Monday, August 3, 2009

Nuts for nigella

I haven't visited all the latest posts from my dear friends in the blogging world for weeks.

My life has been filled with summer fun. A quick trip to the Twin Cities with my husband and girls and a girls weekend in Kansas City - what a great time! All the while, my garden has suffered slightly from neglect. I bribed the girls into watering for me during my KC trip. It worked for the first day but the rest of the time - not so much.

I came home and the tomato plant had pretty much died. The annuals needed a good drink too. But thankfully, some plants came to life and here they are.

The two photos above are my first try with nigella or Love in a Mist "Persian Violet", recommended by Connie at Notes from a Cottage Garden. Connie - I'm so glad you suggested these!!!!! First of all, the colors are stunning (and match all the different hues of purple and pink I have) and they are so carefree. I am surprised at how many people (and fellow gardeners around here) weren't familiar with this annual - but now they are after seeing these beauties. Thanks for the tip!
The story behind this plant - I received a $20 gift card to a local nursery from the lady whose chocolate lab ate my bush morning glory! So I picked up this double purple coneflower. It's a lot shorter than other coneflowers that I've grown - not sure if this will be different next year after its roots mature. Isn't it cool?

Kerri from Colors of the Garden - here is your blue larkspur!!!! These have really taken off and are very tall and sturdy. I love them. The gloriosa daisies are about ready to bloom and hopefully will be able to post some photos for next time. I started both of these from seeds this spring.

What is the proper way to collect seeds from annuals so that I can do this again next year?

Hope all is well in your gardens. It has been very dry and cool here. We could use a good soaking and some nice warm August days .... and I have some serious weeding to do!


Connie said...

Wow, great color on that first photo of Nigella! What a great care-free plant. Larkspur is also a favorite of mine and self sows for me, as does the Nigella. To save seeds, just let the seed heads mature and dry on the plant, then keep in cool dry place. Larkspur seed is short lived, so should be used the next year.
I talked to my Dad and he told me how cool the weather has been....hard to believe, when we have been over 100 degrees all week. It should be heading your way soon. :-)

Susie said...

I was wondering what you've been up to. Sounds like you have been having lots of fun!

The color of the larkspur is beautiful!

Roses and Lilacs said...

Hi Beth, how I envy your nigella. I tried again this year sowing seed directly outside. I finally got some foliage but no blooms. Oh well, there is alway next year.

Beth said...

Thanks for sharing how you get the seeds, Connie. Yes, it's been very cool. It's very fall-like which I love. It's just a little too early!

Susie - I know isn't that color beautiful! Plus it's so tall it looks really nice in the back of the border.

Marnie - What a bummer that you didn't get any blooms :O( They were a little tough to get going and I had to baby them quite a bit but what a show they are putting on now. Next year!?

Kit said...

Beth, I too love that Nigella! Now I'm really regretting that I didn't put any seeds in. I'll definitely try it next year. Something I really like about it (besides the gorgeous blooms) is the ferny foliage. I've been wishing I had something like that to stick in my cut flower arrangements for green accents. Double bonus!
Glad you had a couple of fun trips...I'll send some tomatoes with Johnnny to ease the pain of losing your plant!

Jann E. said...

That nigella is really pretty! We have low larkspur growing wild in the Black Hills, and I've seen larkspur at Yellowstone, WY; does it grow wild in ND too? The blue flowers are so beautiful.

Beth said...

Kit - I knew once you saw my plant that you would love the nigella. I saw them on the garden tour a few years back and have been meaning to try them ever since. I'll give you seeds again next spring!

Jann E. - that's a great question! I haven't seen it grown wild here but then again, I've never really looked for it either. I agree though - that blue is to die for!

Kerri said...

Like you, our lives have been filled with summer fun, with family visiting for a week and a big family picnic. So good to see everyone!
I've been missing my blog friends too.
I too grew nigella seedlings for the first time, but sad to say, they're still languishing in the six pack, unplanted, as are a few other things. There just hasn't been enough time to do everything I wanted to. However, they did bloom beautifully! Yes, I love the ferny foliage and that lovely blue!
I'm so glad your larkspurs grew and bloomed. Mine didn't! None of the seeds sprouted that I planted.
Sorry your gloriosas didn't come out rust colored :( Perhaps next year they will.
I do just as Connie said to save seeds.
Oh dear, a dog ate your gorgeous bush morning glory? The double coneflower is a lovely replacement. So nice of the dog's owner to give you the gift certificate.
We've had pouring rain today, but most of the rest of the week was beautiful.
Glad you've been enjoying the summer so much.