Saturday, November 26, 2011

Week 1 of the picture contest- November 27,2011- Let's get started

Welcome to the Sixth Annual Mears Garden Picture contest. It is that time of year again.
Each Sunday for 12 weeks I will post 4 pictures from the Mears garden for 2011. You get to vote for the one you like best. Those 12 winners and the 4 highest finishing second place pictures will advance to a round of 16. By that point we should be well into February. Over the next 4 weeks you will pick the four finalists. There will then be that one last vote for the fan favorite for garden year 2011. By that time winter will be mostly done, at least in Iowa. (In theory)
You can vote two ways. I would prefer that you vote on the Mears garden blog located at
There should be a place to vote at the top of the page. Voting will be open through Saturday at midnight.

There is a place for Comments at the bottom of the post. Tell me what you think of this week's pictures.

Each week on the blog I will do several things. I will give you the four pictures for that week’s event. I will tell you how the voting went the previous week. And I will tell you something about the garden. Oh- there is also a bonus picture section each week.

I hope you enjoy the contest. Let’s begin.
Week 1 November 27, 2011

I really love the process of going back and selecting the contestants for the picture contest. It gives me an opportunity to revisit and remember all that color. Despite the heat and the lack of moisture since July there were great moments. During this winter I hope to pass on some of those moments to you.

Here are your first week’s pictures.

Picture number 1 is the crocus called Tricolor. I do not think you can have too many crocuses. This picture was taken on March 30, 2011. March- that is really not that far away. I have found a way to plant another 125 this fall. Scroll down for some bulb planting tips.

Picture number 2 is the daylily called Margaret Seawright. The picture was taken on July 9. I particularly like this picture because of the black background. The picture was taken at 3 in the afternoon. I wish I understood how I got that background. It just happens.
Margaret Seawright is one of my favorite daylilies. It is just about the only daylily where I bought a second plant of the same name.
Don’t you sometimes wonder who a plant was named after? When you google (has google reached the dictionary as a verb?) Margaret Seawright you discover that the plant was hybridized by a person named Stevens-Seawright. I am going to guess that Margaret was somebody’s mother or wife. The plant was registered in 1985. On the web you can also find a place called “r. Seawright Gardens” in Carlisle Massachusetts. The home page says they are in their 35th year. I think the person(s) at that garden developed another favorite daylily of mine called Sandra Elizabeth. Who was she? Ms. Elizabeth is a wonderful late blooming, tall yellow daylily. It was blooming in mid September for me this year.

Picture number 3 is a bloodroot, group picture. I love bloodroot. It is a native wildflower, which grows in the woods in Iowa. This picture was taken on April 9. The single variety (yes there is a double, which you may see later in the contest) pops out of nowhere. If the weather is warm the flower will not last more than a day or so. I have really enjoyed how the plant is spreading over the years. There are bonus pictures down below.

Picture 4 is a primrose. The picture was taken on May 7. I do not know the particular name, but the color combination of red and yellow is one of the best. As I make a “wish list” for the garden, I write “more primroses”. They seem vigorous, surviving the wet weather and the heat. They grow in partial shade, which is abundant in our garden. What more can you want in a plant?

So there you have the first week of pictures. Vote away. Get some friends to also participate. This is a way to get through the winter. If a friend would like to receive the emails, just send me the address. Suggest that your friends subscribe to the website.

For your bonus pictures here are more primroses.

Here are more bloodroot pictures. The first picture almost made it into the contest. I sometimes think about the aesthetic difference between a single flower and a group picture. Sometimes I like the group, sometimes the single one.

As to bulb planting tips- here are two.
First- you should take pictures in April of the places in your garden that have bulb holes. A bulb hole is a place in the yard that has no bulbs. I have a little feature on my inexpensive camera that allows me to take movies with sound. I take a picture and narrate it.
I then can go back in October, review the pictures, here my own comments, and place my bulb order for those holes.

Second- save those plant trays from the garden stores- the ones with all the holes. After you plant bulbs, like crocuses, that are a taste treat to the squirrels, cover the space with the trays until the ground freezes. Did you know that daffodils taste bad to squirrels and deer?

I hope to see and hear from many of you this winter. I close with pumpkin art. I love how pumpkins deteriorate. There will be more about pumpkins in the weeks ahead.
Happy winter.


Dave said...

Welcome back! Missed the picture contest.

Catherine Woods said...

Hurrah, I love the picture contest!