Flowers Around the Potting Shed + July Garden Update

Flowers Around the Potting Shed and July Garden Update | © #summer #garden #flowers #gardenshed #pottingshed

Happy Thursday, I’m sharing a July garden update this morning! This is a photo heavy post, so grab a cold drink, apply your sunscreen, and join me for a stroll around the Potting Shed to see what’s in bloom!

Hydrangeas in basket on Potting Shed door| © #summer #garden #flowers #gardenshed #hydrangeas

Endless Summer Hydrangeas are starting to fade from their vibrant spring blues to softer greens of summer.

Hydrangeas in basket on Potting Shed door| © #summer #garden #flowers #gardenshed #hydrangeas

I cut some hydrangeas to fill a basket on the door of the Potting Shed.

It was 96 degrees on Monday, with the humidity pushing the heat index to a pore-cleansing 105, when I was taking most of these photos. You know it’s July in North Carolina when it’s hot in the shade. . .

But it’s perfect weather for butterflies, who need the heat to get airborne, and thrive in 85 to 100 degree temps.

Verbena Lollipop is butterfly magnet! It’s hardy in USDA zones 6 – 10 and prefers full sun in well-drained soil.  A USDA Plant Hardiness Zone is the standard by which gardeners and growers can determine which plants are most likely to thrive at a location. We’re in zone 7b here in North Carolina.

Butterfly on verbena | © #summer #garden #flowers #butterfly

You can find your hardiness zone by zipcode, here.

Limelight Hydrangeas | © #summer #garden #flowers #hydrangeas

Fortunately the Limelight Hydrangeas don’t complain about the heat! ‘Limelight’ is a paniculata hydrangea with panicle-shaped flower heads that grow 6 to 12 inches long. Unlike other hydrangea varieties, they are drought tolerant, preferring part to full sun. Read my Public Service Annoucement: Plant a Limelight Hydrangea to find more information on this easy-to-grow shrub.

Zinnias and bumblebee | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

After seeing Pam’s garden, I planted some ‘Cut and Come Again’ Zinnias, throwing some seeds out around the first of May. They came up with no effort on my part other than daily watering. . .I had no idea growing zinnias from seed would be *sow* easy!

Zinnias and bumblebee | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

Like their namesake, ‘Cut and Come Again’, the more you cut, the more they bloom, from summer through fall. I’m looking forward to putting their name to the test! 🌸

Pollen basket on bumblebee and zinnias | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

Note the orange on the bumblebee’s hind leg: female bumblebees and honey bees have pollen baskets to collect the pollen grains to return to the nest for their offspring.

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail on butterfly bush | © #summer #garden #flowers #butterfly

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail is the most common butterfly we see fluttering around the garden. This is a female swallowtail, denoted by the large area of blue area on the hind wings.

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail on butterfly bush | © #summer #garden #flowers #butterfly

They are loving the Soda Pop Butterfly Bush, a dwarf variety Buddleia.

Organize your plant tags for easy reference! | © #summer #garden #flowers

I shared this plant tag organization tip back in the fall, but it’s worth repeating in case you missed it!

Organize your plant tags for easy reference! | © #summer #garden #flowers

I found book rings at Dollar Tree and used a hole punch to add the tags to the rings. Some of the tags already had a convenient hole at the top.

Organize your plant tags for easy reference! | © #summer #garden #flowers

I organized my tags by climbers/roses, perennials, and shrubs/trees so I can refer back as needed.  .  .so much better than having them loose and thrown together in a messy heap in a box or drawer!

Organize your plant tags for easy reference! | © #summer #garden #flowers

 Black Diamond® Crape Myrtle is in bloom! We planted a small Crimson Red™ variety in the fall, drawn to the vibrant red blooms and dramatic black foliage.

Black Diamond® Crape Myrtle | © #summer #garden #flowers

Black Diamonds are praised for their drought and heat tolerance, compact habits, fadeless foliage and vibrant bloom colors.

Organize your plant tags for easy reference! | © #summer #garden #flowers

In addition to red, they’re also available in white, pink, lavender and magenta and are hardy in zones 6-9.  You can ready more about them, here.

Flowers Around the Potting Shed and July Garden Update | © #summer #garden #flowers #gardenshed #pottingshed

Bumblebees on bee balm | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

We have a couple of varieties of bee balm, which is a favorite of the hummingbirds and bees.

Bumblebees on bee balm | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

I got a little carried away stalking the bees, buzzing around the bee balm!  🐝

Bumblebee in flight and bee balm | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

Bumblebee on bee balm | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

Bumblebee on bee balm | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

Bumblebee on bee balm | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

Bumblebee on bee balm | © #summer #garden #flowers #bees

This favorite garden flower the bees are buzzing around is a solar light I found at HomeGoods several years ago . . .

