A cool May. Looking out from the patio

I went out this morning and started taking pictures of what I could see from our patio.  We had a bit of rain last night and it was still too wet to work in the garden.


Coreopsis unknown variety

I’m real happy with the way the perennials we planted last year are doing.  They’ve all returned.  Yes I know they’re supposed to but I’ve found that’s not always the case.

20160521_095758_Coreopsis moonbeam

Coreopsis ‘moonbeam’


Some are blooming their hearts out;
others are just beginning to set buds.

And despite the cool wet spring they  appear to be thriving.

The moonbeam coreopsis has proven to be very prolific.  I let the flowers go to seed  last year and it seems to have self-sown.





20160521_095716_Bee Balm

Bee Balm

The bee balm looks strong and will be covered in cheery red flowers this summer.  I’m going to have to deal with the strawberries sooner then later I think.  They will take over the bed if I let them.  But don’t you think it’s nice to be able to stand on the patio and pick a sweet juicy strawberry.


Looking West

If I look west behind the perennial bed my eyes rest on some of the shrubs and trees in the garden.  This Japanese Maple is framed by Abelia ‘confetti’ and in the foreground is a ‘Limemound’ spirea.  I love the contrast in leaf color and shape.  From this angle you can’t see it but there’s a path between the spirea and the japanese maple.  I like a little mystery.  Wondering what’s around the corner. Adding a sense of discovery.


Hydrangea unknown variety. May 21, 2016

This Hydrangea was burnt horribly during the last freeze.  It’s made a remarkable comeback and is a joy to see when you step out the door.

20160521_100142_Lemon Balm

Lemon Balm. May 21, 2016

Look to the north and you’ll see a strong cluster of lemon balm.  I’ll need to remember to cut it throughout the year.



This bed also has one of the coneflowers we started from seed last year.  Isn’t it a beauty.  It seems happy very in this location.


Blueberry. May 21, 2016

If you keep looking North toward the fence you’ll see one of the blueberries that I thought would fail to fruit.  So many flowers had fallen off or turned brown after the last freeze that I didn’t know how it would be able to set fruit.  But it did.

And this just doesn’t begin to show the diversity of life visible from the patio.  More herbs, fruits, perennials and flowering shrubs. A great diversity of life.  We are truly blessed.  And before I go, one last picture.


Backyard compost center. May 21, 2016

The blurry mass of red is a cardinal flying past our backyard compost center.  All our kitchen scraps, coffee grounds and trimmings go into these “garbage bins” where they are mixed with leaves to add carbon, help control moisture levels, and allow air to circulate.  Material is added daily and it’s given a stir. This is how our compost starts; right here in this humble corner of the backyard.

All of the beds get a dose of compost and a layer of shredded leaves each year.  I try to keep all the paths mulched with wood chips.  No need to purchase fertilizer.  What most consider trash becomes a rich compost and mulch both of which feed the soil and fertilize the plants.  And happy plants they are.  Just look out form the patio and I think you’ll agree.

“I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority.”
― E.B. White, Letters of E. B. White




3 thoughts on “A cool May. Looking out from the patio

  1. Great quote by E.B. White and lovely examples from your garden. My parents in the 70’s chose to make a compost pile rather than discarding vegetable “remains.”Although they were professionals, they had “hippie” ideas- believed in osteopathic medicine, natural remedies and filling our plates with more veggies than meats. Makes me smile to think they were almost living like, “pioneers,” too. 🙂


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