The Watering Can - 7/7/2023

Finally putting a bit more in the ground as the yard stabilizes and we get some more rain

We've gotten some good rain this week! There was a particularly nice, long storm on Wednesday evening that gave everything a nice soak for the first time in what feels like weeks. Some overcast skies have helped keep things a little cooler throughout the days as well. It's been a welcome relief.

With all of that, the plants in the yard have mostly stabilized for now, at least it seems. I've gotten one new thing in the ground this week, and I hoped to report on more of the potted plants this week, but it looks like that will need to be in next week's update.

Spiderwort (Genus Tradescantia)

This is another one of the many plants I was gifted by Janine Kharey, and I finally got it in the ground this week after much hand-wringing over the weather. It's in a spot that usually holds some moisture, near the driveway on the West side, and I'm hoping it will like this spot and fill out like it's known to do. So far it seems to be responding well to its new home, and has actually perked up a bit from how it looks in the photo.

I really want to start getting more and more color and new life in the understory of the area along the driveway — it's a long, winding introduction to this property and I would like to fill out the understory a little more to go with the wonderful, stately canopy trees.

A newly-planted Dayflower plant in front of a metal watering can The Dayflower in its new spot just after planting. It's perked up a bit since with some watering & rain.

Mayhaws (Crataegus aestivalis)

The Mayhaws are still doing good, though the bigger one (Mayhaw 1) has had its leaves eaten up pretty badly the last couple of weeks. I haven't found any actual caterpillars or bugs of any kind on there yet, though, so I'm not quite sure what could be doing it. It still seems to be pretty healthy overall.

A small branch of a Mayhaw tree, with the leaves showing signs of being eaten

Lanceleaf Coreopsis (Coreopsis lanceolata)

The blooms have just kept coming, with four total now and three looking good. It's been so nice to have this splash of gold in the middle of this part of the yard. I'm really looking forward to the rest of the plants filling out and having a bit more color next year!

I've seen a few little pollinators on them so far, mostly skippers, and a little snail one morning.

A tiny snail on the petal of a Coreopsis flower A tiny snail inspects one of the Coreopsis flowers in the early morning

Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta)

Much to my surprise, one of the three Black-eyed Susan plants from Beaver's Abundance has absolutely taken off and now has several buds starting on it. It's at least twice as tall as the other two at this point!

A closeup photo of an unopened Black-eyed Susan blossom The Black-eyed Susan is just about ready to open.

South Prairie - Wet Patch

The three Swamp Milkweed plants have grown so much since planting. The middle of the three is especially tall and healthy looking. No signs of flowering so far, but who knows what to expect with this summer.

The Butterfly Weed is hanging in there. This spot might be too wet for them, though they are on the dryer end of the patch. The smaller of the two, which I've commented on before, is finally getting a little more sturdy and upright, even with watering.

The Stokes' Aster is doing fine. Holding on, not growing up much leaf-wise. I can only hope and assume that they're building up their roots just fine. At least one of them had been dug up by the critter culprit and the roots seemed to look like they were doing well.

A healthy Swamp Milkweed plant growing in tall grass The middle Swamp Milkweed, with the twin stalks, is growing tall over the long grass. I think if any of them do bloom this year, it'll be this one.
A small Butterfly Weed plant growing on the edge of a marked off patch The larger of the two Butterfly Weeds, still pretty small. It's lost a good bit of its lower leaves recently, not sure what's up with that, other than maybe being crowded out by the grass getting longer around it.
A very small Butterfly Weed plant surrounded by tall grass The smaller Butterfly Weed, still very small, but a little more sturdy than it'd been for the first few weeks after planting.

Narrowleaf False Dragonhead (Physostegia angustifolia)

Not much to look at now, but I have high hopes for these three. I rescued them from a nearby ditch, where they were very likely to get mowed right as they were flowering, just like they did last year. I've kept them in pots for the last few weeks as they've progressed through they're blooms, and this weekend collected the seed before planting these three near the Ranch Elderberry.

They're perennials, so I'm hoping they'll come back next year, and I'm also hoping to plant some of the seed around this spot as well to try and get more. In any case, it's another wildflower addition to the larger South Prairie area.

Three dying physotegia plants newly planted in the ground

Once again I hope to have some details on the potted plants next week, now that I've rearranged my gardening station a bit and have gotten into a better routine with them. It's been another great lesson learning all of their different needs. Looking forward to it!