Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day - June 15, 2011

GBBD June 2011
Wow, how can it be the middle of June already! After a week of being sick and kind of ignoring everything, I am amazed at just how much progress the garden has made in the past month. Everything seems just so much bigger and farther ahead of where it was last year at this time. Of course, some of that is due to the fact that things are more established than last year. We've had some pleasantly cool, overcast days the past week (even got a smattering of rain a few days ago), and the garden is loving it...and looks great.

East Border from South  350
Here you can see the definite palette of the spring garden tends to be in the yellow/gold and purple/blue spectrums. Some of it is by design, but a lot of it is just luck!

east border from north  348
Here is the same border from the opposite direction. Some of the sections of this garden were re-planted last fall, due to my growing realization that the light and soil in certain parts of the bed are totally different than the rest of it. I'm hoping that by the end of this season, everything will have filled in, so far, the new plants are much happier than their predecessors (more on this in a later post).

pink lupine  336
Pink hybrid Lupine
I posted about this pink Lupine in a previous post...and how it was stolen late that same day! There are now a few new blooms coming up, so I guess I can forgive whoever that mean, awful, horrible person was...sorta ;-)

Iris 'Gerald Darby'
I was really surprised that this Iris bloomed this year, but I'm not complaining! It's a very soft, opalescent blue/purple with nice contrasting veining. It looks smashing blooming on top of it's near-black stems. I can't wait to see this plant bulk up and fill in its space in the coming years. As a bonus, it looks great in contrast with Astrantia 'Ruby Wedding' that grows nearby.

astrantia ruby wedding  344
Astrantia 'Ruby Wedding'
And here is 'Ruby Wedding', one of my growing collection of Astrantias. I was unsure how I felt about these darker-colored Astrantias, thinking they might be too dark and fade into the background. True, they are a bit more somber than many other flowers, but I find them to be lovely and sophisticated. As a bonus, this Astrantia also has foliage that is flushed with a deep maroon-red, a wonderful accent. I've also found that so far, Astrantias seem very vigorous and easy-going. For some reason, I thought they might be very persnickety...then again, we haven't hit summer's heat and wind their resolve WILL be tested eventually!

Pimpenella major rosea
Pimpinella major 'Rosea'
I actually just purchased this from Joy Creek Nursery a few weeks ago. I was surprised at just how floriferous it turned out to be. One little plant has expanded to fill a decent amount of space, although airily, and has started throwing out these delicate umbels of softest pink flowers.

centranthus and nepeta  june 13 2011
Centranthus ruber with Nepeta 'Walkers Low'
These are both wonderful, traditional, cottage-type plants. They are vigorous, free-flowering and wonderfully informal. I have them planted in a patch together with Geranium 'Rozanne' and they grow together to form a mass of color.

Columbine combos astrantia major  346
Columbine 'Tequila Sunrise'Astrantia major
The Columbines have gone crazy this year, with some plants pushing 4'tall. I always love their loose, informal branching and how their blooms seem to float in the air. The Astrantia is an unnamed variety I have growing in a difficult far, they seem very happy. I may have to re-arrange them a bit, as they seem to be especially vigorous, but I'm giving them a year or so to settle in and then I'll re-assess them. Love those pink and green-tinged bracts.

Astrantia abbey road h 2
Astrantia 'Abbey Road'
I have this interplanted with the above Astrantia, and while it's much bushier, seems to be a bit shorter. I think this is the Astrantia color I like most, a deep wine-red...not terribly noticeable from a distance, but stunning up close and en masse.

Nepeta  june 13 2011
Nepeta 'Walkers Low'
Again, you can't really go wrong with Catmint...beautiful in its own right, and a wonderful companion to other plants, softening hard edges and easing transitions.

knautia macedonica 2  june 13 2011
Knautia macedonica 'Mars Midget'
The shortest of the Knautias I have planted and the first to bloom. I was unsure how I would feel about the color of these last year, but they are very different in bloom than how they appear in many photos. They aren't pure red, but more of a claret color...much prettier and easier to work with. They harmonize well with almost everything I can think of. A bonus, they bloom from early June until frost!

