"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

Hello Friends!

Friends, Romans, countrymen...y'all. Foodies, gardeners, artists and collectors - let's gather together to share and possibly learn a thing or two in the mix.

Donna Baker

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Lily, Lily, Rose



A favorite plein air painting by John Singer Sargent, Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose.  He painted this at the same time every evening over a two year period. The carnations have come and gone, but right now, lilies reign supreme at the city house.

I am impressed that the former owner planted perennials in succession so the blooms just keep coming.  I am filling in with annuals then need to mulch.  The only lily I can identify is the calla lily.  Can't wait to see what the others that haven't opened look like.









Okay, here is a rose.  She planted the same kind around the house.  I think they might be Drift roses or something like that.  I've already deadheaded them once.  Not a sign of blackspot.  At the farm, I've tried every rose and they all get blackspot, whether I spray or not.


Don't have a clue what this large plant is.  At first I thought it ghastly, but it is growing on me.  I hate to admit it, but I do not like large blooms, as on poinsettia plants, Bird of Paradise, glads, hibiscus... But, 
I do love moon flowers, roses and hydrangeas, so never mind.  

I read a funny story once about Truman Capote opening his apartment door to an armload of poinsettia plants.  He shut the door and said that he didn't even want to know who would send a plant like that.  Since they are for sale around my birthday, I get loads of them.  Some even sprayed with glitter.  I've finally gotten family to stop buying them for me.


This is what I shall be doing today.  Braiding onions and pickling the ones that don't have a stem.  Happy day to all.

33 comments:

  1. That's a beautiful day..
    I am very partial to that painting also..as far as I can see you have daylilies and orientals..
    and that may be a tradescantia(sp?)pallida.

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  2. I submitted too quickly..pointsettias are my least fave.. the cream ones I can accept:)
    I dislike the blaring red ones..and I have seen died blue:(
    I have a tile birdhouse comme toi but pinks..:)

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    1. Yes, please no one give me a plant that has been died or glittered. The poinsettias just start dropping leaves everywhere and I just don't like them. I can't abide cactus or agave either as I've been stuck with their spines too many times. I was once on a trip with The Museum of Natural Science in Houston on a field trip to south Texas. There was a large plant with sharp spikes at the tip. They told us if we backed into one, they were poisonous and we'd have to go to the hospital.

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  3. Loving that painting - which I did not know.
    And your garden. Lilies thrive here, and we have over the years planted lots. And lots.
    Of the calla lilies I think my favourite is green goddess - a subtle charmer in green and white.

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    1. Sounds beautiful. It was Sargent's first major purchase by the Tate Museum and of course, they still own it. I really love perennials that come back year after year, like old friends.

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  4. That's one of my favorite paintings. You have a beautiful assortment of day lilies. The rose looks like a Knockout...lower maintenance. The purple plant is a wandering Jew or Purple Heart. They grew like crazy!

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    1. I think you're right about the rose and thank you for helping me with the names. Do you know if one should pick the flower off of hostas before it blooms to keep the plant healthy? The plant store didm't know. The info on the painting made for interesting reading. I've always loved it too.

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  5. I'm a fan of Singer Sargent, this painting and the much sadder, but quite magnificent one in Boston of the daughters of Edward Darley Boit. Do you know the lovely one of Paul Helleu painting out of doors with his wife? It reminds me of my father.
    You seem to have become the owner of a well-planted garden, but fearless removal of anything you don't like is the answer! Plant swaps, gifts, whatever. It's always a good plan to let family and friends know QUITE CLEARLY what flowers you can't abide!

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    1. No, I am not familiar with the other paintings but will google them. Yes, I am still waiting to see what is to come. I am planting lavender and Shasta daisies and seeding some flowers and wildflowers so I hope a few take root.

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  6. Dear Donna, thank you for posting that beautiful Sargent painting. It is also one of my favorites, and I when I visit London, I make a point of visiting it. Meanwhile, I keep a postcard with the image here at home.

    What a delight to discover that the previous owner of your home has planted with a blooming sequence in mind. I am sure that you will be adding your own touches, perhaps adding some bulbs this fall. Do you keep a garden journal book or rely on photographs?

