Greetings, cold climate gardeners! It’s feeling autumnal around here, and starting to look it, too. The mid-August garden is a garden in transition. The early summer plants are looking shabby and the fall garden is just getting going. The beds that used to look so lush now have gaps in them because the Johnny-jump-ups have exhausted themselves, and yet colchicums are two weeks away. The garden needs a good going over–which it hasn’t gotten yet–so I am just going to share with you some highlights.The Phlox paniculata above was found growing in a clump of ‘Bright Eyes’ phlox, so I assume my new favorite is a seedling of it. The new one was hard to miss, being both taller and more vigorous than its parent. I have two clumps of it and I can’t wait until they get a little bigger. I need to think of a name for it. Suggestions? Invincibelle Spirit hydrangea was a trial plant from Proven Winners several years ago. It is very hardy and took the move from the old house to the new with nary a pout. ‘Butterfly Kisses’ is a dwarf form of coneflower that I received from Walters Gardens to trial. It made it through the winter just fine and I am looking forward to seeing the colchicums blooming among them in another couple of weeks. My friend gave me this daylily and I don’t know the name. I grow it in the parking pad bed where I grow a lot of bright colored plants. My sister gave me this lily when she was on a kick to find plants named after relatives. She has a son named Henry and had gotten more bulbs of Henry’s lily than she could use, so gave her surplus to me. In looking for a bit of history on this lily (discovered by Augustine Henry, that’s how it got its name), I found one site that said it needed alkaline soil and another that said it liked slightly acid soil. I have acid soil and it grows fine for me, but I bet if you have alkaline soil it would also grow fine for you. I have colchicums planted around this sedum and think it will look great when they bloom. I grew this blackberry lily (Belamcanda chinensis) from seed I started last year. The seed came from a far-away friend’s garden, and I shared a picture of my first bloom with her. It was then she told me that a dear friend of hers had given her the original seed, and that friend had died in the past year after a long battle with cancer. It makes her glad that a bit of her friend’s garden lives on in mine.
The picture at the top of this blog post is Japanese blood grass (Imperata cylindrica) which came from another cold climate gardener. I planted the grass in a spot that had originally been growing Butterfly milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa), and apparently I missed a few roots of the milkweed when I dug it up.
Inspired by the words of Elizabeth Lawrence, “We can have flowers nearly every month of the year,” Carol of May Dreams Gardens started Garden Bloggers Bloom Day. On the 15th of every month, garden bloggers from all over the world publish what is currently blooming in their gardens, and leave a link in Mr. Linky and the comments of May Dreams Gardens.