Allium and Erysimum
Allium 'Purple Sensation' and Erysimum 'Bowles Mauve'
I have about a dozen of these Allium scattered throughout the garden, and plan to ad MANY more this fall. Along with the later-flower drumstick Allium, they add great vertical accent and wonderful points of color throughout the garden.

Linaria Purpurea Ann Folkard V
Linaria purpureaGeranium 'Ann Folkard'
I was intrigued by the Linaria after reading Andrew Keys wonderful post on them at his blog last year. So far, they are a bit spindly (it is their first year), but have attained a nice height and are now blooming. I really hope they do reseed as they are ephemeral enough to be allowed to grow up around other plants, adding their delicate verticality and stunning red-purple flowers. Geranium 'Ann Folkard' is one of my garden grows rampant in my garden in spring/early summer, weaving the garden together with it's wonderful chartreause foliage and now, it's intensely-colored flowers. The blooms are small, but the color is outstanding. Violet-magenta with a contrasting black eye and veining.

Dutch Iris and Persicaria Lance Corporal
Dutch Iris with Persicaria 'Lance Corporal'
I got a bag of these Dutch Iris at a Box Store this fall. I forgot about them and planted them in a guilty frenzy just a few months ago. Amazing, they all seem to have emerged, and in a lovely array of colors. This is a purple one, which I think contrasts nicely with the foliage of nearby Persicaria 'Lance Corporal'

geranium katherine adele  349
Geranium 'Katherine Adele'
I'm really guessing at what Geranium this really is, I bought it at the HPSO sale a few years ago, and realized after I got home, it didn't have a label...oops! Does it really matter, however, when the foliage is as stunning as can be...and the flowers are so light and delicate...I think not!

Oxalis crassipes
Oxalis crassipes
This has to be the bloomingest Oxalis ever. It will truly bloom at this rate all summer long. I never know how it manages to save enough energy to make it through winter!

Ligularia the rocket Astrantia Maxima
Ligularia 'The Rocket'Astrantia maxima
Two new plants in the "shady" portion of our backyard. The Ligularia surprised me a few weeks ago by sending up blooms spikes. I considered cutting them off, so the plant could focus on getting established this year, but thought, "What the hell", might as well enjoy them! Astrantia maxima is a bit different from my other Astrantias...the leaves are divided into 3 leaflets (rather than the more typical 5) and the flowers have much wider's a very interesting effect.

Amsonia hubrichtii
Amsonia hubrichtii
While the flowers of Amsonia are not its claim to fame (that would be its glorious fall color), they aren't bad. The color is the palest, milky sort of blue, and are easy to miss on smaller plants (like mine). Still, they are pretty in a very understated way.

geranium rozanne  342
Geranium 'Rozanne'
Geranium 'Rozanne' is a plant that most gardeners are familiar with at this point. She is the unstoppable superstar of the Geranium family. While this is a pic of one of the new plants I planted this spring, the plants that returned from last year are enormous already, almost 2' x 3'...and are just on the cusp of blooming...can't wait!

rodgersia aeuscifolia  338 sidalcea  337
Rodgersia aescufoliaSidalcea oregana
The fist bloom is of Rodgersia Aeuscufoli, and while not terribly impressive, is the first Rodgersia bloom I've had in my garden, so I just had to share it! While grown primarily for their range of stunning foliage, Rodgersias do bloom, with the blooms resembling those of Astilbe. The Sildacea, or Checker Mallow, is a quaint native plant I got at the Audubons Society's annual Native Plant Sale last spring. It really 'slept' last year and didn't do much of anything. This year, however, it's already pushing 3' tall and has sent up numerous spires of these delicate blooms. Not a show-stopper, but definitely a nice accent.

Tiarella pacific crest
Tiarella 'Pacific Crest'
I'm surprised this Tiarella is still's been pumping out flowers for over a month...and is spreading in all directions at the same time. Love it.

