2017: A Year in my Garden


JBtheExplorer

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The year ends next week and I thought it'd be a good time to share some of my favorite photos taken in my native garden throughout 2017. It was another great year for my habitat restoration.

My first bloom of the year was Confederate Violet (Viola sororia f. princeana) in late April. It was soon followed by Common Blue Violets, Wild Ginger, and Wild Strawberry.
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The color really began to show in May. Wild Columbine (Aquilegia canadensis), Wild Geranium (Geranium maculatum), and Stout Blue-eyed Grass (Sisyrinchium angustifolium) are just some of the native plants I have that begin blooming in May.
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As great as May is, June begins two straight months of color explosion. Right at the beginning of June, Blue Flag Irises begin to bloom. They seem to bloom just as the rest of the plants get to their height, as if they intend to bloom before they become hidden.
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Foxglove Beardtongue (Penstemon digitalis) starts blooming around the middle of the month. It's popular with long-tongued bees.
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Towards the end of the months, Bush's Coneflowers and Black-eyed Susans begin to bloom.
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A Sweat Bee rests on this Black-eyed Susan.
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At the very end of June, just as July begins, Orange Milkweed starts blooming and continues all the way through summer. A Great Golden Digger Wasp was frequently seen drinking nectar in July.
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July has the biggest variety of flowers in my garden. One of the standouts is Swamp Milkweed. It's one of the tallest plants I have and attracts a large variety of pollinators.
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I only have a couple Purple Prairie Clover plants in my garden, but when they bloom, they're often visited by small bees and flies. I wish I had more of these, but they grow slowly and rabbits like to eat them right to the ground.
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Wild Bergamot attracts all sorts of bees, as well as Hummingbirds. I enjoy the shape of the flower but it doesn't bloom for long.
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August doesn't bring many new blooms to my garden, but a lot of July flowers do carry over throughout August, including Purple Coneflower, which attracts a wide variety of pollinators, as well as dragonflies and damselflies which simply use them as a place to land.

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One flower that does begin to bloom in August is quickly becoming a favorite of mine, Great Blue Lobelia. It seems to grow into a nice shape and size, and the blue-purple color looks amazing. I'm on a mission to grow more of these. I've heard that once you have a small colony of them, they'll self-seed enough to quickly turn into a large colony. Hummingbirds love them!

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September doesn't offer much for new blooms, but it does give me Sneezeweed, which is a very tall and bright yellow flower that I wouldn't mind more of. I only have one plant and it keeps coming back.
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September is also when Asters begin to bloom. Asters are the last flowers to bloom in my garden. They can bloom as early as August and can continue well into October.
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Asters are an important late-season nectar source for butterflies and bees, and on warm Autumn days, the plants can be swarmed by pollinators. It's an amazing sight, and I'd especially recommend New England Aster for anyone gardening to helping pollinators.
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Of course, now it's December and the garden sits dormant, waiting to start growing again next year. It continues to provide shelter as well as food, but it won't start looking good again for four long months.
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If you'd like to see all of my garden photos, here's a slideshow of my native garden.
 
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alp

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Every photo is a gem and the bugs are glorious!

I have never seen a blue lobelia! What a beauty!
 
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Gorgeous! Do you do anything with you photos, @JBtheExplorer ? Are you a hobby or professional photographer? Do you sell them? These would make a beautiful calender to sell or give away to friends and relatives.
 

JBtheExplorer

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Thanks everyone!

Gorgeous! Do you do anything with you photos, @JBtheExplorer ? Are you a hobby or professional photographer? Do you sell them? These would make a beautiful calender to sell or give away to friends and relatives.
Just a hobby. I hang a few on my walls and give some to my relatives.

I've wanted to do a calendar for years. Maybe one year I'll finally go through with it. The hardest part would be cutting it down to 12 months!
 
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JBtheExplorer

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Do you by any chance have any pictures of seedlings? Or some very small plants? Nothing is coming up yet, but I want to know what not to pull! (y)
I didn't, but I just took these real quick. Not too easy to ID New England Aster when they're small, but once they have a few sets of true leaves, they're much easier to ID.

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MaryMary

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Thank you, JB!! :) (y)

I'm starting to worry, because they are not coming up. :unsure: I'll buy one if I have to, but was hoping to grow them from seed.
 

JBtheExplorer

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Thank you, JB!! :) (y)

I'm starting to worry, because they are not coming up. :unsure: I'll buy one if I have to, but was hoping to grow them from seed.

They come up super easy for me. One of the easier plants I've grown from seed. Give them some time and they may start growing.
 
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MaryMary

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Yes!! (y) I noticed them two days ago. :D I was going to wait until they were more recognizable, but that is the only thing I planted in that pot, so I'm sure that's what they are. (y) :)

I already pulled a weed out after seeing the seedlings, so thank you for the pictures!

Yay!!! :joyful:
 

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