The answer to that question is just about everything I’ve ever planted! Loving the ubiquitous lavenders, yellow and pink yarrow, catmint, and volunteer sunflowers! We just deadheaded the catmint and Jupiter’s Beard this week, and had over two inches of rain so far this July on our ridge overlooking the Sangres de Cristo Range!Let’s hear it for the monsoons!
My Blue-Mist Spirea bushes on the right and left foreground are acting a little bit shy with just a few flowers so far, but all five should be full out in a week or so!
And this Magenta yarrow is in its first year, so its taking its sweet time to bloom. A couple plants got damaged by that late May snowstorm we had. The Russian Sage and Showy Four-O’Clocks are very late in blooming.
But overall, I’m quite happy with our results this summer!
WOW, it was plenty HOT here yesterday! We got over 90 degrees, which almost never happens up here at 7,000 feet. My new plants were not pleased, but those that have been here for the past few years were fine. Here’s a photo summary of what is happening in my garden.
First of all, this is what my “sky garden” looked like in June 2019. We had just completed the hardscaping at this point!
These day in the far east end I am nursing a new plant, an Icelandic Poppy, and so far so good in spite of all the wind we’ve had lately. My Jupiter’s Beard at the end is struggling but still hanging in.
Lavender absolutely loves it up here! And that large Jupiter’s Beard on the left is thriving too.
I forget the name of these cute little yellow flowers, but they sure are tough! Then I have a couple of different penstemons in this grouping near one of my lavender plants. The Blue-mist Spirea bushes with start blooming in July.
This is a view of mid-garden with the steps. Yarrow dominates this area. It seems to be pleased with itself. My native Four-O’Clock is slowly creeping out from under Buddha and that big Catmint plant. It got hit hard by the big snow we had the end of May, that almost froze all the flower heads off! My green shamrock is in the foreground. Thanks Mike!
My west end is mostly new or native plants. So excited to see that yellow Evening Primrose start to bloom this morning! The native sunflowers are everywhere over there and I just planted a “Little Kim Lilac” bush over there. Sure hope it survives the wind! Check out a few of Mike’s creations, the metal sculpture and his horseshoe wind chime under the Bluebird’s box.
I should also include this central square of flowers, the first place I planted anything about four years ago. Can you find my metal coil dog? That’s one of Mike’s more recent creations.
I truly do pity those who don’t have a garden to observe in the spring! Every new day is an adventure out there. I put in new perennials every year and so I must then remember where I put what, and go out and see what made it through the winter. Sometimes very subtle signs at first!
My earliest bloomer this spring were some miniature irises. Regular irises to bloom later in May or early June…
The irises even beat the tiny creeping thyme flowers (Turkish Veronica) this year!
We had a small but wonderful rain last night and so all the plants look refreshed and ready to thrive...
…and the rain also cleared the smoke out of our skies for a lovely view of the Sangre de Cristos this morning!
Mike’s been busy with his new welder too. He made a cute, little wiener dog named Rusty… get it?
Here at 7,000 feet in southern Colorado, we have had an amazingly wet summer! In the past three months we have received over ten inchesof rain! Even yesterday I thought we got nothing, and then this morning I went out and found .14 in the rain gauge! Mother Nature is not disappointing this year!
This post is about transforming this sad, dry piece of ground in March of 2018 …
to this in three years.
Luckily I had Mike and my brother John to do the heavy lifting, but they helped a lot with the vision and design too. The process of this transformation had a life of its own really. We would do one wall and then that would lead to thoughts about other transformations. Why did we use gravel? Because that’s all we could get around here 🙂
When we started out I had no idea what we could create, but we just keep at it and it continues to improve, especially with the native voluntaries coming in more each year. We get more Blue Mist Spirea mini-bushes each year, more early purple penstemons, and these lovely little lupines in June.
I am so pleased that this Colorado Four O’Clock (Mirabilis multiflora) decided to bloom in my garden!
And of course the endless native sunflowers…
I finally named my garden after my brother who knows so much about gardening and is so willing to do the hard work it takes to make it GROW! Ask the critters, the birds, the bees, the bunnies, the beetles, the hummingbirds, and the salamanders (lizards?) if life is better with us around. We aim to please…
The brief but colorful story of my garden below the Spanish Peaks in southern Colorado!