Saturday, May 28, 2016

My Memorial Day Weekend Plantings

I love summer. I love flowers. I love having flip flops to wear. It's probably all a result of having lived in Hawaii when I was little.

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And here you can see my new plants that I purchased Memorial Day weekend which was insanely hot!

The roasting sun was not the best for the tender new plants so I had to do extra watering to help them get established. I water slowly and deeply so that the water can sink into the soil. The first few weeks  I water anywhere from daily to a few days apart, depending on how long the soil is moist. Once the soil dries up, I water slowly and deeply again. After the planting my husband and I laid out the mulch in deep layers, so that was a great help in keeping the soil moist. When first planted, the seedlings are in shock so this careful watering helps them to get established. After a few weeks I can pull back on the watering. At this point I water about once every week or two. My plants probably suffered in this heat, but the water bill becomes too large if I water too much. Besides, all that slow and deep watering done days apart causes the roots to grow deeply, where there is more moisture.

It is a temptation to water quickly and lightly, but that barely gets to the roots and keeps the roots at the surface level. As a result, the plant never establishes deep roots. In San Antonio I had soaker hoses to help with the slow and deep watering. I've been holding back on this investment but if we have another summer like this, I may have to do that. Also I try to plant pretty xeriscape plants that do well in the scorching heat with little water. That is what I did in Texas. That is more difficult to do in Virginia because I rarely find those types of plants in the nurseries. Most of the plants I find are too tender for the brutal heat of a Virginia summer. I don't understand why they are sold.

This year I decided to experiment with a couple of popular plants I was never able to grow in San Antonio due to the alkaline soils and brutal sun and heat. I wondered if they'd do well in my gardens that get little shade. I also found a couple of Texas xeriscaping favorites, which I will showcase in this and the next few posts. On to the flowers!

The purple clematis in back I've only grown in Virginia. I like how my mini-roses contrast with them. I grew these mini-roses in Texas too. I get them at the grocery store.  They only grow 6-12" tall. They make a lovely border plant and bloom through the summer. I'll cut these clematis back when they are done blooming in order to get a second bloom in August.

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One of my new flowers is the foxglove!

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I hope I can get these established so they come back next year!

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I deadheaded the lavender phlox that I got from the Mount Vernon garden sale when we first moved here. I think this is the 3rd replanting of this plant. I have about 3 huge mounds of this now.
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My foxglove with my early blooming mums. The gladiolas will bloom soon.

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Once I get my garden established it should be quite pretty.

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