Saturday, November 15, 2014

It's snowing!

Fall is winding down, there are few trees left that are still shedding their leaves.  It's lightly snowing outside as I write this post ... the gardens have mostly been cleaned up, hay has been delivered and stacked, and the barn closed up for the winter.

There was a coating of ice on the pond when I got up this morning, mostly gone already ... but it's an indicator of things to come!  Shot gun deer season started this morning, and I was surprised I didn't hear many shots when I got up.  My hunters have been in the woods for bow season, for about a month now ... unfortunately, I don't think they have gotten a deer yet.  The deer population is incredibly huge around here and really needs some thinning.

I have lots of photos to share today, including some choice daylily seedling pictures .... let's start with some silly pet pictures!

This is Seneca, my male barn cat from a feral act organization ... he's really not feral though, very friendly.  He follows the dogs and I around the pond, running from tree to tree.


Here Rocky is looking at Seneca in the tree, waiting for him to come down and run to the next tree ... crazy cat, he thinks ...


Lily and my female barn cat BarnGirl, she also follows us around the pond ... I feel a bit like the pied piper!


The boys, Cosmo & Merlin play with a tire in their pasture.


Sambina hanging out in the barn, looking for an apple or carrot.


The three of them waiting while I clean stalls.  You can see the new supports for the roof over the door opening.  That was one of the projects my helper and I got done this fall.  The old supports were rotting out and I was afraid a load of snow on the roof would have collapsed the entire thing.  Now it's good for years to come.


I put up some of the tractor parts that I got from a friend.  I have many more, but decided to only put up these three for now.


The Hoop House has been moved by the WNY Hosta Society.  It is now at Lasting Dreams Daylily Gardens in Orchard Park, NY.  My neighbors across the street are thrilled to be able to see the donkeys in their pasture again.


This was our first snow, a couple of weeks ago ... it quickly melted off.  This week, we've been dealing with the "Polar Vortex".  It's colder than normal, but just some light snow.


I have no idea what this yellow flowering plants is, it grows along the side of the road on my way to yoga.  Anyone know what this is?



Now for some pictures of my daylily seedlings from this summer ... I was concentrating on closing my daylily nursery, but still managed to see what seedlings were blooming when I could.

This is a cross of my own Dad's Pyrotechnics X Maude's Valentine.  It's VERY tall, with really good branching, but not a high bud count.


This is one of my favorites, a cross of my own Mystic Avalon X Vertical Horizons.


This is that same cross:


I love the colors on this one ... the photo is showing the green throat too green, but it's a great color combination.  My own Mystic Firebird x Platypus Pam.


Again, that same cross ... but this definitely takes on the shape of Platypus Pam.


This one is Kathryn's Black x Raspberry Butterfly ... a really deep colored daylily.


This is just to show that I'm getting some patterns in my seedlings.  This is a cross of Vertical Horizons x Digital Imagery.


Another favorite, Do The Twist x Raspberry Butterflies ... tall, great branching, intense color, decent bud count ... and the shape is always interesting.


Another intense color, Space Coast Seashells x Davey Jones Locker.


More patterns ... this number I put on this photo for this seedling can't really be what it is, so hopefully it blooms next summer and I can see what it really is.


These next 2 photos are of the same seedling ... Blue-eyed Curls x Vertical Horizon.



This is from a seed I bought off the Lily Auction, it has Rose F Kennedy as a parent ... one of the few of that cross that I actually liked.  Most looked like the same flower everyone else is registering from RFK.


Love this little yellow!!!  It's a cross of Tennessee Tan x Jocelyn's Oddity.  Clear color and a great shape!


These next 2 are seedlings I purchased from Sandy Holmes a few years ago ... I really like both of them and need to do something with them.



So that's all I have for today.  I think it's time to go work on my quilt and watch is snow!  Stay warm everyone!


Sunday, October 5, 2014

Fall is here

I had every intention of posting a new blog sooner, life just seems to get in the way.  I've been busy closing down the daylily nursery, moving daylilies and now getting the farm ready for winter.

Let's start with some silly animal pictures first:

My very silly Lily, not sure why this is a comfortable sleeping spot for her!


Next up is Cosmo, looking all sleek in his gorgeous short summer coat.  They almost shine in the sun when they have finally shed off all the winter hair.


And Merlin in his summer coat.  Notice the ridge of long hair along his belly, it's so cute.  His Dad Cosmo has a white spot on his side, Merlin doesn't ... and when they are close to each other, Merlin is much smaller.


And Rocky relaxing in the shade while I work in the sun.  What a life!


I didn't take a picture of Sambina for some reason ... sometimes she walks away from me when I pull out the camera.

I've heard lots of people talk about downsizing their daylilies and gardens, but most don't really do it.  I decided in March that I needed to make life easier, so the first thing to do was to close down my daylily nursery.  That was a huge amount of work!  I started the year with over 400 named daylily varieties and hundreds of seedlings I had created.

I sold tons of daylilies and seedlings at very reasonable prices.  I donated tons of clumps of older spider daylilies to the local Master Gardeners for use in the community gardens they support.  And I donated tons more to Buffalo Grassroots Gardens, an organization that supports inner-city community gardens.  Finally, I donated tons to my daylily clubs' sale.

