Summer’s Bright Accents

So many berries and cherries at Coppertop!

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We’ve been needing to harvest daily. Although I thought we could hold off on harvesting the sour cherries, I’m glad we didn’t. Yesterday early evening in the welcome mist, we picked seven pounds that are ripe and ready. In another few days we’ll pick more. Gathering some spilled cherries from the grass reminded me of a favorite childhood game, Hi Ho Cherry-O! Lots of jam in the works, too.

We purchased a super cool tool at the Lavender Festival in Sequim that we’ve already put to good use. It’s an extendable pole with a cutter and grabber on the end for harvesting fruit. We also bought a saw blade attachment for pruning tall branches. I’ll post a photo another time.

The vibrant shades of summer flowers add wonderful accents to all the green vegetables growing at Coppertop. Monarda didyma, or bee balm, is showing its stately blooms at the edge of the vegetable garden. IMG_1355

I love the textured leaves and fuzzy blossoms of this purple heliotrope in a pot on our deck. It’s one of my favorite annuals, and I’ve planted them at the front of the house as well. The flowers are known to have a cherry pie scent — as if we aren’t overflowing with cherries already! Also, heliotropes tend to turn toward the sun throughout the day; its botanical name, heliotrope, means “move with the sun.”  The flowers sometimes even turn toward the east overnight to prepare for sunrise.

IMG_1365 Ligularia steenocephala ‘Little Rocket’ is also one of my new summer favorites. I want to remember to add more of these perennials to the shade garden. Our one large specimen bloomed along the black arches in a profusion of yellow spires on dark stems  in mid June through early July. IMG_0971

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