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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A thing of beauty...

Lilium Black Beauty Crop
Lilium 'Black Beauty' starting to open

The race between the three summer-blooming Lilies in my garden ('Black Beauty', 'Silver Scheherezade' & Lilium lancifolium) has finally been won...by 'Black Beauty'! It was also the first lily I purchased after starting this garden...so it seems fitting.

Following the trend of odd garden happenings this year, my trio of 'Black Beauty' bulbs finally produced a new stem this year...yay! Sadly, however, the stem/bulb furthest back in this bed is looking pretty sad and sickly...only producing 2 or 3 buds this year. I'm not sure if it's due to our lack of a winter this year, the encroaching Laurel blocking too much sun...or general over-crowding by other plants. I think I'll dig it up after it finishes blooming and move further forward, where it should get more sun. I'll also be trimming back the Laurel soon to open up the garden a bit.

I don't have a lot of big/showy blooms in my garden, to be honest, as I prefer plants with many small blooms, rather than a few large blooms. Lilies are one of the exceptions, however, and I look forward to their blooms with a bit of breathless anticipation.

How about all of you...are you reveling in summer's bounty right about now too? Here in Portland, we've been having a run of truly lovely weather...cool & breezy...perfect for strolling around the garden. I can't help buy feel a little guilty about that, of course...and my thoughts go out to all of you suffering from terrible heat & drought around the rest of the country.

lilium black beauty v  1923

67 comments:

  1. Beautiful pictures! Love them. Do you actually live off Rhone Street in Portland?

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    1. Thanks, Danielle...I sure do...in the Brooklyn neighborhood :-)

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  2. I don't know how I feel about lilies. Like you I prefer lots of smaller flowers, and lilies and other large blooms seem too risky -- all the eggs in one basket type of thing. Still, they are beautiful!

    As for summer... breezy we have. It's the "cool" that I'm no longer familiar with.

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    1. I know how you feel, Alan...and that's one reason I don't usually care for big blooms...plus, sometimes big blooms just look too gaudy (to me, anyway).

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  3. I love lilies! Yours are beautiful. I also love daylilies, but I don't think you have many of those, right? I actually have always loved big flowers better than small ones. Big flowers, big leaves, big colors. I need more lilies. And I am enjoying the sun today, although it is still too cool.

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    1. I actually have just one...the old standard 'Stella D'Oro'...although I'm thinking about adding some different ones someday :-)

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  4. I do enjoy lilies. Mine are already finished for the year, except for the daylilies. I am not enjoying my garden much right now as the best blooms have already finished. Now it all seems like work! :)

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    1. Oh no...I hope you have a few little blooms left for autumn...or at least some nice leaves to look forward to :-)

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  5. I'm glad SOMEONE is having good weather.
    Love the Verbena ---none of mine "took" this year--I seeded the heck out of some areas.
    I wonder if I should try plants?

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    1. I know...and I feel very guilty about it...especially when I talk to my dad in the midwest...ugh! Verbena is one of those things that I never had ANY seedlings of for years and year...then, this past year, they ALL seemed to re-seed. You should buy 1 or 2 plants...that's what I did and it's worked well so far :-)

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  6. Love lilies, all types! It's HOT here.....

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  7. I have one pot of daylilies that has only produced 4 blooms total for the first time this year. I had given up hope because it was over a year since I had planted them. I'm still not sure what triggers their blooms here in the tropics. On this side of the world it has been raining non-stop to the point of flooding in the low-lying areas of the city. Glad to hear you, at least, are having good weather.

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    1. That's a tricky one...I think they really do better with some vernalization...but who knows! Stay safe during that crazy weather...floods...eek!

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  8. Mine are looking a bit like the leaning tower of Pisa but I can fix them up once I get out of the house. Let's cross my fingers that I get to it though before leaving for the beach. So much to do...

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    1. Oh yeah, Ann, mine definitely lean out for more sun...so far, I haven't had to stake mine...fingers crossed!

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  9. Scott, both, such beautiful photos! and of course the lily is divine. A few are open now, and others are promising to do so....nothing like them in our gardens.

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    1. I totally agree, Diana...they ad so amazingly beautiful...and, generally, so easy to grow!

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  10. I divided mine two years ago, and they are still struggling to reach former glory. Black Beauty is surely that, and going on my list right now.

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  11. I think seeing plants that thrive there, but don't here, is one of my favorite parts about your and many other blogs. That lily makes quite the accent among all the purple!

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    1. Agreed...it's kind of fun to virtually explore other's gardens...even those we have no hopes of re-recreating in our own locale ;-)

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  12. Your garden is so very beautiful...and your photographs are wonderful. I am also feeling a little guilty about our nice summer. Guess it is the west coast's turn for a break.

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    1. I know...we should probably stop feeling guilty and enjoy it ;-)

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  13. I inherited a few Stargazer Lilies when we moved here and while I love them as cut flowers not so much in the garden. I moved them to an out of the way spot and each year when they just start to open (right about now) I cut them and bring them inside to enjoy. Not exactly the best idea if I want them to return next year right? But so far they have...tough things!

    I loved the sun and warmer temps today...tomorrow is supposed to be even warmer!

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    1. There are some flowers that certainly applies for...Stargazers are weird in that the plants seem so stumpy...too short for such BIG blooms...and hey...if they keep coming back, why stop!

