In June as many as a dozen species may burst their buds on a single day. No man can heed all of these anniversaries; no man can ignore all of them."~Aldo Leopold (American ecologist, 1887-1948)
It’s June and by now the lilacs are finished blooming here in the
Pacific Northwest. I have 3 medium sized trees and by now I would normally have been up on a
ladder amongst the branches cutting off all the old bloom clusters before they
form seed heads. It makes them not only
look considerably better, it also sends the plants energy into new growth sooner
rather than giving it over to seed formation.
I won’t be doing that this year though. The pace of my schedule has ramped up this year and some tasks of the garden simply must be left undone. Ignoring some garden jobs can cause untold disaster, like letting weeds get out of control. That I won’t allow, but skipping the lilacs doesn’t worry me. Leaving the seed heads will not affect the tree’s blooming performance next year. What it will do is provide food for birds during winter’s dearth and that’s a good thing. A neighboring garden has a beautiful double flowering white lilac tree. It is far too big to teeter on a ladder to clean it up so it is never dead-headed. And because of that, every winter on the bleak gray days, I smile as I watch the Chickadees feast on every last morsel offered by that tree. This winter they’ll have more with my trees adding to their buffet.
In Bloom in My Garden Today: Alpine Strawberries, Armeria, Baptisia, Bletilla pink, Blueberries, Chives, Columbine, Daylily, Daphne caucasica ‘Eternal Fragrance’, Dianthus, Gaillardia (blanket flower), Hardy Geranium, Hosta ‘sum and substance’, Huchera, Kniphofia (torch flower or red hot poker, Nepeta ‘six hills giant’ (catmint), Peas, Peony, Phygelius ‘new sensation’ (cape fushia), Primrose vailii, Rose, Salvia, Saxifraga andrewsii (irish saxifrage), Sedum, Schizostylis ‘watermelon’, Thalictrum rochebrunianum (meadow rue), Tomato,