Monday, June 29, 2009

Rain, Mug Shots, and Glorious Green

Did you know that the Government of Ontario has conspired to make our Driver's License photographs even more hideous than they have been in the past? Every five years we have to have a new photo taken - so today was the day, crummy cold or not. Troweled on the spackle, carefully applied the lipstick, cleaned the glasses and presented myself in a classic outfit - worthy of this important piece of identification that I'd have to keep with me for half a decade.

After a short wait, it was my turn, I walked up to the desk - paid my $75.00, got my sticker on my old licence stood in front of the ubiquitous white wall, waiting for my Kodak moment, when the Government of Ontario employee said to me in no uncertain terms - NO SMILING. At that moment the flash went off - and I figure I've been captured with an expression so addled, that on that photographic evidence alone, no one will be believe I should be permitted to drive a car, or even cross the road on my own. No smiling, what's this world come to? Between my passport photo and now my driver's licence, it's enough for a girl to want to go out and get a disguise.

After my visits to official government offices, I managed to get a bit of long overdue gardening done. I'd had a couple trays of bits and pieces that I've planted and positioned on the back deck and had a go at more edging and weeding. The rain has dictated the amount and type of work I've been able to get to. It's been a real mixed bag of rain and sun for the last two days.

Here's the sunshower we had last night taken from behind the glass storm door.

After an hour it all stopped -all my edges were filled to the brim with water.

There's nothing better than a soft sunny morning after a good rain.

The Thermopsis looked so pretty this morning. I'm a fan of Lupins - but they only last a year or two for me. I think of this as a Lupin on stilts - it stands about 150 cm - or about 4-5 feet.

Good yellow circles of Inula royleana.

I'm starting to warm to the Salvia transylvanica 'Blue Spires'. Anything to take your eyes away from the lawn that has started to go dormant.

It's been a bit of a rough year for the Anemone cylindrica. Parts of the plant seem to have melted away from either virus or damage from direct sun. Such a wonderful understated little woodlander.

I've never seen the little hairs on the Trycirtis hold water after the rain.

Here's Ipomopsis rubra - before it does its shocking orange red floral display.

Look at that mighty edge!

Even the little furry bits of the Monarda had tiny little water droplets trapped in the individual hairs.

I love this part of the summer when the blue Hosta are still so very blue.

And, hiding underneath those beefy leaves are lots of pure white blossoms.

Into the back garden. The patch of brown on the stone are the little bits from the Eastern White Pine - needle shed yet to come.

These are the green seeds of the Thalictrum aquilegifolium. While it does self-seed - it's not overly aggressive. And, unlike Aquilegia whose leaves are mined into white/brown muck by mid-July - T. aquilegifolium doesn't appear (up until now) to have any insect problems. A good shade plant that handles the dry and heat very well for me.

Here's Hosta 'Strip Tease'. It is in a very shady area - comparing mine to others on the net - I guess I would classify it as more Tease than Strip.

And, as if on cue, my Clematis viticella, yes, you know the one that doesn't get wilt, the one you're supposed to plant instead of all those saucy big-flowered varieties, is demonstrating once again, that plants do not read.


Frances said...

Hi Barbara, this is the first post of the day to be read and it might have to be read several times for the enjoyment it gave. The morning after a rain does make the plants so photogenic as the droplets hang on so long without being evaporated by heat and sun. Your hostas look especially lovely, but what is up with the no smiling!!!! The salvia is magnificent and I am happy to see the Inula. We started seeds of I. magnifica last winter and the leaves are nice and large at present with the promise of interesting flowers in years to come.

Outside In said...

What great Hostas you have, don't you just love photographing flowers after it rains? the water drops really makes the photos interesting.
Great post, have a great week!

Teza said...

Your photographs are wonderful, and for a moment I was tempted to smile, but in maintaining the Government edict of the day, I shall refrain! (Inside the grin is a mile wide my friend!)

Rosemary said...

What a lovely garden you have! I especially like the blue salvia.

Gail said...

Barbara, it's always a treat to stop tell great stories, gardening and other wise! ~~ Keep smiling your plants love it when you do. gail

easygardener said...

Lovely pictures. We have recently had heavy rain after a long dry spell. It is amazing how revitalised the plants look - all droopiness has disappeared. Such a good photo opportunity too!