Thursday, June 30, 2022

June Joys

 As I look back on my May blog post, I can hardly believe how different everything looks in a single month. I actually found it a bit shocking to realize that I still had tulips in May, because June is nothing but summer. 

Duchess of Albany clematis

Lamium, Rozanne geraniums, container callibrachoas

Moonshine yarrow

Amsonia hubrichtii along walkway

Sweetspire shrub, new here

Tie Dye clematis

The garden has that summery look, with lots of greenery, and plenty of flowers. Every time one of my perennials fades away, there's another one waiting to show off right afterwards. 

Duchess of Albany clematis

Coreopsis and nigella

Mexican primrose

Sweet William

Mixed clematis, Jackmanii Superb and Polish Spirit

Tie Dye clematis

Munstead lavender with Sweet William

Monarch Queen of Hearts

Sedum Angelina in bloom

Unknown bee balm

The zinnias and other annuals that I plant in the ground will be late this year. Don't get me started on cutworms! But there are other pretty spots ready to fill in. 

Rose snapdragons

Beginning of Cut and Come Again zinnias

Tall Ribbon Mix snapdragons

Sunflowers and Sunpatiens

Annual geraniums guarding the roses

Happy Lights hollyhock 

Munstead lavender and sedum Angelina

First Endless Summer hydrangea bloom

Echinops/Globe thistle


Sugar Shack button bush

My roses still looked fantastic at the start of the month, but right now there's not much happening out there. Honestly, I don't really mind, because the Japanese beetles have arrived. Without the roses in bloom, they aren't having nearly as much fun. Still, I make a regular circuit around the yard with my Bubble Pit of Doom, which is just a Solo cup filled with a bit of soapy water. If you hold it under them and give a tap, they'll naturally drop right into it. Goodbye critters! At my house, they like to eat roses, coneflowers, zinnias, green beans, clematis, hibiscus, and hollyhocks. 

Climbing Don Juan

Funny Face

Angel Face

Fourth of July


Oranges and Lemons


Peace, again

Early in June, we were still getting a lot of spring rain. My unscientific method of measuring the rain at our house is to take photos of the rain gauge every time it fills. This method tells me that we had 5 inches of rain in the first two weeks of June. But now, it's a typical summer in Robin's Nest, and we're wishing for rain. The running joke at our house is that someone puts up a dome in early summer so that no rain can get to us. The dome has definitely gone up! Once the dome goes up, it's time for the garden hose rodeo. 

Oriental lilies

Coneflowers and achillea
Echinops/Globe thistle 

I thought I'd give an updated look at my containers, to show how much they've filled in. I'm still especially enamored of this first one, which sits on my mostly shady front porch. Some of these I didn't feature yet, as they were still too new last month, and unimpressive. I've also included a photo of my water garden, so that you can see my goldfish eagerly having their breakfast. I have a few plants in there, but I keep the fish to eat the mosquito larvae that might gather there. 

Monarchs have arrived! This first photo shows my milkweed patch, which is taking over this corner of my garden. Luckily, it's worth it. First of all, milkweed flowers are the single most beautiful flower fragrance I've ever smelled, reminiscent of lilacs, honey, and vanilla. And secondly, the milkweed brings in the monarchs! I've only seen this single beauty, but she left me 10 eggs, which are now rapidly growing caterpillars. And so it begins for this year. I have plenty of milkweed, so I hope more beauties find this little haven. 

I still haven't seen very many other butterflies yet this year. I have two butterfly favorites in bloom right now, coneflowers and button bush, so I expect to see more soon. Obviously a swallowtail was here, that's the striped caterpillar you see here. When full grown, they look quite similar to monarchs. But it's easy to tell the difference by where you find them. Monarch caterpillars *only* eat milkweed, while swallowtails can be found on parsley, dill, fennel, and carrots. The solid green caterpillar you see below is a tomato hornworm. But he was found in my garage, a LONG way away from my tomatoes, so I let him be. And yes, that's a small garter snake, the first snake I've ever seen here! 

Swallowtail caterpillar

Tomato hornworm

Spring Azure

Red Admiral

Garter snake

Even though we haven't had much rain lately, we did have a short sudden storm that took out most of this beloved Forest Pansy redbud. It's now just a shadow of its former self, and we'll be looking to replace it. It has been my favorite tree and I'm deeply saddened that it broke. To tell you the truth, we already lost another of these trees in a storm some years back, so we are reluctant to get the same kind. But I love it so!  Here it is in spring, and then again just a few weeks ago. It was looking particularly beautiful this summer, reminding me of the shape of a Japanese maple. Normally I would have neglected to take a photo of it after the flowers are gone, but so glad that I did. 

The veggies are coming on strong. We've had many tasty salads, and are starting to harvest carrots and sugar snap peas. Cucumbers and tomatoes will be coming soon. Yum! 

And so the month of June comes to an end. There are no crafts to report, most have been set aside in favor of gardening. When the summer heat starts to get wicked, I tend to switch over the rock painting. I have that waiting for me to start soon. This is the time of year for the sunsets to be seen right off the front porch. I love that! Thanks for stopping by to see my nest, I sure appreciate it.