Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Spring is in the Air

We finally had a very wet winter with a great snow pack in the mountains.

And everything is blooming!!



A few years ago we ripped out our lawn in the front yard and planted lots of plants that will tolerate our extreme heat and not need a lot of water.  The lavender is in full bloom.  There are 3 rose colored Crepe Myrtle trees in front of the lavender.  Shouldn't be long until they begin to show their color too.

I love flowers, as you can see almost everything in the yard has blossoms.  I try to stay mostly with purple, yellow and pink flowers except for the the roses.  This is a very colorful yard.


I have a couple of these red rose bushes.  They bloom most of the summer.  And their color is the most vivid red.  I love to pick bunches of them for vases throughout the house.  They are so bright and cheery.  I had an aphid infestations a couple of years ago on all my rose bushes.  Went to the nursery and bought a huge bag of ladybugs and released them on the roses.  Their offspring are still around and there isn't an aphid in sight.


I have wanted to try one of these vines for years, so I planted this one yesterday.  I hope it does well.  I really like the blooms.

Mandevilla Vine

You can barely see the house on the west side.  The house is covered with climbing red roses all along our driveway.  It is so thick I need to trim it back after the blooms.  Not too much though as they provide great shade on this side of the house and they keep the west facing wall cool all summer.

I think this year will be a good year for my persimmon tree. It has a multitude of blossoms this year.
Last year's crop was 1.  Yes, only one on the whole tree.


Here is my dwarf apple tree.  I had enough apples last year to make a pie.  This year it was loaded with blossoms and small apples are forming in bunches all over the branches.  I am going to have to watch that the branches don't get too heavy as they grow.  May be supporting those branches before the summer is over. I get good sized apples from this small tree.  What I like about it is I don't have to climb a ladder to pick the fruit.

This is the front yard, soon the Jasmine by the front windows will be in full bloom.  I love the smell in the  house when I open the windows in the evening during the hot summer months.

More roses and lavender

Fifteen years ago when I moved into this house it was a flat field of grass and weeds.  After many years and long hours of gardening my yard is almost like a park.  I counted the trees I planted and we now have 21 trees on our 1/3 acre.  With just a tiny patch of grass under a couple of trees that only takes a few minutes to mow.  The lawn is growing in the dampest part of the property as is the curly willow.  They catch any water that might run off the property,

Anyway we can get shade lowers our A/C bill in the summer. This spot is still too sunny so we put up a EZ up pop up canopy in this spot today.  It will keep things cool on this side of the yard until the plants and trees get a little bigger.

We brought this tree home in our car a few years ago.  My has this one grown.

These two trees help shade the east side of the house in the summer and loose their leaves for warmth in winter.  They where both gifts from the birds.  People tell me I have a green thumb.  Just about everything I stick in the ground it grows.

Last year I was taller than this little tree in the foreground.  It came home in a plastic bag from the state fair.  There is another one by the fence from the fair the year before. The tall light green one behind came from our local tree foundation.  You pick out the type of tree you like and they bring you one about 4 feet tall.  I choose a Tupelo tree.  Wow, that one has grown, too.  Looking at the pictures this year I can really see how much everything has grown over the winter.

This one on the left is a curly willow.  It started life out in a bouquet from the grocery store.  I just stuck it in the ground and now it is taller than the house.  The tree on the right is a mystery citrus tree.  I say mystery because we thought it had died, forgotten about it, then all of a sudden it reappeared and this year is covered with blossoms. We can't remember what kind of tree was there.  Hopefully there will be fruit so we know what kind of citrus we have  There are blueberry and strawberry patches off camera.  And a couple of lemons trees off to the right, one is big enough this year to have blossoms.  Looking forward to fresh lemons.  Behind the small white fence on the left will be my vegetable garden.  That is another project for next month. You can see one of my two compost bins in the center of the picture right in front of a fence covered with honeysuckle vines.

This one started out from a seed a bird dropped.  When it was about 1 inch tall I moved it to this location.  Seems to love this corner of the property.  Just to the right if this picture is a Bay Leaf tree.  It grows extremely slow.  I think it is about 4 years old and only about 24 inches tall.  But I love having fresh Bay Leaf for cooking all year long.  So much better than the dry stuff you get in the spice isle at the store. There are herbs growing all over the yard too, thyme, sage, rosemary and a lot of medicinal plants.  It is like having my own pharmacy growing right in my backyard.

I have more yard projects this week.  Time to get the major work done before the heat sets in.  It will probably be hot until October.  When the projects are done it will be time to enjoy the garden.

Happy Gardening!

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