Tag Archives: tansy

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Glow

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Glow

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Glow

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of cuttings from our gardens.

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Glow

I experimented with a variety of designs on Saturday morning but in the end I was most happy with a reworking of last week’s vase, which had featured dahlias. Mid-week to refreshen the vase I had replaced most of the dahlias.  For this week I kept the same container but actually only the foliage, Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’ and a few dahlia leaves are original from last week. The dahlias really seemed tired after all and so were replaced completely with white and gold shining discs in the form of Shasta daisies and black-eyed Susans along with flat-topped umbels of miniature suns in the form of tansy.

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Glow

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Glow

The low-profile glazed ceramic vase works well this week, but if I had taken more time I would have switched the flowers into a basket for an even more summery look.

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Glow

Materials
Flowers
Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’ (Coral Bells)
Leucanthemum superbum ‘Alaska’ (Shasta Daisy)
Rudbeckia fulgida ‘Goldsturm’ (Black-eyed Susan)
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Foliage
Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’
Dahlia leaves
Vase
Pottery bowls, with Lomey plastic dish inserts, eco-friendly floral foam

Here are a few of my other experiments using reddish orange Dahlia ‘David Howard’ with coral bells and a nice specimen of Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’.

Dahlia ‘David Howard’

Dahlia ‘David Howard’

Dahlia ‘David Howard’

Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’

Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower-filled vases across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place in a vase this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of cuttings from our gardens.

I didn’t have a notion this week about what shape my vase would take this week but flower choices were limited. On Saturday morning I cut all the dahlias I could and placed them in water for conditioning. Stems were shorter than I wanted despite having cut back the plants a couple times this year. That afternoon just as I was preparing to make a vase for today, I found an email from a friend in the neighborhood. She had left us a still-warm peach cobbler to find by the front door—a soon-devoured, delicious peach cobbler I might add. Finding inspiration in the handmade ceramic dish in which she had baked our treat, I chose another dish of similar size and put together a pair of small tabletop designs. I was happy to be able to return her dish with a few flowers from my garden.

Using Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’ as outline foliage and a few dahlia leaves as concealers I added the freshest dahlias to the first arrangement, along with a bouncy Buddleja and a sprig of tansy. The effect was a little spare but cheerful.

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

Dahlia ‘Gallery Art Deco’ worked nicely with the color of my friend’s dish so they all went into her arrangement.

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

I also included the few  white Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’ I had been able to cut. Bugs seem especially attracted to these and not many are vase-worthy.

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

Both vases were quickly assembled, little-fussing or second-guessing. This is the second vase.

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

A view from the right corner:

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

This design has a slightly more oval than round shape. This was owing to the fact I had a couple of longer-stemmed ‘David Howard’ to use.

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Duo

Materials
Flowers
Buddleja davidii ‘Adokeep’ (Adonis blue Butterfly Bush)
Dahlia sp.
Dahlia ‘David Howard’
Dahlia ‘Gallery Art Deco’
Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Foliage
Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’
Dahlia leaves
Vase
Pottery bowls, with Lomey plastic dish inserts, eco-friendly floral foam

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower-filled vases across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place in a vase this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of cuttings from our gardens.

Today I had in mind a particular style for my vase: asymmetrical, loosely arranged, strongly textured yet airy, whimsical and light. Though not completely true to my vision, it does fairly dance. For its vibrancy and color I am happy with how this one turned out.

I don’t use a lot of yellow but in the garden strong yellows of rudbeckia and tansy have come alive in the past several weeks. Tansy with its rich textural characteristics ended up being a good material to define the shape and tone of the design. I used rudbeckia to continue the color while changing the texture. While cutting the tansy, heart-shaped leaves from a young redbud seedling caught my attention as well. These items, along with everlasting sweet pea seed pods, were the starting point for the vase.

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

Next I added stems of verbena, achillea and salvias and then finished with dahlias and phlox.

