Yesterday, when I was watering the new grass, I stood watching some Goldfinches feasting on my coneflowers. After the flowers bloom, the stalks look a little unsightly, but I leave them standing so that the birds can eat the seeds. I enjoy watching these bright yellow and black birds eating and chattering. I think that they had their young family with them, as they were feeding a couple of the smaller birds. I find that if I deadhead they will keep blooming for a while, but if I leave them...they reseed. They have filled in the area that I have planned for coneflowers...so now I will take the seeds off the crowns and mix them with the wildflower seeds to be spread on the woods border. They seem to do well in the woods and every once in a while a white one will pop up. I like the pink ones better...
Today is the day that our weather is going to change. It's cooler this morning and a promise of a little rain would be welcomed. Supposed to be 87 by this afternoon.
Yesterday, as I cut down the empty stems of the hostas...I thought of the humming birds and their long migration coming up.The hummers have enjoyed the hosta blossoms this year. I leave my feeders up until I don't see them anymore. I used to hear that they won't leave if feeders are still there...but that's an old wives tale. The hummers know when to leave and do so on their own... in their own time. They have quite a fight on their hands (wings) with the many, many bees this year. It is becoming harder and harder to fill the feeders without being stung. I have started filling them at dusk...when the bees are not around.Speaking of hummers...I noticed that this year they are buzzing around my roses and my geraniums. I haven't seen that in other years.
A couple of people have emailed me, asking for before and after pictures of the area that I scatter wild flower seeds.The above picture was taken in the fall of 2006.I had cleared the woods just a couple of years before with the help of Joe and the power plant.There wasn't much growing there. As I placed the statue of St Francis I had such high hopes for this area. Our gardens around the house were pretty manicured and I needed a kind of "wild " place to sit and enjoy watching chipmunks, squirrels and birds.At the end of the growing season I was so tired.... I worked so hard and spent quite a bit of money there. Statues, bird houses, trellises, small trees, bushes, plants and seed.. I would sit with my paper and pencil, drawing how I wanted it to look. I wanted to have color all through the growing season. How could I do that without spending much more money? I saw a website that carried wild flower seed for different areas of our country....and decided to give that a try. I ordered the Midwest blend and I was told to be patient...I couldn't expect miracles that first year.
This is how it looked a couple of years ago. This was after I started scattering seed. The coneflowers on the far left, phlox, and black eyed susans were from that seed. At the time the picture was taken...I had a water source...me hauling a long hose or wheeling water in my lawn cart. The area is quite dry without additional water. For the last couple of years...the flowers have dwindled, because I'm just too old to handle the watering. I had to find a new plan. Last year I decided to give up on this area and concentrate on my flowers up close to the house.I didn't scatter seed. Now, wonder of all wonders...I have more energy this year and not as much back pain.....so I ordered seed and will scatter it this fall. I would like to keep St Francis's area pretty with flowers and also the other statues. I intend to scatter the seeds from my Red Bud trees and see if I can get some to grow back farther in the woods.I have added a CrabApple tree, two Red Bud trees, two Lilacs and pink and purple, a small Maple tree, a Korean Spice Bush, several Honeysuckles, a Mock Orange, a Hibiscus, a Forsythia, and countless other plants since I have been gardening here. The border is coming alive with color both spring and fall. Now, if I can only get some wild flowers to stay...without watering I'll be happy. Patience is what I am lacking....it takes time to build a wildflower garden I've found.