My flowers have started blooming, which means that I am obsessively circling my home looking for new flowers to take pictures of.
I have been posting them onto my Facebook account; yet I realize that not all of my friends want to see dozens of flower pictures.
It is, however, my personal opinion that if people would post more flower (and puppy) pictures on social media, the world would be an infinitely better place.
I started taking pictures this morning because the moment I walked out the door, I was greeted by a beautiful "Golden Showers" rose that had opened up overnight.
I ended up snapping photos of almost everything in my "garden."
This, my friends, is why I am using my blog platform to share these photos. That, and I desperately want to "talk" about my roses...this gives me a better opportunity to tell you about them.
My garden is a work in progress; I am constantly fussing with it. We are also doing some "Spring" updates. My husband is in the process of widening the "garden" areas around our home, updating the island, planting some trees, rearranging and adding a much-needed edge around it all.
A little background: we have lived in our home for a little over five years. We had it built. When we moved in, it was "landscaped" by the builder (Adams Homes).
Although the landscaping was perfectly adequate, I didn't care for it at all.
Our home (as far as I know) is still the only Craftsman style, two-story home built by Adams Homes in our town. And I wanted my "garden" and landscaping to be a little more unique.
I love climbing flowers; I love bougainvillea (although I have had less luck with the latter). I love cottage gardens and English-style flower gardens. I don't know much about the specifics of garden styles, I just had a rough idea of what I wanted to do.
So I started doing research.
(By the way, I am in Zone 9a...near the Atlantic Ocean.)
I ended up with a couple very specific roses that I wanted.
Have you ever had something very specific in mind while shopping? Why is it, then, that the very specific item is the biggest pain in the a@@ to find? It is a million times easier to just have a general idea...
Anyways, I specifically wanted a Zephirine Drouhin climbing rose and was unable to find her anywhere near me.
I ended up at Rose Petals Nursery in Gainesville, Florida. My husband and I visited there almost five years ago. The family that runs it is wonderful. If you are able to visit, definitely do so. Otherwise, she does mail order, too.
Four and a half years later my garden has filled in a little bit.
Here are some Spring pictures. I will post some more later this summer, or as our projects are completed.
So, this is the "Golden Showers" climbing rose that greeted me this morning.
I had to cut it back quite a bit last season...it was about 8-10' tall and gangly.
"Golden Showers" partially open and bud.
A couple hours later of the same flower.
This hack job is an interesting story. :)
I bought it from a garden center as a "Don Juan."
It was "Don Juan" for an entire three months, then started a new shoot which produced a ton of small white flowers. It bloomed only once every Spring.
It looks a bit like "White Dawn," although I guess I can never be sure. The trellis it was on rusted out last winter so I had to cut the plant down to the stump. It has started to creep again. ~ I need to get a trellis very soon!
These next two pictures (BELOW) are of "Sambac" or "Asian" jasmine.
They have not thrived quite as well here as the Confederate jasmine. I wish they would bloom better...the scent is wonderful and is very strong ~especially on hot summer evenings ~ even when there are only a few flowers.
I planted them on my entryway sidewalk because I thought the scent was inviting.
Another smaller "Sambac" jasmine.
The hanging plants are succulents jade (left) and "Burro's Tail" or "Jelly Bean" plant.
Our lot is pie-shaped, so this is the southeast corner. At the moment it is a little sad. My husband built this fence (he can do pretty much anything) because we had people cutting through our yard. This wasn't the worst thing ever, but the moment he saw someone ride a motorcycle across the yard (ugh, really), he decided a fence was needed.
He also planted two Golden Goddess bamboo plants on either side.
In the middle of the fence you can see (sort of) the Carolina jasmine, which has already bloomed for the year. Carolina jasmine has pretty yellow flowers but they don't smell as nice (in my opinion) as Sambac or Confederate.
Below is my "Maggie" antique rose.
She has always been very small, and I thought she might need a little more air because she was starting to get crowded by Mrs. B.R.Cant. So last week I VERY CAREFULLY moved her out a little farther away from the other shrubs. She seems to have tolerated the move very well. I hope she will be happier in this spot...she already has several blooms.