Flower solar light | © #summer #garden #flowers

It doesn’t require any watering and can tolerate extreme temps, unlike me. ;)

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail on butterfly bush | © #summer #garden #flowers #butterfly

Hope you’re enjoying some summer blooms and staying cool where you are!


Flowers Around the Potting Shed and July Garden Update | © #summer #garden #flowers #gardenshed #bees #hydrangeas #butterflies

Thank you for your visit, sharing with:

Between Naps on the Porch

  50 comments for “Flowers Around the Potting Shed + July Garden Update

  1. Ann Woleben
    July 11, 2019 at 6:28 am

    Thank you for the book ring idea for garden tags! I keep a garden journal and have placed a few tags in the journal, along with notes that I enter when trying a new plant. Your book ring idea will keep my journal from becoming too “fat.”

  2. July 11, 2019 at 6:29 am

    Thanks for sharing your garden pics. Just beautiful. I will have to try those zinnias next year!

  3. Laney Jason
    July 11, 2019 at 6:41 am

    I love everything you do. Your photos are amazing and capture every detail of Mother Nature. I am an organized person and your idea with the book rings is perfect. Thank you!
    Laney Jason

  4. Kathy M.
    July 11, 2019 at 6:46 am

    It certainly has been hot and humid here in N.C. Wish I had a lake nearby to jump into to cool off. Just was out looking around my garden to see which plants could take the heat. You are so right about Limelight Hydrangeas! They are looking great along with the other Paniculata types I have. Also the Crepe Myrtles have taken over to provide color as the Vitex face away.Annual Tithonia with its orange flowers are attractingTiger Swallowtails and I even saw my first of the season Monarch yesterday on some Joe Pye weed I planted. The cuckoo( rain crow) is calling for rain this morning so maybe a break in the heat wave. You and Lola stay cool.

  5. Susan H Whetstine
    July 11, 2019 at 6:52 am

    I’m so glad to have seen your hooks for all your information cards! That’s such a neat idea. I love looking at all the different varieties of flowers, trees and bushes you have planted. We live in the same zone so know what works already is so nice. We’re building a house and downsizing soon and I’ve been looking at what to plant. Your information is so helpful to me!!

  6. Ree Martinez
    July 11, 2019 at 7:22 am

    Love the ring hint. Beats stuffing them in an envelope. The bee pictures are wonderful. I’m learning beekeeping and so enjoyed them.

  7. July 11, 2019 at 7:25 am

    Mary, what a delight to walk around your potting shed in the early morning before it gets so hot! Everything looks so vibrant and healthy. I love the book ring idea, I don’t remember this from last fall, is that age☺️ I am so glad you planted zinnia seeds, they are such a happy flower and great for cutting. I must find the verbena “lollipop” next spring. You have sold me on that variety. I am unfamiliar with your crape myrtle, but it is unusual and I love the red blooms. The temps and humidity have been relentless but we are expecting quite a bit of rain over the next 5-6 days! Stay cool and Happy Gardening 👩🏻‍🌾

  8. Kathleen
    July 11, 2019 at 7:56 am

    Thank you for sharing your garden. We moved from Michigan to Florida five years ago and I truly miss some of the flowers that I can’t grow here. Your garden is beautiful and you capture it and the nature that enjoys it so well.

  9. July 11, 2019 at 8:00 am

    Gorgeous flowers! You are a couple weeks ahead of me, my Limelights are just now starting to get some blooms. Love the plant tag idea. Maybe I need to get rid of my big old sandwich bags of tags and get a little more organized!

  10. Ellen
    July 11, 2019 at 8:05 am

    GOOD MORNING MARY! Zinnias are my favorite flower!! I always plant cut and come again..for the very reasons you u stated…along with they are beautiful flowers all the different colors with different color centers!! I make bouquets of them all the time…I also like the giant variety…they will have long, stems that are strong and really BIG flowers..I try to water them at the base of the plant to try to avoid powdery mildew…you can’t keep it away fully but that helps..I save their seeds for next year…and, not only do I love Zinnias but unfortunately so do Japanese beetles…I have to check the plants, at least twice a day…I walk around with my bowl full of soapy water and end up with a bowl of beetle juice!! I have seen more bees this year and am happy about that..a lot more variety than before..I also keep my plant I can remember what I planted and if I liked it..the ring idea is genius..thank you…we are headed for a brief cool down…can’t wait!! Have a great day!! 🦋🐝🐛🌺🌸🌼

  11. Mary Sharon
    July 11, 2019 at 8:07 am

    Loved seeing your beautiful flowers.

  12. Bonnie Morgan
    July 11, 2019 at 8:17 am

    I don’t remember the ring idea but I love it. Do you write the dates on them? I find myself not sure when I planted things!
    Your butterfly pics are so pretty today! I haven’t had many butterflies this year and I am sad! Don’t know why. I loved looking back at your Public Service Announcement post.
    Your garden is beautiful as always.

