Thursday, October 25, 2012

For mum's sake.

I think I got lucky a few years ago planting mums in the garden as soon as they were on store shelves, when fall was really just a whisper- they must have had enough time to establish roots before winter. Come spring they all came back, and bloomed by late summer through fall. I tried a few more in protected places, and still had success. Coming to Minnesota, however, I surely did not think they would over winter. I brought them mostly to assure I had them one more fall.  Little did I know we'd have the most mild winter, and come spring I would have the largest mums I've ever had. I've read about the Minnesota mums, bred to be super hardy here, but to my knowledge these babies aren't supposed to be reliably hardy.  So you never know, this may have been their last time to shine... we won't know until spring.
I know this Rusty one below is 'Hannah'

A few snapdragons crept in the shot, too.
Happy Fall!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Hooray! Sale Time!

I just made my 250th sale on Etsy, and in honor of this milestone I'm having a 25% off sale from now through Friday at midnight! There are items in my shop as low as $6 and $9, so go get some seriously discounted hand made goodies! Visit my shop here:

Jamie Sierra Knits

Enter coupon code: 250sales

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Awesome Autumn Asters

Asters are always worth the wait for me. They may not start blooming until the fear of first frost arrises, but when they do- the color is so welcome.
Here are some pictures of the asters blooming in my garden today.


Welcome Autumn!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

For the Love of Nasturiums

It never fails. I never regret planting a ton of nasturium seeds in the spring. Right about now, when most of the perennials have pooped out, these babies are at their top performance. And something about those cooler days at the end of summer makes them grow even quicker. The leaves look like little lotus leaves blowing in the wind. These beauties are by my side walkway, spilling just perfectly onto the cement. The variety is likely peach melba, although I plant a dozen varieties of seeds each spring, and often lose track.


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Landscape Inspiration

My oldest son, who is 7, is into gardening, so when I wanted to tour the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum I decided to give my husband a break, and take Benjamin with me. We had a great time. We ate a sack lunch in the hosta glade, and he ran from water feature to water feature scheming all the waterfalls and fountains he'll have in his yard when we grows up. I took a ton of pictures. Shocking, right? I've narrowed them into categories, including landscape inspiration, container gardens, plants I want, and water features. Here's the first batch.

Whether you're looking for a traditional perennial bed, a flaming hot bed of hard working annuals, or ideas for great shaped shrubs, there are lots of ideas here.

Classic combination of russian sage, black eyed susan, and heuchera.

Fantastic hillside anyone could grow with sedum, coneflower, sage, phlox, and joe pye weed.

Reds and pinks...

So special!
I want to know how none of their tall annuals are tipping over? Like magic!

Still lots of contrast and scale to love here.

Like, whoa.
Favorite part of this combination is the grass, surprisingly.
So much to love about this combination... the height of the cannas, the red from the canna flowers matching the red flower so of the salvia.

Now all climbers have to be against a wall. Love this pillar of clematis in a rose garden.
White nicotiana peace pipe with siberian iris, and lavender petunias. Love how the height goes up and down here.
A wisteria arbor with a beautiful white mandevilla, and all white hanging baskets.

This makes me miss my limelight hydrangeas.

Hope you found some awesome inspiration.

More hummingbirds!

I love it when a plan comes together. I love taking pictures of hummingbirds, so I designed the back porch specifically to lure them in. My containers are planted with about 7 kinds of salvia, abultion, butterfly bush, zinnia, canna, roses, geranium, dahlia... all flowers I have seen hummingbirds and butterflies feeding from. The plan was to be able to sit in a comfortable spot, drink my morning coffee, or evening tea, and watch for the birds. Ta da! As long as I can keep the kids from coming in and out the door too much, I get hummingbird viewing a plenty.

Happy gardening!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Bloom Frenzy

As I was deadheading the other day two things occurred to me. I really love flowers. I always thought I was equal parts foliage/flowers, but really, it is all about the flowers. Also, I bet there are hundreds of thousands of flowers in my yard over the span of a single summer. I used to count- when my roses were smaller, how many each one put out. When a huge john cabot topped well over 300 at once, I stopped counting. Note to self: get a John Cabot for this yard.

Just wanted to share a little sampling of what is blooming right now.
Rudbeckia with small orange zinnia. Love how the center of zinnia is the same hue of yellow as the black eyed susan's petals.
My huge old wheel barrel planter is cranking still. I never regret spendin the $5 on a six pack of wave petunias.

This great rudbeckia, from seed this year- most likely from my neighbor, although I put a few seeds in places, too.
Pink "Prime Minister" Phlox blooms well in less than a half day's sun.
Bonica rose giving me a great second show for the season.
So glad I spent the 50 cents on this cleome 4 pack.
My favorite spot to watch for hummingbirds- they love the honeysuckle on the arbor, the bee balm, and the tall white nicotiana.
Heuchera 'Palace Purple' has a nice long bloom period, and looks great in both sun and shade for me.
This rose, Pearly Gates, is in a container on the back porch- so this bloom is right in my face when I sit on my porch.
This butterfly bush brings all the pollinators to the yard!
Also on the back porch, this abultion (aka flowering maple)- gosh, I've probably had this one for 6 years now, in the same pot... NEVER disappoints.

Happy gardening!

Thursday, July 26, 2012


I've noticed the hummingbird activity picking up quite a bit. I wasn't feeling well tonight, so I went and grabbed a blanket and my camera and found a nice a spot on the grass. I enjoy watching the hummingbirds so much. I like to close my eyes and listen for them from around the yard. There were two who stayed together in out of tree, and then a few flying solo.

Happy gardening!