Wednesday, August 7, 2013

What's Blooming

Oriental Lilies

A new flush of I have the biggest stand of oriental lilies planted smack behind my Katsura tree. What was I thinking? I have all of these beautiful flowers and I have to work pretty hard just to see them. I'm trying to decide where to put them if I dig them up in the fall. I probably put them there because I couldn't think of a better spot, since they get so tall (5-6 feet). They do make my yard smell nice, even if I can't see them.

Fresh figs almost ripe.

Vines and Fig Trees

I have 3 fig trees growing in my "Mediterranean Garden". All of them are doing great, although one, like my lilies, is planted in the wrong spot—in this case—too much shade. This year I have a bumper crop since we've had such a hot, dry summer.

When we moved from our house in Renton to hear I took cuttings, which looked like dead sticks, from my grapes in the back yard. We lived in an old Italian neighborhood, and presumably these are grapes from the old country since the vines there were quite gnarled and old. All of my sticks got roots. So I planted all of them in soil that is about 90% gravel by my garage. I heard that grapes like to suffer in order to produce good fruit, so mine are definitely suffering. At the advice of a vineyard owner, I have been giving them organic fertilizer, and they seem to be doing well, in spite of the bad soil.
My "mystery" grapes are finally
starting to fill the arbor.
What is it?
(If you guessed an artichoke, you are correct.)


I have always loved hydrangeas and I've gradually built up a collection in my yard. I have one called 'Ayesha' with popcorn-like blossoms, 'Pia' a small-sized mop-head type with burgundy blossoms, "Nikko Blue" the big mop head that everyone has in their yard, 'Twist and Shout', a lacecap "everblooming" type, and lots more whose names I don't remember or never had.

Hydrangeas are easy to start from cuttings. There are some nice videos on YouTube that can show you how. Too bad I don't have room for any more, although that hasn't stopped me before from starting new plants. Sometimes I just can't resist.
H. Paniculata
Lacecap (I lost the label)

'Twist and Shout'

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