Friday, July 29, 2011

Middle of the Midwest

Have grown up in the midwest, we can't help but feel a fondness for an Ohio garden in mid-summer. Visiting my mom in the heart of Ohio's Amish Country last week gave us chance to admire those staples of a midwestern summer garden - Black-eyed Susans, coneflowers, Shasta daisies, hostas, and daylilies galore!

Some of these plants will grow in central Florida, but they don't thrive in quite the same fashion. Hosta here rarely receives the cold dormant winter period it requires, and certainly doesn't grow so prolifically that neighbors will happily let you dig up large clumps to start your own gardens. These plants are beloved up north as excellent ground cover almost anywhere, and the tall flower spikes that begin in mid-summer are a draw for butterflies and hummingbirds.

Speaking of butterflies and hummingbirds - we found Eastern Tiger Swallowtail butterflies just about everywhere in Ohio this time of year. These are found in Florida as well, but they don't seem to be seen in such great numbers.

And the hummingbirds! They are rare visitors in My Florida Backyard, especially in the summer when the heat is simply too much for the tiny creatures. But in the midwest, Ruby-Throated hummingbirds are a common sight all summer long, visiting nectar plants and sugar water feeders throughout the day and tempting nature-lovers with cameras to take way too many pictures (we've narrowed it down to a couple of our favorite shots).

A midwestern sunset can be pretty beautiful, but at the end of the day, we're always happy to return to My Florida Backyard. In a few months, our gardens will still be full of blooms while those up north will be covered in snow, and that's something we just wouldn't trade for anything!


  1. What a beautiful yard and garden! That hosta looks so healthy! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Lovely home and gardens. I would love to be able to grow some of the flowers that northerners can grow, but alas, you know how it is. Glad you had a wonderful time in Ohio.

    Have a great weekend ~ FlowerLady

  3. It's always nice to see gardens in other areas of the country, and this one is very nice. Great Hummer pic.

  4. Really, what fantastic shots of the hummingbird. So cute. I always wanted lots of those hostas. They're so amazing, but we have caladiums instead so I guess we're even. Your parents garden is lovely. My sister is in Cincinnati. She says its HOT and HUMID!!

  5. I miss the hostas,not to mention the Lili-of-the-Valley,peonies,etc.....but we have had an abundance of hummingbirds and Eastern Tiger Swallowtails,this year.Go Figure.I guess only Mother Nature knows....

  6. Hello I just stumbled onto this blog. I am from Zephyrhills :) My husband is from Ohio. We wanted to know what the star on the side of the house is for. When we visited Ohio last year they where on almost every house.

    By the way you pictures are beautiful!