Well, summer is upon us, with last week's horrendous heat wave and some strong winds that really did a number on the garden :-(
Nevertheless, things in the garden are still moving along (despite a case of powdery mildew on the Raspberry Wine monardas :-( and a suspected case of aster yellows on one of the Magnus coneflowers). So much is happening now that the garden is in full swing, that I thought I'd share a first of the year an last of the year happening today.
A last...last of the columbines (unless they surprise me with a 2nd flush of blooms). This is 'Tequila Sunrise'. I bought a trio of these plants early this spring and they have bloomed for months...really earning their keep. Alas, the time seems to have come for them to take a break. I'm hoping the foliage at least stays nice-looking, unlike 'Lime Frost' which has pretty much died back to the ground, luckily, it is hidden by the rapidly expanding patch of rudbeckia triloba in front of it.
And here we have the first coneflower of the year. This one is 'Prairie Splendour', which is supposed to bloom much earlier than regular coneflowers, but since my 'Magnus' is probably only a day or 2 from blooming right now, that isn't totally true...at least not in my garden. Then again, my garden is hardly their preferred situation, getting only 3-4 hours of direct sun a day, which goes from about 11-3 or so. Unfortunately, one of the Magnus is showing what I can only assume is the first sign of aster yellows...UGH. I have been reluctant to plant coneflowers in my garden, as I ALWAYS seem to get aster yellows. So far, it's only the one flower, so I'm hoping it's just a fluke...i'm keeping an eye on the plant, which otherwise seems totally healthy...but if I see any more shenanigans, I'll yank it out.