able to simply start layering the branches towards the middle to fill in the gap. It will take a few more years, but I won’t have to risk buying another plant and ending up with the same problem.

Have you ever had a plant not end up being what it was supposed to be?

A Favorite

July 18th, 2017

Every time a flower blooms I’m reminded why I have it in my garden. My favorite flower is whatever is blooming at the time. At the moment, the peony poppies are exquisite.

I have these blooming in all sorts of colors, lavender, dark pink, light pink, white. There are single ones and double ones. Next year I’m thinking of getting a few seeds for some dark ones, I’d love to see some almost black ones in with this pink color.

What’s your favorite thing blooming in the garden right now?

Quote of the Day: Rosemary Verey

July 14th, 2017

“We must all examine our environment, always gaining inspiration from existing natural features; we will then enhance rather than overwhelm our surroundings.”

Rosemary Verey in Making of a Garden.

I’ve been considering this idea as I walk around my garden. Truth be told, this idea is much more important when you live on a large property and have sweeping views or lots of woodland. Our property has a few acres of cleared land, a lovely view to the coastal mountain range, and acres of woods.


It can be hard to decide what to plant to tame the areas around the house but not distract from the natural surroundings. The nice this is that I have lovely backdrops for the various gardens here at Chiot’s Run. Mature woodland edges are always lovely behind a garden, especially when they’re far enough away to not suck all the moisture and nutrients from your plants.

What things in your environment do you need to consider when planning/adapting your garden?

Hello Long Lost Friend

July 13th, 2017

Back in Ohio we had this lovely short yellow foxglove growing in our garden. It was there when we arrived, I think it’s Digitalis lutea. It’s a lovely specimen, much shorter than the big purple and white foxgloves (which I also have in the garden). The yellowish green color is perfect for brightening up a shady border. The short height makes it perfect for the front of a border.

I got a plant from my mom’s garden last summer, she got her plants from me originally. It’s nice to finally have it in the garden again. Hopefully I can save seeds from this and get a few more going to plant along the woodland edges.

Have you ever lost a plant that you love through moving?

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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