Winterberry Farm Primitives

This blog is now devoted to gardening with native plants with a focus on those species native to the east coast of the United States. With an MS in Agricultural Science from the University of Delaware and my love of native plants, I hope to help folks see the beauty and necessity of using native plants in your garden instead of exotic plants. Did you know that our native song birds and native insects are disappearing as our local environments continue to change?
For those who come to this page to see my 'Winterberry Farm Primitives' blog can now be found at where I will post new additions to my online antiques shop at and discuss various subjects about primitive antiques.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Front Garden - June 4, 2014

Our cool, clear spring has been very good for working in the garden but not too good for blogging. I have been in my gardens every day since I last blogged and I have loved every minute of my time working and enjoying my gardens. Things are changing and the garden is becoming so overgrown that it is like walking through a small wooded area instead of my front yard. I have seen catbirds, chickadees, blue jays, cardinals, woodpeckers, cedar waxwings, mockingbirds, and so many robins that they are even nesting on a tavern sign on my front porch.
These babies are gone now and I have seen them hopping around my back gardens learning how to eat the Amelanchier berries from my Amelanchier canadensis tree that is full of delicious berries that make the best jelly. I talked about this jelly in a December 29, 2009 in a blog posting on the Amelanchier tree (serviceberry) that you can find in my archives.
What has happened in my front garden since the last time I posted? There have been many changes and much growth in the last couple of weeks.
Remember this picture from last January?
Or this picture from last February?
Well.....this is what that same area of my front garden looks like today, June 4, 2014. I know I posted these pictures before but the hydrangea is leafing out and the geraniums are beginning to flower so the undergrowth is continuing to grow and expand. Flowers have come and gone, shrubs have flowered and are now setting seed and the trilliums are almost gone but there are new flowers getting ready to burst forth as the summer begins.
The Porteranthus trifoliatus is now in flower and is a showy plant if it is in your woodland areas. It seems to collect the sunshine on those gorgeous white flowers and will look like it is glowing on a sunny spring day.
Porteranthus stipulatus, a cousin of Porteranthus trifoliatus, is just beginning to bud out as its cousin is just finishing its flowering season. It will be just as fabulous when it is in full flower so the bright but soft white of these cousins will continue to grace my front garden into the summer months. Another plant just getting ready to flower is my Spigelia marilandica. A truly wonderful native plant that can grow in shade or sun and has bright red flowers with wonderful yellow throats. This is just one of my plants in my shady front garden that is getting ready to flower.
As for those little annual vines - they have not done too well because of our cool and rainy spring but I expect that they will start to grow very quickly as the summer warms up. Here is a picture of the firecracker vine on my fence as of today. Not too big yet but it is already flowering!
That is it for today but as soon as that spigelia begins to flower and the geraniums get going - I'll be back!

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