Meet the Sweet William Flowers part of the Dianthus family of flowers!
Pretty easy to grow and once you have a spot they like, they keep coming back due to seeding so well here in our garden.
We grow most everything directly into the soil, the few plants we grow in pots I clearly state this since there is not to many outdoor plants we grow in pots, I need the pots for my indoor flowers and plants. We are big into seeds and the Sweet Williams seed quite well!
We have a ok sized cluster of Sweet Williams growing inside our six foot fence of many colors! Some years one color dominates, while other years we have several, just never know what color is going to bloom. This is the west side of the garden looking towards Mount Jefferson.
Guy does supplement the soil with our compost pile which consists of everything from the kitchen. Coffee grounds, fruits,vegetables,gosh anything natural that can be broken down AND a very healthy worm population!
Watering, this is the High Desert of Oregon. We get what seven inches of water a year or something? Not much water in other words! I , we water two time a day. Early morning before the sun gets hot. Then we water in the evening. This takes a good hour each, if not more.... never timed the watering. Unlike Guy I have a hard time standing or sitting still in one spot watering (I have not physically worked like he has all day long. I am not as tired as Guy ha), so I have a tendency to wonder about while the water is doing its thing. Guy's rule of thumb is four to six inches down of soil must be moist.
When I moved here from the coast, and before that the Valley growing here in the High Desert was different!! The coast it was always wet, always misting. In the Valley everything seamed to grow earlier then here, and watering sure you watered but nothing like here!! Guy is the one who taught me about growing a garden here in the High Desert!
Make sure you know what growing zone you are in for new plants and flowers. Or I tell folks to look to see what your neighbors are growing. How they are growing. Watch their routine, or if they are chatting type folks stop and ask! Some of us gardeners have routines , some folks do not mind folks stopping by to chat. While other times it is nice to work and talk! I like the working and talking this way my flowers still get the attention they have to have, though a lot of work goes on where the public just cant go. The dogs are rather protective of me and it is best if they can see who has stopped to chat. This is after all the dogs job.
Guy is another story! Guy does not chat, period. Very rarely can anyone get two words out of him haha! This is why I say perhaps just keep a eye on what your neighbors are growing, what does well for them. Then spend the money on your own garden, yard or landscape design? Some gardeners are just busy. Let the more experienced gardeners spend their money to see what will grow in your area. We have folks come by here a lot!! We just figure this is what they are doing. Fine by us....
Kind of a funny thing.... we had some busy bodies showing up. They were so wanting to know what was inside our fence haha!! One come through the mulch pile, though some of the flowers (stepping on some), just to see inside the fence haha!! This is where a lot of our prized flowers are growing! The ones I have hand pollinated, bred. The flowers I am real protective of, the ponds etc. are at. Hopefully they seen what they wanted to see and to gossip to the others so they dont do this haha
Most all of our Sweet Williams Flowers bloom out of the public's eye. No real reason. In 2014 we tried some other places of the garden which is outside our six foot fence and can be seen by the public however on the north side and the hollyhocks really did steal most of the sunshine from this batch. We will just see what they do in 2015.
I added one photo of a butterfly on the Sweet Williams, butterflies love the Sweet William Flowers. Can not say this enough!! Since of course the biggest batch of Sweet Williams grows inside the big fence the butterflies get used to me and land on the Sweet Williams a foot or so from my chair.
The dogs have gotten into this area before, ripping up , stepping on basically destroying what we had growing in this area before, the Sweet Williams bounced right back and bloomed!!
The shot above is the Sweet Williams opening up! Here soon enough I will get back into my spring and summer routine which is getting outside early where you do get to see such things as the Sweet Williams uncurling. You can also see several buds that will be opening soon enough after I took that shot.
The red color there of that Sweet Williams flower? When the sun hits that the photographs come out real funky. The red just absorbs so much light!! Since I personally have my camera settings the way I like them, I do not change my settings for such flowers. I just wait for the sun to move. I rely on natural light myself. Some folks dont and this is cool to. Whatever floats your boat!
There are several colors of Sweet Williams blooming here and no real color attracts the butterflies more or less then the other , at least to my observations. We have many swallowtails and skippers butterflies who come to the Sweet William Flowers. We do have a selection of butterflies who visit here however some come here for things like a drink, or to visit whatever flower is their favorite. It just seams to me planting most of these Sweet Williams near the Honeysuckle has worked out for us.
In this shot you can see a leaf from another flowering plant we have and that is for a whole other post. We do plant thick. That is plants live, grow and fight for the sun and the room to grow here. When one grows in pots, you do not have this happening. It just appears to us that the flowers are hardier doing things this way in which we might be wrong? Planting thick works for us and we have learned what flowers do really well around other species of flowers. What draws things such as Butterflies, hummingbirds etc when we plant thick like this. Our Sweet Williams gets more attention from the pollinators growing near the Honeysuckle.
Seeding, oh my goodness does the Sweet Williams seed well!! When I think about it I have been known to pinch off the seed pods for our Sweet Williams just seed and seed..... Like some of the other flowers, new seeds are always welcomed and at this moment I can not remember if I got new seeds in or not?
We also like the plant itself. I think it is pretty then when the flowers come it is just a huge plus!
Above I added a shot of the swallowtail on the Sweet Williams
Some of these photographs were pulled out of my archive so I can not tell you if they are uploaded to the flower album or not at this point? It is already 2015 , new photographs are being taken and I am not done with the 2014 photographs yet! Keep me busy ha!
Thank you for coming by and checking out my Sweet Williams Flowers. The Sweat Williams really will look fantastic in your garden!! Either by seeds or perhaps you can find plants to buy and just pop them into the ground? Just because we have not had these grow in pots does not mean they wont? That might be a interesting thing to try for us? Who am I kidding, Guy does not have such time ha! I could try it some day?