Monday, June 16, 2014

The Heat Arrives

I was troubled that we didn't have the promised rain yesterday and instead, had a hot, windy day. Needless to say, watering and irrigation were priorities around the gardens starting this morning.  It looks like we'll have some amount of rain during the week but as always, we wont count on it!  It was a bit warm today with temperatures up near 90 degree F.  The gardens were beautiful (see above) today and we saw lots of visitors throughout the gardens.  The cottonwood (Populus deltoides) seeds are still floating down around the gardens but I think the bulk have drifted down and we're seeing plenty of them germinating throughout the gardens.  We had a nice turnout of Grumpies and other volunteers and continued gardening efforts throughout the day. Below are some additional plant photos taken this morning.
red Martagon lily (Lilium martagon) in the shade garden
'Minnie Pearl' phlox (Phlox hybrida) looking and smelling sweet
Suncatcher 'Blue Blast' petunia (Petunia) in the trials
Larry is off this week so we all had a busy day. Terry (above) was out setting up sprinklers, clearing out bulb foliage and spent the bulk of his day shearing the boxwood (Buxus 'Green Velvet') hedges in the herb garden sections.  He always does a nice job and they look remarkable.  Cindy (seen below) worked on lots of watering, took care of the yard watering and had some other duties as well.  Big John set up sprinklers, checked water features and spent a good portion of time tilling up a large section of the sunken garden that we'll plant later in the week. Jenny was in for tidying in and around the azalea/rhododendron garden where there were plenty of weeds and lots of spent bulb foliage to remove.  I was able to get outside with three batches of herbicide and hit the areas in most need including the sunken garden brick paths.  The annual infiltration of weeds in June is expected but I wasn't prepared for the scale and scope of what we're seeing now.  We'll just keep chipping away at it!
Our Grumpies had a busy day today. After cleaning up two of our water features, Maury (above) helped install a sign for the Thomas Jefferson Collection and Janice was in that same area watering and tidying this morning.  The carpenters of Dave, Vern, Jim and Ron Y. kept busy with a wide range of projects including more work on the Japanese fence repairs.  The guys below, Larry H., Bob C., Ron R. and Lloyd (left to right) went through the progression seen below (three photos) and were joined by Kevin C.  Initial enthusiasm was tempered by the reality of a really hard job and ultimately we see Bob and Lloyd taking an unauthorized break...more to follow on their reprimands...  The guys did a great job and Pat was not far away doing something very similar.  Gary B. and Ron B. put in some solid time organizing our plastic flats and containers which is no small task.  Gary S. worked on some software issues related to our plant records system.  Kathy and Eva weeded one of the entrance garden flower beds and Stan was in later for pruning and clean-up in the Japanese garden.  Shirley worked her weeding kung fu in the old color rooms garden and brought back some nice loads.  Dr. Gredler did his mowing and both Dave E. and Joanne A. were in today to tidy up their respective assigned gardens.  We also saw Dr. Yahr and many others today.  Further below are some additional plant photos from today including the maturing Thomas Jefferson Collection.
'Ghostmaster' plantain lily (Hosta)
Royal Hawaiian 'Black Coral' elephant ears (Colocasia esculenta) just filling in containers (above and below) with coleus (Solenostemon scutellarioides).  The coleus above is 'Golden Dream' and 'Sedona' is below.  Having fun with foliage!
The Thomas Jefferson Collection filling in nicely

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