I did a lot of walking today as I transferred flats around the entrance garden slope in preparation for our Volunteer Work Day tomorrow (8 am until 12 noon). Thankfully it was an overcast day with a nice breeze! We had a skeleton crew on grounds today (Terry, Cindy and I) but accomplished our tasks in good order and we also had a stellar crew of volunteers. It was nice to see lots of visitors and the color out in the gardens is still quite nice (like the 'Morden Blush' rose seen above). While the majority of our early season bulbs are finished, perennials continue to fill in and our planting of annuals is on track as well. We had a great day and look forward to a successful planting day tomorrow.
'Ivory Silk' Japanese tree lilac (Syringa reticulata)
goatsbeard (Aruncus dioicus) - perennial
climbing hydrangea (Hydrangea anomola subsp petiolaris) on our archway
bowman's root (Gillenia trifoliata) - perennial
Our volunteers were involved with a wide range of tasks and duties out in the gardens. Marv (above) did a nice job in the moss garden where he continues to primp and encourage our moss island and moss patches throughout the Japanese garden. Bill O. (below) did his mowing and shifted to some other tasks as well. The second photo down shows Eva (foreground) and Kathy near the gazebo where they continued to clear bulb foliage and weeds. They are a great duo and are some of our most regular volunteers (at the gardens almost daily!). The third photo down shows the beautiful smile of Margaret who thankfully didn't beat me up after turning on irrigation in the garden she was weeding! In the next photo down, she can be seen with Terri N. in the formal gardens clearing out ornamental onion (Allium) foliage in preparation for the planting of seasonals next week. The fifth photo down shows Vicky's versatility during her third straight day of helping out with watering, weeding, etc. She is a real asset and is a heck of a hard worker. Kay (sixth photo down) tidied up her area of the shade garden nicely and installed some beautiful new perennials. Vern (seventh photo down) continued work on the last two Garden Art Projects ("Nature Nooks") that will go out next week. Urban (eighth photo down) did some nice pruning around the gardens. We also saw Maury (errands), Pat M. (painting), Ron Y., Rose Marie L., Mary W., Karen M. (Japanese garden tidying), Jumbo Jim, Dr. Gredler, Big John and many others today. It was another excellent day of volunteerism out in the gardens.
Above is a shot of the beautiful 'East Friesland' perennial salvia (Salvia nemerosa) which is peaking right now and very attractive to bees and early butterflies. Our grounds staff made sure our watering duties were covered and helped with various projects. Terry worked on push mowing, watering, rototilling and some nice blower rounds which were needed due to the amazing amount of "cotton" drifting down from the female cottonwoods (Populus deltoides). What a mess right now and ultimately a weeding nightmare. UGH! Cindy was a huge help hauling plants for the work day tomorrow and must have run 20 loads of plants. She also weeded, watered and took care of all the yard watering needs. I helped organize the volunteers but the bulk of my time was spent hauling plants as well and staging them in advance of what I hope will be 30+ volunteers coming tomorrow to help plant 12,000 annuals (our goal). More photos from today can be seen further below...
meadowsweet (Filipendula vulgaris 'Flore Plena') - perennial
'Marcus' compact perennial salvia (Salvia nemerosa) - perennial
'Blue Moon' wisteria (Wisteria macrostachys) - woody vine
variegated sweet iris (Iris pallida 'Albo-Variegata') - perennial
blooms of arrowwood viburnum (Viburnum dentatum)