A garden is the best alternative therapy.

Posts tagged ‘poppy’

Wildflowers on Order for 2011

Having looked through countless pages of wildflowers for our area, I’ve made my final decisions for next year!  I placed my order through Wildseedfarms.com of Fredericksburg, Texas.  I loved the annuals corn poppies and cornflowers so much that I’ve ordered them again this time around.

Corn Poppies (image copyright by RoundRockGarden)

Cornflowers (image copyright by RoundRockGarden)

In addition, I chose Purple Coneflower (echinacea), which can be used medicinally.  It reportedly grows up to five feet tall and blooms from April through September.  Bees and butterflies love these!  From what I’ve read, purple coneflower is a perennial.

Purple Coneflower (image copyright by Wildseedfarms.com)

Chicory is the next flower I chose.  It sports periwinkle-colored blooms that last only a single day, but flowers June through October, growing up to 4 feet tall.  Bees, butterflies, wasps and lacewings enjoy nectaring on chicory.  The leaves can be used as a nutritious addition to salads, while the roots can be dried in the oven, ground and used as a coffee substitute.  Chicory is a perennial.

Chicory flowers (image copyright by Wildseedfarms.com)

To add more red to the garden, I chose the almost fluorescent Scarlet Flax.  This variety is shorter than the rest, measuring up to only two feet or less, but blooms from late spring all the way through fall.   It is also an annual.

Scarlet Flax (image copyright by Wildseedfarms.com)

Finally, I’ve decided against the larger sunflowers this year and chose Maximilian Sunflowers.  These are wonderful sunflowers you see all over Central Texas.  Growing from 3-10 feet tall in thick mounds, they make a nice natural hedge absolutely covered in multiple blooms up to 5 inches across.  These are also perennials, and bloom from late summer through fall.

Maximilian Sunflowers (From NPS.Gov)

With the exception of the sunflowers, all of these wildflowers can be directly sown in fall.  I’ll be preparing the beds in the coming weeks and get them sown by the end of October so they can establish themselves and put on a great show in 2011.  Unlike last year, when I used a wildflower mix, I will be sowing these in groupings so as to ensure a good representation of each.

I can hardly wait to see how colorful the garden will be next year with all of these new additions, PLUS the milkweed and the native flowering plants I put in earlier this spring!  Who knows, I may also have coreopsis and primrose come up from last year’s sowing … and maybe even bluebonnets that failed to germinate!

Have you made your wildflower order yet?


Macro Monday – Caught in the act

Syrphid flies getting it on

Both of them looking at me like, “Uh, do you MIND?!”

The cornflowers are going gangbusters in the wildflower bed.   After the flower petals dry and fall off, the flower base takes on this golden glow in the sunlight.  I tried to capture it on film, but it doesn’t quite convey how shiny it was.  This photo captures the blooming and death stages …

I can’t get enough of taking bee photos.  We just got a new Nikon D-90 camera, so I played around with the macro and speed settings, as well as the camera’s ability to take 4 shots per second – pretty helpful capturing those bees in motion.

And, not entirely unrelated to the bees – the first yellow crookneck squash is starting to form in the garden.  I say not entirely unrelated because this little squash wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the bees.  That little squash was once a yellow flower that must have been pollinated by one of my little buzzing friends in order for it to start developing:

For more Macro Monday photography, please visit Lisa’s Chaos.com:

Macro Monday from A Round Rock Garden

There’s certainly no shortage of interesting blooms to keep me fascinated for this week’s Macro Monday.

White salvia greggii


culinary sage flower


poppy bloom


a close up view of poppy


Indigo Spires salvia


Indigo Spires salvia


Morning dew - captured by my daughter


Copper Canyon Daisies


Not a hairy green strawberry, but a poppy.


German thyme flowers


A different looking poppy with a lot of contrast


metallic looking bug


My daughter found it odd that a poppy’s petals were stuck together.  As she tried to pull them apart, this little guy came running out to see what interesting lunch was headed his way.  They both locked eyes for a minute as if measuring one another up.  My daughter caught this great pic of the spider looking back at her.  I came in from a different angle to see what his web tunnel looked like from the other end . . .


taken by my daughter


Spider making a tent out of a poppy

Thank you for viewing my Macro Monday post.  For more macro posts involving all sorts of subject (not just plants), go to LisasChaos.com, or click on the image below:

Macro Monday

Just a few blooms from the garden today, in celebration of Macro Monday.  Got a camera with a macro feature?  Take your pictures and post them to your blog.  Then go to Lisaschaos.com and enter your blog address to be listed.

I don't need to say what this looks like. Poppy getting ready to blossom

Indigo Spires salvia

Pink cornflower

Another cornflower

Ant harvesting nectar from a closed cornflower

Salvia greggii bloom

And these were taken and posted on Saturday, but thought I’d add them:

Lavender bloom up close and personal

A spider crawling on a poppy

Inside the poppy

First wildflower blooms!

I could hardly contain my excitement yesterday when I came home to discover that the first wildflower had bloomed.  The winner is the cornflower:

The first of the wildflowers!

The next day, while working on the Native beds, Michelle wandered down the fence and yelled, “Joe!  Come look!”  Not only were more cornflowers opening, but the first poppy opened as well!  The poppy amazed us by how large it is, and how paper thin the petals are!   The wildflower bed has a lot of poppies, so I’m sure it will only be a few days until many more open up!

Another cornflower

and a pink one!

A cornflower opening ...

Here is another opening

A poppy standing tall, almost ready to bloom

the first poppy bloom

Inside the poppy

Here are a few more pictures of the wildflower bed as well:

The entire bed

Some of the tallest at the northeast corner of the yard

A spider crawling on a poppy

My daughter snapped this one - the spider is hiding at the top

Spider web among the wildflowers

Update on the wildflower bed

It has been thirty days since I scattered the wildflower seeds along the fence line.  I have an incredible amount of sprouts in the bed now, but it is still very early to tell exactly what is growing.  Maybe I just have a bunch of weeds.  🙂

Wildflowers can take up to a month to sprout, so we should have just about all the germination we’re going to get.   I really hope I have at least a few of each of them.

This is what is planted in the bed:  bluebonnets, Indian blankets, purple coneflower, phlox, cornflower, cosmos, corn poppy, California poppy, daisy, scarlet flax, primrose, Mexican hat and Indian paintbrush.


Wildflowers have sprouted and are developing strong roots for a good Spring show! - hopefully!


a close-up of the floor of the bed - covered in new sprouts.

a detail of the bed reveals lots of sprouts

Of course, I have a couple wildflowers I can enjoy in the meantime.  The back yard is blanketed in wild asters, while morning glory can be found along the fence line.


a cluster of wild asters among a sea of white and yellow in my back yard

morning glory

morning glories are another wild flower growing all over the fences

There’s still a lot blooming with the summer and fall plants – aster, lobelia, cuphea, alyssum, lantana, bougainvillea and a few more hibiscus bulbs are ready to open up!