End of the tulips, start of the iris

It’s amazing what a couple of hours after work can do out in the garden. I was just going to do a little deadheading on the tulip bed, and before you know it, we got quite a few things off the to-do list.

I did get the tulips all cut off, and Frank spread bonemeal out for their last feeding of the year. I’m sad to see them go, but we had a very long tulip blooming season, so I can’t really complain. There are even a couple of daffodils still blooming, which is amazing. The first tulip bloomed on 4-29, one of the species tulips, so something like 40 days is a lot! I’m very satisfied, and glad we bought most of them last fall.

Of course, Van Engelen has sent their new catalog, so I’m very ready to spring another hundred dollars for even more. We have many empty spots in the spring garden that would be great places for more tulips. If only the mice hadn’t gotten so many of the species guys! I want to try more hot pepper next year to see if that will work. I also read somewhere where this guy put down screens just on the surface of the ground and let the snow pile up on it, and it kept down the mice, kept them from tunneling.

The front shade-ish garden is doing really well. The astilbe is in bloom, the Japanese maple is doing great. I wasn’t sure about that guy because he is a zone 5 plant, but I was hoping that keeping him next to the house might squeak him through, and it seems to have worked. I got him on sale for something like $10 because he was so very small. The bleeding heart in that bed is still going strong, as is the ribbon grass (which is spreading a bit too quickly, need to keep an eye on that) and the columbine are at peak.

The iris are coming out all over the place, and looking great. We’re trying to keep an eye on which ones will need to be split after the season ends, and so far it’s just the yellow flags that will need it. Everything else is recovering from being split too hard a couple of years ago, but is at the filling-in-well stage.

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