Below is Maman Cochet, Cl.
I planted her about 4.5 years ago and she didn't do much of anything until last year. Now, I have continually had to cut her back because she goes bananas and tries to grow into the flashing in the roof. :/
Last fall another shoot rocketed out of the base and grew all winter...that new shoot is is probably 10-11 feet now. Like I said, BANANAS.
I just had to cut her back, which was probably terrible timing. But she has lots and lots of buds on her now. Her flowers are so pretty and have over 100 petals per flower (I counted one, once). So I am waiting with great anticipation for all these buds to flower
Maman Cochet, Cl. Front & Side.
Maman Cochet, Cl. buds (below)
This is a Mimosa (or Chinese Silk) tree.
We received it as a sapling from a neighbor and planted it about three years ago. As you can see, now, it is gigantic. I know some people in the south consider these trees pests because they drop seeds, but when it flowers in the summer it is just so, so pretty with pink "fan" shaped flowers that smell so wonderful. It loses all of its leaves in the winter, and just has now gotten some leaves on it. I will take some pics of the flowers this summer!
This is probably my favorite antique rose that I bought from Rose Petals Nursery, Mrs. B.R. Cant. She has thrived, blooming almost constantly since I planted her 4.5 years ago. I have had to cut her back a little, trying to train her a bit on where I want her to go.
She was bumping into the Confederate jasmine on one side and a Knockout rose on the other. I moved the Knockout rose to make more room for her. She is just beautiful. She is planted on the south side of the house and gets full sun and is probably 4-5' tall by 5-6' wide.
Here is another antique rose bush that has thrived, General Schablikine. He has one little flower that is a little sad, but has a ton of buds, so I will be out taking pics of his flowers very soon.
He has done really well on the south side of my house, where it is very, very hot in the summer. I bought this plant at Rose Petals Nursery.
Another climber I need to cut back frequently, "Sally Holmes" antique rose. There were no great flowers on her right now, but she is a great producer so pics will come soon. Her flowers come in giant clusters and are just beautiful.
Someone in my neighborhood threw out this little Valencia orange tree this winter. I marched up there with my little red wagon and brought it home! We just planted it, and hopefully it will have better luck than our other citrus trees. It is in the middle of the south yard where it will have blazing hot sun and I hear citrus trees like that. So, fingers crossed!
This is the flower that started my antique rose search, "Zephirine Drouhin" and which led me to Rose Petals Nursery.
I had envisioned her climbing on either side of my garage and myself training the vines to meet in the middle of the garage, but alas...no. :) At least not yet. I haven't given up on her yet, though, although her blooms are scarce and far between.
She is a thornless rose that can grow in partial shade. Although now, in my personal experience, she MAY not like the partial shade quite as much as being in the sun...because my one plant that has more sun generally does better.
The Zephi shown below is on the north side of my garage and rarely has blooms.
(Below) The Zephi on the south side of my garage...and she has the first flower of the season!
Above & Below, Zephirine Douhin blossom.
My husband is working on this island...he is going to put edging around it soon.
The two palms on the ends are Bostonian palms, and the one in the middle is a Sylvestri, I think. The shrub that looks off-balance is a Walter's Viburnum and my husband wants me to pull it out because it looks dumb. It will look better when the Lantana catches up on the right...which right now has been cut way back.
I normally don't pick flowers, but I picked these to take to an elderly friend last summer. I think there is a filter on this photo because it showed the raindrops much better.
The top is a Mrs. B.R. Cant, and the bottom is my Maman Cochet, Cl. I cut these right after a summer rain storm.
I need to begin working on the north side of my house, which is pretty much a total disaster. I have rows of hydrangeas that have done pretty much nothing...and again, I am holding out hope that this will be the year for them.
Also, in Florida the weeds grow all year round. This gets exhausting, no matter how much one loves gardening. I ran out of steam last Fall, and have not touched the north side of the house since then.
I have lots and lots of weeding to do.
Oh, and finally, another one of my favorite things: my German Shepherd. I wanted to take a picture of her by the roses, but she wouldn't cooperate.
Thank you for stopping by!