I have only my "keepers" left and a few hundred seedlings, many hundreds less than I started the year with.  Turns out I ended up keeping 67 named varieties.

This is a picture of the front sale gardens with only my "keeper" daylilies left.  These were then all dug and planted in the gardens behind the house or in front of the barn.


This barn garden bed originally had huge clumps of old spider type daylilies.  Those were all donated.  Now to clear the weeds and build up the soil.


A neighbor down the road wanted some of the timbers from my raised beds, that I no longer needed.  And he volunteered to consolidate my manure pile and move some of the timbers for me.  While he was consolidating the manure pile, I had him fill the barn bed with good composted donkey manure.  (Lily's coat is growing back in)


Another shot ....


The barn bed all weeded and filled, waiting for daylilies.


These are the beds he moved for me.  Next Spring I'll move them between the barn and the shed and replant some of my seedlings in them.  For now I needed to keep that space open so the Hosta group can come and move their hoop house to another location.  


Clumps waiting to be planted.


More clumps waiting.  I had my list and tried to be very careful about planting tall ones in back and to make sure I didn't have any of the same colors next to each other.


We'll see next summer how well I planned!  Here it is all planted.  I also moved in some phlox.



I was very glad when this job was all done!

Now for some fall garden shots.  These are fall flowering crocuses, or Colchicum.


Zinnias.


Back garden shot with the Castor Bean in the forefront.


Frogs on waterlilies:


And my hydrangea, Pink Diamond.  The color this year was amazing.


I guess I'll stop here.  I was planning on adding a few pictures of some of my daylily seedlings, but will wait and do an entire post of those.

Until next time ....


Sunday, August 17, 2014

So little time ...

It's been quite a while since I last posted on my blog, and I'm very sorry.  I had told myself that I wouldn't be one of those people that start a blog and then don't keep up on it.

It's just been a very busy summer.  I had made the decision in the Spring that this would be the last year for my daylily nursery, and I worked hard all summer selling and donating daylilies.  I donated many clumps of older varieties of daylilies to some non-profit organizations for the Community Gardens in the city.

And I also spent time on my sister's and brother-in-laws boat.  It was really nice not to spend ALL my time int he gardens when I wasn't working my day job! 

My bother-in-law, Tim, builds docks and piers ... so is very familiar with the waterfront.  I joined them for the Buffalo Regatta, a competition for home-made water craft.  Tim & Sandy's boat was the "Judges" boat ... so we had the best view!


 This boat was fantastic ... and they paddled along effortlessly.



The guy in the cowboy hat is Rick Smith; he owns some of the old silo's and has been  instrumental in getting people involved with with the old parts of the waterfront.



We were taking bets on when this group would flip and end up in the water ... I don't know that they ever did flip ...


This "craft" was not seaworthy.  Every time he tried to get into the boat, it flipped.  He then tried to swim it down the river, but the water really wasn't warm ... he ended up beaching it and didn't finish the race.


Here's Tim ... captain extraordinaire ... LOL!


This canoe was amazing ... they appeared out of nowhere and paddled together like a well oiled machine!

This is the "craft" we ended up pulling to the finish line.  He was trying to pedal his way in, but that square front just got in the way.


Kids and their tent/fort? along the way ...



This complex is supposed to be developed into an entertainment area ... that will be interesting.


My sister Sandy had made reservations for us to take a ride on the Buffalo Fire Boat, the Cotter.


Here she is playing with a water cannon!


Tim said this "tall ship" didn't raise enough money last summer to pay to get back through the locks, so they had to spend the winter in Buffalo.


You can clearly see where the Buffalo River meets Lake Erie ... the silt in the water from all the rain turns the river brown.


The windmills on the old Bethlehem Steel site.


We were involved in a rescue on our way back in, one of the fireman on the Cotter saw the kid in the water trying to climb a ladder after his kayak had drifted off.  The Cotter called for help, Coast Guard, Other firemen and police arrived to help get the kid out of the water.


On another warmer weekend, we went out for a day in the sun and then to Canalside to listen to Susan Tedeschi and the Derek Trucks Band.  Sandy & Tim's dogs, Lola and Bruno, joined us.


It was a beautiful day and evening!



Unfortunately, my gardens often looked like the picture below this year.  I think they flooded at least 3 times.  As of July 31st, we had 14 inches of rain since June 1st.  8 of those inches were in July.  Then we had another 2 inches in first 2 days of August ... and very few dry days still.


I thought I'd end with some pictures of daylilies that bloomed this year ... this one is Chokecherry Mountain.

Heart Exhibit - one of my friend Linda Michaels daylilies.


High Water Mark


Jan's Twister - this was just the perfect bloom!


Moroccan Saphire


My own Mystic Avalon


And my Mystic Dragonsong.


Two different pictures of my Mystic Flare ...



This week we are digging the last of the daylilies out of the gardens that I don't plan on keeping, I'm donating these to my club's (BADS) sale next Saturday.  So if you are in the Buffalo area and are a gardener, be sure to stop at the Buffalo Botanical Gardens on Saturday the 23rd. The Buffalo Area Daylily Society, WNY Hosta Society and the Iris Society will have plants for sale to the public.

And I promise to post again soon ... I have more pictures to share of our wonderful waterfront!