Where Are They?

There are a few things missing from my garden this season, including…

Phlox paniculata ‘Crème de Menthe’. At one time, this was one of my favorite perennials, but it disappeared completely this year. Last year, it was very undersized and I knew it was fading. I probably should have moved it at that time, given it more space and more care, and then I might still have it. I have no idea where I’ll get a replacement plant.

Umbels. Right, we covered them a few days ago, about how my zealous hoeing resulted in the seedlings of dill, carrots, cilantro, and parsnips not having a chance. I still ought to sow a few dill seeds out in the garden and see what comes up.

Mulch. I am a chronic under-mulcher, a late-mulcher. We've had so much rain the past few springs that I get lazy about mulching. Then the rains stop and I see all the dried up beds and all the weeds, and wish I had mulched earlier in the spring. Yes, here is some mulch in the garden, especially in the paths of the vegetable garden but not nearly enough in the flower beds.

I'm also a mulch-experimenter, trying all kinds of mulches, many that are disappointing. Now I have at least found a mulch I like, that I can live with, that doesn’t fuse into solid sheets over time. It’s mini pine bark mulch. I bought 20 three cubic feet bags of it a few weeks ago and started mulching the flower beds this week.

Japanese Beetles. Mind you, I’m not complaining about missing Japanese beetles. I’ve actually seen a few beetles, two on a rose, one at my sister's and five at my nephew's. I've also noticed a bit of damage on some zinnia foliage that is probably caused by these beetles. But by now I should be seeing them all over the grape vine. And I see none. Where are they? They are either very late, or something about the dry summer we had last year or the way the winter was, or who knows what, has perhaps reduced their population? We can only hope, but must remain vigilant.

Rabbits. Where are they? I haven’t seen a rabbit all spring and now it is summer and still no rabbits. Who will be my foe, my worthy opponent in the fight for garden domination? Where in the world did they go? Has my personal war with the rabbits ended?

What’s missing in your garden this season?


cindy scott day said…
As a garden newbie, I have encountered just about everything this year, from cutworms to rabbits to flea beetles that threaten to kill my cauliflower completely. (Everything else seems safe for now.)

I had a family of baby rabbits settle in before I had my fence up. I built a fence out of wood stakes and deer netting, which has been very effective. BUT I built it around the rabbit nest before I knew it was there. I can just imagine the poor mother frantically chewing through the netting. (I found the hole later and patched it by stapling another swatch of netting over the hole.)

I've been the fortunate beneficiary of plenty of mulch. First, my elderly neighbor allowed me to rake up piles and piles of pine needles from her yard for my unusually high pH soil. Then utility crews took down three trees across the street and left three huge piles of wood chips. Lucky me. And lucky for my garden.

Check out my blog: http://inchbyinchrowbyrow.wordpress.com
Sue Swift said…
Sadly, I'm missing bees. They are very, very scarce this year.
I am missing butterflies and other insects. I think it is the fogging the City does to control mosquitoes. I don't like it when they do that. I try not to go out when the truck goes around fogging. It isn't good for anyone or anything, in my mind.
Carrie said…
I'm missing bees too. We have seen a few more since we put in lavender last week but even with all my other flowers, they are scarce this year. I've seen 1 honey bee and I swear I screamed the fact over to the hubby who was in our other plot. I don't know of anyone else who's seen one yet at the plots. Where are they????
Layanee said…
The sun is missing this year but it is out there somewhere. I am missing the callirhoe which I planted last year...must go take a walk to determine what else is missing. If it stops raining that is.
Marie said…
I know where the rabbits are. They are ALL IN MY GARDEN!
Gail said…
We haven't any butterflies and hardly any honeybees....we do have solitary bees working madly on the native plants, like liatris, butterfly weed and coneflowers. gail
Anonymous said…
Those pesky Japanese beetles are certainly not missing in my garden this year! I think you sent all your over here. My "cup" runneth over, so to speak. I make my daily rounds with a cup of soapy water, and often start with yesterdays victims still in the cup. Ewwww!
DivaGlinda said…
I'm sorry about your phlox, Carol - variegated plants can be less tough maybe? If there are any live pieces of the root underground and they might surprise you and pop up.

We have bees and butterflies (and wasps and leafhoppers and the tomato-loving leaf-footed bugs) but what we're missing are normal temperatures and normal rainfall.

Maybe that's also why some plants that survived here for a number of years have gone missing - most of the creeping Jenny, my only heuchera, 1/2 the tradescantia, most of the coreopsis.

Have fun mulching!

Annie at the Transplantable Rose
(still working on the divas' page...can't be annie yet)
Lilies of all things. I planted an entire row of them along the bunny fence. But now, nothing.
Phillip Oliver said…
I have not seen as many Japanese beetles either and I'm thanking my lucky stars.
Ramble on Rose said…
I am thankfully missing japanese beetles. Butterflies (aside from one swallowtail) and powdery mildew are also conspicuously absent.
~~Rhonda said…
So sorry to hear you are missing a favorite perennial. A garden is never static is it?

The only thing I can think of that is missing in my garden is time enough to get all the work done! Plenty of bees, honeybees, butterflies, dragonflies, etc. Not to mention plenty of Japanese beetles...::sigh:: Not missing any plants that I'm aware of. The apricots produced fruit for the second time in the 15 years we've had this house. The blossoms are usually frozen off. Come to think of it...we ARE missing apples. Three trees and no apples for the first time. Hmm. ?? ~~Rhonda
I'm missing right now. The mosquitos certainly aren't missing, and they're forcing this gardener to limit her time in the garden. As for other missing things, I lost a lot of Aquilegias over the winter and my Cornus kousa didn't bloom. How could you possibly miss the rabbits?
Those variegated plants can be weak natured at best sometimes. Would never make here in the south......too hot!
Rose said…
After weeks of watching and waiting, I finally gave up on several perennials that didn't make it through the winter. Two I could understand--probably the result of winter heaving--but the other two are a mystery to me. I do have Japanese beetles, but I think you're right, there aren't as many as past years. But I could send you some rabbits--I have a couple brazen ones that eye my vegetable garden each night. I'd hate to think you couldn't write about doing battle with rabbits anymore, Carol:)
Unknown said…
so excited to have found you.. I think through Garden Rant, so hard to retrace clicking rambles.

I have good reading ahead, and much to learn,
thanks in advance.

I am lamenting the loss of Blue Leadwort and a Japanese Painted Fern, " Burgundy Lace, both planted with prayers of a fool.

But I still can't imagine what happened to the Geranium x "Rozanne', overzealous mulching by my dear husband perhaps.
Pam/Digging said…
Rain. And a break from triple-digit temps.
Cindy, MCOK said…
Moisture is definitely in short supply on my corner of Katy. That's probably why I don't have vast hordes of mosquitoes roaming the property ... they've all gone north to hang out at MMD's Squirrelhaven!
I won the war against snails and slugs... with the help of pink poison pellets.. But i miss them and trails they made early in the morning. Aha...
Have a nice weekend
~ bangchik
It's odd how some years different plants disappear. Other plants warp and change into something else. Certain bugs are terribly one year and not so much the next. Keeps it interesting though doesn't it?~~Dee
EAL said…
I have plants disappear every year, so many I couldn't possibly keep track. I live the variegation on that phlox--too bad. But I find that the variegated foliage plants are in general not as hardy.