Creating Rain

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My blog title refers to the fact that we had to do A LOT of watering today to make up for the lack of recent precipitation and the increasing heat!  Nice photo above of ‘Indian Summer’ gloriosa daisy (Rudbeckia hirta) which loves the heat to be sure.  We had a busier-than-usual Friday with the addition of some excellent volunteer planters that came in to help out.  Our grounds staff had a busy day of gardening with much of our activities accomplished to prepare for a hot weekend.  It was nice to see so many visitors today including some small tours.

Our grounds crew of Terry, Cindy, Janice, Trevor and Nolan all had a wide range of activities although everyone was involved with significant watering.  Friday also includes plenty of mowing, blower rounds, primping and other duties.  I was able to work on a couple projects, gave a cart tour and ultimately helped with watering as the dry spots are becoming more conspicuous.  Our grounds crew, as usual, demonstrated excellent team work.

Our volunteers today included Kathy P., Eva, Kay, Cathi, Gena, Nancy, Myrt, Patty, Marcia N., Alan M., Marv B., Betty H. and likely others I missed.  Kathy and Eva did a great job weeding in multiple areas.  Kay planted with Terry and moved on to weeding.  Cathi, Gena, Myrt and Patty all worked on some major planting not far from the Giant Aquarium while Alan M. continued tidying up and mulching in and around the arboretum.  Marv primped his two moss areas and Betty did some weeding as well.  Overall we had a great crew and productive day.

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‘Sunningdale Variegated’ masterwort (Astrantia major) – perennial (variegation fades quickly)

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variegated cattails (Typha latifolia) – perennial

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oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia) starting to bloom – woody shrub

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rat-tailed radish (Raphanus sativus) – you eat the above ground pods! (see this and many other selections in our Heirloom Garden!)

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‘Purple Rooster’ bee balm (Monarda didyma) – perennial

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American elderberry (Sambucus canadensis) – woody shrub

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Peruvian zinnia (Zinnia peruviana) – annual

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pale coneflower (Echinacea pallida) – perennial

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the giant Adirondack chair is again popular and is surrounded by giant Abyssinian bananas (Ensete ventricosum “Maurelii’) and amaranth (Amaranthus) that we let reseed from last year (thinned recently)

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‘Vienna Weeping’ hornbean (Carpinus betulus) – woody tree

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delphiniums above and poppies (Papaver somniferum) below can be found in profusion in the English cottage garden

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the waterfall in the Japanese garden continues to add beauty (and sound!)

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our “little library” has copies of Life in a Coral Reef by Wendy Pfeffer for visitors to read as they go through the Giant Aquarium (below)

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