Persicaria taurus
Persicaria amplexicaulis 'Taurus'
Ok, so this is barely a bloom, but I wanted to include it because I was surprised it was starting to bloom so early (a good month before when it usually blooms for me).

Sanguisorbia pink elephant Clematis Recta Purpurea flower  june 13 2011
Sanguisorbia 'Pink Elephant'Clematis recta purpurea
While I love the crazy, spontaneous way that Sanguisorbias tend to sprawl all over and lend their little buttons of color, I'm hoping that mine gets a little more self-supporting next year. It gets about 6' tall and then flops all over. The Clematis is really grown for it's outstanding purple foliage (which is now starting to green as the weather warms) but the flowers are nice and airy, if not terribly showy. They are supposed to have a sweet fragrance, but I haven't noticed any yet.

blue purple lupine  339
Blue hybride Lupine
It figures that the one blue Lupine in the mixed pack I bought would show up in the middle of a huge patch of Catmint and Geranium 'Rozanne'...hmmmm. Oh well, I'm still crushing on it, and it was a surprise, as it didn't bloom last year.

Front Garden June 15 2011  347
Front Garden
And here are the front and side gardens in (pretty much) their entirety. The back yard is actually starting to take shape and will get it's very own post soon. Thanks to Carol at May Dreams Garden for hosting Garden Bloggers Bloom Day each month. I can't wait to start making the rounds to all your other blogs to see whats blooming. Also, check back later this week (maybe early next week) for my Foliage Follow-Up...lots of good stuff there too!


  1. It looks like you can pretty much just point the camera in any direction and see pretty blooms! (where as I have to walk around my garden looking for overall shot like yours above would never make it into my bloomday post!). The blue Lupine is a knock-out. Reminds me of all the wild ones we saw along I-84 last weekend on our road trip. So beautiful!

  2. I mean this is one beautiful crowdscaped area here, I love everything in it. I can see how one would be tempted to cut that Lupine! Glad you have more now.

  3. Your Astrantia maxima is a new one to me. Very interesting. The Jupiter's beard and catmint go so well together, don't they? I hope nobody steals your new Lupine blossoms. They're gorgeous. Love that Rozanne photo too.

  4. Everything looks great Scott! Looking at your garden I realize that mine might be too heavily weighted for mid to late summer flowers. I'll have to keep your set of plants in mind when shopping to even things out.

  5. Gorgeous! I've never heard of Pimpinella. It reminds me a bit of Achillea, but more delicate, and hopefully not as aggressive at spreading. I'll have to check it out. I like Achillea's flowers, but they are thugs.

    And the blue Lupine is going to look stunning. It actually looks like it might be blue and white.

  6. beautiful garden and photographs! most of those plants are unfamiliar to me - thank you for being so detailed with their identification!

  7. You have so many interesting plants. All beautiful and your photos are so vibrant and colorful. I love them!

  8. Your garden is stunning - the soft purples and yellows are wonderfully spring-ish, and your photography shows it off amazingly. I love how everything is stuffed in together...particularly the red valerian & catmint.

  9. Wanna trade houses? Pretty please?

  10. I ditto Liza ;) Scott you have such a gorgeous garden. The flowers are simply stunning and I'm in love with the combinations. You have a real talent with your camera too, your captures are truly beautiful! What a wonderful document of your garden, I'm feeling inspired. Cheers

  11. Hi Scott. Glad you are feeling better.Wow, your garden is really gorgeous now. I love your Astrantia 'Ruby Wedding'. What a pretty one. I am so jealous of your Lupines. I have no luck with them. And I just have to put that oxalis on the "never ending list". Gorgeous.

  12. I took a while to savor your garden...everything is lovely! I particularly like your front garden with plants and blooms billowing out over the edges...wonderful! Happy GBBD!

  13. You can never have too many astrantias or harde geraniums. Your garden has some lovely combinations.

  14. What a feast! I am sure many passers-by screech to a halt to admire your garden. Here's hoping not too many of them take it to the next level and help themselves to a bouquet.

