Monday, July 28, 2008

Butterfly Bush, or should I say Lack of Butterfly Bush

My butterfly bush did not endure the harsh winter very well. It's not dead, but as of yesterday, it looks like this:

A couple of scrawny one & a half foot stalks. If you have been reading my blog for awhile, you may remember that this bush gets very large - over 7 feet tall and usually overhangs the deck. I used to love coming home and going out to take butterfly pictures while sitting on the deck.

It does not look like I will be having any blooms this year.

Yesterday I was walking up from the basement through the garage and saw a Monarch through the window. I put my laundry away and then went to see if it was still there. It was still happily sipping the drumstick allium nectar.

I didn't get a great picture, but, hey, we beggars can't be choosy!

I have been in the bad habit of doing no garden chores when I get home from work. My gardens are too big to be tended to only one day each weekend. So today I came home and immediately went out with my trusty shovel and wheelbarrow and spent 1.25 hours digging out more sedum coral carpet.

Years ago I planted it with ajuga because I thought it was a nice combo. The ajuga bloomed in the spring and the sedum in July. At the time I didn't know just how aggressive the sedum was.

Last year I thought I had removed it from this area. Ha! It was back this year with a vengeance. All the little white flowers are sedum. I decided the only way to remove it was to remove the ajuga right along with it. So today I dug it all out of this little area.

I also removed this silver snow-in-summer which is intertwined with the phlox.
After 1.25 hours I had two wheelbarrow loads removed and one load of top soil added back in.

It needs more top soil, but I was too pooped to haul more. I threw some of the nicer ajuga into a bucket of water and left it under the shade of a cherry tree until I get time to replant it.

The wheelbarrow and shovel were left there also because I have many more loads to haul out. I feel pretty good that I at least accomplished something after work today.

Just look at that green grass at the end of July! Unheard of in my yard. I hope it rains tonight.

I have no idea what the temperature is, but it was hot out there! I came in red-faced and ready for a long shower. It's been over 45 minutes and I am still red in the face. If I should ever disappear for a few weeks with no post, you can be sure that the sedum coral carpet finally did me in!

Remember my new garden shoes in early June?
Here they are today with my garden gloves right after I finished the above.


  1. Gardening is such hard work!
    It's not such a bad picture of the monarch. At least you got one. So pretty...

  2. Sorry about your butterfly bush! The one in the back here loves it as the rain gutter overflow there. The white one on the side of the house has what looks like suckers shooting straight up to the sky, but what flowers are there are pretty. I transplanted one near a blue spruce and it bloomed, but isn't that big.
    You work so hard. I am being sporadic about weeding around here. I did pull some up tonight near my little pond.
    Better hit the hay-Ms. Nightowl here!

  3. I think it's a great photo. All that color, Zoey, you are so good with color!

    Make sure you drink a good amount of water while you are out there. It may be humid, but your body is loosing fluids in that heat.

    Finally, I used to love coming home and working in the garden. All those long, cool summer nights. Down here, you garden in the morning or not at all. Hot. I miss the garden in the evening in Michigan. Low slanting light, little white clover puffs in the lawn, fireflies. Cherish what you've got!

  4. Wilted, thanks for stopping by.

    Dianne, I guess you are a night owl. I am rarely up at 1:45 a.m.!

    Anonymous, Thank you. I really do cherish my cooler climate. I can't take the heat at all. I still love to garden at 6:30 a.m. on the weekends--it's my favorite time.


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