Sunday, July 29, 2007

"A Garden by the Sea"

If you are lucky enough to have a cottage by the sea; then please buy Leila Hadley’s book “A Garden by the Sea”. She and her husband, Henry Luce, planned and planted lovely organic flower gardens around their summer home on Fishers Island in Long Island Sound. This informative and readable book offers guidance for garden lovers who want to plant near the sea.

Every summer I spend about two weeks a year on Fishers Island. The Hydrangea macrophylla with blue bloom clusters the size of baseballs grace every yard. Marsh mallow shrubs with pink flowers line the brackish ponds and the coastline.

My favorite shrub is the rosa rugosa with white, pink or magenta flowers. Today after kayaking friends and I picked a few rosehips as we walked up from the beach. The fleshy part of rose hips can be eaten or throw into boiling water for tea. This fruit of the rosa is tasty and an excellent source of vitamin C.

While walking along the coastline nothing is better than juicy blackberries plucked from their vines and popped into your mouth.

July brings hot humid days. Flower boxes, containers, vegetable gardens and the newly planted should be watered frequently. Even your compost may need watering. Fertilize your tomatoes. After harvesting the last raspberry cut back the smaller canes to the soil line; leaving the stronger canes for next season. Pull your weeds before they go to seed.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

400th America’s Anniversary Garden

In 2007, people are planting a garden to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Jamestown, the first permanent settlement in the Americas. Individuals, garden clubs, plant nurseries, parks and businesses are participating with a red, white and blue theme. From containers and hanging baskets to large gardens these anniversary designs are appearing throughout Virginia.

Enter your type of garden in the 2007 contest. The deadline is Sept 1st. For more info on contest details and planting info please visit . Click on the link for help with your garden design and for informative lists of appropriate plants.

Elaine, member of the Goochland Garden Club, is deadheading blooms in one of the corridor gardens which the Garden Club planted along Rt.6 near the Goochland Court House.

White petunias and blue salvia are surrounded by red roses in The Italian Garden at Maymont Park,, in Richmond. The wisteria blossoms are beginning to appear. The background is framed with blooming magnolias.

Red, white and blue flowers line the walkway of the Jamestown Settlement’s visitor center and galleries. Click for info, events, etc.

The first colonist realized the importance of plants and included a botanist, Johannes Fleisher, as a passenger in the first voyage to the New World in May 13, 1607. His job role was to record "exotic" plants and trees and to search for new botanical medicines.