    • July 11, 2019 at 8:41 am

      Hi Bonnie, I haven’t written the dates on the tags in the past, but will going forward. Sometimes the only way I can remember when I planted something is from a blog post. :) Maybe your butterflies are there but you’re just not seeing them? I know ours usually don’t show up until mid to late afternoon when it’s way too hot to be outside. There have been several times when my hubby is outdoors and texted me to come out and bring my camera with me. 🦋

  13. Susan B
    July 11, 2019 at 8:37 am

    Your garden looks beautiful Mary. I love the hydrangeas in he basket on the door, so pretty. My favorite is your clever idea for arranging the garden tags with the ring holders. I tried looking for the ring holders last fall but didn’t have any luck. I will try again now because I really want to organize my plant tags and your idea is brilliant. The zinnias are beautiful but I don’t plant them because they are so susceptible to powdery mildew, but they look so nice that I will give them another try next summer. It’s probably much too late to try this summer. Have a wonderful day!

  14. Dorinda Selke
    July 11, 2019 at 8:39 am

    Mary – for some reason I missed your wonderful tip on putting the plant info cards onto rings. This will now be my next project although I don’t have nearly as many as you. Hugs, Dorinda

  15. Linda Sellers
    July 11, 2019 at 8:44 am

    Beautiful flowers!
    One of My favorite Hydrangeas! I also Love Butterfly trees.

  16. July 11, 2019 at 8:53 am

    I loved strolling around your potting shed garden this morning, Mary. Thanks for the tip on organizing the plant tags. Keep cool 😎 as you water all those pretty flowers and plants. ❤️

  17. Sharon
    July 11, 2019 at 9:00 am

    Thanks for the ring idea! I must have missed that in one of your posts. You are a great photographer too. Love your gorgeous garden and the animals and insects that visit you there. 😊

  18. July 11, 2019 at 9:44 am

    Thanks for the ring idea, I had forgotten and I definitely want to do that. I LOOOOVE zinnias and don’t know why I didn’t plant them this year. I didn’t know there were “cut and come again” varieties. I will ask for them. Your hydrangeas on the door are gorgeous. My limelights are just about to start blooming! I love them. Stay cool, we are HOT too. I do not enjoy it when it is this hot. Happy summer Mary!

  19. franki
    July 11, 2019 at 9:49 am

    Well…it sounds like I’m going to have to “move” my limelight hydrangeas…not a single bloom…they are next to my oakleaf and they were prolific…course, now eaten to bits by Japenese beetles. Enjoy while you can! Luvd your photos & narrative!! franki

  20. Loryl
    July 11, 2019 at 9:50 am

    Love that ring tag idea! I used it this year and am so glad you suggested it! Better than trying to keep them in a gardening journal.

  21. July 11, 2019 at 10:21 am

    Mary, you are inspiring me to give limelight a try here. If it truly is drought tolerent and loves the summer heat, then it just might work in our garden. We can only use our irrigiation once a week, and hand watering is something I reserve for a few pots on the terrace. I wilt in the heat too! I’m also going to give the Cut and Come Again zinnias a try if I can find them. I love zinnias in the house during the summer months. Like sunflowers, they perk things up. And thanks for the reminder about the idea of saving the plant cards. Great idea!
    Happy summer! Stay cool and thanks for sharing all this beauty and helpful hints.

  22. Liz
    July 11, 2019 at 10:41 am

    Everything looks wonderful. You’e Captured some great shots of the bees and butterflies! I’ve been keeping my tags in a ring binder, staple several to a piece of paper and have them in a clear sleeve. I’ve divided them up into groups like trees/shrubs, hostas, perennials, etc. It is getting kind of fat though! I like your idea of the rings, I may switch over.

  23. Rosalinda Espinoza
    July 11, 2019 at 10:47 am

    Everything looks beautiful from your shed to the flowers. I enjoy reading your post and all of your ideas. Thank you for the plant ring idea…I usually just stick the identifier in the pot…but this idea is genius. It’s so hot in San Antonio Texas where I live… I need to find more flowering plants that will last through our summer heat. Love reading your blog and all the beautiful things you share with us.

  24. mel
    July 11, 2019 at 10:56 am

    Love love love your hydrangeas!

  25. Donna Milazzo
    July 11, 2019 at 11:09 am

    I’m glad I could enjoy your ‘toasty’ garden from the comfort of my family room couch!! So many gorgeous images Mary! I’m going to try the Limelight Hydrangeas even though I’m in Zone 10 and hope for the best. Those butterflies are SO pretty. Just yesterday I was doing a paint refresh on a little ‘Welcome’ sign that I’m sure my MIL got at the dollar store. The neon blue/pink butterfly was just not doing it for me, so I looked up a Swallowtail and repainted it as best I could to match the Swallowtail’s beautiful pattern. I had never paid attention to the details before, and the Eastern with its blue highlights is even more lovely. Would love to have you write a post on photography tips – you are a master!

