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Garden Review- Aim for a Pollinators Garden

Our condo area had a problem with the old drainage downspouts last year.  A work crew nearly destroyed our back garden repairing a water drainage problem in the lower back area of the condo.  Contractors came and dug a big hole and trench to install a new and larger capacity drainage system. This year I want to restore that part of the garden.

Today it was warm enough to place the patio furniture and do a little sweeping up from the past winter.  Not too much has come up except a couple of hyacinths that survived the digger.  It appears that our rhododendron and astilbe survived the winter.

After I put all the furniture, I went over to inspect the right sun garden that had been torn up for the repair.  It looks like the three astilbes I planted last year survived the winter. I have a Japanese maple tree in the center.   I have some pink lilies planted, and I am waiting with crossed fingers for them to show their heads.  There is a rhododendron in the back corner.  I have ordered some cornflowers to plant.  Cornflowers are bee friendly.  BEE, not a wasp.  I have a wasp allergy.  I swell if stung by yellow jackets or other wasps.  I have only been stung by a honey bee once a  long time ago with no reaction.  I feel I wish to do what I can to protect the pollinators: honey bee. Other pollinators include butterflies, flies, small birds, moths.

I try to plant pollinator-friendly flowers, so I got the cornflowers, lilies, daisy, and lavender.  John loves geraniums, and we will plant these.  By the way, Geraniums deter mosquitos.  I’ll write more of pest control plants later in the summer. Here is a list of friendly flowers.

Pollination occurs when pollen is moved within flowers or carried from flower to flower by pollinating animals such as birds, bees, bats, butterflies, moths, beetles, or other animals, or by the wind. The transfer of pollen in and between flowers of the same species leads to fertilization and successful seed and fruit production for plants.  Pollination ensures that a plant will produce full-bodied fruit and a full set of viable seeds.

  • Worldwide there is disturbing evidence that pollinating animals have suffered from a loss of habitat, chemical misuse, introduced and invasive plant and animal species, and diseases and parasites.
  • Many pollinators are federally “listed species,” meaning that there is evidence of their disappearance in natural areas.
  • The U.S. has lost over 50% of its managed honeybee colonies over the past ten years.
  • A lack of research has hindered our knowledge about the status of pollinators.  The E.U. has been so concerned that they have invested over $20 million investigating the status of pollinators in Europe.


If you look at the far right bottom of this picture, you will see a wood bucket.  I have ordered a dwarf forsythia called “sugar baby” to plant in the bucket.  I live in a 6a grow zone.  It freezes here in winter, and that makes container growing over the winters a bit difficult.  I use wood containers mainly as they will not freeze and crack like a pottery pot.



right side sun garden back

The very front flower bed of the lower patio garden gets a lot of sunlight, and here we have planted five rose bushes.  I love roses, the more fragrant, the better.  A couple of fragrant roses I have always had in the garden are the yellow pink-tinged peach rose and for rich fragrance, Mr. Lincoln; a dark red, long stem, highly fragrant hybrid.


Rosegarden front back patio garden

I planted peas in that container with the trellis last year, but this year I am planting sweet peas.  The fragrance of sweet pea is delicious. I ordered a wood garden planter on legs – raised bed gardening for my veggies. Can ‘t wait to get my tomato plants in soil.

The right side of the patio includes a long hill and side garden that are mainly in the shade.  I have a row of evergreens to contain the garden and a staircase that goes up to the upper-level sunroom.  This part of the garden is mostly shade except for right against the house, where I have planted pinky winky and white and green hydrangea called Limelight 9 see cover photo).  I love hydrangeas- you get good value for money, as John says.  They bloom with big colorful flowers that last all summer into fall. Don’t’ you love that name “pinky winky.”

The right side has hostas and ferns we planted last year, and I am currently looking for more flowering plants that do well in the shade.  A new project for the summer.

side hydrangea- pinky winky & limelight

These are my plans for the back gardens. Thanks for reading. Let me know if you know any good shade lowing plants and tell us your garden plans.

Talk soon



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