Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Mears Garden news- Summer week 6- July 28, 2009

Stuff happens.
We went for the weekend to St. Paul. It was a good trip despite bumps in the road, including at one point a dead battery. Stops along the way included the wonderful arboretum in Dubuque. It has one of the largest hosta collections in the country. It is also entirely staffed by volunteers, which is an amazing testimonial to the community. In St. Paul we saw the Cirque d’ Soleil, which is always worth the price of admission.
On the way we saw the verdant countryside. There are places as you ride the ridges of northeast Iowa that you can see a long way, sometimes in all directions. We also saw the latest in barn decorations, quilt squares. These are springing up all over in rural Iowa. People paint quilt patterns on big pieces of wood and then attach them to the ends of the barns. Several pictures appear in the bonus picture section this week.
On the way back we saw the results of a bad hailstorm Friday night. There was field after field that at first just looked bad until we figured out what was wrong. The plants were shredded, or broken, or just knocked down. It was particularly bad south of Decorah, which is up by the Minnesota border.
When we got home we learned that the storm that brought hail north of Iowa City had come through Iowa City. I understand that there was a big wind that took down a big branch of the Elm tree in our front yard. It landed on a part of the garden near the corner of the house off the front porch. We spent the next two hours getting the branch out of the garden. Since we couldn’t just drag it out we had to clip and saw until the pieces were small enough to lift out. Plants were crushed and we now have several Star Gazer lilies on the dining room table.
Stuff happens.

Here are your pictures this week.

First here is this exuberant euphorbia, First Blush. I do not get to show you many pictures of euphorbia.

Next is one of my favorites of the lilium. This one is called Pizzazz.

Third this week is a species lilium called speciosum album. White can be good, particularly if you can find an obliging purple for the background.

Finally here is the weekly fix for the daylily fans out there. This is Volcanic Explosion. The daylilies are slowly finishing their season. It has to happen. Those that are going strong cannot be thought of as late daylilies. In another ten days we will get to the very late category.

So there are your poll pictures this week.
In last week’s voting the daylily just barely edged the caladium.

For your bonus pictures there are first a few from the garden including daylily Tiger Kitten (who thinks up these names?), and the lovely white Oriental lily Casa Blanca.

There are also barn pictures showing some of the squares that are showing up all over Iowa.

Finally there are pictures from the Como Park Conservatory in St. Paul. Tropical water lilies are rather spectacular.

Enjoy the cool summer.

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