Finding Color Along The Labyrinth

Meditation Circle

Looking Toward Meditation Circle Entrance

In these last days of July the meditation circle has finally come into its own. Originally, when this was a new feature in the garden, I attempted to use only evergreens or semi-evergreens here, but, since I could never find a perfect combination, I have been much happier just supplementing with low-maintenance annuals.

Entrance To The Labyrinth

Entrance To The Labyrinth Is Between Two Rows Of Dark Purple Angelonia ‘Alonia Big Indigo’

A beautiful but tough annual that never needs deadheading, Angelonia angustifolia (summer snapdragon), is providing plenty of color and interest. I know I have mentioned Angelonia before, but it is finally well-established and caught my eye a couple of days ago after a brief morning shower.  It does not mind the heat and scarcity of rain. Its size is a good fit for the narrow space between the paths of the labyrinth, keeping the paths open for easy passage without needing much trimming.

Angelonia ‘Serenita Raspberry’ and 'Purple'

Angelonia ‘Serenita Raspberry’ and ‘Purple’ (Purple turned out to be pink.)

I had planned to use a limited color scheme of white and blue this year, but blue Angelonia were hard to find this year at the time I needed them. Unable to locate enough white plants to use for the entire circle either, I ended up having to settle for a mix of mostly pinks and a few purples (Angelonia ‘Serena White’, ‘Alonia Big Indigo’, ‘Serenita Raspberry’, ‘Purple’ , and ‘Rose’). The ‘Purple’ turned out to be pink also. Though not my first color choices, I have enjoyed them immensely.

Angelonia 'Alonia Big Indigo'

Angelonia ‘Alonia Big Indigo’

Angelonia 'Serena White'

Angelonia ‘Serena White’

Angelonia ‘Serenita Raspberry’, 'Purple' and 'Alonia Big Indigo'

Angelonia ‘Serenita Raspberry’, ‘Purple’ and ‘Alonia Big Indigo’

I need to fill in where the original thyme was planted to define part of the wall. It has spread out from the center, but left patchy gaps in the middle. With that one exception the various thymes are doing well and have been blooming for a few weeks, attracting many pollinators. The goal of the labyrinth (or center of the circle) is planted in Thymus serpyllum ‘Pink Chintz’ (Pink chintz thyme).

Angelonia 'Serena White' and Thymus serpyllum 'Pink Chintz' (Pink chintz thyme)

Angelonia ‘Serena White’ and Thymus serpyllum ‘Pink Chintz’ (Pink chintz thyme)

Thymus serpyllum 'Pink Chintz' (Pink chintz thyme)

Thymus serpyllum ‘Pink Chintz’ (Pink chintz thyme)

Here is the second Common Buckeye (Junonia coenia) I have seen this summer enjoying the thyme.

Common Buckeye (Junonia coenia)

There still are a few Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue) left from the original planting a few years ago. They have self-seeded and I have left a few, moved some to other parts of the garden and given many away.

Thymus serpyllum 'Pink Chintz' (Pink chintz thyme) and Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red' (Beardtongue)

Thymus serpyllum ‘Pink Chintz’ (Pink chintz thyme) and Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue)

Another penstemon original to the labyrinth is Penstemon mexicali ‘Pike’s Peak Purple’ (Beardtongue). Of the dozen or so only one survives. I think it likes this summer’s dry weather.

Penstemon  mexicali 'Pike's Peak Purple' (Beardtongue)

Penstemon mexicali ‘Pike’s Peak Purple’ (Beardtongue)

Penstemon  mexicali 'Pike's Peak Purple' (Beardtongue)

Penstemon mexicali ‘Pike’s Peak Purple’ (Beardtongue)

All in all I love the how the circle has enhanced the garden and I enjoy the peacefulness of the walking meditation.

Meditation Circle

Meditation Circle

31 thoughts on “Finding Color Along The Labyrinth

  1. Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin

    Oh my goodness, it is beyond wonderful. I hope to come and visit and walk the circle before long. The impact of the planting is wonderful. I’m green with envy over your entire garden, but the meditation circle is stunning. Congratulations on the outcome of all your hard work, creativity, and prayer for this sacred small space in your part of heaven. The biggest blue ribbon ever for you.

    Reply
  2. Pauline

    It’s wonderful! Do you try sowing your annuals from seed each year, maybe that would be the way to get the colours you want, I think the mix of colours is lovely though.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks Pauline! I should try seeds and had actually looked them up the other day. I have a pretty bad track record with nurturing seeds, but it would be worth a try and much more cost efficient too.

      Reply
  3. mattb325

    It is really beautiful – I love the idea of the angelonia and penstemon combinations, and the white semi-circular planting of the angelonia is just lovely

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks Matt. I like the white and would like to try the entire meditation garden in all white. I’ve tried to establish Iberis (candytuft) in the circle since it’s evergreen here, but the voles and maybe drainage issues have thwarted that plan.

      Reply
  4. rusty duck

    It looks fantastic! Going with predominantly one species in alternative colours is a great idea. It gives it consistency and leads the eye very easily around the circle.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks for the feedback. I do like having the consistency. The colors change when the path turns back on itself and that does seem to work well.

      Reply
  5. Judy @ NewEnglandGardenAndThread

    I’m struggling with an adjective to describe how lovely this looks. I draws me in and I want to park myself in a chair and think about the meaning of life. Then, of course, I need to get up and walk around it. 🙂 Your hard work shows.

    Reply
  6. rickii

    I noticed Angelonia for the first time this year. I was very dissatisfied with the snapdragon six packs (they are shorter than expected and bloom sparsely) so maybe I’ll try Angie next year. Sometimes not finding exactly what we have in mind pushes us in interesting new directions. It worked out well for you this time.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks. Do give them a try. Snapdragons are planted here in fall and spring but they don’t like our heat and humidity in summer. I’ve had angelonia for 2-3 years and they are reliable.

      Reply
  7. Gina

    What a wonderful idea. I have a small hideaway that I use as an outdoor meditation area but have never thought of a labyrinth

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Gina I became intrigued with labyrinths and although I’d never walked one before building this one, I just felt I’d like one. It has been a nice feature in the garden. Your hideaway sounds nice too. It’s nice to get some quiet time.

      Reply
  8. Christina

    Wow, Susie the Angelonias have grown a lot since mid June when I was with you.. The garden feels completely different in your photographs today. It looks gorgeous.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks. Oh I wish you could come back and see it now. Before your visit I could barely keep the angelonia alive because it had turned so blisteringly hot and dry. Never had such a hard time getting it established as I did this year. Now, I can sense the garden pulling back and receding. There’s a subtle shift in the morning air that presages fall.

      Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      The angelonia will last until the first frost. Maybe I’ll replace it will snapdragons for fall and winter. That worked great last year.

      Reply
  9. Cathy

    This looks so effective, Susie – and it was noting your meditation circle many many months ago that triggered my meditation ribbons….. I do not have space for a circle but came up with the idea of ribbons in rainbow colours which are distributed around the garden next to benches, each removable so they can walked to another bench as a walking meditation or held where they are for a sitting meditation.

    Reply

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