Tuesday, May 23, 2023

beautiful may

I think May has officially become my favorite month. The weather in northeast IL is just about perfect this time of year. We've had abundant sunshine with low humidity interspersed with rain and cool days. May in this part of the country brings the start of farmer's markets, art and craft fairs, the opening of garden centers, setting up outdoor spaces and dining al fresco, working in the yard, planting flowers and vegetables, and the official start of grilling season.  

Before I show you what's going on outdoors at Comfy House, I want to introduce my latest house plant. This is a philodendron micans. I'd never seen this variety of phildendron before and fell in love with the color of the leaves, especially when the sunlight is shining through them. I found this plant at an art and craft show. Two young women run a plant business out of their home, which I thought was really cool. 

We got a "new" patio set on FB Marketplace at the end of April. I have it set up in a different way right now; this is when we first brought it home. Our old settee was literally falling apart and we didn't want our glass and metal dining table anymore. It's usually just the two of us dining al fresco and the table took up too much room. We did keep the two white wicker rockers (not shown) from the old set ~ those were still usable and gives us more seating options.

Early May is when perennials and trees truly burst into bloom around here. It's like Mother Nature's gift to us after putting up with five - six loong, dreary, cold months. 

{Celandine poppy}

{bleeding heart}

{bishop's cap}

{not my redbud tree ~ a neighbor-friend's ~ but wish I had one)

Right now, our wiegala bushes are in beautiful bloom...

Pink peonies are about to burst open...

Clematis should be budding anyday now, too. This and the peony bush are right next to each other and when they are in full bloom at the same time, it's breathtaking!

I really need to harvest this rhubarb (it is massive right now) and bake something. The past two years I relied on making a rhubarb-strawberry crisp, but this year I'd like to change it up. A friend happened to recently post these rhubarb recipes on social media and I thought they both looked yummy and different from the same ol' traditional rhubarb desserts. Give them a try with me!

Made our spring trip to one of our favorite garden centers last week.

I never plan out my gardening. I simply buy what appeals to me when I see it and hope for the best. Somehow, it always works. This time I got gerbera daisies, coleus, impatiens, nasturtium, trailing ivy, basil, rosemary, parsley, cilantro, dill, tomato plants, a purple beauty pepper plant, a red onion plant, a hanging basket of calibrochea and a hanging basket of passion flower vine.

Got a few of the bigger planters done ~ here's one that I did with nasturium and gerbera daisy. It'll look much better when it fills out and that nasturium starts blooming. By the way, see those little seedlings on the red bench? They are elm seeds and they fall by the ton. They coat our driveway, sidewalk, porch, patio, patio furniture, and plants and clog our gutters. I could leaf blow 10x/day and it wouldn't make a difference. It's like shoveling while it's still snowing.

The coleus and impatiens got planted (by Brian ~ he does most of the planting-in-the-ground stuff) on the shady north side of our house, just past the mass of ferns, in-between the hostas. Again, when these flowers fill out, this area will look much better.

Our little veggie garden all in pots. It's the only space in our small yard where we get full sun, as we're surrounded by trees.

May, for me, also brought me good news with the stray kitty, Smokey. I was able to easily get him into a carrier (he's such a sweetheart!) and brought him into Save-a-Pet. They will fully vet him, including neutering, and then he will be adoptable. When I inquired about him the other day, the intake woman said he was still very nervous and that they were cleaning his wounded ears three times a day. She said she'd keep me posted about his progress. I miss seeing him every day and feeding him, but I know this is for the best ~ not only for him, but for our community; especially since he wasn't neutered.

Now to have the same kind of luck with Blanco, the feral. After almost a year of taking care of him, I still can only get about three feet away from him before he bolts. I will be using a live trap to try and catch him. I have a feeling it's not going to be easy. He's also not neutered, so it makes me wonder how many kittens there's going to be roaming around soon. And so the cycle continues. đŸ˜¢

Lastly, another good thing May brings is graduation ceremonies. My youngest niece graduated university last week with a major in Psychology and a minor in Sociology. She's now going on for her Master's degree is Social Work. I'm so proud of her!

Hope the month of May has been beautiful for you, too.


  1. Your yard looks beautiful! I'm like you - when it's time for spring planting it's fun to go to the nursery and just get what appeals. I won't be planting much this year since we will be moving this summer, but next year, I will have my actual yard back, and can plant whatever I want. The new patio furniture is just great. What a great FB Marketplace find! It's always good to hear from you. See you again soon.

  2. ...nice terrace. I wish you many happy gardening days.
    I also have "Bleeding Heart" in the garden, and the rapeseed is blooming in our fields... it's so wonderful.
    Thanks for your rhubarb biscuits... I will bake them :-)))
    May is our dream, but so is June... I'm looking forward to the strawberries...
    a hug to you from Viola
    I wish you a really nice time.

  3. I think you may have proved that May is a true favorite month, Melanie! I think I kind of have to agree, that is until November comes around for me. Your new terrace living room is so pretty! I can see you enjoying it daily. We are finally going to some nurseries and garden centers today and hope they have something left as we haven't planted any new herbs or pepper plants yet this year. Days just slip by. I wrote down a couple of your new plants to look for. I love your new pink leaf philodendron! I'm very glad you're having a month of many lovelies there, Melanie. I kind of envy your late spring. If it weren't for the cool temps we've had, ours would be summer gardens now.

  4. I am loving this month too. And today's weather?? LOVE.
    I love your new houseplant.
    Congratulations to your niece!
    So many things to celebrate. ❤️

  5. Love the poppies and all your flowers! I'm full speed ahead on gardening too!

  6. I have never seen a philodendron like that before. Very pretty.
    May is looking very nice in your garden. I envy that rhubarb. It doesn't seem to do well here, but I did get some at the farmer's market last time I went. I'm going to check out your recipes. Enjoy your days on that lovely patio.

  7. Such a feast. Thanks for a view into the abundance of your world.

  8. Beautiful weather here, too. We're getting our garden and patios in order and it feels nice to be out in the sunshine. It's so much better than dealing with snow. Hahaha!!

  9. I know just how happy it makes you to see spring finally arrive. After getting sleet on May 1-2, I thought it would never get here. And yet it was 92 yesterday, woo boy. Still waiting for rain on my garden.


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