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

Because the weather has been so hot many of the flowers are not pristine, but I cut as many as I could find, using the imperfect ones as well. The vase may not last long but it was fun to create.

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

Materials
Flowers
Achillea filipendulina (Fern-leaf Yarrow)
Antirrhinum majus ‘Speedy Sonnet Bronze’ (Snapdragon)
Buddleja davidii ‘Adokeep’ (Adonis blue Butterfly Bush)
Dahlia sp.
Dahlia ‘David Howard’
Dahlia ‘Gallery Art Deco’
Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’
Phlox paniculata ‘Robert Poore’ (Garden phlox)
Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower)
Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’
Salvia uliginosa ‘Blue Sky’ (Bog sage)
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Verbena bonariensis
Foliage
Cercis canadensis (Eastern Redbud)
Dahlia leaves
Gaura lindheimeri ‘Passionate Blush’ (Butterfly Gaura)
Vase
Crystal pedestal dish

The flowers were styled with floral foam in a plastic 6-inch Lomey dish that sits inside the low crystal pedestal vase.

In A Vase On Monday – Texture And Whimsy

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower-filled vases across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place in a vase this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase highlighting what is growing in our gardens.

Virgie was my mother’s first cousin and she shared her love of gardening and lots of plants with me over the years. Her passalong rose is blooming this week and it seemed destined to feature in today’s vase.

When I began photographing the arrangement the heuchera leaf front and center at the lip of the vase seemed much too dark; I added a white snapdragon so it would not leave a black hole.  Later I decided I liked the balance of the other flowers without that central snapdragon.  Now I cannot decide so thought I would show both ways. The top two images show the original design and these next two show the modified one with the additional snapdragon.

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

Accompanying the roses is a branch of Flowering Dogwood. Dogwood is native to North Carolina and serves as our state flower.

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

Other white flowers include a late blooming narcissus, whose name I wish I knew, and the aforementioned snapdragon, Speedy Sonnet White.

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

A few pink and red dianthus were added for accent and texture.

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

As concealer foliage I used young leaves of Big Top Bronze Heuchera with their reddish undersides, along with spring green fern-like tansy leaves (one is visible in the upper right corner).

Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’ (Coral Bells)

Materials
Flowers
Antirrhinum majus ‘Speedy Sonnet White’ (Snapdragon)
Cornus florida (Flowering Dogwood)
Dianthus Ideal Select Mix
Narcissus
Rose
Foliage
Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’ (Coral Bells)
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Vase
Ceramic Urn Stamped “Vintage 4”

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

In A Vase On Monday – Rose and White

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower-filled vases across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place in a vase this week. Good health and peace to you.

In A Vase On Monday – Quartet

In A Vase On Monday – Late Summer Quartet

Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share an arrangement every Monday using materials collected from our gardens. We have been a few days now without rain and more significantly, three days of cooler temperatures and lower humidity, blue skies and warm sun have brought luscious comfort to these last days of August.

Zinnias took over my design plans again this week. I had planned to feature some tiny stems of unsung workers in the garden—marigolds, lantana, celosia—but when walking around the garden I could not resist including gold, yellow and orange zinnias as well. These paired well with silvery Artemisia and richly colored Blackbird Euphorbia.

In A Vase On Monday – Late Summer Quartet

By using four straight-sided vodka glasses set inside another glass dish, I was able to mix and match heights. This enabled me to still use some of the tiny-stemmed flowers as well. I like the multi-colored blooms of common lantana. Butterflies are drawn to it also. In the bottom right corner perhaps you can make out the deep red of Marigold ’Spry Boy.’

In A Vase On Monday – Late Summer Quartet

The white-tipped undersides of this orange zinnia is strikingly different from others in this collection. Below it rests an apricot Dahlia ‘Fireworks.’

In A Vase On Monday – Late Summer Quartet

Although I like the vases collected into one arrangement, I was curious how they might look scattered more free-range.

