Friday, June 4, 2021

May Madness in the Garden

Madness may be something of an exaggeration, but the month of May is pretty darned busy in my garden. That’s when the Frost Free date arrives, and it’s time to plant. If you’re anything like me, perhaps you even went ahead and planted a few things before the frost free date arrived. And maybe some of those plantings worked out okay, but some didn’t.This doesn’t even take into account all the plant shopping that needs to happen before the planting can even begin. 

But let’s start out my May update with a visit to my little beachy Michigan hometown, St. Joseph. The pandemic kept me away for over a year, but once I became fully vaccinated, off I went! It was chilly of course, early May next to Lake Michigan can be pretty dicey. But honestly, that didn’t even matter to me. I was just happy to be back in my happy place, no matter what the weather. One of my goals was to gather some larger beach rocks to place inside my gabion, which is meant to be a sculpture. I love how it turned out! 

The main goal of this trip was to visit nearby Holland Michigan for the Tulip Time Festival, with my best friend. I can’t begin to tell you how good it felt to see and hug her again. Our tulip day was rainy, but we were so busy talking that we barely noticed. And yes, we saw some beautiful tulips in the rain. But what really mattered was catching up with each other. 

There’s another special stop that I always make when I visit the area, Fernwood Botanical Garden. It’s beautiful regardless, but it’s special to me because my grandmother once loved it. They have an entire gulley filled with primrose, and it just happens to be in bloom at the same time as the tulips. I never can quite catch how amazing it looks with my camera. Next year, I’ll take a little video. That ought to show them off better. You can see there are plenty of other pretty spots to enjoy in the spring. 

Once I returned home, it was still chilly. But I had a kitchen full of plants languishing indoors that really needed to get planted outdoors. I’d put them outside for a few days, then a frost would threaten, and I’d have to pull them into the garage for the night. Finally I just gave up and planted, hoping on hope that frost wouldn’t get them. I got lucky, there were no more frosts, but some of the plants did not like the cold wet soil, and had to be replaced. I always take photos of my containers at the start of the season, so I know how far they’ve come. But not many of those pix are worth sharing after that chilly start. It was a rough beginning to the garden season. 

Two of my spring favorites are iris and poppies. They did not disappoint this year. 

But here we are at month’s end, and May looks more traditional. Most everything has been planted, and flowers bloom freely. The veggies are coming up, and we’ve been enjoying fresh lettuce and radishes in our salad. 

I always do fuss over my garden in the extreme, but this year we’re having the garden club over for a tour. That makes me feel some kind of way! I still have to plant the caladiums, set up my water garden, and put down the mulch. Those are always the last chores on the list. 

I did manage to pop over to Franklin Park Conservatory for a quick visit. It's so popular that it's often full of people, and it was one of those places that made me much too nervous to visit during the pandemic. It was nice to be back. 

We decided to take our vaccinated selves down to Florida for a vacation, but mostly to visit my parents living there. First stop is Sarasota, where we always visit the Selby Gardens. They had a special display related to artist Lichtenstein, in case you are wondering what the pop art stands for. Of course we take in beaches and sunsets. 

Next stop is central Florida, for a different kind of scenery, and where hubby can do a little golfing.

I'm late posting my May update, due to still being on the road. It feels funny to close my post without sunset photos from home, but they weren't very dramatic in May. I’m sure that summer storm season will bring more drama to the skies. Still, I’m glad that you’ve come to visit my nest during my favorite garden month. Thanks for stopping by! 


  1. Strolling through your garden was a very pleasurable experience, and I love loved your rock sculpture. The beach pictures were great too.

    1. Would love for you to see it in person Darlene! Just tell me when you can stop by.

  2. All your photos are gorgeous Robin ! Especially those beach shots .. I really love them. The mass of Nigella were amazing. The poppies are a favorite of mine too .. that tree with the exposed roots? awesome ! .. It is a busy time trying to keep the gardens tidy in such heat and humidity that we are having at the moment. Spring came slightly early and with a great deal of force, it is another odd year to deal with.

  3. I'm so in love with beaches, it's easy to get a good shot! That mass of nigella doesn't even show it all. Needless to say it reseeds freely! Enjoy your warm spring. It's summer here now!


Thanks so much for commenting, I always love to hear from my readers! I'll respond by commenting back on your own blog.