    Braiding onions while sitting on a porch...that surely does paint a summertime picture! xo

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    1. No, but I should Frances. I am only pulling what I am certain is a weed or tree saplings - little elms everywhere. I don't think I could have done what she did without a landscape architect. It is one of the reasons I bought the house; if you remember I called it a little jewel box. I will fill in with annuals soon. I just hope there are some left at the plant stores.

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  7. the coral one with the yellow throat is a day lily. the others, maybe asian lilies? and the purple plant is a type of wandering jew or day flower. it will have small pink flowers that only last a day. I have some in my yard. I have crinum lilies and the red ones are starting to bloom, the pink ones are about done and the white swamp lilies won't bloom til late summer.

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    1. It is all new to me, mostly. I can identify some of them, but the majority are a mystery. I have figured out the directions and sunny or shady parts. It helps when I find things to plant. In reality, there is very few places left to plant anything.

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  8. This is one of my most favorite paintings.
    When Daughter was at University in one class they had to copy a painting. She made a copy of this one but only the right hand corner. It was a Birthday gift.

    cheers, parsnip and thehamish

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    1. Yes, as I said earlier, he had to paint at the same time each evening to get the light just right. He was a wonderful painter.

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  9. What a bounty you have in your garden! I'm curious as to why you braid the onions?

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    1. To hang in the shade by a hook. After they cure for a couple of days, you hang them up in bunches. They have lasted me until Thanksgiving before. The garden is stunning; so full I can hardly find a spot to plant.

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  10. I have always loved that picture - how the artist manages to capture the light. I'm not very keen on lilies in the garden mainly because the slugs seem to love them and we do have lily beetles which are gross and leave black sludgy poo all over them.

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    1. Elaine, thank goodness I haven't seen anything like that here. Lillies aren't my favorite plant, but they are growing on me and everywhere. It is fun to see what is going to bloom next.

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  11. You have beautiful flowers at your home! I am not fond of poinsettias either and I think adding glitter makes them even more garish. Thank you so much for visiting my blog. -Jenn

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  12. Donna, A wonderful Painter!
    I thought i was the only one who dislikes Poinsettias, glad for the company. It's like when I say I can't stand clowns and people look at me like I'm insane; same thing with Poinsettias.
    So nice of that homeowner to have been a gardener, and a smart one at that! The mystery plant looks very much like a Wandering Jew... but I thought that to be an annual. It could also be a Spiderwort plant in which case you will really love it when it starts sprouting a gazillion little purple flowers.

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    1. A lot of it is new to me so I am fascinated to see all that blooms. She literally planted every square inch, so I am using a lot of seeds. Annuals where the perennials have died back. I guess it's the tropical plants I'm not used to and don't know what they are. Did find some large pokeweed plants that I yanked out.

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  13. LOVE that painting! The light! And Sargent is in a class by himself when it comes to beautiful portraiture.
    What gorgeous flowers! And they keep on coming! Lucky you!! I'm a December kid and I wouldn't want poinsettias for my birthday either but I do put them out by my front door for color at Christmas since it's all white out on the landing.

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    1. Bet that all white is beautiful on the landing. In my city house there are lots of whites and creams. It is soothing. I remember you're a Sag too. Did you go to the Mapplethorp exhibit in LA?

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  14. What an amazing painting!! And I love these pictures of springtime beauty :)

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    1. You are very kind and I love so many paintings and different styles of art, I could never choose

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  15. Donna wasn't John Singer Sargent so gifted. This is one of my favorite paintings. Imagine having the patience to work on something for two years. If I work on a painting more than two weeks I think I have done something:)
    So nice you ate being surprised with each new plant that blooms. Now I have to say that is as good as a box of chocolates! Hugs

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    1. Deb, you hit the nail on the head. I'm back at the farm for a week to babysit grandkids and can't wait to get back to see what new is blooming. I have taken six months on a piece of art. The life sized horse in my dining room. Two years is more patience than I have.

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  16. Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous. A Stargazer and day lilies. I miss my day lilies. I had a bud that used to have a day lily farm and she was kind enough to share. Then we moved and the day lilies stayed:(

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    1. I love that story Sandra. I wanted to have a flower farm once. I love perennials and appreciate their return. I used to plant mainly annuals, but now love anything perennial. I see pictures of sunflower farms and it amazes me.

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