Sunflowers Everywhere Green Hour Challenge #16

Here are last year’s sunflowers starting to bloom. This year we are going to have quite a few more to share with you but last year these ended up producing an amazing amount of seeds for the birds.

For this challenge we were to plant our sunflower seeds but since we did it early in anticipation of the challenge, we are already enjoying the fruits of our labor.

We have some that are getting to be about a foot high already. I planted a mix of seeds so and in this garden bed they are all short so they won’t cover my window where I sit at my desk and look out.

I think they will look like these from a few years ago and will be multi-colored.

I sent both boys out with their nature journals to sketch some of the sunflower seedlings and here are their entries along with mine.

I think it is interesting to note how we each have our own style of recording things in our journals.

One chose to draw a more “scientific” style drawing looking at it from the side-view. One son chose to draw it by standing and looking down at it showing the leaves. Then there is my journal where I attempt to take in one whole garden box with the beans, the rudbeckia, the marigolds, the weeds, and the sunflowers.

Well, that is how we accomplished our Outdoor Hour Challenge #16. By the end of the summer we will have quite a few sunflowers to observe and draw and share with the birds.

Morning Glories and Passion Flowers

This morning I noticed for the first time that the newly transplanted passion flower is starting to cling to the garden arch that my husband made for me a few weeks ago.

I love the twirly little way it sends out its tendrils to grab the bars of the arch.

I also was interested to find that my morning glories are starting to get their first true leaves and how differently they are shaped than the emerging leaves.

I was looking in the Handbook of Nature Study for morning glories but couldn’t find them directly listed, except for a little mention in the hedge bindweed section on pages 518-519. But the description of the leaves sounds just like the morning glory plant.


“The leaves are arrow-shaped, with two long backward and outward projecting points, or “ears”, which are often gracefully lobed. “

We are really enjoying our study of garden flowers this year. We always have a garden but this time with the focus on learning each plants name, the names of their parts, and a little about it, we are seeing so much more.

I can’t resist sharing my new birdfeeder station with you. My husband picked up the pole to hang the feeders on and I chose two different kinds of feeders, hoping to attract a different kind of bird to our yard. We are also going to be planting the Thompson Seedless grapes on a short fence in this little spot to add a little green and shelter for the birds. The vines on the fence will also hide the ugly green propane tank you see on the right of the photo. :)

Vine Study Button

Colors of the Garden: Shamrocks and Rudbeckia

My daughter loves all things about Ireland and she planted these shamrocks a few years ago in her garden box.

This year they are blooming with this delicate pink flower. The first photo is the flower and the second shows the leaves and plant. Interesting huh?

Here is another photo of interesting leaves from my garden. I just found the packing slip that told me what this plant is in my garden box…..Black Beauty Rudbeckia. It is a variety of coneflower and will have a dark, purplish flower when it blooms. For now, we are really enjoying the colors of the leaves and the stem of the plant.

I found on the internet that it will grow to be 5 to 6 feet tall. I can hardly wait to see it full grown and blooming. Of course I will share photos.