Plenty Sweet Life

Grandma's Recipes One By One!

Bouquet of the Month for July

on July 1, 2014

It’s time for the Bouquet of the Month for July. I actually made up this bouquet from flowers in my garden, but I did it a couple of weeks ago. We went on a family vacation and I wasn’t sure what I’d find when I got back home. We had a LOT of rain in the month of June (only 1″ short of an all-time record) and I wanted to make sure I had photos of my flowers in case something (like a LOT of rain) happened. Our area had 7 inches of rain on June 20th and there were a lot of roads closed due to flooding. We were lucky and only had some water damage in our downstairs bathroom where we lost 2 boards of our laminate flooring. We had just updated that bathroom and hadn’t even taken a shower in it yet! But like we say in Minnesota – it could have been worse!


It seems like the majority of my garden flowers bloom in May or June. I’m trying to get better at planting things that bloom at different times of the summer. Last year I planted a lot and none of them survived our everlasting winter.


These are peonies which originally came from Grandma and Grandpa’s farm by way of the house on the lake where I grew up. I’m sure it’s a very old species so I don’t know what the name is. I’m not that kind of gardener. I love the flowers, but I don’t need to know all the specifics like official names. You can also see tiny purple flowers on spikes here. I think that’s a kind of Russian sage and they’re very fragrant – not in a good way – but they’re pretty.


The iris plants I have came from a neighbor across the street from us. I love that – sharing the plants when your perennials need thinning. You can see some hasta leaves in the back of the bouquet. My two kinds of hasta came from two friends and I need to thin them – anyone need any?


You can see a tiny pink rose in the lower right hand corner here – those bushes came from another friend of mine. I planted the daisies from seed years ago and they just keep coming back. Last year I took the dried seed heads and scattered them all over the garden and it worked! Now I have many more daisies in other parts of the garden. I’m always amazed when anything comes back from the year before. There’s always that time in the spring when nothing’s coming and then suddenly there they are!


I love being able to go out and pick some flowers from the garden to use in the house. That’s another thing that I got from both of my grandmas. They always grew flowers in the garden and had them in the house. One of my grandmas loved sweet peas and when we first moved to this house, I grew them, too. Now we have more mature trees in our yard and there’s not enough sun to grow them very well. It must have been a family thing to grow sweet peas, because I know that Grandma’s sisters grew them also. There used to be competition to see who planted them first, who had the first bloom, and who picked the biggest bunch. They were always planted on the birthday of one of Grandma’s sisters in April. My second daughter was born on April 7 so when I plant them, I try to do it on that date even though my grandpa always told me that it was “plenty early”. Maybe I’ll try them again some year. In the meantime, I’ll just have to deal with more shade in the yard and do some experimenting. I just love to keep on trying. That’s the beauty of gardening, you keep learning and trying year after year. More bouquets to come! What kind of plants are in your garden? I’d love to hear about them!




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