Usually if I were to choose a favorite thing to do with a friend, I would choose to 'go to tea'. There's something intimate and friendly about sharing a cuppa tea in a cozy English-style tea room. But this time of year I make a small exception to this favorite activity. Right now if you were to ask me my favorite thing to do with a friend, I'd say it would be to walk through the garden. But since you aren't here and we are distanced by virtual miles, please walk with my in blogland as I share two of my favorite flowers with you. I'm crazy about roses and lavender, and they are both at perfection in June!
The Diana, Princess of Wales rose is in full bloom and ready to be trimmed back to make way for new blossoms. I delay this as long as possible, as I love the wild and colorful abundance of the heavy blossoms. A weeping Norway spruce and a tall Blue Atlas Cedar add backdrop for this meaningful rose. Like the rest of the world, I adored Princess Diana.
Evening sun streams beams of light on trees and a deep red rose that grows as tall as me this year. It's blossoms are always perfect, a feat I've discovered isn't always possible with a deep red rose. I wish I could remember the variety of this bush, but do not. Soon I will take the time to identify it again.
Tall Grosso lavender spikes compliment the red of this rose. They are just about ready to bloom --- and are long and tall this year, making them perfect for lavender wands or bottles. From stem base to tallest spike these lavender plants stand over 3' tall this year.
Last year new 'baby' lavender plants were added to this bed. At $1.49 per plant, I couldn't pass them by. They are growing well and look sweet with the violas that re-seeded from last year and are growing wildly. Morning Glory shoots can be seen peeking out with their green, heart-shaped leaves. By summer's end they will completely cover the dog kennel fence, providing refreshing shade for the dogs. The dogs rarely live in the kennel, but when they do I like to think they appreciate my efforts.
If you were here, I would have you grasp a handful of lavender and run it through your hands. It makes them smell so good and then you can carry their fragrance with you for the rest of our walk.
The Peace rose by the front door is on the right --- and is first in a line of potted plants and other roses by the front room window. Last year creeping plants spilled out of a planter onto the decorative rock and took root. I've let them grow, liking the green base they provide for the pots and granite. I hope I don't regret my decision some day! They are growing profusely!
This is my "lavender star". Planted alone, this lavender has had lots of space to grow and expand. It stands nearly 4' tall and at least that far around. It makes a stunning and fragrant plant at the beginning of the sidewalk entrance. This lavender is safe from harvest, as I enjoy it until October's frost when it's time to cut back. Although it doesn't continually keep fresh buds and blossoms until then, they dry on the stems and look pretty just the same.
It's hard to give a sense of scale in a picture --- but here's another picture of my favorite lavender bush. Although it looks small in a picture, it's really quite magnificently large!
Lavender should usually be harvested before the buds actually blossom out. But it's very pretty in the garden to allow some to blossom to their fullest. The bees are attracted to the flowers and they are so pretty standing on tall spikes in the green of the garden. This picture shows several varieties of lavender. Each has a different characteristic, color, and appearance. They even smell different from one another! Still distinctively lavender, but not the same.
Miniature roses and young lavender plants grace the island in the driveway. Pansy faces peer out from wagon bed as though to greet you with a smile.
Are you smiling? They are!
Wave petunias in blue peek out from an oak barrel and geraniums line up in red and white as they prepare for the 4th of July! It's the corner of 'red, white, and blue'.
Lavender plants along the driveway are packed into a garden bed. The Alba lavender plant in the background contrasts with it's white buds to the lavender hybrid in the foreground.
Thank you for walking with me today! Now, would you like to come in for a cuppa tea? Please do! Today we have chamomile or lavender. Which would you prefer?