  26. Susan
    July 11, 2019 at 12:42 pm

    your garden is so wonderful! Your tip on garden zones was very helpful; I live in a microclimate zone combining 7A and 7B. The plant marker’s organization is something I will be sharing with all my gardening friends.

    Have a cool and blessed day!


  27. July 11, 2019 at 1:12 pm

    I got so excited when I saw the notification email in my inbox today that your post was all about flowers around your fabulous potting shed! Love all the pictures and the ring idea deserved a reminder. I love bumble bees so much but I can never seem to capture them on camera the way you do. That “in flight” picture made me giggle with delight! I saw a new butterfly in my yard yesterday too. I think it was some sort of black swallowtail. I also want to try those popsicle verbenas in the yard. I’m borderline zone 5-6 so maybe, just maybe they would work here. Anyway…loved this post and will enjoy it more than once today!

  28. Marilyn
    July 11, 2019 at 3:04 pm

    Gorgeous flowers,

  29. Joan
    July 11, 2019 at 3:06 pm

    Mary Thank You for sharing your beautiful garden.

  30. Marion
    July 11, 2019 at 3:07 pm

    Love the butterflies around and on the flowers.

  31. July 11, 2019 at 4:29 pm

    Love all you photos, especially the bees and butterflies. Your garden is always amazing, thanks for sharing! Sandi

  32. July 11, 2019 at 4:36 pm

    Your garden is beautiful, thank you for sharing it with us ☀️😎

  33. Susie
    July 11, 2019 at 4:55 pm

    OMG where did you get that basket on the door? It’s just perfect!

  34. July 11, 2019 at 5:43 pm

    Zinnias will always have a special place in my heart-enjoy:@)

  35. Clara
    July 11, 2019 at 7:02 pm

    Mary, A lovely stroll through beautiful gardens after a very busy work day. Thanks for sharing. I love your ideas & your pics are fabulous! Clara ❤️

  36. Carol
    July 11, 2019 at 8:23 pm

    Oh how I enjoyed all your photos today. I live in the Phoenix area, and my car temp showed 117 about 3 p.m. today, so needless to say, not many flowers around here!

  37. Cyndi Raines
    July 12, 2019 at 12:03 am

    Loved the tour, beautiful pictures. Zinnias are such happy flowers, so colorful and bright. Need to remember to plant some next year. Love the butterfly pics. Great job Mary! 🌸🌞🐝🌻🌼🦋

  38. July 12, 2019 at 10:14 am

    I could spend all day “walking” around yours and Pam’s gardens Mary, so much glorious eye candy, tips and interesting facts! Especially in the comfort of AC while I stroll through on my laptop :) I love the way you organized your plant info tags, so smart! Summer in the south can be challenging, and here come the hurricanes, double ugh!! Stay cool ☀️

  39. Rita C.
    July 12, 2019 at 9:40 pm

    I love your garden and how you’re experimenting each year with new plants, Mary. All the close up photos of bees, butterflies and blooms makes me happy to see and reminisce. We’ve been having the same heat and, apart from our tornadoes here in the city on June 24th, have had next to no rain since or in the foreseeable forecast. This is the time of year when I’d hate even going out to water the containers. We’ve been walking at 7am to beat the heat. Keep the garden updates coming. I love seeing them. Love that basket on your shed door too. Have a good weekend.

  40. July 13, 2019 at 5:06 am

    Incredibly beautiful photos of the flowers, bees and butterflies. Wow! What a joy! I hope your summer will be perfect!

  41. Ginny
    July 13, 2019 at 10:02 am

    One of my favorite Saturday morning activities…. endless coffee and catching up on your blog! Your photos & flowers are incredible & flowers make me so happy! Please never stop!

  42. s
    July 13, 2019 at 10:08 am

    Thanks so much – love your pics! I have to be content now to flowers on the deck but have been enjoying them there. I haven’t seen as much of the little bumblebees this year but always love to watch them. Did not know about the little “tote” they carry! Stay cool as I enjoy flowers so much but do not like 90 degree weather!! Oh well it is July!!!

  43. July 16, 2019 at 8:57 am

    Thanks for this post….you just made my day!!! So pretty….I love the idea of organizing my plant tags with the binder rings. Great Idea!! Have a great week and try to stay COOL!!!

  44. June Fisher
    July 16, 2019 at 12:37 pm

    I am in love with your Potting Shed sign. I want one just like it. Do you know what company made it.
    It has already served a purpose by leading me to your page and I love it!

  45. Kathleen
    August 16, 2019 at 8:27 pm

    Love the plant tag organization idea. I was trying to keep mine in a binder sleeve and they never would end up there.

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