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Ayr Mont on a clear, cool, August late afternoon

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day: August 2013

Usually, our mid-August hights are in the upper 80s to mid-90s. Today, the high was somewhere in the low 70's.  

I felt ALIVE!

That's why I'm doing my first Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day post since... oh dear, sometime last year.  I was CPAP-zonked for most of the spring - really, up until I got busy with the summer, community theater musical which just recently ended.  

Taking pictures, though was a perfect excuse reason for being outside even more today.  

Please check out more summer blooms at May Dreams Gardens' Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!

Here's what was blooming today:

DSC02370sI've never planted dahlias at our current house in Hillsborough because they didn't do well in our back yard in Durham.  I'm glad I finally decided to plant these last fall (I was tempted by them at the Biltmore Garden shop) because these have done well.

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A lot of the color in the flower beds right now comes from the phlox.

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Usually, the cosmos come up from seed in the mailbox bed.  Very few came up there this year, but a number of them came up in the gravel next to the driveway.  Dear husband transplated them, and now the mailbox bed is as beautiful as usual.

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August is the spider month!  This orange garden spider made its web in the side bed, which has the most flowers in bloom (and therefore the most insects).

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The cone flowers and black-eyed Susans are happy in the new bed.

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Rain lily (it's really only about 2 inches tall)(I love how well this new camera focuses)

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Marigolds, nasturtiums, and purple tourenia.  The nasturtiums are a bit too vivid - I'm still getting used to my new camera.

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Because of being exhausted from getting used to the CPAP this spring, I didn't plant as many annuals as I usually do.  This begonia came up from seed on its own.

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The deck has been wonderful to look at from inside on hot days.  I love the colorful African impatiens.  Above it, on the right, is a hyacinth bean with its first blooms.  The tall plant to the left of it is the tithonia.  This one hasn't bloomed yet.

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This cardinal flower also came up from seed on its own.  It's about 5 feet tall, though the top part finished blooming last week.  The hummingbirds love it, and we love to watch them at lunch.  There's a tithonia to the left, and the hummingbirds frequent that too, but there were no tithonia blooms today.

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Black-eyed Susan vine

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This native azalea looked totally dead two years ago.  It was brown, didn't get any leaves or blooms, and the stems snapped.  It greened up last year, and, this year, it's blooming off-season.  I don't understand it, but it makes me happy (the camera didn't want to focus in the shade, though).

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Cleome (spider flower) blooms all summer and reseeds itself.  What more could you want?!

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This spider lily will bloom tomorrow or the day after.  They're some of my favorite flowers of the late summer garden.

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The Japanese anemones are more of the current stars of the garden.

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The rose mallow just started blooming today.  Usually, they bloom in July, but I think they didn't like all the cloudy, rainy weather we had then.

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The hibiscus flowers are all at the end of this post because they didn't bloom until this afternoon.

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This hibiscus was eaten by caterpillars in the spring, but it came back from the roots.  I was glad to see it come back and bloom.

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We used to have a few different Formosa lily plants in our yard, but they eventually all died.  They had little, tiny, 2-3 inch tall plants for only a few dollars at the Duke Gardens sale last fall.  Now, the plants are 5 to 6 feet tall.  This is the first one to bloom.

Happy

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I've been on a hibiscus kick the last few years.  We planted this one two years ago.  It makes me smile. 

Oops!  I almost forgot these photos I took after our evening walk at Ayr Mont.

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By the time I took this photo, there was only one butterfly left on the Joe Pye Weed.  Yesterday afternoon, there were 17.

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More of my hibiscus fascination - this one is only about 2 1/2 feet tall.

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This salvia is another hummingbird favorite.

 

 

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