Sweet Kate is a wonderful perennial for the garden. The above picture was taken early in the morning back in May of this year. I purchased Tradescantia Sweet Kate from Plant Delights Nursery about 12 years ago. It is an easy to grow perennial that has spectacular bright chartreuse foliage and blooms all summer long.
It forms dense clumps, foliage is erect and has strap like leaves growing about 18 inches tall. The bright chartreuse is eye catching along the border of my garden. The next two pictures were taken this morning, towards the end of the season it is still blooming but the leaves are not as bright.
The flowers are a deep blue nearly violet color. Flowers are petaled and bloom everyday in the morning until the sun hits them from spring to first frost. The stamen stems have a dot of pollen on each that floats above the flower.
Sweet Kate is deer resistant, will tolerate wet soil, attracts a lot of butterflies, blooms from spring to the first frost and will grow in direct sun even in South Carolina. It is easily divided so you can transplant to other areas of your garden. If you are not growing Sweet Cate, you should give it a try.
Let me know if you are growing Sweet Cate in your garden?
I received a wonderful thank you note from Barefoot Contessa, Ina Garten’s administrative person, Lidey Heuck. She loved my cutting board!
This is her note:
It is so nice to get snail mail every now and then, especially when it is not a bill!
I still have not heard back directly from Ina Garten (Barefoot Contessa) but I hope too.
If you have not followed my story on this, check out these other post:
Shipped end grain cutting board to Ina Garten, This Week
Received email from Barefoot Contessa, Is Today The Day?
This is the board I sent to Ina Garten
See more about My Work and cutting boards.
During my hike this evening I found a large patch of bracken fern growing on the side of the mountain. Bracken is a large fern that can grow up to 3 feet tall and grows well in the sun. Here is South Carolina we have a lot of extremely hot weather in late July and August and the bracken ferns will grow well in direct sun in our area.
Bracken ferns have rhizome roots and are rapid growers in the right soil. They can reproduce two ways, by rhizomes spreading and by spores. All you need is about 3 to 4 inches of the rhizome to transplant bracken ferns from one area to another. Bracken ferns are fast growing and can be invasive.
As you can see in the pictures, bracken has fronds that are made up of smaller leaflets. The fronds are shaped like triangles. After the first hard frost the bracken fronds die back but will come back in the spring.
When I am making an arrangement of bourbon roses or oriental lilies I will add a couple of bracken fronds. I have read that bracken fern is carcinogenic to mice, rats, horses and cattle when eaten.
If you plant bracken ferns in your garden they are almost impossible to get rid of them if you decide you don’t want them anymore!!
I planted a few large ostrich ferns today that I got from a friend in a trade for a cutting board. Then I walked around the garden and down to the creek with my camera. Along the way, I spotted a few caterpillars, insects, lizards and newts! By the time I got back it started to rain and has been raining all day.
Orange Woolly Caterpillar
Cicada killer wasp capturing a cicada.
The above picture was taken by a friend, Rob Mays at his church just a few weeks ago.
Red-eft (eastern newt/salamander)
Red Oxblood Lily Flower
I decide to pull theSanDisk card from my Reconyx trail cam today and had a over 50 pictures of wild eastern turkey, 20 plus night pictures of raccoons and a a few of a red fox. Most of these turkey pictures are males, tom or often called gobblers. Tom turkeys have a beard, a snood on top of their head, dark almost black plunage around the neck and the extra claw or spur behind the foot. Click on the pictures to enlarge to see the details I mentioned!
I love these pictures where they are flapping their wings, looks like they are standing on their toes!!
I love my trail cam, the brand I purchased is a Reconyx Hyperfire trail cam but there are many different brands and price ranges. Each picture get the date and time stamp, moon and temperature.
Previous post on Wild Mountain Turkey.
I love growing Oriental Lilies for the beautiful trumpet flowers, their wonderful fragrance and using them in flower arrangements. This is the Oriental Lily Start Gazer and it is the last flower that I will have this year. I grow a lot of Oriental Lilies, I just love the beauty of the flowers and they have the most wonderful fragrance too. I usually cut the flowers early in the morning then I hold the flower unside down and with a small pair of scissors I cut the male anthers. This will keep the flower looking nice.
If you have the space in your garden for Oriental Lilies you should give them a try. They are relatively easy to grow as long as you have amended soils. Purchase large bulbs and you will have large flowers. Smaller bulbs will take a couple years to get large flowers. I will tell you that the deer love them, so don’t plant them if you have deer.
Geraniums are easy to grow and are fairly reliable. My wife likes to grow geraniums in posts. She has them everywhere, on the deck on the front porch, etc.. She love the fuchsia color geraniums and sometimes they can be hard to find. Last year we drove to nearly all the local nurseries before we found them. If you water and fertilize them they will bloom all summer.