Chipmunk Eats 2 Red Salvia Plants

Last year and this year I have planted two Red Salvia plants on either side of the large Lemon Licorice plant. Last year they grew well for awhile then started losing leaves and eventually lost the flowers. I thought I maybe watered them too much. But I planted them again this year and made a point to keep them on the dry-side.

Well once again I noticed the lower leaves of one plant began to disappear. Then I happened to look out the patio door and saw the chipmunk chomping away. I didn’t realize they ate plants, but since salvia is a member of the sage family he may find it tasty.

The next day both plants were completely gone except for the stems as shown in the last of the video. Oh well, I’ll pick another type of plant next year!

America’s Independence Day

Today we celebrate Independence Day on July 4th. I am so glad I live in this great country. No other country on earth is like America. My ancestors moved here in the mid-late 1600s from Germany and Ireland. I’m so glad they did. One of my great grandfathers was a Lieutenant in the Revolutionary War. I had relatives that served in WWII, the Korean War and Vietnam. I was born during WWII. Although my parents lived in rural Ohio, my father went to work in an airplane plant in Detroit, coming home every couple weekends. My sister, who was 18 when I was born, worked in a factory nearby making military parts – a real Rosie-the-riviter. Her boyfriend (and eventual husband) was serving in the Navy in the Philippines. I grew up going to the local parades which had a strong military influence. At school we always said the Pledge of Allegiance first thing before class began. I consider myself a #PROUDAMERICAN.

The Flag flies all year on my house as it does on several of my neighbors’ homes. However, on Memorial Day, Independence Day and Veteran’s Day I display many small flags to show my devotion to my country. I’m so grateful that I have the FREEDOM to do that! #MAGA

Independence Day 2018

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Landscaping Can Be An Obsession

When landscaping our yards we tend to select plants and colors that we like. I’ve done that, too! My colors are dark green, Chartreuse, burgundy/bronze, yellow/orange and white. By keeping with a theme, it allows me to move plants around when dividing overgrown plants or putting them in a more desirable location.

The East side of my home gets a lot of hot cooking-type of sun until about 2:00 in the afternoon. It also gets less rain since the house shields it. So on this side the plants need little care and minimum water. I had landscapers add the large stones to help with erosion from the slope. There are various varieties of sedums

East side - dry area plants

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including the popular Autumn Joy Sedum which honey bees LOVE! There is a Dappled Willow shrub in between two of the Golden Globe arborvitae. I severely prune it before winter then it regrows to 8-10ft each year, reaching the top of that window. The burgundy Barberries are medium-sized so don’t require much pruning to keep them small.

Sunny West Side plants

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The West side of the home gets 2-3 hours of afternoon sun. I planted 3 full sized Barberries years ago. The Hostas were originally planted when there was a Cherry tree at the corner for shade. I have to keep them watered during the heat if there is minimal rain. I’ve divided them a few times, giving some friends. The Vicary privet was planted by the builder 23 yrs ago. The Blue Spruce to the right is a Bakerii Dwarf Blue Spruce so it has remained 8-10 ft.

Trees for privacy

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The Back Yard has been in for many years. The Viburnums have now reached about 12ft and are a wonderful privacy screen. The birds congregate in these shrubs. The Norway Spruces are VERY tall now as is the Callery Pear. The plant in the lower front left is a Varigated Virginia Creeper vine. It is on a 3-section metal fence that hides the A/C.

New plants fronting spruce trees

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The space in front of the large Spruces has been a problem. Over the years I’ve tried three different types of plants in this area. None has survived or thrived. This Spring I tried again with plants that “may be” more tolerant of dappled shade from the pear tree. The new plants L-R are: Sweet Flag, Fireworks Fountain Grass, Coral Bells and Bonfire Cushion Spurge

Newly planted back of house

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I’m still working on the area next to the back of the house. Since I lost two of the Ninebarks to their powdery mildew problem and needed to move the Ligularia to a larger spot, I’ve had to select different plants. Late last summer I put in two Cinnamon Ferns. Two years ago I put in a Vanilla Spice Summersweet. I’m still trying to save the one remaining Ninebark. I added the Creeping Jenny a couple weeks ago to eventually provide colorful groundcover and help with maintaining moisture.

pyracantha

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This Pyracantha is many years old now. It’s huge and is a refuge for dozens of little birds. I no longer get the pretty orange berries in the fall because the mass of birds knock the berries off before they have a chance to mature to the orange color. It does have pretty white flowers in late Spring.

