Late April in the Garden

So much has begun to bloom in the past two weeks since my last gardening post, it is becoming a wonderland of color around here.  If we must be stuck at home, at least we have beautiful flowers to enjoy.  Some very chilly nights this past week kept me from getting a lot of planting done, though.  We have several colors of azaleas, and this year the white ones are pristine and lovely!

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Many years the white ones suffer frost damage, but this year they bloomed without any damage for several days before getting some light frost browning.

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Dark pink and lighter pinks are around the circle.

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I like this medium pink the best among the pink ones.

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Pink, white and coral azaleas bloom all the way down the drive along our property.

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A few days ago, George made an appearance.  He was gobbling loud enough to be heard inside the house, so I stepped out to the veranda to see if it was him.

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It indeed was George, I recognize the long beard which shows he is a mature bird.  He was strutting his stuff, but no lady turkeys were answering the call.

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Oliver is still making almost daily visits as well.  I gave him a small carrot one day, and he turned up his nose at it.   I was surprised as I thought squirrels liked all kinds of vegetables.  Researching it, they are supposed to like a wide variety of foods including all types of veggies, but our little thief has a thing for carbs.  He’ll eat fruit and grains, and My Sweet Babboo gave him a few peanuts last week.  But he will snatch up any kind of bread in a hurry. This day he got some raisin bread.

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The first of the early irises began their blooming.  I have two beds of these.  This year all the iris seem like they are going to be more prolific.

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The first of the burgundy and yellow ones bloomed.  There are a lot of buds on those, so I expect a bunch more in the days to come.

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I do adore white flowers, and the white irises are particularly lovely this year.  There are 19 white blooms and buds in this bed!

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Beautiful pure white with delicate beards, they seem to glow in the sunlight.

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I did get a few tomatoes put into pots, but a late week frost then the threat of a thunderstorm with high winds kept me from putting these into the ground.  I kept the geraniums on the sun porch too, so they wouldn’t be damaged by the wind.   Two geranium stems are in a vase of water, and are rooting nicely.

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Then we had another visitor.  This little cub was interested in the birdseed, but he cannot climb the pole and the feeder is too far off the ground for him to reach.

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I scared him, and he ran down to the hostas, turned around and froze in this position.  He isn’t coming toward me, just looking at me as I took his picture.  He is pretty young, but still is about 100 pounds.  He (she?) has such a cute face with bright and curious eyes.

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He moved off towards the east cove, taking one last curious look before going into the woods.  I wondered where his mother was.  She didn’t make an appearance, but I am sure she was close by.  It is spring in the mountains, one must be alert while outside.

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Checking on the peaches, it seems that there will be some this year.  We will see who gets them first, LOL!!

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On the island flower bed near the azaleas, I am thrilled to show the lady slippers have come up.  Last year I only had one, this year there are two.  These are members of the orchid family that only grow wild.

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These take such a delicate mix of just the right conditions to grow.  They need a symbiotic relationship with a particular beneficial soil fungus to germinate, specific requirements for light and water, and bees for pollination.   They cannot be moved or cultivated.  I feel like a fairy has touched the ground here, and granted us a rare and precious gift.

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What is going on in your garden?

31 thoughts on “Late April in the Garden

  1. Kim J LeMere

    My garden is limited but this year my 3 Red Charm Peonies are going to bloom and I’m super excited. I saw them at the Botanical Gardens in Chicago many years ago and our daughter gave us the 3 bulbs when we moved to TN. I enjoyed the tour of your yard and your lady slippers are a real gift, so precious to see. You are lucky to have so much wildlife wander into your yard and the baby cub is super cute, glad you kept your distance. Happy Spring!

  2. Meta O’Connell

    Your yard is so pretty. Put peanut butter on a Ritz cracker for the squirrel. They love it.

    1. carolegoldquilts

      I love your annual spring tours! Your flowers are always gorgeous, and we don’t have wild turkeys so George is rather a spectacle, from my perspective!
      It’s snowing here today, but yesterday was lovely and I was able to clean up some of the dried plant matter that I leave over the winter for the birds. We also have bears and moose to watch for when opening the door. Moose can be cranky and unpredictable so we give them a lot of space. Thanks for sharing your lovely environment!

  3. Ginger Michael

    Loved seeing your garden. Looks like you’ve had a good spring. My question is how do you keep the deer from eating those hosta? About the only thing they haven’t chewed through in our yard in coastal South Carolina is the Meyer lemon tree due no doubt to its lovely long thorns.

  4. Mary Ed Williams

    You must not have any deer from the look of your hostas. Mine have to be safely contained on the deck. Your yard is gorgeous. Thanks for sharing.

    1. We do indeed have some deer, but they don’t show up very often. There is a lot of food for them in the woods on our property and surrounding properties, so they will nibble on those hostas but never seem to eat them to the ground.

  5. Rita C.

    What gifts! I am happy to report the iris I transplanted into my daughter’s flower bed last year are blooming! It’s early here, they usually come up around Mother’s Day. I love yours, the lady slippers, and the azalea. We had white azaleas, and they were gorgeous almost every year. That bear! Oh my, that would scare the bejeebers out of me, knowing mama would be nearby too.

  6. Carol whitaker

    Beautiful flowers, thanks for sharing! Hope you are well and staying safe! Think of you often!

  7. karenfae

    great photos of the bear! nice that you were able to scare him away and that the on wasn’t about. love all the flowers my azaleas are at the ugly stage now of drying off and falling off, iris’s opening here to – you have so many lovely shades of them.

