Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Volunteers are something I have a lot of! See all these pretty blue bachelor buttons? They all volunteered. I started with one clump from a friend and now I have them everywhere! The light blue flowers are forget-me-nots and I never planted one! My problem is the minute I decide to pull them out and get rid of them someone will say they wish they had some and I won't have any left to give them. I hate waste!
This gravel stairway has been here for almost 20 years. The dirt is like cement but look here! There is feverfew, toadflax and violets all volunteering in the path. If I tried to grow something here it would never grow.
Here are a pink and a purple wild columbine, white violets and the wild strawberries I mentioned before all growing in hard packed gravel.
This is another clump of bachelor buttons.
More Bachelor buttons and columbine.
This is a favorite of mine but I didn't plant it here. It's a Japanese anemone and I dug them all out a couple years ago. I moved some and gave some away. I know I'm getting old and forgetful but I'm sure I didn't plant one here!
I really do love my volunteers. The only problem is when they plant themselves in these conditions I can't really share them because I can't dig the roots up. How about you, do you love or hate your volunteers? Do you pull them out when they are small so you won't feel guilty about throwing away plants? Could you possibly be one of those heartless people who wants everything perfect and considers any plant growing where you don't want it a weed? Does anyone out there need any bachelor buttons?


Sara said...

Hi Jean,

I too love finding the volunteer plants and flowers around my garden. I like to nurture them if they have been hidden away by another plant. I recently found some wild violets that I have never seen in the garden before. What a find!
Sara from farmingfriends

"Early Bird" said...

I noticed at my friends house the other day that she had quite a few "volunteers"...I think it is neat...kind of like "Survivor" plants...

PEA said...

I have Johnny Jump Ups growing in the gravel in our driveway beside the house and I would never dig them up! I figure if they want to grow there, then so be it! lol If I have any volunteers I leave them be unless they're in a spot where it's not safe for them to be in, then I just transplant them somewhere else. xox

Teeny Tiny cabin said...

Hi Jean,
I don't have any volunteers yet-but I would love them.
I loved all the pictures of your garden and all the charming things you have done using collectible and interesting containers.
Absolutely love your fountain idea, I've never seen anything like it! And your header is gorgeous! Blessings to you! Claudia O.

OldBagNewTricks said...

I love LITTLE volunteers... however, I have spent five years removing (paying to remove) volunteer TREES that the previous homeowner allowed to grow unchecked... through the fence, through the deck, too close to the garage that the roots raised the floor. So I am of two minds for volunteers -- the good guys and the bad guys. Yours are darling.

Anita said...

Oh, I would love to get some of your volunteer plants - if you were not that far away from me!

And yes, I do LOVE the plants that are roaming my garden, too! Especially the columbines....

Happy gardening!

Best wishes from Germany,