I wanted to somewhat conceal my back steps so I selected Karl Foerster Reed Grass  to grow in front of it. I put it in last summer so this year is its first to grow as planned. Per

Karl Foerster Reed Grass

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the photos I’ve viewed on the Internet, the fronds start as white then turn yellow then rust. It has a columnar growth and “per the photos” shouldn’t outgrow this space.

Backyard overview

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Every year I say, “now I’m done”, but who knows if this is the year I’m REALLY done!

Coppertina Ninebark is disease free so far this year

Last July I wrote about “buyer beware” when deciding to plant Ninebarks in the landscape. I originally planted three Coppertina Ninebarks in May 2015. Two of them succumbed to powdery mildew and witch’s broom. Last fall I had some leftover mix of a disease control that I had used for a couple other plants. I took what was left in the Ortho sprayer and dumped it around the base of the remaining Ninebark shrub. (yes, I know that’s not according to package label directions!)

Coppertina Ninebark

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When the leaves came out this Spring, I watched for recurrence of the mildew. Surprisingly I didn’t see any. So far – June – there is still no mildew and the shrub is thriving with lots of new growth and the color that the nursery websites show it to have.

I’m still leery of this shrub but if the mildew stays away, it may prove to be a very nice shrub. It is about a foot taller than last year and about 2-feet wider.

I’m tickled!

The People’s President

I’ve noticed something about President Trump when he is with “regular people“. They seem to be completely at ease with hugging or touching him. That’s something we don’t often see with our presidents although Bush 43 seemed to get hugs on certain occasions. I’m sure in person President Trump must be a formidable presence when he walks into a room. Not only is he tall but he oozes power. One would think that would deter a feeling of closeness with him. However, I’ve heard people say that in person he’s very compelling, making people feel as if he’s truly interested in them. I suspect that was a major reason he was elected. He was “one of us”, using the kind of language we use. Hillary wasn’t capable of connecting with ordinary people in that way.

Recently President Trump held a bill-signing ceremony for the RIGHT-TO-TRY bill. This will give terminally ill people the option to try treatments that have not yet been approved by the FDA. At that ceremony was an adorable little boy with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. His actions during the bill signing were absolutely precious as he attempted to get a hug from the President.

Trump with grieving MomDays earlier, President Trump was speaking at the Annual National Peace Officer’s memorial service. During his recognition of an NYPD slain officer, Miosotis Familia, he invited the family to come to the podium. The touching image came when the officer’s Mother hugged the President as he held her hand while still speaking. Such a tender moment.

The President seems ever aware of the people near his “entourage” but not a part of it. In this video he being directed to his car but instead took a brief time to greet the law enforcement officers providing security. To this President, they aren’t just fixtures but REAL people who perform an important job AND who he wants to thank. Imagine how special that made them feel!

And of course, we all remember when the President stopped to retrieve a Marine One guard’s hat that had been blown off by strong winds. Even though the hat blew away again, in true Marine fashion, the guard never moved or cracked a smile.

The next time there is one of the President’s famous rallies, watch how people react to him. How they speak out during his speech, how they try to touch him, and how often they shout out “we love you”. The Democrats are at a loss to understand what the rest of America knows and loves.

No Blue Wave in Ohio

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The Democrats have been saying they are going to have a BLUE WAVE in Nov 2018. Meaning they believe they will take over control of the House of Representatives and the Senate. Their plans are that IF they do that, they will Impeach President Trump and kill President Trump’s tax cuts in order to RAISE OUR TAXES! A few months ago in generic ballot polls, it appeared they might be successful. They had a substantial lead over a generic Republican. However, with all of President Trump’s successes, that lead is now down to only 3 points. Obviously the American voter isn’t as dumb as the Democrats think we are.

The results of Ohio’s recent primary indicates there is no BLUE WAVE in Ohio. I heard it reported that around 200,000 more GOP voters went to the polls than Democrat voters.

In the race for Ohio Governor there were 827,039 GOP votes vs only 679,738 Democrat votes. That’s 21.6% more GOP votes. Mike DeWine (R) received 17% more votes – 494,766 votes than Richard Cordray’s (D) 423,264. Another big race was for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Sherrod Brown (D). Brown is a far left-wing Dem leaning toward Bernie Sanders Socialism. In November, Brown will be challenged by Rep Jim Renacci (R) who achieved 360,475 votes of the total 760,808 cast by GOP voters.

If this enthusiasm continues until November, Ohio is apt to maintain a GOP Governor and pick up a U.S. Senate seat. We really need Renacci to win to help President Trump implement more of his programs.