Our rose gardens have been a source of rich color all summer long - except for this past weekend when the New England Rose Society met here for the summer meeting. But a day after we hoped for a wonderful showing, buds opened in every bed in a kaleidoscope of color.
|Top Row L-R: Memorial Day, Sir John Betjeman, Rosa rugosa “Rubra”, Cupcake; Middle Row L-R: New Dawn, New Dawn, Passionate Kisses, Double Pink Knock Out; Bottom Row L-R: Blushing Knock Out, Sea Foam, Pretty Lady|
Top Row L-R: Teasing Georgia, Julia Child, What a Peach; Middle Row L-R: Rio Samba, Tropicana, Rio Samba (showing color evolution); Bottom Row L-R: Unknown, Bella Roma, What a Peach, Hotel California
Clockwise from top left: John F. Kennedy, Drop Dead Red, Munstead Wood, Unidentified blush, Double Red Knock Out
The marginal plants and lilies in the water garden have also provided sporadic bursts of color, although we've had to spend a fair amount of time reining in the water mint.
Last summer we acquired the cattail reeds from a local river while we were canoeing, and we were delighted that they survived the winter and developed into graceful plants this summer. The marsh marigolds are still blooming as is the houttuynia. The lavender mint blossoms and pink obedient blooms make a lovely combination along the edge of the pond.
Although they started blooming six weeks ago, the daylilies (hemerocallis) are still a dramatic presence.
And along with the daylilies, the clematis have also been solid performers throughout the summer. I love the contrast between the deep purple and the light green of the lemon balm. "Betty Corning" has outdone herself this summer, however. The bell shaped blossoms have covered the vine since early June.
The butterfly garden seemed to sprout overnight After heavy pruning in spring, the shrubs seemed to languish and then almost overnight, they burst forth with six foot canes topped with lavender, magenta, deep purple, and white flower spikes. Hummingbird clear-wing moths and monarch butterflies have been visiting daily.
|The butterfly garden is next to hte gazebo, behind the rose beds. The purple spikes of "Dark Knight" make a striking statement.|
|We have a rainbow of butterfly shrubs circling behind the dark purple shrubs.|
In the perennial beds, coneflowers, tall phlox, rudbeckia, Japanese anemones, and sage are taking center stage. The cransebill are still blooming, but starting to wind down.
|Balloon flowers and the last of the Montauk daisies|
|The tall phlox are gorgeous this year|
|The second round of foxglove spikes timed themselves perfectly with the coneflowers.|
|The coneflowers have provided cut flowers for the house for weeks. In the back is ligularia, which shouldn't thrive in this sunny bed, but it does. Barely visible in the back are daylilies.|
In the herb garden, the tarragon, oregano and hyssop make a bold border. We've been harvesting mint, oregano, parsley, thyme, and sage for weeks. Cooking with fresh herbs has become our new favorite thing to do..
In New England, the stars of the August garden are the mallows and hibiscus. Malva sylvestris “Zebrinba” and the more common pale pink mallows self sow freely and can become a bit of a nuisance, but in the spring, I transplant dozens into the perennial beds alongside the lupines and peonies for some color later in the summer.
Rose of Sharon shrubs Hibiscus syriacus are one of our favorite flowering shrubs. We have both single and double varieties,
, Hibiscus moscheutos, bring the feel of the tropics to our New England gardens just as paradoxically, the days are becoming shorter and the nights are becoming cooler.
The shade gardens have really come into their own over the summer, with brilliant foliage and unexpected pops of color.
|In the tree grove a carpet of wood violets contrasts with hostas. This has been a favorite place to spend time during the recent heat wave. Stepping under the canopy of the trees, there was a dramatic difference in temperature.|
|The hosta blooms are fading but the striking foliage lends its own textural interest to the shade beds.|
|Hyssop in the background does well in this shady area and contrasts nicely with ajuga (left foreground) and the bright chartreuse hosta.|
A few additional late summer blooms have added color here and there. Hydrangeas and windflowers, obedient plants, chrysanthemums, and some annuals that we've tucked into pots will carry the beds into September:
|The windlowers just started blooming within the past week and will bloom for another month or more. The delicate pink petals open a medium pink and then fade to a pale pink blush. The white counterpart to this prolific bloomer blooms in the spring.|
|The blooms of the hydrangea tree in the deck open with a pink tint that fades to white, opposite that of the pee gee (shown below), which opens white and develops a lovely pinkish hue over time.|
|Reading Nancy Ondra's books has taught me to appreciate and embrace seed pods. These, of my favorite columbine, are ready to be harvested for seeds. In the background are ruby colored chrysanthemum, a staple of the late summer and fall garden.|
Thanks so much for joining us again for this month's stroll through the garden beds. Be sure to check out the other amazing gardens that participate in May Dreams' Garden Bloggers Bloom Day!