Crank Up The Color - 07/22/14
This time of year, we start each day the same way. Get a cup of coffee and take a stroll around the garden. Mid summer is the best-- everything is mature and in bloom. The color palette is breathtaking and makes us all smile. I've seen the saying and I'm sure you have too, 'Flowers are God's way of smiling.' I think that's true.
There's something about seeing things that are so vibrant first thing in the morning that just sets your soul on a calm and peaceful path. I love flowers... love growing them... smelling them and just staring at them. Although, I must admit, we're kind of messy gardeners at our house. There are flowers right beside carrots right beside cucumbers right beside more flowers, with a tomato or two to boot. At the beginning of spring, I just give the kids some seeds and small plants and let them go to town. What we get is what we get and it's always a magnificent surprise.
Over the years, I've learned the names of lots of flowers and how to care for them and am trying to pass this on to my kids like my mom and grandmothers shared with me. My husband on the other thing calls everything a begonia. He'll call me at work and say, 'Honey, do we need to water the begonias?' That's code word for the garden as a whole. "No, honey. The kids and I took care of it already. Thanks though." The only thing he doesn't call a begonia is the black eyed susans. Instead, he calls them the blue eyed lucys.
So, here's what we planted to crank up the color at our house. Begonias of course, petunias, sweet potato vine, geraniums, black eyed susans, salvia, roses, dianthis, various lillies, gerber daisies, impatiens and my favorite~ zinnias. It's a nice mix of perennials and annuals. Some of the annuals I reseed myself like the zinnias, petunias and impatiens. Here's one little money saving trick I learned by accident. If you don't clean out your pots each fall and just let them sit there as they die leaving them out all winter in the elements.... your petunias and impatiens will reseed themselves effortlessly. Each year, the plants come back hardier and bold in color. The zinnias I actually take apart and collect the seeds and replant them in the beds in spring.
I'd love to hear from you and see your pictures too. Share them with me on FB or Twitter and if you have any tips on sunflowers... please share. Our sunflower plant took a dirt nap early on.