Iris, Old and New

April is the month of the bearded iris here in North Carolina.

I have one old type from my daddy’s mother’s garden.


I moved many iris onto this bank last summer.  They have never been happier.


The rest of my iris are hybrids.

They came from Cooley’s in Oregon over twenty years ago.

Taco Supreme
Banana Frappe’
Thunder Echo
Persian Berry
I got this from my daddy.   Hmmmm?  Depth of Field?


This is just the first wave of iris.  There will be more in the coming weeks.

The next parade will be the peonies.  Here is the first bloom.

Ants love the sap on the peony buds.

Ahhhhh spring at last!


My Many Mysteries

I have a bad habit of sticking seeds and plant pieces in the pots of other plants.


I tell myself I will remember this.  I will know what it is when it grows up.

I have done this too many times to keep track of what was stuck where.

So along with the designated plants in the pots, there are mystery plants.


I find a pieces of a plant broken off.   Which plant?  What color?


No matter.  Stick it here in this empty spot.

I have a habit of purloining seeds.

I spent a whole day with this piece of picked-off-the-tree citrus fruit in my bra.

I did not remember it until that night while changing into my pajamas.

I did manage to label those particular seeds.

Not that I wouldn’t recognize the mean little seedlings with their lethal thorns.

I have moved a “mystery tree” around the yard for years. I knew I must have had  a reason for planting it in the kids’ sandbox.

It finally bloomed this year.

It is a peach.  I now realize it was the pit of a long-ago snack eaten by one of my now-grown children.  Mystery solved.

While clearing out a box this morning, I found this.

Could it be a seed from a Tuscan pear?  We shall see.



Daddy in the Sky with Grandkids

I gave my daddy a plane ride for Christmas.  He didn’t get airborne until this Saturday.

He went up in a little plane from a small airport near our home.

It was not a Piper Cub like he and his dad had in the 1950’s.  No matter.

Daddy was the unofficial co-pilot.

My two adult children got to go along.  Lucky ducks!

I felt like I was lifting off with them as I watched them take off.   What a thrill!

I knew my daddy was being transported back to his teenage years.

My daddy and my children were up there in the sky making a memory.

The pilot knew this was no ordinary thrill ride.  This was a trip back in time.



Spring Easter Cactus

This little bloomer is from the forests of Mexico and South America.

It needs porous soil and indirect light.

The simple, pink, tubular flowers open during the day and close at dusk.


The buds just began to open this week, though they have been fully formed for weeks.

Its name is Rhipsalidopsis.  Its leaf sections look similar to Schlumbergera except there are no points.


Happy Easter


Two Tiny Treasures

I love tiny plants.  They are perfect for planting in troughs and my fairy garden.

Here are two of my favorites.

Ledebouria cooperi  ‘Jessop’ has tiny bulbs.

Ledebouria cooperi ‘Jessop’

The leaves have copper stripes.  Its blooms are a lovely lavender. Its buds look like grape clusters.


The other little lovely is a Delosperma/Ice Plant named ‘Fire Spinner.’

Delosperma/Ice plant ‘Fire Spinner’

It is just starting to bloom. Soon this patch will be glowing in the sun.

It really does look like it is on fire.


Both of these plants are easy to grow.  I have planted them in numerous places in my gardens. They like sun and well-drained soil.   All are growing happily.



Bonus Blooms

A good Amaryllis/Hippeastrum bulb will bloom twice.


If you peek in the boxes from most “big box” stores the contents look like half a bulb because they split them.

My replacement Exotica bulb sent up a stalk of the usual four blooms last month.

It has bloomed another time with six blooms on the second stalk.


Really lovely colors, markings and shapes.


This one’s a keeper.


There’s a New Queen in Town

The results of the Spring Queen Weed contest were quite a surprise.

I never thought I’d see a nettle dethroned of the title.


This is not an event to be celebrated, however.

The dominant weed this year is a totally new species.

I kept asking myself, “Did you plant these seeds by accident?”

After discovering their presence EVERYWHERE, I concluded that was impossible.

How could thousands of Sweet Pea seeds suddenly appear?


Well they did.   So without a doubt the 2017 Weed Queen is the Sweet Pea.


Not so sweet.


My First Love was Leaves

I have not always been the FLOWER.

My first love was leaves.   I collected leaves.  Pressed leaves into pictures.  Made stationery with embedded leaves…

In my home there are leaves on the rugs and floor clothes and walls and sofas…

So today I want to share an unusual leaf.

I have been watching this plant grow for months.

It was a gift from ” My Friend the Fairy.”  (See post. She is adorable)

The plant is a “Queen of the Night” , “Night Blooming Cereus” or Epiphyllum oxypetallum.

Its nickname is also Gooseneck cactus.   Now I know why.  One leaf decided it needed to be longer.  So it added another lobe on the tip.

This stem and leaf first looked like a rising cobra’s head several months ago.

It elongated and has now sprouted side leaflets.

The leaves are very thick and the venation is visually absent,


except for the midrib seen underneath.

The midrib sends vein offshoots to each leaflet.

The underside of the main leaf has rootlets which is typical of an epiphyte.

Lastly, I would like to include a photo that those who know me will appreciate.

Photo shoot carnage.  Positioning leaves lead to a spill.  Another mess.  I wonder what punishment will be bestowed upon me by my facedown fairy godmother. She’s mean.


The Queen only blooms once every couple of years, so I will enjoy its leaves in the meantime.