I bought a small pot of ‘Blue Moon’ woodland phlox (Phlox divaricata) in 2013. It was kind of over its bloom period when I bought it, so I didn’t expect much. The following year, it was nice enough, but nothing to write home about.The following year (which was last year) it bulked up enough that I decided to divide it and plant some divisions in the Secret Garden.
This year, ‘Blue Moon’ has bowled me over.I planted five divisions, three on one side of the path and two on the other side, so that you would see them from a distance and want to walk down the path to check them out. They are far more enticing than my meager photography skills can convey. They create exactly the effect I was hoping for, an ethereal beauty that looks like it belongs there. The color definitely catches your eye, even from other locations than the one I had intended.
And the fragrance! How could the fragrance have escaped my notice or memory before now? It’s a sweet perfume that carries far without being overwhelming. It’s the essence of spring.
When I was done swooning, my first thought was, More! I need more-more-more of this! and I went to bed that night dreaming of all the places I would plant future divisions. For you see, when I divided it last year, I left half the plant in its original location, pictured at the top of the post. And I bought a very small pot of another cultivar, ‘White Perfume’, at the Ithaca Garden Fair. That has been planted in a different garden bed to bulk up until it, too, is ready to divide.
Woodland phlox is native to the eastern two-thirds of North America but has not been documented as native in my county. I’ve never seen it growing in the wild. It likes moist soil and, as you would expect from a woodland plant, dappled shade and a soil enriched with leaf mold. It blooms in my garden in May and in Dee Nash’s Oklahoma garden in March. She mentions growing it from seed. I have never seen seeds on my plant, but perhaps I have never looked. I will be looking this year, you can bet on that.
Bonus: Woodland phlox lasts a long time in a vase.
Posted for Wildflower Wednesday, created by Gail of Clay and Limestone, to share wildflowers/native plants no matter where you garden in the blogasphere. “It doesn’t matter if we sometimes show the same plants. How they grow and thrive in your garden is what matters most. It’s always the fourth Wednesday of the month!”