Sunday, August 16, 2015
Bloom Day August 2015
Technically, August is the middle of summer, but it feels like we should already be in fall, it's been such a hot, dry summer this year...it seems like it's been summer since May. One thing is certain, I'm looking forward to fall...even more so than usual! Still, things could be worse, so I try to ignore the areas that are sparse...including the ones I just never got planted this spring...since we skipped spring this year. Let's take a stroll through the garden, shall we?
Summer belongs to the Composites, aka, the Daisies...and to me, there is nothing that compares to the elegant simplicity of the Echinacea. Here we have good old 'Magnus' backed by Achantherum calamagrostis.
And here, in an idyllic summer vignette, 'Magnus' again, sandwiched between a gauzy haze of Deschampsia 'Schottland' and Panicum 'Cheyenne Sky'.
As much as I like 'Magnus', I wish the form was a little more like the species...for that, we have the wonderful 'Showoff'...which is my favorite Echinacea at the moment...just love those reflexed petals.
While summer gets kicked off by the Echinacea, it's heralded in full-throated glory by the various Rudbeckias...their bold, unabashed golden colors look so comfortable in a summer border.
Pair them with blue and/or violet and you have a classic, winning combination.
The blue above, of course, is provided by the garden stalwart, Geranium 'Rozanne'...always dependable, always beautiful.
And, of course, there's fellow Geranium, 'Ann Folkard'...who is having the best year ever, surprisingly. Usually, she seems to fizzle out once the heat of summer hits, but this year, she is unfazed and growing rampantly and mingling with bedfellow, 'Rozanne'...the hussies!
Allium 'Millennium' has been in this bud stage for what seems like weeks...JUST BLOOM!
The Agastaches this year are a mixed bag. The 'Blue Blazes' that were planted in the ground all failed to return, those in pots, however, are loving life.
Agastache 'Desert Sunrise' blooms away happily, even though it's literally growing in a pile of gravel...the same plant in the garden...dead.
The big surprise this year was Agastache 'Blue Boa', which I've had trouble overwintering in the past...sailed through last winter and was blooming already in June...it shows no sign of stopping.
I finally broke down and purchased several plants of Ammi majus...I want umbels!
After falling in love with Verbena hastata at a recent garden tour, I snapped one up during a recent trip to Joy Creek...I think the bees love it as much as I do.
Of course, there are numerous Verbena bonariensis around the garden. I have so many now that I don't feel guilty when I pull a few out here and there...I'll always have more ;-)
The fabulous Vernonia 'Southern Cross' is starting to put out it's electric purple blooms. I love Vernonias, but most of them are far too big for my tiny garden with its lack of real sun...this is a shorter variety that, for all intents and purposes, looks like a tall Amsonia until it blooms. A bonus, the seedheads are the most wonderful shade of rusty pink during the winter.
Some of the Sedums are also starting their floral show, here we have a new one (to me) 'Sunsparkler Dazzleberry'...not sure who thought up that name!
One of my favorites, even it it tends to splay out a bit for me, 'Xenox'.
My beloved Scabiosa ochroleuca keeps on blooming...such a great plant!
The related Knautia macedonica are also blooming away happily...totally unfazed by the heat and drought.
While I tried to eradicate them last year, there are still random plants of Impatiens balfourii popping up here and there...I will probably regret letting them bloom next year.
August is typically prime season for the Joe Pye weeds as well...here we have the compact, but still fairly tall, 'Little Joe'
Here, a variety of Eutrochium perfoliatum that I can't remember the name of...no matter, the bees are happy, regardless.
And, of course, the big guy, Eutrochium atropurpureum (I think). I think it was just labeled as 'Joe Pye Weed'...so I'm not 100% sure what variety it is. I'm not sure why, but this year it's much more "open" and spreading...much less upright...perhaps I need to thin out the canes next year?
If you have heavy clay soil, you owe it to yourself to give Persicaria a try. They aren't the most drought-tolerant plants ever...but they do well with just a bit of extra water...and repay your attention with masses of these wonderful ruby wands.
'Golden Arrow' has had the toughest time of all the Persicaria this year...it scorched badly and then proceeded to completely open up, flopping everywhere. I corseted it with some twine, however, and once the weather cooled a bit, it seems to have bounced back.
I spotted this variety 'Orangefield' at a local nursery a month or so ago, and in spite of my aversion to orange flowers, purchased it out of curiosity. Luckily, it's not even close to orange...so it gets to stay ;-)
I'm sure I've forgotten a few things...but that's enough for now...so let's take a look at the wider views...here we have the North Border looking East.
The North Border looking West.
The Front Border looking South.
The Front Border looking North.
And a shot of pretty much everything.
I hope you're having a good summer and enjoying it for what it is...for more bloomy goodness, head on over to May Dreams Garden.