  15. Great gardens, great blooms Scott! Happy Bloom Day!

  16. Wow, your garden is looking great! I love the yellow/gold/purple/blue colors.

    I also love 'Ruby Wedding' and the fact that you showed us a landscape shot so we can better visualize where all of your gorgeous flowers live.

  17. Hard to believe that any part of that beauty happened by accident. Gorgeous. Your Gerald Darby bloom is much lighter than mine (which is deep purple). Also, I bought an astrantia last week and it was your fault.

  18. Your garden looks so good! I love the colors that are blooming right now. I have Linaria, I really like it a lot, but it does reseed everywhere. I usually cut them back by half after they bloom and they will bloom again. I hope my Astrania blooms this year, it's got lots of leaves but no flowers yet. I didn't realize there were so many types. Beautiful pictures!

  19. Oh my word, you have my dream everywhere and no grass! I'm trying desperately to get Centranthus going. Absolutely beautiful!

  20. Hi Scott, I'm really intrigued by Astrantia 'Ruby Wedding'. The color is a fun contrast to the blues and golds you have. As always, beautiful photography. I very much enjoyed my walk through your gardens today!

  21. I love yellows and purples together and your posting really shines as the perfect examples of the great combinations you can have with those two colors.

  22. Scott,
    What beautiful combinations! Your photography is perfection.

  23. Absolutely gorgeous!

  24. Oh, my goodness, it is all SO beautiful!

  25. What beautiful gardens! I absolutely love Centranthus and your Ruby Wedding. Although, all are gorgeous. Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting. I'm a new follower.

  26. Love the harmony in your front garden. Very balanced. Busy but relaxed. Nice use of colors and texture. Photos are superb. Thanks for commenting on my post also.

    Wish I could grow lupines, may just add the bluebonnets this fall as a spring annual.

    Planted the Rocket this spring, have to water it twice a day, it's like a sponge.

  27. your plant combos are wonderful and your pics certainly capture the beauty of the plants

  28. It was such a treat visiting your garden today! You've done a terrific job so far ... so much wonderful colour. I do so love the combinations in those front garden beds and I can understand why passers-by with green fingers might want to 'borrow' a plant or two!!

  29. You have got the CUTEST place! I love it all-the house, the gardens. What a must hate to leave for work!

  30. Oh my, what a beautiful garden you have! And so many blooms--I don't know where to begin. But I do know I must add some Astrantia to my garden!

  31. Absolutely lovely! If I'm not wrong you are on a forum I'm on also, as I recall a setting just like this. Lovely. Thanks for stopping by. I am now your new follower, when you have time I'd appreciate your stopping by and following. Have a good day.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  32. Your garden is composed of my favorite flower colors. It was great to see the whole thing and then the individual profiles. I wish we could grow lupines here. I love Roxanne--she is currently climbing a 10 foot shrub. I used to be enamored with Katherine Adele but lately I am thinking of ripping her out because she seeds everywhere and the flowers are small and anemic even if there are a lot of them. I do like the foliage.

  33. Wonderful garden! I am also a proud corner-garden owner. Sometimes gardening here is not as much of an escape as an invitation for comments from passers-by. Do you find the same thing?

    I love the repetition that gives your garden rhythm and ties it together... and envy the ligularia. My shade is so so dry!

    My thought about Katherine Adele is let her bloom, then chop her down. Her foliage gets very ratty for me in the heat of summer.


  34. So many flowers, unbelievable! Your photo’s are beautiful.

  35. I love your many of my favorites (columbine, Queen Anne's Lace)!

    I wish I knew what that tall grass in my "expiriment" was called. But I'd be happy to send you some seeds if you would like some. (You can e-mail me at ecarian at yahoo dot com). Not sure how they would do in cooler climates, but they do wonderfully out here.

