Six on Saturday: June 13

The first preserving of 2020!

Just as these are strange times, these are a strange selection of “Six on Saturday” photos. Not related, but as I ventured around the gardens on this second Saturday in June these are the things that stood out as crossing points, or attention getters in my mind for what may seem to you indecipherable reasons.

  1. Strawberry Jam, notable because this is the first food preservation of the 2020 season. Up to this point, we’ve eaten all the potager’s bounty fresh from the garden, or given it to friends. There’s something very satisfying about preserving food from one’s garden, knowing that it is available, just waiting on the pantry shelf, without requiring a mask to get it.
My beloved Elder.

2) It must be June, the elder is in bloom! If I had to move tomorrow, this elder would be the plant I’d miss most. It’s drizzling this morning, or I’d be picking bloom clusters to make elderflower cordial, and even after ample harvest of blooms, there will still be plenty of berries later for batches and batches of jelly. Even in the moistness, the fragrance is tantalizing.

These were barely 1″ across last week!

3) Cauliflower “Minute Man” is suddenly 6″ in diameter. Just after taking this photo, I folded the large leaf at 10:00 position over the head to keep it blanched. Won’t be long until harvest now. Cauliflower can be tricky in the best of years, and this year certainly can’t be classified as belonging in that “best” category, unless it’s nominated for “Best Year to Stay Home.”

A new plant blooms!

4) Tradescantia “White Doll”, just planted this late spring from Fieldstone Perennials, and it’s already happily blooming under the walnut trees in the Front Island. I wanted more white in this shady area, and hopefully this will spread nicely (and not turn into that ugly magenta color that many spiderworts become over time.) It’s a nice, compact short one, and I think I really like it!

The first daylily has opened!

5) Daylily “Bumblebee” has announced the beginning of the daylily season, which I hope will be extended by the new “late” daylilies added last autumn. It’s always comforting to see the daylily season begin, and most of the established plants are loaded with buds already, promising lots of color in the weeks to come. It’s being crowded a bit by the milkweed that is gradually grabbing more and more territory, but I leave it because the monarchs need it.

The sole survivor.

6) Penstemon “Gold Leaf”…no, your eyes are not deceiving you…the leaves are definitely NOT gold. However, this is the only survivor from an entire packet of seeds ordered last year. Only a couple of the seedlings were indeed gold-leaved, but neither of them, nor any of the others except this lone plant survived the winter. I’m disappointed, of course, but the flowers on this plant are white with a very pale lavender tinge, and the bees and hummingbirds seem to love it, so it will stay for now in the South Island.

So that’s my six offerings for this week. I bet you can find six things of interest in your garden as well. If so, join the meme hosted by The Propagator, and click on the link to visit there to see lots of other SOS posts.


About carolee

A former professional herb and lavender grower, now just growing for joy in my new potager. When I'm not in the garden, I'm in the kitchen, writing, or traveling to great gardens.
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8 Responses to Six on Saturday: June 13

  1. Going Batty in Wales says:

    I seem to have a bumper flowering of the elder trees this year. My ‘black lace’ elder is flowering for the first time and I am so pleased with it.


    • carolee says:

      That is a pretty plant. Doesn’t it have pink blooms? I wonder if it makes a pink cordial.


      • Going Batty in Wales says:

        It does have pink blooms and dark purple leaves. It only had 3 flowers, I had masses of white ones (elders self-seed prolifically here) and I rarely drink elderflower cordial so I left them in place. Maybe in a year or two I will have a go with them and see if the colour transfers to the cordial. It will be very pretty if they do!didn’t pick them.


  2. What a lovely post! I thoroughly enjoyed your ‘six on Saturday’! I’ve never tried making Elderflower cordial, but am intrigued to do so!


    • carolee says:

      Thank you! I love all things “elder.” It’s a wonderful plant. I’ll be making my cordial this afternoon, after I get the watering done. Since we haven’t had rain, the flowers are full of pollen and that’s the perfect time to make it!


  3. Chicken Librarian says:

    Your elderflower is huge! I have only found one on our property and it is a stunted little thing. Although I don’t recall ever seeing one that big around here anyway.


    • carolee says:

      They are actually common hedgerow plants here in Indiana. Mine is only so large because it has no competition, and I baby it! I’ve planted two more back in the berry rows, but the deer keep them at 2′!!!


      • Chicken Librarian says:

        I just found more elderberry on the property. Well. One more anyway! I need to get out there and get some of the flowers! It’s funny how I just started noticing them everywhere I go!


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