Friday, April 22, 2011

Fashionably Late

There are some plants that I know from past seasons are just a little later to emerge than everything else...Eupatorium, Vitis vinifera and warm-season grasses, to name a few. For plants that I just planted last season, however, it can be a harrowing wait to see if they made it through the winter.

hosta big daddy april 16 2011  166
Hosta 'Big Daddy'
I was a little surprised this one came up so late, it seems like Hostas are often some of the first plants up in the spring. I had just planted it last spring, however, and was afraid it might have rotted over the winter...luckily, this bad boy finally showed up.

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Clematis recta purpurea
Ok, so I've seen the little nubbins of growth for a month or so, but these seem to take forever to finally decide to GROW!

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Rodgersia podophylla 'Rotlaub'
I planted these last year and they grew huge leaves which looked great until, after a few weeks of hot, windy weather last summer, started to scorch and promptly retreated underground. I thought for sure they had croaked. Lo and behold, they are back! They are even beefier than last year and are growing rapidly. I'm not sure if I should transplant them to somewhere shadier (likely) or hope that they have a more established root system and with regular watering, they will be ok in their current spot. Honestly, with the hot winds my neighborhood gets during summer, I should probably play it safe and move them.

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Veronicastrum virginicum 'Fascination'
I planted these lovely ladies last spring and they seemed to do pretty well...and the blooms were AMAZING. I sort of lump them with Eupatorium (being of similar size/habit) so figured they would be later in emerging...but I was still biting my fingernails. They finally are here...and I'm jazzed. If you've never seen them before, imagine a Veronica...but taller, slimmer and far more glamorous...basically, the Kate Moss of Veronicas. They bear these long, wispy candelabras of flowers and are amazing. They can be a bit slow to get established, but 'Fascination' is supposedly a little quicker to bulk up than most of the other hybrids. To top it all off...just look at that new foliage...what a kaleidoscopic mix of purples, pinks, oranges, reds, yellows and greens!

rhus typhina balitiger april 18 2011
Rhus typhina 'Balitiger' (Tiger Eye Sumac)
I'm not sure why, but this little bush that's practically a weed for some people really doesn't like my garden...and that makes me WANT it to grow even more. I'm hoping last years strange grow/wilt/grow/wilt cycle will be broken and I will just get the "grow" part.

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Astilboides tabularis
Luckily, I was reading Loree's blog over at Danger Garden a few weeks ago and saw here mention her Astilboides was just I had hope mine wouldn't be far behind. Wouldn't you know it, the very next day I saw it's odd little head pop out of the ground.

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Rheum palmatum tanguticum
I mentioned in a previous post how I was lamenting my Ornamental Rhubarb wasn't up yet, and while it was indeed a late riser, it's now joined by 2 additional buds coming up near the original crown...awesome!!!

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Astrantia 'Abbey Road'
While my Astrantia major emerged in the first week of February, this hybrid didn't come up until almost a full 2 months later! I bought them late in the fall (as they were discounted 50% - in case you didn't know, I'm a sucker for a sale). I snatched up 5 of them and popped them right in the ground. 1 week later, we had our first freeze and they were toast. I was afraid, at the time, they might not have had enough time to settle in before the freeze. Luckily, since our cold weather typically only lasts a few days, I convinced myself that their were busy throughout our mild, wet winter putting out new roots and getting ready for spring. Then they didn't show up. A. major was up and running...but no sign from 'Abbey Road'. Finally, a few weeks ago, the first one appeared, and now they have all returned, to my sheer delight! I really, really hope they do well in this odd spot of the garden...I've been coveting these plants for years and would love to keep them happy...we'll see!

So, who does that leave, which plants STILL haven't shown their pretty little faces? Well, there are only a few...Salvia 'Purple Majesty', Rudbeckia triloba, and Agastache 'Blue Fortune'. How about all you out you have something that you're waiting patiently (or impatiently for) you have something that always keeps you on the edge of your seat, thinking it didn't make it?


  1. I love photos of new plants emerging from the earth. :) As far as waiting goes, I'm too forgetful for that, I'm afraid. I'm more likely to be surprised when I see something new come up in a bed... I leave it, and then finally have that eureka moment: "Oh YEAH! I moved 'Hadspen Blood' astrantia there last year! Yay, it's back!" lol.

    p.s. I'm not even commenting on your previous post. All those awesome-foliaged plants are way too dangerous for me to keep thinking about--I'm already out of room here!

