Monday, July 25, 2016

Busy, Busy, Busy!

Oh, the busy garden. The flourishing garden! I'm watering and watering and taking in all the loveliness before it's gone. You can relate, right? 

I don't know about you but my Oriental lily bulbs seem to decline after several years. This spring I bought another bag of 'Star Gazer' from Costco. They've just started blooming. The flowers must be at least six inches in diameter! 

Lilium orientale 'Star Gazer'

'Star Gazer'
You may have noticed that the stamens are gone. I try to pinch them off before they drop their pollen on the petals.

One thing I love about my summer garden is the profusion of flowers on my hardy Fuchsias. The hummers and bees love them too.
Fuchsia 'Baby Ann'

Fuchsia 'Delta's Angelique'

Fuchsia 'Tom Woods'

Fuchsia 'DeBron's Black Cherry'

Fuchsia 'DeBron's Black Cherry' with Bergenia

Fuchsia 'Checkerboard' 

Back in 2004 when I was still new to the many merits of hardy Fuchsias, I purchased the Fuchsia below at a plant sale. Unfortunately there was no tag. I'm curious to find out its identity. 

Fuchsia NOID... Do you know the ID?

When preparing for this post, I was looking back at all the Fuchsias that are no longer with me. There are a lot that aren't hardy or met their demise in some other way. Every year since discovering Fry Road Nursery, I've purchased at least a few new varieties. Now that Fry Road has closed, I took my obsession to the variety store and purchased the one below. I don't know if it will survive, but it's pretty for now.

Store-bought NOID

I found the Fuchsia below at N&M Nursery in Hubbard (Oregon) a few months ago. Apparently it can get quite big. I can't wait! 

Fuchsia 'Cardinal'

Fuchsia 'Golden Herald'

Fuchsia 'Beacon Rose'

Fuchsia 'Mrs. John D. Fredricks' (I think)

Mrs. Fredricks again, I think

Surprising to me is that 'Island Sunset' Fuchsia survived (in a container, no less) on my patio during the 2014 single-digit winter. It blooms reliably every summer. This year it's in a hanging container. 

Fuchsia 'Island Sunset'

Fuchsia 'Flash' with Hydrangea serrata 'O Amacha Nishiki' 

And, of course I've got several (because they're so easy to propagate from cuttings) of the standard hardy Fuchsia, below. As long as the soil stays moist, it'll bloom its fool head off.

Fuchsia magellanica

More bloomers...

Pink-flowering hardy Lobelia 

Lobelia tupa

Lobelia tupa with Rosa glauca and a single-flowered Dahlia

Phlox paniculata 'Starfire' (I think)

I've not had great luck with Angel's Fishing Rods. I think it's got to do with my tendency to crowd things. This year I'm giving them space, determined to help them get established. I was surprised to see a blossom on this one a few days ago.

Dierama spp.

Coreopsis 'Cruzin' Main Street'

Gladiolus spp.

Clethra alnifolia 'Ruby Spice'

Sanguisorba menziesii

Saponaria x 'Max Frei'

Rosa 'Knock Out' hiding in Panicum 'Shenandoah' 

Alstroemeria psittacina

Alstroemeria psittacina

Finally, after two years of watching, waiting, watering and wondering, my Anemonopsis is blooming! Such exquisite little blossoms, aren't they?

Anemonopsis macrophylla

Anemonopsis macrophylla

Dahlias are another plant that don't exactly thrive in my garden. But I'm trying. Here are the ones that are blooming right now.

Dahlia 'Sayonara'

Dahlia 'Roxy'... thank you Nancy!

Dahlia 'Ivanetti'

Dahlia 'Fatima'

Dahlia 'Twyinings Smartie'

Dahlia 'Matchmaker'

The photo below is from last year. I purchased the Love-Lies-Bleeding at a plant sale/fundraiser and admittedly didn't treat very well. Despite that, it grew and bloomed. 

'Dreadlocks' Love-Lies-Bleeding

At season's end, I shook the "blossom" and let the ripe seed scatter around. I didn't think I'd see any babies because I know how the slugs love to eat seedlings. Well, lo and behold, I've seen lots of seedlings! Here is the biggest plant of the bunch, now standing at four feet tall. It's a lot more healthy and vigorous than its mother. 

Volunteer Dreadlocks Love-Lies-Bleeding just starting to bloom.

Begonia grandis with foliage from Weigela florida 'Variegata'

I'm not a huge fan of blue and prefer purple because it is a lot more harmonious with pinks and reds. But this Agapanthus, is a wowzer for me.

Agapanthus 'Northern Star'

And I like the Echinops balls too. 

Echinops ritro

Echinops ritro

Oreganum x 'Bristol Cross' 

This plant (below) is a super easy annual to grow from seed. The most challenging part is finding a store that sells the seed. I found mine at Wilco Farm Store, of all places. 

Malope trifida

I grow the purple ground orchid but not the creamy yellow one. When I saw it at a nursery recently, it came home with me. This is the very last blossom. 

Bletilla ochracea 'Chinese Butterfly'

I also found a variegated Beauty Berry this spring. Love, love!

Variegated Beauty Berry ~~ Callicarpa japonica 'Snow Storm'

Callicarpa japonica 'Snow Storm'

Years ago--2001 to be exact--I purchase the Potentilla (below). It is a rare thing to see in nurseries which I find baffling. I mean look at these gorgeous, deep pink strawberry-like flowers. With the cooler summer we're having, the flowers are lasting a lot longer. 

Potentilla fruticosa 'Pink Beauty'

Wine Cups (Callirhoe bushii)

And as I bragged on Facebook a few days ago, my Gardenia 'Frostproof' is really happy this year. I counted over 35 blooms one day. The fragrance is amazing!

Gardenia 'Frostproof'

Gardenia 'Frostproof'

The other day I was at the Farmers' Market and found this new-to-the-market variegated Astrantia! Yep.

Astrantia 'Star of Magic'

Foliage galore! This dark-leaved Canna is amazing. This spring I dug up the clump and replanted offsets all over my garden. I love the bold contrast to all the small-leaved shrubs and perennials. 


And the cooler-than-normal summer has been so good to my Japanese Blood Grass.

Japanese Forest Grass (Imperata cylindrica 'Rubra') and a red-berried Hypericum

Such a happy plant!

I have a BEFORE and AFTER for you. I decided the Hosta on the right needed to go. It was too matchy-matchy with the variegated comfrey. I wanted something dramatic and contrasting. 

Variegated Comfrey and Hosta 'Paradigm'

Unfortunately my AFTER photos are a bit blurry, but I think you'll get the idea. I replaced it with Hibiscus moscheutos 'Kopper King' which plays off the Chameleon Plant (Hottunynia cordata) really well, I think.

Okay, I've droned on long enough. I hope you're all enjoying your garden. Isn't it fun to design and play with plants?