Today there was a very early morning light rain, followed by fog—a mostly gray, dreary but mild day. The clouds lifted a short time before sunset and the sky colored a bright clear blue, before mixing with apricot, red and orange hues.
A few minutes earlier I went out to inspect the Irises–the ones that have been reblooming for several weeks. As welcome as they are I do find it unsettling to see Irises (and many neighbors’ Azaleas) flowering at this time of year. This is an unknown cultivar passed-along by a friend. The bud is lavender but opens to white. [Note: November 9, 2013. Thanks to P&B at Petals and Wings for identifying this Iris in her comment below as ‘Immortality’ –the only reblooming white Iris.]
In September I had expected the Jackmanii Clematis to flower again but it did not. Today I found one perfect flower under the shelter of neighboring Muhlenbergia capillaris (Pink Muhly Grass). This Clematis has interesting seed heads also.
Surprisingly the Ginger Lily still has several blooms even after the October frost. The leaves and stalks are turning brown.
A nice surprise during this garden wander was finding that rich orange hips have formed on Gardenia jasminoides ‘Chuck Hayes’ along the western border.
The sasanquas this year are as pretty as they have ever been. The red one is Camellia sasanqua ‘Yuletide’ but the name of the delicate pink and white one is unknown. They have grown up into each other over the years. The pink one was supposed to bloom in autumn and the Yuletide was to wait until winter, but obviously there can be a lot of variation. [Note: November 21, 2013-Thanks to Christina H. in Raleigh who identified the pink and white Camellia as ‘Hana-Jiman.’]
One last image for today is that of the Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ I planted in April. This is a dwarf variety and maybe has managed to reach about 12 inches. It was touted as having nice fall foliage and it is beginning to display red stems and burgundy tinges on the leaves.
Joining Christina at Creating my own garden of the Hesperides for Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD), today I am examining the impact of foliage in my June garden.
I like to use silver-foliaged plants and am pleased with the perennial Dusty Miller along the front of the western border.
A privacy hedge was installed in February 2011 along the southern border. The ‘Blue Point’ Junipers have remained healthy and are noticeably taller this year. Suddenly branches are growing in weird directions so I must figure out how to prune them better. It will still be a while before these trees fill out the edge of the southern border, but already they help provide a sense of enclosure when standing inside the garden.
The hydrangea planted this year is growing well, although I had imagined it would be larger by now. The foliage is supposed to have nice red color in the fall.
Having finished blooming, now Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue) and Clematis ‘Jackmanii’ add garden interest with their seedpods.
Helianthus angustifolius (Swamp Sunflower) is a native plant I picked up through a friend’s plant exchange. I have found this plant to be rather aggressive. Growing to 5-feet, its dark-green leathery leaves are interesting and later in summer and fall the border will shine with its bright yellow daisy-like flowers.
A storm last week felled several trees and blew numerous branches and leaves around the neighborhood. Yesterday in the western border I encountered these browned leaves from a neighbor’s Platanus occidentalis (American sycamore). They serve as a reminder Summer has just started but it will pass quickly. Take time to enjoy every minute.
Thanks to Christina for hosting. Be sure to visit her to see her featured foliage and find links to other foliage highlights of other GBFD bloggers.
I am joining Christine at Creating my own garden of the Hesperides for Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD).
The garden is filling in with this month, from green, sword-like Iris leaves and feathery Achillea to the silvery foliage of Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear), Lychnis coronaria (Rose Campion) and perennial Dusty Miller.
An exciting addition to the garden is this Oakleaf Hydrangea. It’s full name is Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ (Lil’ Ruby dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangea).
It arrived as part of a plant shipment on April 11 and by April 16 it was settling in well. Yesterday, just five days later, it really seems to be acclimated.
The broad green leaves of this deciduous woody shrub resemble oak leaves. In fall the highly textured, leathery leaves should turn scarlet and burgundy. The inflorescences should bloom white, turn to pink and eventually fade to burgundy red.
Be sure to visit Christine to see other GBFD articles.