Garden of Versailles

A number of years ago, I had the opportunity to visit the palace and gardens of Versailles.  The palace itself is a baroque wonder but sadly jammed with people most of the time now.  The gardens are another matter, built on a grand scale by André Le Notre to showcase the Sun King’s power and ambition.  André, a gardener and landscape architect was first commissioned … Continue reading Garden of Versailles

Fertilizing 101. part 3: fertilizers for the fall

Here we are in the third day of fall in southern Ontario and it’s a steamy 31 deg celsius (88 F).  I have watered more in the last week than all of the summer!  Annuals are blooming madly and the butterflies are still hanging about. A swallowtail on my lantana However, it is fall and time to plant bulbs, trim back dead summer leaves and … Continue reading Fertilizing 101. part 3: fertilizers for the fall

A snapshot in the life of a butterfly

A quick look in photos at the life of a monarch butterfly: Eggs on a leaf.  There’s safety in numbers!   After hatching a caterpillar’s life is spent eating…   Hanging out with friends eating…   And more eating!   After about two weeks, the journey begins…   To find a suitable spot…   To hang…   And transform into a chrysalis.   Any spot … Continue reading A snapshot in the life of a butterfly

Dashing and Dependable Daylilies

Daylilies are the workhorses of the plant world.  Dependable, tough, low maintenance, generally well behaved and the latest varieties are anything but dull!  They have come a long way from the old orange daylilies that you see growing along the roadside and marking out the outlines of long gone homesteads, yet have retained that long lived tenacity from their orange ancestor. Now you can get … Continue reading Dashing and Dependable Daylilies

Trapped by the garden

I keep meaning to write a blog but am lured by the siren song of the garden!!  The weather is glorious for the moment, the first roses are opening even before the paeonies! Even in my small suburban garden, nature moves to her own rhythm.  A swallowtail butterfly visits my Korean lilac bush every spring. The bumblebees adore my double columbines aptly named Granny’s Bonnets … Continue reading Trapped by the garden

The Big Players

Crazy, crazy weather, global warming and we’re having one of the coldest, wettest Mays in a long time here in southern Ontario with serious flooding in eastern Ontario, Quebec and around Canada.  In spite of the cold and rain, the spring blooms march on with the big players blowing their trumpets…tulips and daffodils.  Even though I’m Dutch, I’m not a big fan of the large tulips … Continue reading The Big Players

Spring Marches On

After a very unpleasant hailstorm the other week that prematurely terminated my crocuses and tiny irises, the next round of bulbs and spring flowers have marched in.  Another of my favourites are the species tulips.  Blooming early and finishing before the trees fully leaf out, they flourish and spread in the spring sunshine and will grow under trees as long as they get the early … Continue reading Spring Marches On