Friday, April 26, 2013

7 Quick Takes (Vol 211) The Back Garden In Spring Update


We have had every type of weather this week here in Chez Knit. Rain on Monday, loads of it. Sun and warmer weather on Tuesday. SNOW on Wednesday. Weather psychosis rules here in the Frozen Northeast Ohio. It is still April after all. And because I am still in the really basic learning phase for the new camera we are just going to take a stroll around the back garden this week.

You know the set in stone rules for Friday. After you have dug up my blather and transplanted it in the garden of your life you need to click on the picture above to be whisked, at the speed of my ever expanding garden chores list, over to Conversion Diary.

Dig that blather up!

It wouldn't be Spring without pansiesMorning Pansy Dew 2Morning Pansy Dew 3Morning Pansy Dew 4

Can I tell you that it is not actually Spring until I plant some pansies. I. Love. Pansies. They are happy and hardy and have a light “pansy-like” smell that just throws me right back to my childhood when I would go to this person’s house…..

Glenn Lauren Pringle

Gramps and Gramma always had pansies planted along the driveway in the spring. And they would let me pick one or two to take home with me.

And from GLP and LHP I learned the fact that it is sometimes necessary to pinch back in order to get better blooms. Plant your pansies and pinch off ALL the blossoms. They will rebloom, don’t worry, and they will be happier for it.

Dude get away from my woman!

I am calling this photo….

DUDE! Get away from my woman!

There is mating territory being staked out in front of my office window every day. After successfully running off the interloper at the bottom of the picture Mr. Schwarzecardinal then proceeded to do his “Hey Baby Pick Me” dance for the female.

She didn’t seem all that interested if you ask me.

Monster Moss

You know, a landscaper friend told me once that someone had paid him big money to actually add moss to a newly constructed sandstone wall so that the wall would look old.

All I can say to that is……


Moss, and also Corsican mint, are the bane of my Springtime existence. I spend a great deal of time scrapping the doggone stuff off my walkways. If I am not vigilant the stuff will take over the paths and then start on the beds. The moss is bad enough but the Corsican mint!!!

Oh my stars and garters that stuff is a pain in my ever expanding bahookie. And I have no one to blame but myself. I thought it might be an interesting “effect” to plant it in between the sandstone steps in one portion of my landscaping. That was in the front of the house. How the HECK it got to the back garden I do not know. But ever since I have been fighting a war of attrition with that stuff.

Clematis in monochrome

I have been playing with the “Monochrome” setting on Big Bertha. The clematis wanted to be all dark and mysterious for once. I obliged.

And we know how much I love my clematis. I will do anything she asks.

Well anything EXCEPT touch any of the leaves or stems first thing in the morning. All the dew and moisture of any kind has to be off the plants before I do anything with it. Working with clematis when the vines are wet is a VERY good way to spread Clematis Wilt.

And I don’t want to have to go through THAT again.

The bane of my weeding existence

I don’t know the name of these little weeds but I do know that they are the bane of my weeding existence. They spring up with great abandon in the spring and if you don’t pull them out ASAP they quickly set seed pods.

And then you are screwed.

See the little brown stick like things hanging around the flower? Those are almost ready seed pods. When they ARE ready, if you brush against the plant, heck if there is even a moderate breeze blowing for that matter, it triggers the pods to fling their seeds out into the atmosphere.

And I do mean fling.

I hate them.


So bright and beautifulOh how I love the Gold Finches. They tweet so happily at the feeder. They fill up all the spots on the feeder so none of the other birds can feed.

They dive bomb me when I come out to fill up the feeder.

Such happy little bullies.

Ostrich Fern 1Ostrich Fern 2Ostrich Fern 3Ostrich Fern 4

And last but certainly not least….

My growing Ostrich Fern collection.

When I first set up the back garden there was an area that I knew would get very little sun. It is a narrow bed right along the garage wall. It just screamed for hosta of course but when I was wandering around my local plant nursery thinking about perennials I stopped abruptly at a good sized pot of Ostrich fern. Hmmm, that looks interesting.

So I bought a couple and planted them where I wanted them…..

And the next year I had, not two ostrich fern plants but FIVE! And that is when I learned the thing about OF’s that I didn’t know.

They like to make Ostrich fern babies. Lots and lots of babies that they send out on a runner under the ground. And they are no respecter of other plantings. Every spring I have new babies that come up in the middle of the hosta, under the bench, everywhere that they can. Thank goodness they are fairly easy to transplant, which I have begun to do.

Just another one of those plants that you really should know about BEFORE you plant them.


  1. Your flower photos are amazing! Happy spring!
    (Rita @ Open Window)

  2. I love all these. But especially that last fern photo. Lovely.


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