Thursday, October 14, 2010

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day

Salvia farinacea
Also blooming:

Zinnia angustifolia 'starburst'
Rosa 'Flower Carpet Red' ('Ricarda')?

Aster spp.
Veronica longifolia 'Sunny Border Blue'

Chrysanthemum spp.

Stipa tenuissima
 Penstemon 'Red Rocks'

                                                       Gallardia spp.

Alyssum 'golf'

 Also blooming:
Miscanthus sinescis 'variegatus'
Rudebeckia hirta
Solidago  rugosa

Eupatorium auromaticum 'joicus variegated'
Panicum virgatum 'Heavy Metal'
Panicum virgatum 'Dallas Blues'
Calamagrostis 'Karl Foerster '
Pennisetum alopecuroides 'Hamelin'
Pennisetum alopecuroides  (standard)
Miscanthus sinesis 'gold bar'
Sedum telephium 'Autumn Joy'

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Bronze Fennel Surprise

Front Entry Garden
Early this spring while I was shopping for seasonal plant selections for my front entry garden, I came upon a bronze fennel plant.  This particular section of the garden at the time exhibited a trio of bronze sedges, blue fescue, and black and blue sage. I felt like this group of plants along with the bronze fennel would create complementary colors and texture. Which it did, so I was very pleased.

However may biggest surprise occurred when 10 to 12 larvae turned up 5 weeks later turning my fennel plant into a bare boned skeleton.
I used to work for a plant protection products company ( that's a political correct term for pesticide and fertilizer distributor), so I thought what insecticide do I need to use to eradicate this pest?  Orthene, Spinosad, Sevin, or  Bacillus thurengnsis Kurstaki?  Some of you have probably heard of some of these.Well about that time my 9 year old neighbor Eli came along and I showed him the "worms", he replied "cool".  Hmm, I thought to myself as I had been explaining different gardening terms to Eli over the last month or so. So I decided to  give Eli some more education, I purchased a plastic insect container from wally world and added fennel leaves with the worms, err larvae. Soon the larvae quit eating and started attaching to the container to turn into chrysalis for 12 days. I sent the container home with Eli and received very exciting reports from his mother and him almost on a daily basis. Soon the Swallowtail Butterfly,  (Eastern Black Swallowtail, Papilio polyxenes), begin to emerge and Eli came running to my wife so excited he almost tripped over himself. She told him to release them so they wouldn't hurt themselves.

Over the next week Eli would release a butterfly a day until he left the final two and returned them to me and allowed me to view this amazing metamorphism from larvae to adult. Those two were the last two we captured as we didn't want to injury them. That was in late June and about every 7-10 days more larvae would show up on the fennel and then in another week the butterflies would show up again. For the last 6 weeks I have been blessed with a contiual cycle of swallowtails and the larvae continue to show up consistently.
My poor fennel plant, the ultimate sacrifice. Its health and life for rebirth of these magnificent creatures.
Hmm, sounds like someting I've heard before.

2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.

Latest photo yesterday on Boltonia 'Snowbank'

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Wildflower Wednesday kinda!

Hot weather stalwart Rudebeckia "Goldstrum". Found these seedlings coming up two years ago and have transplanted them every spring and fall.  Goldstrum is probably not native to Kansas but it is probably the closest species I currently grow. Plans are to grow Helianthus in the near future. There is some interesting information @

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Vagabond Gardener

Cindy and I have moved five times in the last ten years.  At every residence and growing zone I have been challenged to meet growing conditions to have a successful garden.  I try initially to evaluate every site and also to blend the garden design with the architecture of the building.  Through the years we downsized considerably to the point where we are now in a very small cottage sized residence in south central Kansas. My past gardens have always had super turf grass as I have been an expert in the turf grass industry in my past employment.  Well I have decided to go with a cottage style garden for this residence, and eliminate much of the turf on our small corner lot.

Front entrance June 2009 , one year after moving in.

April 2010 some progress

January 2010 Corner of corner lot
April 2010
June 2010
July 2010

I will share more photos in the near future..

Monday, July 19, 2010

Tastful Textures

in the Garden of Greggo

Echinecea "Magnus", Foeniculum vulgare (Bronze Fennel)(my swallowtail larvae farm), and Salvia guaranitica "Black and Blue"

Rudebeckia Goldstrum and Miscanthus (variegated form)

Picea abies, Sambucus "Black Lace", Plumbago, and Salvia garanitica.

Cosmos, Leucanthemum superbum 'Snowcap' Shasta Daisy,
Perovskia atriplicifolia Russian Sage, and Rudebeckia hirta Gloriosa Daisy.

Alyssum and Rudebeckia hirta Gloriosa Daisy
Salvia farinacea mealycup sage, Calamagrostis acutiflora Karl Foerster and 
Agastache rupestris 'Desert Sunrise'.

Kind of new to blogging and still trying to figure out how to format and achieve interest from you the gardening public.

Happy gardening-Greggo

Monday, July 12, 2010

Looks like steak and potatoes tonight

Potato bounty July 4th.....5a.m. potato's.

Mr Potato Head

Completed limestone bed with potato plants, onions, and Liriope muscari.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Perennial Bed Project 1 completed May 4th

 All the steps are completed, with finer detailing to come.  We will take more pictures as the perennials mature. Happy gardening!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Perennial Bed Project

Doesn't look like much  now in this photo, however this will change. Plans are to elevate the circular area with sod cut out from the new bed in the upper most area in the photo at right. This will help with drainage.  Step one: will be to mark beds with spray paint. Step two: cut out sod with flat headed shovel and transplant sod. Step three: add sand, compost and till into existing clay soil. Step four: improve drainage by installing drainage tile. Step five: Adding small retaining walls to newly sodded area. Step six: Raking and leveling soil. Mark for plants. Step seven: Plant perennials!!!!! Hopefully by May 1st.

Spring is in the Air

Which means time for new projects! I have been studying all the seed and plant catalogues I can get hold of. Dreams of flower candy dance in my brain.