September already...who let that happen?!? Portland had a rough couple of weeks at the beginning of this month, with some nasty temps, making me hide inside with the A/C blasting, but cooler temps have returned and I'm venturing out again into the great outdoors. This is one of my absolute favorite times in the garden, probably because I have such a leaning toward fall-blooming plants...and grasses, which are shining at this time of year.
Rudbeckia 'Goldsturm' with Agastache 'Desert Sunrise' and Panicum virgatum 'Shenandoah'
I know this will show up in a lot of the photos throughout the post, but this workhorse of a plant still deserves it's own photo. Dependable and long-lived...and such a great standard in summer/fall gardens. I really love how it ushers in fall with a blaze of color. While I shun golden yellows earlier in the year, at this time of year, it just seems appropriate...and really sets off the warmer tones found elsewhere.
Agastache 'Blue Blazes'
My favorite of the blue Agastaches...huge, vigorous and floriferous. A few of these are 6' tall and almost as wide...they have a fairly open branching structure (which I may try to keep a bit more compact with selective pruning next year) and insinuate themselves into other plants, making for some great combos. In the above photo, you can see how fabulous it looks when backlit...which makes the entire plant look like, well, it's namesake!
Pimplinella major 'Rosea'
This was a bit of a surprise, the Pimpinella, which I thought only bloomed in spring, is re-blooming!
Salvia 'Black & Blue' and Rudbeckia 'Goldsturm'
While I always curse the late arrival of this Salvia (which means I get to look at a patch of bare ground until July), once it arrives and starts throwing out it's amazingly electric flowers, I always forgive it. Love how the rich blue looks against the gold of Rudbeckias...and in combination with pink and purples.
|Teucrium 'Purple Tails'||Agastache 'Ava'|
I've grown Sedum 'Autumn Joy' for years, but this spring, decided to add a few of this Sedum as well. I really like the slightly larger size and colorful leaves and stems. The flowers are just as nice as 'Autumn Joy' and are totally loved by the bees. I love their subtle, glowing coloring.
Knautia macedonica, Verbena bonariensis, Agastache 'Blue Blazes'
I love this little combo...it's a sort of crazy free-for-all of red, blue and purple. A bonus, all the plants are pretty drought-tolerant...next year I'm hoping they will require only a few waterings.
I bought these on a lark, just because I love the way they smell. I have to say, they've grown on me. I really like their dark little flowers, which look smashing against Pennisetum 'Hameln'
I FINALLY found one of these for sale this spring, and even though had no where to really put it, bought it anyway. I'm pretty sure I'll have to move it next year...but for now, I'm just enjoying it. I think I actually like the blooms best at this stage, as they are a little past their prime...they have a rich, earthy beauty to them.
|Sedum 'Autumn Joy'||Echinacea 'Prairie Splendour'|
I got a few of these at a nursery that was closing a few weeks ago. Just when I thought they are done blooming, they sent up more blooms. Love their rich, purple blooms. Apparently, these have a propensity to reseed a bit...they'll have to duke it out with the patch of Verbena bonariensis nearby.
Astrantia major 'Alba'
While 'Abbey Road' was just cut back, 'Alba' has sent up a few new blooms...I'm adding a few more Astrantia this fall...they've proven themselves to be not only charming and beautiful, but tough and vigorous...winners in my book!
A gift from the generous Derrick Pitman (Mr. Impatiens), this tender Impatiens has proven to be extremely vigorous, even though it got much more sun than I think it normally likes (4-5 hours in the middle of the day). It sailed through the summer while the Rodgersias and Ligularias scorched a few feet away (and with MUCH more supplemental water). Love the airy two-toned flowers!
|Agastache 'Desert Sunrise'||Persicaria 'Golden Arrow'|
Agastache 'Purple Haze'
One of the things I love about this time of year (aside from cooler weather) is the amazing quality of the light...as in this photo, plants look amazing when backlit!
I've shown both Geraniums 'Rozanne' and 'Ann Folkard' numerous times in these posts (both are still blooming...what workhorses!). This is a smaller and subtler Geranium, which I got mostly because the foliage (hopefully) turns brilliant colors in the fall. The flowers are small, but are produced continuously for months and add a simple, understated elegance to the garden.
Verbascum chaixii 'Album'
Ryan Miller (Gnomiscience) gifted me with a bunch of seedlings a few months ago, and they are all thriving in their new spots...some of them, like this amazing Verbascum, have even started blooming already. Love the mix of colors on this plant...the purple stamens are just stunning.
Salvia verticillata 'Purple Rain'
I've been lax about dead-heading this summer, luckily, some plants, like this Salvia, keep pumping out flowers regardless...gotta love that!
Salvia 'Purple Majesty'
Another Salvia...this time, a giant! Getting over 6' tall (sadly, with somewhat fragile stems), this plant has been throwing out it's rich, purple blooms for months. I wish it was a little sturdier...then again, ever stem that breaks means that 2 more sprout a the axel below the break...so more flowers!
|Cirsium rivulare 'Atropurpureum'||Rudbeckia 'Goldsturm' and Geranium 'Rozanne'|
Another Agastache...one of the standards for the clan...and tough as nails! I had these planted in too much shade last year and they languished. This year, I knew I had to move them, but wasn't sure where...so I just dug them in behind the new fence. They have thrived there...it's not as sunny as they would probably like...but I haven't watered them but maybe 2-3 times all summer.
I recently overhauled a section of the north border, adding some Panicum and this Persicaria...love the rich, ruby-colored tapers.
Vernonia missurica (Ironweed)
I was hoping this would be open by bloom day, but it's taking its sweet time! Planted as tiny little starts this spring (purchased at the Spring HPSO plant sale) they've grown rapidly...I'm surprised they are blooming this year! They topped out around 5' tall this year...I'm wondering if they'll be even taller next year.
Another plant JUST about to bloom...look for it next month!
East Border, with Crocosmia 'Orangeade', Agastache 'Blue Fortune', Rudbeckia 'Goldsturm', Agastache 'Desert Sunrise', Geranium 'Rozanne', Geranium 'Ann Folkard', Knautia Macedonica
I leave you will a view of the east border, in front of the house...what do you all have going in your garden...are you enjoying our slip into fall...or dreading winter!?!