I took my last wildflower hike yesterday to Fourmile Falls, which is actually 4 miles round trip. Most of the wildflowers were fall asters, but my DH enjoyed feasting on the wild raspberries. Then a farewell luncheon at Farrago Market Cafe for salmon tacos...a must do if you are ever passing through Pagosa Springs.
Just like my At Home in the Woods quilt, I started working on a perennial garden 4 years ago.
Here is the result of the years of experimentation.
The Russian Sage, Midnight Sage, and Purple Coneflowers have been steady performers and the Snow in Summer is the best ground cover. Beware though, the Coneflowers and Sage free seed themselves everywhere!
Spring is predominated by Bearded Iris, but they are long gone now.
Then there is the jewel of our garden:
My daughter carefully tends these babies when she visits and most have been started from seed.
She has several varieties, including white, yellow and pink ones.
This year I added some red-orange Gaillardia to the mix and hope it is a survivor.
This entire patch is free seeding volunteers and transplants from the native areas of our land.
Along the border of the property, cheery sunflowers grow.
There have been many failures over the years. The plants have to tolerate some severe conditions. Pagosa Springs is a very arid location and the garden must tolerate long periods of drought. Then there is the severely cold winter. Some years there is no snow pack, which is the hardest on my garden. The snow actually insulates the plants and provides water until we can return and start up the sprinkler system. But the biggest challenge of all is the deer!
Now it is time to pack up and head back to the Valley of the Sun.
I will miss the afternoon thunderstorms and the cool nights of sleep, but I am ready to return to my sewing room and community.
Okay weeds, you can reclaim the garden!
Miss Izzy will miss romping through the grass, playing in the dirt and just exploring the great out-of-doors!