Gasping Over Gladiola

August 30, 2010

A shocker in the garden this morning. I looked out of my office window and saw a spear of magenta tufts, a gladiola, completely unexpected.

Because I didn’t even know it was planted there.

I haven’t planted glads in scads of years. And I cannot remember ever planting them in this bed. I originally planted them about 8 years ago in the bump by the pond. They were transplanted to the back of the hosta bed and never ever thrived.

This one has come out of nowhere. What a beautiful surprise.

The butterfly bed is attracting skippers and more skippers, this time not just a Peck’s Skipper but a Dion Skipper and a (I believe) Salt Marsh Moth along with our admirals, monarchs and cabbage butterflies. Spring azures are far and few between now. I have come to a new appreciation for these flutters of papery wings. In the past, one brownish butterfly looked like all brownish butterflies. Now, I see the difference in wing shape, and color patterns and whether it has fringe on the wings. All these details are what help identify each insect, as without them, one skipper is pretty much like every other skipper.

The Dion Skipper holds its wings in a unique position, so they look like fighter planes with rudders up and at the ready. More romantically, like flower petals.

The pin oak is starting to drop acorns and sitting underneath is taking chances with the safety of your cranium. They are green right now, but the squirrels love them still.

The green peppers are so very happy to be out of the shade of the watermelon. They have burst into bloom and are covered with dozens of peppers in various stages of growth. I have learned much this year about growing vegetables. I will be so much smarter next year.

The unhealthy hydrangea has me mulling. Neither of the other two are in trouble and they’ve all had about the same level of care. The troubled one has had much more tenderness bestowed lately, but still hasn’t recovered. I’m now thinking that maybe this appearance has to do with being planted on top of decaying iris roots. Maybe the roots are giving off something that hydrangeas don’t agree with. Maybe it’s feeding off those roots and it’s just not agreeing with it.

Maybe I just have no clue and am flailing for answers.

Watered the veggie garden again. We should see sprouts within a week or two. Tony will so enjoy that spinach, well into the fall.

I will watch as the glad unfurls more and more flowers. It’s like a gift from those gardening gods, a special smile, a burst of joy.


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