  8. Ruth Jones

    What a treat to see your lady slippers! My orchids are blooming nicely, such color & such a joy to see just outside the window! You have a lovely garden Carole.

  9. It is indeed beautiful at this time of the year. The color spots are just magnificent. I, too, love the whites. Even the critters are a welcomed sight.

  10. Sylvia Anderson

    Good morning Carole. You have no idea how much I look forward to your garden tours, complete with wildlife and gorgeous flowering shrubs in such beautiful colors. The garden fairy definitely dropped her lovely slippers somewhere she knew they would be well taken care and appreciated.
    Good to see George is still around, and still strutting his stuff for the ladies. who don’t seem to care, at the moment. Poor George, maybe next time they’ll make an appearance and give his ego a little boost! Love the cute little black bear, but wouldn’t want to get too close and have mama come charging out of the bushes at me. I’ll enjoy them looking at all your great photos.
    Have a good and safe day.

  11. My azalea is in bud and is just about to pop. Yours are lovely! You sure have a lot of visitors to your yard. I hope that big black visitor keeps lots of social distance! We have some purple and yellow irises …your white ones are beautiful

  12. What a wonderful walk through in the garden, The Iris’s are just gorgeous. I especially loved seeing Oliver 🙂 I have never seen a bear but in a photo, not sure how I would feel seeing a bear so close, even as cute as he was!

  13. Phyllis Smith

    Good morning Carole, Well your gardens are so pretty, perhaps you could share your green thumbs with some of us who don’t have any. My irises have come up but haven’t gotten any buds as yet. My mothers triple leaf day lilies are about to start budding. The poker plants on my back patio have all come up and growing great, the flower part that the humming birds like will be up soon, cann’t wait till the hummers come back. Will be putting their feeders out later today. Trying to keep the kitchen cleaned so just taking a little break for now. My son likes to boil his own peanuts so he has a big pot of them on the stove. Little Oliver sounds like some of the squirrels around here. They wait for me to put the bread crumbs in the feeder with some pecans that gotten a bit stale. I put the nuts into my small chopper and chop them and those rascals will literally sit there in the feeder and eat it all in one sitting if I don’t watch and keep them run off. Mama bear had to be close by they don’t let their little ones get too far. Guess I’d best go thru the rest of the mail here and then get back to cleaning with the Lysol and tidy up the house . Have a great day and stay safe

  14. The baby bear….oh so cute! My daughter lives in a development, where her house backs up to wetlands and a millpond. She just moved in last fall and one of the neighbors alerted her to the lady slippers that are abundant on property. She shares photos of what is blooming and asking for descriptions. Because it is a highly wooded property she has all kinds of fun things cropping up. Someone did some “woodland planting” with azaleas and a few dogwood trees, along with tulips and daffodils, but she is really treasuring her lady slippers. I think you are right about the fairies delivering.

  15. Such pretty blooms you have, Carole! We had some extreme cold here (for April) a week ago and that seems to have slowed everything down here. Not even any leaves on the trees! Great photo of the bear, too – wow!

  16. Naomie Moore

    Outstanding! Love all your photos. You live in a beautiful area with such an array of plants and flowers. I am in zone 9b, a completely different climate. Love the bears, squirrels, chipmunks, turkeys you have. While I do have squirrels, I also have rattlesnakes, coyotes, deer and the random bobcat here and there. And tons of raccoons. We went from winter to summer in 3 days, Monday we were barely kissing 60° and by Wednesday we were in the mid 90’s with no “spring” type weather. Let’s see how my plants do. My roses are spectacular though. Thanks for sharing your corner of the world. So refreshing and always a bright spot in my day.

  17. Joan Sheppard

    Chicago – you say bear I think Football. What a darling – from the proper “social” distance. We ran into a moose once on a walk and I went to pet it. My husband was very quick to remind me that it was in fact a baby even though it was taller than me and that Mom was sure to be close. Backing up slowly.
    Your garden is so lovely. Lady slippers, azaleas, and we are still finding tiny pockets of snow from last week. Your pictures are so wonderful. Now if we had “Smell-a-vision? Glad to see George and Oliver are out and about, I laugh just thinking about them.
    Thanks ever so much for sharing.

  18. Brenda Ackerman

    Hello Carole, It was delightful to read your post today and see all of your fabulous photos. Seeing the Azalea’s all lined up in a beautiful line, certainly would have me walking in front of them as long as they were all blooming so beautifully. I also enjoy all of your other displays of colors and types of florals that you have brilliantly displayed throughout your yard, patio and indoors! It was also so fun seeing your fabulous outdoor “pets” in all of their natural beauties also. I believe that you should enter the photo of Oliver in the Fair this year! This photo is just gorgeous! Just a thought. Have a great day Carole!

  19. Spectacular photos Carole; the colors, the wildlife, the flowers! Do you feel the loveliness just oozing across your property? Our trees are budding, we may have plums this year, and possibly peaches! I am so excited. We planted a tree on the south side between us and the neighbor 3 years ago, and it is now 10-12 ft high. We are hoping! We transplanted the brassicas last weekend, but had a pretty heavy snowfall with intense sun and they really took a hit. We think the roots are good still, because they are very green at ground level, but the leaves look sun burned. 😔 it’s a waiting game now. We have a few starts still in the house, but not a full replacement if they don’t come back. I imagine it will be a week or two before we see anything.

  20. The flowering plants are beautiful Carole, the iris look like they are going to put on a wonderful display this year…my garden visitors fade into insignificance here compared to yours!!

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