Blooms Day, June 2010 in Toronto

Welcome to the Microgarden this Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. Hope you like my new cushions… and enjoy the jasmine fragrance of the Hall’s honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica ‘Halliana’) by the front porch.

I wrote recently about the nice perfume of the black locust tree. Well, Hall’s honeysuckle is yet another of those highly invasive plants with a lovely fragrance. Coincidence? It’s showing its invasive tendencies in my garden by climbing up and through anything and everything. Like up the Pyracantha growing behind the bench… and now behind the honeysuckle.

(What you don’t see in this picture: my air conditioning unit and the empty pots below the bench, all carefully cropped out.)

Also in bloom, or getting there, is Hydrangea ‘Annabelle’, one of four varieties of hydrangea in my garden (the others are H. ‘Limelight’, ‘Pinky Winky’ and ‘Quickfire’). Four! I don’t know how this happened. Let’s just say, I must be a sucker for a good plant pitch. So far, ‘Annabelle’ has proven herself to be the winner (despite the brand name on the other guys, who have yet to be proven).

(What you don’t see in this picture: the huge, growing hole in my box (Buxus) sphere. Imagine the scene in the sci-fi movie, where the planet is zapped, shimmers for an instant, then begins to disintegrate. That’s what winter-kill is doing on the sunny side of the box. Poor thing, it is not much longer for this garden.)

Next in my Blooms Day lineup is a new arrival, Rosa ‘Floral Fairy Tale’ – kindly supplied by Palantine Roses as part of the generous swag at the Garden Writers Association District VII meeting this month. Do I have room for another rose? Ask the hydrangeas.

This is one lovely rose, growing 2-3′ tall, with an apricot bud that opens to pinky-apricot with a yellow centre. It’s lightly scented; very lightly. If it had more fragrance, it might be too close to perfection.

(What you don’t see in this picture: The places where maurauding raccoons sat on my Allium christophii, now wearing crutches – the alliums, not the raccoons – and not only squashed my ‘Helen Elizabeth’ poppy flat, they chewed and spat out the buds of its first-ever blooms.)

There’s usually a story behind every pretty picture. For more stories, and more pretty pictures, visit May Dreams Gardens, where every 15th of the month Carol graciously invites bloggers from around the world to show their stuff. Or not.


  1. Beautiful hydrangea and rose. I like your front door, too! And your honesty in mentioning what got cropped out! 🙂

  2. I'm a person of very limited taste when it comes to roses – but it's one of my dreams one day to live in a very old house and have apricot roses growing by the front door.


  3. How rude to chew your first bloom and then spit it out! Thoughtless little critter. Helen your rose is totally gorgeous and so perfectly goes with your lovely cushion! I love your door too. The fragrance of B. L. and Honeysuckle must be that way to lure us into tolerating them… I am forever cutting down B.L. seedlings from the fields. My Annabelle looks about like yours right now. Love your descriptions of what is not in the pictures! ;>)

  4. You have been able to hide things, but I have not been able to hide the weeds in my garden. It's not my fault! It has been impossible to keep up with the weeds in all the rain.

  5. I'm absolutely in love with my Hall's honeysuckle right now. I could certainly see it being invasive if left alone but with a little pruning I've kept mine under control.

    Last night I was walking my dog and suddenly smelled the distinctive fragrance of a Hall's honeysuckle – it took me a while to find – it was probably 40-50' away on the other side of the street, but the breeze was blowing just right.

    I dream of one day growing it near my bedroom window so I could experience it every day it was flowering.

  6. An excellent read and so true…the cropping feature is a wonderful editing tool! I do like your new cushions and the front door is a great color. The raccoons, squirrels and chipmunks are horribly destructive her, too. gail

  7. I love the picture of your porch! It is fun to see the "whole garden!" I was on a time crunch this AM, so couldn't really do a "wide shot!"

    Glad it is warming up for you up there!

  8. Your front door garden looks lovely Helen. I can imagine curling up on the bench with a book, inhaling the fragrance of the honeysuckle and drinking green tea. It's 7 AM here.

  9. It's hard to resist Hydrangeas. I don't have a large garden, yet I have 10 (how did that happen?). The Rose is lovely. Sorry about the raccoon problems. Maybe it got poisoned by the poppy.

  10. Helen
    Love the cushions… very classy mix of patterns.
    Impressive Hydrangeas, and very pretty rose!
    (Raccoons in Toronto? They do seem to be a fixture whether urban or rural. Sorry to hear bout the damage. Skillful cropping = most useful ;~D

  11. Hello Helen,

    There are so many things that I love in your post…..sitting on a porch, my cropping tool in Photoshop, Hydrangeas and lastly, Roses. I wish we could grow hydrangeas in the desert, but it is just a little too hard 🙂

  12. Hi Helen,
    I am chuckling about the things we didn't see in the photos, but I know it's not funny at all when critters take liberties with our plants. I am having a lot of rabbit damage this year. It's very frustrating.

    You do have some lovely blooms. I love that rose. I am also laughing about asking the hydrangeas if you have room for more roses.

  13. Too funny – I can totally relate to the "what you don't see" secrets behind lovely photos. Though I must say Town Mouse's garden looks just as lovely as its photographs. She even puts charming container arrangements in her utility areas. Your rose is indeed perfection and what a perfect shot with the dew drop and all – lovely pics – thanks for sharing your blooms!

  14. Love the cushions on the bench. I somehow missed your fine Bloom Day post, not surprising since there were over 100, but clever Delphine of Paradis Express has a wonderful montage of TG today. She has a photo of an agave grouping that I can't seem to find on your blog and would love to know whose garden it's from. In searching for the photo, I had a nice browse through your blog. What a treat!

  15. I find it interesting that the Black Locust and the Annabelle both thrive in such diverse climates as coastal Va. and Toronto. I hope you had a happy GBBD!

You might also like