Greeneville's 14th annual Iris Festival

Hello friends,,,,,,,, Maddie here, just checking in while at the library. Today and tomorrow is the celebration in Greeneville of their 14th annual Iris Festival. I'm looking forward to checking out what all they do during the weekend. Not much money to benefit from the crafts, but there will be irises and story telling and the walk today was most uplifting to the library, seeing the cordoned off old towne set up with neat things to check out and do.
Spring is in full blown array here.......we've had cooler weather which the older folk would insist on being "blackberry winter" as the blackberry canes everywhere are blossoming right now. No freeze in town, but I'm sure there has been frost up in the surrounding mountains.
I'm seeing peonies, Dutch iris, some bearded iris, and now a lot of roses blooming in yards. Heuchera is setting up spires of little tiny lanterns on the clumps of plants I have seen where people plant them. Down the street, on the corner, someone has a serious passion for the old bearded irises, and the variety of colors and type are really neat to see. I also spotted breadseed poppies in yards where I know there resides an older gardener..........I miss my oriental poppies this year. I dug them up successfully and they're 48 miles from me at the moment.............
This weekend I will soak peat pots and plant beans and okra to tuck into a strip along the west back fence. As the pots swell, I will remove the strip of grass and chunk out the soil to plug the little pots into once they germinate. It's still not the time as some older gardeners would tell me to plant things like tomato's despite that mine have been in the soil now for over four weeks.
I've spotted a source for a few snagged seed pods of blue columbine along my walk, if I don't snip them, they will be chopped off and discarded. And I intend on walking down to where those impressive clumps of opium poppies are at and ask for seeds once the pods start to mature and ripen. I've become less shy about asking people for seeds lately. Life is too short to hang back and be tongue tied. I'm still begging seeds, tubers, roots, rhizomes and divisions from anyone feeing my angst at not being able to reach any of my remaining perennials and bulbs from Vinca Ridge (formerly Faerie Holler.....which by the way I will have another Faerie Holler which is why I renamed the ridge that, as you should see all the vinca that took over once I dug up all the perennials and bulbs!! LOL). I fear once I get transportation capabilities, I will have lost quite a few things to just dying without enough water. I am willing to face my losses. I more want the survivors, the wonderful pots and containers, and that black soil to add to the future beds around this house as you've all read in the past writings.
I have started a few of Helen's seeds she sent me, and hopefully I will have some flowers to tuck in here and there. I don't do well with some seeds, but the ones that drop and grow are what do well with me........Columbine, cleome, blackberry lily, 4 o'clocks, rudbeckia, anything that reseeds with abandon and without encouragments........not to mention rampant dividers and makers of many children are welcome still by me. I didn't (DON'T FLAME ME PLEASE) have the time to dig up my purple loosestrife, it behaved for me very well and didn't reseed at all.........I had the two plants I dug up in Michigan where it IS a thug, and didn't get Gooseneck loosestrife either...........Lost my varigated Fallopia as well, which I hate, but maybe I'll find a source later on. It didn't spread for me either. I had great luck with the Hellebore eventually, and I'm champing at the bits to get my potted daylilies back to plug them into a temporary bed. Any bulbs of narcissus I'll plant now and leave them when I move. But I'll be here for at least another year..........and given our plans, maybe a bit more than that.
The trees have all leafed out here, and the thunderstorms and lightening we had a few days ago fed the leaves some nourishing nitrogen and the greens are darker. I have had a positive encounter with a wren who spotted my discarded and emptied thistle seed socks in the driveway..........apparently the starlings were imposing and too threatening, and once the wren spotted the dumped seed, she started coming regularly to her own private buffet! I have inclinations to put one of the bird feeders on the eastern side near the bedroom window like what I had on the ridge, despite being overrun by robins..........and hope for the best. And one on the western side near the unused driveway beside the herb garden and hope to draw cardinals and other hidden birds. I still miss finches and hope desperately that once my flowers bulk up and I plant more and more, that the word will be spread to more varieties of them. Time will tell and at least there's mockingbirds and cardinals and robins and wrens! Mourning doves are alright but I'm not nuts about the starlings. A few bluejays, but not as many as I would have thought. I've heard a woodpecker, but not seen anything else due to being in the older part of town. Gloria, however has a good assortment. I even miss the titmouse!! oh well........
I will close for now and go wandering down the road and see if there's neat things to see. I hope you all have a good weekend, and the weather is kind to you. Gentle rains, and sunshine and just cool enough weather to keep the petals on the flowers a bit longer.
All my love to my gardening friends, thanks for allowing me to share........
maddie up in the green bowl, surrounded by the Cherokee National Forest and the Appalachians and gardening in an historic part of town in zone 6b -7a

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