  36. Beautiful beautiful - your purples, blues and yellows are singing! Never heard of that clematis, but now I have to have it! Erysimum 'Bowles Mauve' is one of those on my "wish I could grow" list - maybe at the next location...

  37. First, thanks for the comment you left on my blog. I am very new at this and am tickled pink when someone leaves me a comment. And now for my comment on your gardens ,,,, wow .... how beautiful. Love everything about it, you should be so proud. I must find an Oxalis like your's ,love it. Thanks for sharing, Lynda

  38. Whether your combinations are on purpose or by accident, you should claim it was all part of your elaborate design scheme. Your garden looks great, but I am sorry about your Lupine theft. That is one of the plants that will not grow here, that I covet. I also know the "joys" of urban gardening - I may not have deer, but I do have the occasional pest of the two legged kind.

  39. Wow...thanks for all the comments, everyone, you made me feel like a superstar for a day!

    Loree: Thanks! Don't you love those roadside Lupines...I swear, no garden can every quite compete with those wonderful, unexpected patches along the roadside and in fields.

    Darla: Crowdscaped...I like that! Indeed...I was upset at the time, but knew there'd be more to come :-)

    Grace: Astrantia maxima was a surprise for me as well...found it at a plant sale this spring and pounced on seems VERY vigorous :-)

    Ryan Miller: Thanks...I was exactly the same last year, realized I had tons of summer/fall interest, but that the garden didn't do a whole lot until almost July...we're constantly figuring things out...right!

    Alison: The Pimpinella looks very much like a very airy Achillea...the color is very soft, and as far as I know, it's not aggressive...yet!

    Kimmie: Glad you enjoyed them...I can't quite help myself and i do go on and on about plants!

    Phillip: Awww, shucks ;-)

    Hanni: Thanks...I do have a grudge against bare ground, and my goal is to have as little dirt as possible showing!

    Liza: Hahahahaha...well, you might want to take a look at the postage stamp sized bathroom first!

    julia@PolkaDotGaloshes: Thanks so much, you're making me blush...I do enjoy wandering about and taking photos!

    Lona: The Astrantia is a winner, for sad you don't have luck with Lupines...if it makes you feel better...they usually get a nasty case of mildew later in the year!

    The Sage Butterfly: Thanks so much...that's exactly the effect I'm going for!

    Janet: I agree completely...they are awesome plants!

    Ricki 'sprig to twig': It's funny, they actually do, I'm always amused by people who stop to comment to each other, or just stop while walking their dog!

    Garden Girl: Thanks so much!

    Zoey: Thanks so much...I do love those colors..and Ruby Wedding is very lovely!

    Kelly (The Sorry Gardener): Isn't that strange about Gerald Darby...then again, I think the blooms are a little darker when they first open and fade a bit...Can't wait to see your new Astrantia on your blog!!!

    Catherine@AGardenerInProgress: Thanks for stopping by...good to know about the's always a bit of a learning experience with new palnts, isn't it! I bet your Astrantia will bloom...mine JUST started blooming...and this is the first of 5 or 6 plants of the same type...I think it's a bit earlier than all the others.

    Cherie: Thanks so much...yeah, I have a vendetta against lawn...hahahahaha! Good luck with the's a great plant once established (even seeds around quite a bit for some people)!

  40. Jenni@RainyDayGardener: Thanks! If you have a spot that gets a bit of shade and, more importantly, stays moist all season, Astrantia would do well...they seem really easy-going as long as they don't dry out.

    Janet, The Queen of Seaford: could literally do entire gardens with those colors and NEVER run out of versatile!

    Michael B. Gordon: Awww...thanks!

    Cre: Thanks so much!

    Ginny: :-)

    HolleyGarden: Thanks for stopping by and's great to have you...aren't those plants awesome...I wish I had room for more!!!

    Greggo: Thanks so much...that's very much what I was going for...lots going on, but not to frenetic! You are so right about "the Rocket', that thing needs more water than anything else...mine gets a couple hours of sun and the leaves completely wilt on the stems...luckily it perks up as soon as the sun goes behind a tree...but sheesh, talk about a drama queen!

