Beautiful Flowers: Images from My Garden - Part 1
A few years back, I had the responsibility and pleasure to care for these beautiful flowers. I refer to this garden as 'my garden', although strictly speaking it was my parent's garden. I lived there for many years. My mother especially enjoyed the many and varied colours and shapes that make for such beautiful flowers and a beautiful garden. My father enjoyed gardening as well, but I sense that he was more of a putterer than an avid gardener.
Over the years I learned quite a bit about tending my garden. Partly from reading books, but mostly by studying the growth habits of the plants in the garden itself. Then there's the art of creating a beautiful setting, using the shapes and colours provided by nature's palette. (see my tips below on growing your own beautiful flowers)
These beautiful flowers images are only a small sample of the many I've taken over the years. I used to use a regular, inexpensive point-and-shoot camera, but it just didn't capture the kind of detail I see in many of these beautiful flowers. There's so much more, interesting detail that isn't captured at a normal distance. All these images are from my digital camera, which finally allowed me to do decent closeups.
^ Evening Primrose
A hardy perennial that seems to spread quite readily. It grows about 30cm (12") tall with several yellow flowers (3cm. across) atop a single stem of multiple leaves. Despite its' name, I seem to recall the flowers would close up at night and during cloudy days. It also comes in pink, which I've had as well.
Also a hardy perennial. Grows about 1m (3.3 ft.) tall, with profuse clusters of small flowers (15mm. across) around the top. Many colour varieties, including reds, pinks and purples. Some varieties frequently exude a nice aroma.
^ Garlic chives
A perennial which grows in clusters about 20cm (8") tall. The tiny flowers that open up later in the season attract many insects, including wasps, as you see in this lucky close-up shot here. It is also said to help keep aphids away from other nearby plants. The stocks can of course be chopped up and used in salads and cooking as well.
^ "Amber" rose
A gorgeous hybrid tea rose. A lovely scent too as I recall.
^ Bleeding Hearts
A beautiful perennial with streams of unusual, delicate (and appropriately named) red/pink flowers nestled in the foliage. Unfortunately, the early spring blooms are fairly short-lived (3 weeks). Grows about 60-70cm tall.
^ Lily of the Valley
A very hardy perennial...it can even grow up through asphalt pavement, and can become invasive as well, but otherwise makes a nice ground cover. The delicate, white, lantern-like flowers hiding just inside the pointy leaves exude a strong perfume-like scent for a short time during the spring. Grows about 15cm (6") tall.
^ Coral Bells
A perennial with clusters of red flowers borne on 20cm stems, emerging from a dense, low-lying carpet of leaves (not visible in this photo).
^ Oriental Lily ("Dizzy")
One of the many intricately detailed blooms of the lily family. Features several large (120mm across), trumpet-like flowers atop multiple-leaved 75cm tall stocks. This one also has a fairly pungent scent.
^ Brown-eyed Susan
A fairly common, but attractive bi-ennial (every other year). Related to the more common Black-eyed Susan, of course. Grows about 60cm tall.
Modest sized (6cm across) trumpet-like flowers grow in abundance all over this 1m tall annual. Also comes in white and a streaked white-pink. The flower petals fade and drop off in the fall, exposing the seed heads, which if picked at the right time, can be stored indoors over the winter and planted anew the next spring...free, flowering plants in perpetuum.
^ "Peace" rose
A beautiful, cream-coloured hybrid tea rose, with pink/white outer petals. Originally introduced after World War II.
Mulitiple, dense, pointed clusters of pink/purple flowers adorn this 1.2m tall perennial. Also comes in white. The name comes from the fact that the floral stems can be gently forced into a different position and remain so for a time.
^ Sweet Pea
Gorgeous pink flowers are the main feature of this climbing annual which can grow as tall as 2m. Needs a fence or trellis for the tendrils to attach to.
You too can grow your own beautiful flowers...
It's not all that difficult to get these results..just get yourself a couple of good gardening books. Basically, you just need to determine the amount of sun or shade each plant requires. Plus, the ultimate height will determine whether it fits better at the front of the flower bed (shorter) or at the back (tall ones). Perennials return every year, so you should plant them a little further back, and plan your annuals around them. You need soil that's soft, and easily workable. If not, get some peat moss and some topsoil or manure, and dig it in well. Follow the directions on planting depth..most are planted at the same depth as the container they came in, except bulbs and rhizomes. Water them well.
I find it looks better to group a large number of the same plant fairly close together (closer than is usually recommended..particularly with shorter annuals), to get a nice swath of colour, in amongst other groups of plants of varying shapes, but complementary colours, such that the whole flower bed is awash with a sea of rainbow colour, particularly annuals. Just remember to water and feed them regularly, but not too much. Removing the spent flower heads regularly, encourages more flowers, so try to keep up with them. Larger plants like shrubs and roses need some breathing room, so don't crowd them.
Roses need lots of sun, and regular pruning to bring out the best in them. As each bloom dies away, you should prune them, such that if you follow the stem from the withered bloom..down to the next leaflet that has 5 leaves, and is pointing away from the center of the plant..make your cut about 1/4 inch above that leaflet, at an angle that allows water to drip away from the leaflet. This will encourage a new stem and bloom to form fairly quickly. A deep mulch on the rose bed will discourage the growth of black spot, a nasty mold that forms when the leaves remain wet for too long. Try and water only from below the leaves, or use a soaker hose. With proper attention and feeding, you'll have a continuous show of colour, and often fragrance, all summer long.
Well, there you have a baker's dozen of some of my garden favourites. I hope you enjoyed the amazingly beautiful work of nature.
I've tried my best to identify these beautiful flowers by name, sometimes from memory alone. If anyone is more knowledgeable than I, and can positively identify something I may have mistaken for another species, let me know.
Note: If you wish to use any of these photos for commercial purposes, let me know in advance. Thank you.
This article ©2010 by timorous
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