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  14. Scot - I just read your blog for the first time tonight and I'm in plant heaven! Gorgeous garden and photography. I grew several of the plants you have in GA, but I didn't mix in grasses. I haven't grown Lilies for a long time, but like both Asiatic, Oriental and some of the other species lilies like "Rubrum". Just moved to Portland in June and in a rental, but I can't wait until we buy a house and I can start planting again.

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    1. Thanks, Barbara...so glad you enjoyed it! I rented for YEARS before I could finally afford a house...the wait makes it seem even more amazing when you start your garden!!!

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  15. Beautiful photo. Much like Barbara I haven't grow Lilies for some time, seeing this post makes me think I should change that!
    Paul

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    1. They are definitely a nice little "spotlight" plant...something with some pizazz ;-)

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  16. That Lily is a beauty indeed and good to hear that the weather has been lovely in your area.

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    1. Totally...we've managed to avoid it getting too hot so far...I'm keeping my fingers crossed it stays that way ;-)

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  17. It's a beauty. I think this has been the worst year I've ever had in gardening. My gardens are shot here so I can see that this last year had some effect on yours also, but things are still looking lovely there.

    Cher Sunray Gardens

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    1. So sorry, Cher, it really has been an awful year in A LOT of places, hasn't it :-( There have definitely been some negatives in the garden this year...but, luckily, nothing too bad. Still, it makes me worry for what our weather will be like in the future.

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  18. Unfortunately red lily leaf beetle has taken most of the joy out of growing lilies in CT. Thankfully it hasn't spread everywhere yet so I can still enjoy them through the beautiful photography of other gardener's gardens!

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    1. I thank my lucky stars that we don't have those beetles here (yet)...they sound just awful!

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  19. Like the combination of the Verbena and your lovely lily!

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    1. Thanks, Janet...I love Verbena...it makes everything look better ;-)

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  20. It is a beautiful lily Scott. It looks so lovely in with your verbena. That is a lovely bed of flowers.

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    1. Thanks, Lona...the Verbena really sets it off!

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  21. Very nice pics Scott and the lily is fantastic! I have a few trumpet ones, which I prefer but they are at their first year and flowered short and little. People don't like it short and little, do they? So I didn't publish any picture.
    What are those fine spiraling leaves in the pictures? I like them

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    1. Thank, Alberto...well, there's always room for short ones :-) I think the leaves you're referring to are the Amsonia hubrichtii.

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  22. I also love this time of year, a time of big plants and big blooms. I have Asiatic lilies that bloom in early summer and Casa Blanca orientals that are blooming right now. The joe pye weed and the cup plant also make me sigh with happiness, and soon the ironweed and downy sunflower!

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    1. Oh yes, Jason...I love all these big guys...so robust! My Joe Pye is just starting to bloom as well...and every time I glance at it, it makes me smile...love 'em! My Ironweed is starting to form buds...which is SO MUCH EARLIER than last year (didn't bloom until September)!

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  23. Ours just opened last week. So great. I love it with the verbena there.

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    1. I love the Verbena with it, as well...great color combo, don't you think :-)

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  24. I'm a fan of big showy blooms. I love Oriental poppies and peonies. But lilies I have to admire from afar. I only have old fashioned day lilies in my garden.

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    1. Oh yes...those big Poppies are glorious, aren't they! I have a few Daylilies as well...so nice!

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  25. I'm watching my lilies too. so far none have opened. Yours looks outstanding with all its complementary neighbors. I bet it smells divine.

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    1. It is definitely beautiful, Grace, but sadly, is unscented :-( I'm planning on planting a few fragrant lilies next spring...for now, I just have to content myself with Scented Lilies from the florist ;-)

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  26. Black Beauty reminds me of Stargazer, which is an all-time favorite. Does Black Beauty have a nice scent, too. It sure is a stunner! It must be a wonderful focal point--the eye is definitely drawn to it in your photos.

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    1. It definitely looks like a smaller-flowers version of Stargazer...sadly, it's unscented :-(

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  27. I love 'BB'. I know that lilies need to be heavily feed to continue blooming, they probably do need a bit more elbow room to be happy and full sun is a must of course. I hope you can aid their recovery!

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    1. I definitely need to feed them, you're right...they've never gotten a lick of fertilizer or food. I think I'll spread some good compost over their patch this winter and let it really seep down there :-)

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  28. Hi Scott, thanks for visiting my blog.
    I grew Black Beauty a few years ago. By accident really, it came as a wrongly labelled lily. Alas, it didn't survive very long.

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    1. Isn't it funny how often that happens...the mislabelling, I mean! So sad they didn't last long :-(

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  29. I don't grow oriental or asiatic lilies, but I do love seeing them in people's gardens. 'Black Beauty' is stunning and looks even better the way you've situated it - surrounded and enhanced by smaller blooms.

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  30. Beautiful photos! On another note...I am nominating you for the One Lovely Blog award! I follow your blog regularly and feel it is wonderful and LOVELY so Congratulations-I am passing the award along to you! The rules to accepting this wonderful award are on my site at http://landscapedesignbylee.blogspot.com. If you feel you cannot comply with the rules of the award please accept this nomination in the sincere spirit in which it is offered.

    Best, Lee

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  31. Its nice to see a flower starting to bloom. Its a wonderful sight. The photo is totally gorgeous.

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  32. I think they really do better with some vernalization...but who knows! Stay safe during that crazy weather...floods.. as well...great color combo Portland Garage Doors

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