    Donna: Thanks so much...glad you could stop by!

    Bernie: Thanks so's a labor of love, right!

    Sue: You don't know how right you are...sometimes I miss my bus while gazing at new flowers!

    Rose: I hope you do add some...they are just so lovely!!!

    Sunray Gardening: I could be...on gardenweb, maybe? Thanks for stopping by and following!

    Carolyn@CarolynsShadeGardens: Thanks...I do love Rozanne...she is just so rambunctious, but good-natured. I'm inclined to agree about Katherine Adele...last year I sheared her back to the ground in July, she did look quite ratty!

    Wife, Mother, Gardner: Let's hear it for the Corner Gadeners! I definitely do that for Katherine Adele...found out last summer that she kind of falls to pieces after blooming!

    Denise: Thanks so much!!!

    Gale: Thanks so much...I'm a big lover of umbels like Queen Anne's Lace...I think I like how "wild" they look! I'll drop you a line about the grass...would be very interested in trying it!

    Cyndy: Thanks so much...that Clematis is lovely...and very easy to grow...I just wish the purple foliage lasted longer (then again, two months of it is pretty good!). I've heard that once established, you can cut it back after flowering and it'll re-grow new purple foliage...but I've been afraid of trying it!

    Granny Lyn: Absolutely, your blog is fun and I can't wait to se more of your posts...we gardeners gotta stick together!

    Les:'re so right, I shouldn't be so afraid of taking credit! Yeah, gardening right on the street definitely has its drawbacks...then again...deer sound pretty intimidating too!

  41. Hi Scott. Thanks for much for your visit and comment to my blog.

    Your blog AND gardens are lovely. Such a charming and old-fashioned look to the garden in front of your home. Your photos are wonderful. The one of the centranthus and nepeta, and the one of the pink lupine are just my favourites!

    Thanks for the 'follow', I've got you on my list to follow now as well. I'll check out more of your blog as soon as I catch up with my other bloggers.

  42. Hi Scott,

    First, I'm so glad I don't live near you because I would have to embarrass myself by walking by your house everyday to stare at your garden!

    Second, I'm so jealous.

    Love the color combinations, thanks for sharing!
    Thanks for visiting me

  43. So many beautiful flowers for Bloom Day, and such beautiful photography too. Your front garden looks great. I love the color combinations.

  44. I think you have done an incredible job with your landscaping...everything seems to fit together perfectly, color, form, and textures. Most of your plants are unfamiliar to me since we garden in different zones, but I do know geranium 'Rozanne'. I have two and they are my favorites!

  45. Beautiful post! Thanks for the visit especially since it led me here! I love to see flowers in different parts of the country. Your front garden is breathtaking. Great photos as well.

  46. Scott, you've managed that rare thing, an acquisitive love of plants held in check by a strong design sense. Wonderful.

  47. Hi Scott,

    Wonderful photos, there's so much to see - stunning!
    I wish my garden looked as good; perhaps it will in years to come.

  48. Oh the colour scheme is lovely just now in your garden Scott. I'm still waiting for Rozanne to start flowering and once she starts she'll not stop!!!

  49. Hi Scott, Your pictures are just terrific and the details on each plant is so helpful. I especially love the Astrantia and have been building a collection of my own.

  50. I'm glad I made it to your bloom day post. You have so many awesome flowers! I forgot to mention in my comment on your foliage that I noticed a lupine. I broke down and bought one a few weeks ago, even though they don't bloom the first year here, and then, I've only had one plant live and bloom for a few seasons. The others haven't made it through the winter.

    Thanks for showing the wider photos of your beds, and the whole corner. I always like to see that. I added more plants to my new area in the almost dark last night, swatting at mosquitoes all the while. I'm glad I did, because it's raining this morning. I just hope they all grow and fill in well this summer.

    I like those astrantias, too.

  51. I adore that shot of Pimpinella major 'Rosea'!!