  2. So I'm reading through your post and thinking "gosh his late-comers are so ahead of mine! Just look at those Rodgersia!" (mine are about an inch tall) and then I see you mention my Astilboides. But the funny thing is what I thought was Astilboides was actually a Podophyllum peltatum I forgot I bought from Joy Creek last summer. My Astilboides still has not made an appearance. So now it is your post that has me hoping that mine won't be far behind.

  3. Your Tiger Eyes is ahead of mine, Scott and I'm not sure mine is even alive. And your Astilboides is about the same--one leaf. I was sure mine was a gonner. Hostas are funny things. Some of mine have leafed out but others are still just barely emerging. Weird. Still no signs of arrival on my Indigofera or Crape Myrtles but they're typically late in showing up to the party. Not so fashionable if you ask me but as long as they arrive I'll be happy. Great post as usual!

  4. I love the pic of the Rheum palmatum tanguticum, great other-worldly colors on that one! My hostas seem about as far along as yours. I'm still eagerly awaiting Salvia 'Black and Blue' which are always so late for me, Echinaceas, and with baited breath, Abutilon 'Julia'

  5. For me it is Amsonia. I have both A. hubrichtii and A. tabernaemontana. They are spring bloomers, but late risers, so every year I worry they aren't coming back. Then I look through last year's notes and remind myself they just sleep late. This year they are just now starting to emerge.

  6. I have great respect for those coming out late. I view them as genetically savvy, covering their little rumps from weather that decides to sneak up on the more primitive of the bunch.

  7. Our plants sure are late in making an appearance this spring, but you can't blame them wanting to stay buried until it warms up a little more.

  8. Your photos are made me smile! This is the 3rd season I've been contorting myself to see what comes out of the ground 1st. (This is the 3rd year since I started my gardens from scratch after a home renovation.) It's been unseasonably cold and rainy - but the plants are thriving in spite of it...

  9. Blackswamp Girl: Hahahahaha...I kinda wish I could be that way...I'm maybe a little too neurotic about my plants...I'm definitely the fretful mother hen ;-)

    Danger Garden: Hahaha...I can see how you'd make the mixup...all those look very similar at that stage (I was sure it was after seeing your really looked identical!). I'm crossing my fingers for yours...I bet it'll pop up any day now. I hope you post some pics of the Podophyllum when it's bigger...those are beau-tiful!

    Grace: After how sad it was last year, I was sure the Tiger Eyes would just give up this past winter...but I guess it still has some fight left in it ;-)

    Ryan: Ahh, yes, I was going to post on 'Black and Blue', but only mentioned 'Purple Majesty' (neither has come up yet). I'm afraid they are both just about the last thing to come up for me too...and I only ever have about half of them return. I've been seeing my Echinaceas for the last 2 weeks on the East side of the house, those on the North just showed up a few days ago.

    Cherry Lane: Strangely, my Amsonia pop out of the ground really early (late Febuary) but then kind of sit there like that for a few months until the past week when they actually, finally, started to grow a bit...plants can be so strange! I have A. you like the other one as much/better?

    Compost: Hahahaha...that's a good way to look at it...and I should know about coming out later better than anyone ;-)

    keewee: Hehehe...totally...I want to stay in bed too on cold mornings!

    Shyrlene: are not neighbors must think I'm utterly crazy taking pictures of "dirt" all the time! I can't wait to see your garden take shape this season!

  10. Well, if your Astilboides and Rodgersia are just coming up, then I guess there's hope for mine. They still haven't made an appearance. No sign of my astrantia either.

  11. I did get a Tiger Eyes and have it in the ground, so we shall see how well it likes my clay soil!
    Your clematis with the red growth is pretty. I am going to look it up...very interesting.

  12. Last year we had also several plants, who are starting late.
    This year we do'nt have that problem.
    it's end of April, but it looks like half of May here now.

  13. It seems like music has found a way to appear visible to our eyes. Nice posted photos

  14. You have a wonderful selection of plants! Some plants I remember to look for, although I find it more merciful just to be surprised by what comes up.

  15. Sumac doesn't like humidity, that's my experience, esp prolonged periods of weeks. I've had complete defoliation as a result.

  16. I think my eupatoriums have just come up, too. I think one of my butterfly milkweeds is coming up. That's good, because they don't always make it every year.