Morning Glories and Moon Flowers

IMG_3046For those who’ve been reading my blogs, you know that this has been a rough summer. Not in a disaster sense but in the oh-crap-now-what kind of way. In the midst of all this I find it’s the little things that get me through.

In late spring, I planted flower seeds in several large planters in the back yard. We don’t have a lot of sun and the only great spot to plant seeds and have a chance for them grow is directly outside the kitchen window. It also happens to be directly over the septic tank so I can’t dig there. Instead, Mike built a low platform in that spot and I have five large planters on it.squirrel

For years I planted strawberries, tomatoes, cucumbers, and other fruits and veggies which the birds, deer, and squirrels have enjoyed. Once I had a lovely crop of strawberries that were almost ripe and saw a squirrel sitting on the stair railing with something bright red in his little paws. I swear he held the strawberry up for me to admire before he sank his sharp little teeth into it.

More recently, I’d been growing several types of mint to use for teas. I never could get them harvested at the right time or maybe I was drying the leaves wrong, but the tea they made was not as strong as I wanted, no matter how much I used.

CIMG1680This year I took a different tack. One pot is filled kitchen herbs which the local wildlife ignores. The rest I filled with flowers. Three of the planters contain different mixes designed to attract bees and butterflies and I have been delighted with the results. The bees and butterflies have arrived as promised and I’ve even had a few hummingbirds enjoy the blooms.

The final planter is one that sits directly outside the kitchen window and for this one I had special plans. First I put a trellis in the planter and on each side of the trellis I planted seeds, morning glories on one side and moon flowers on the other. With great anticipation I watched the vines creep up the trellis and broad leaves fill the space.

The moon flowers appeared first, their large white blooms opening in the late afternoon and shining like pale orbs throughout IMG_20150810_085835 (2)the night. The morning glories showed up a few days later, their happy blue, purple, and pink faces greeting the new day at the same time the moon flowers closed. They both bloom each day and I love this combination of morning and nighttime flowers. For weeks now, this flower show has assured that I smile several times a day.

Fall is coming and my trellis will soon be bare, but that’s okay. I’ll plant chrysanthemums and pansies to brighten the colder months knowing that in the spring my trellis will bloom again.

Learn more about me at: www.erinfarwell.com

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18 Responses to Morning Glories and Moon Flowers

  1. Neva Bodin says:

    Enjoying the beauty amidst the chaos–the secret to life. I think you’ve found it! My life too has been chaotic recently with family medical emergencies and issues, and I try to purposely concentrate on little moments of peace and beauty to quiet the turmoil within me.
    Sounds like you have great success with your plans and know how to enjoy them. Kudos to you!

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  2. Doris says:

    Oh Erin, I can just see those planters full of growth. The morning glory and moon flower combination sounds delightful. Sigh! Here’s to a beautiful fall. Doris

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  3. Joe Stephens says:

    I used to have a good-sized garden that the local deer and groundhog population saw as their buffet. My dad has a three-strand electric fence around his garden and still does constant battle with groundhogs, much to the dismay of my mother. It’s a point of great contention between them when he heads out the door with his air rifle to shoot at that bleeping groundhog. Glad to see you’ve found a solution that involves no firearms.

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  4. Roberta says:

    What a wise and wonderful solution to dark times–look out and focus on something beautiful to bring peace to your heart.

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  5. wyoauthor1 says:

    Wonderful post, Erin! Your descriptions and comparisons (faces of flowers, I LOVE that imagery!) are magical and I envision the colors, the squirrels, everything. Delightful! (and how wonderful to continue having flowers in winter — not where I live, unless they’re indoors!!) I hope you enjoy a beautiful autumn!

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    • erinfarwell says:

      Thanks. I wasn’t used to winter flowers until I moved to Georgia. Now I have bushes that bloom from late September to mid-November and another that blooms from mid-December through March. I can plant pansies outside for color all winter long. Odd, but pretty. Hope your fall is beautiful, too.

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  6. Mike Staton says:

    There you proved it again… gardening is good for the soul. I also like God’s gardens. Nothing like a nature walk in the fall and spring. But not so good in the summer if one lives in Vegas.

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    • erinfarwell says:

      Yea, summer is pretty sweltering here in Georgia. My daughter hates being outside until the temps drop into the mid-60s. Still, we have beautiful springs and falls, though winter here still makes me think of spring in Michigan. 🙂

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  7. Nancy Jardine says:

    Fabulous! I can picture your trellis, Erin but would love to see the whole glory. Your planting was so organised for all day blooming. I love to look out my dining room window, just a few feet from where I write, because that’s where if I cluster a lot of my flowering plants that are in tubs and pots of varying sizes. Like you, the range of colour cheers me up – especially on the many dull grey days that we tend to get in Scotland.

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    • erinfarwell says:

      Thanks, Nancy. This was one of those situations where I had a plan that worked out even better than I expected. I love seeing them. The trellis itself is rather scraggly at the bottom, where it’s just stems and a few leaves but the top is a big tangle of vines, leaves, buds and flowers! As you said, perfect for a dreary day. Thanks for the comments!

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  8. Wranglers says:

    Wish I had a flower garden. Glad you can mess around with them. My grandma had morning gkories. They are so pretty. Cher’ley

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  9. Travis says:

    That is so brilliant to have moon flowers and morning glories together. Plants, as long as you can keep them alive, are great to have and they give a small sense of accomplishment.

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  10. I love your description of the cute squirrel eating your strawberry. Adorable! I have such a poor green thumb that I don’t get to enjoy much in the way of flowers or plants although I guess it’s a blessing in disguise what with everyone replacing their grass and flowers with gravel and drought tolerant succulents.

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  11. S J Brown says:

    I know exactly how you feel. This spring was our first spring in the new house and I really missed all the tulips, daffodils and crocus that use to greet me each spring at the old house. Just last week I made sure I won’t miss all the colorful blooms next year. I planted over 80 flower bulbs. So like you I will be smiling come spring time.

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