I found this more interesting and versatile.

In A Vase On Monday – Late Summer Quartet

The interplay of forms is more obvious when the flowers are given space. The dahlias especially seem happier in this looser format.

In A Vase On Monday – Late Summer Quartet

Materials
Flowers
Celosia plumosa ‘Castle Mix’ (Feather Celosia)
Dahlia ‘Fireworks’
Lantana camara (Common lantana)
Marigold ’Spry Boy’
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Zinnia ‘Cut and Come Again’ (Zinnia elegant pumila), Botanical Interests.
Foliage
Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ (Wormwood)
Euphorbia ‘Blackbird’ (Spurge)
Vase
Vodka glasses and Glass dish

In A Vase On Monday – Late Summer Quartet

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower designs across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday – Two Vases, One Bouquet

In A Vase On Monday – Two Vases, One Bouquet

Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share an arrangement every Monday using materials collected from our gardens.

For today’s vase I chose a Raku pot purchased at our local Apple Chill street fair one autumn long ago, when five dollars was a significant investment.

Reliable and trouble-free, Angelonia ‘Purple’ caught my eye as I looked around the garden yesterday for flowers to feature. Also I included Dahlia ‘Fireworks’ because it is finally beginning to flower a bit more, though it remains rather lackluster. The three ‘Fireworks’ plants are the only dahlias in my garden this summer (my friend Libby’s mom’s red dahlia did not make it through our harsh winter).

In A Vase On Monday – Two Vases, One Bouquet

Zinnia Cut and Come Again continue to color the garden with fresh and long-lasting flowers, drawing hummingbirds, butterflies and other various insects. There is sign of powdery mildew on some of the leaves but the flowers power on. I used most of the zinnias I cut yesterday in a secondary arrangement, but several of the deep orange ones found their way into Monday’s vase, nestling among the purples of Angelonia and one stem of instensely blue-violet salvia.

In A Vase On Monday – Two Vases, One Bouquet

Two clusters of bright yellow Tansy flowers add a final touch.

In A Vase On Monday – Two Vases, One Bouquet

Many of my designs are viewed only from the front, but this one is meant to be seen from all directions.

In A Vase On Monday – Two Vases, One Bouquet

The asymmetry of this view looks more formal, yet gives a touch of personality.

In A Vase On Monday – Two Vases, One Bouquet

Some of the stems in today’s bouquet, especially part of the Angelonia and the dahlias, were not as long as I would have liked.  Concerned they may end of out of water at some point during the week, I decided after the photo shoot to trim all the stems evenly and place them into a different container.  Looking freer in this casual soup mug, the flowers will provide a cheery presence this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Two Vases, One Bouquet

Materials
Flowers
Angelonia ‘Purple’
Dahlia ‘Fireworks’
Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Zinnia Cut and Come Again (Zinnia elegant pumila)
Containers
Lime green soup mug
Raku ware, unknown artist, circa 1978.

It is fun to share vases with others across the world. Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting each week. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange And White

In A Vase On Monday – Orange And White

Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share an arrangement every Monday using materials collected from our gardens.

Zinnia Cut and Come Again are reliable for a profusion of summer blooms. Jason mentioned his were mainly white and orange and coincidentally those are the two colors I had selected for today’s vase. I seem to have a balanced mixture of colors this year, but the white is rare among the reds, pinks and yellows.

Zinnia Cut and Come Again (Zinnia elegant pumila

There are more oranges this year in the mix.

Zinnia Cut and Come Again (Zinnia elegant pumila

Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’ is beginning to bloom in a dark corner behind other plants so I decided to bring a stem indoors.

Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’ (Coral Bells)

For natural accents I reused a piece of bark from a previous arrangement, along with a seed pod from Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Plant) from a few weeks ago. The pod has transformed and burst open.

Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Plant)

A bunch of zinnias make a great summer bouquet, but even in small number they have great presence.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange And White

Materials
Flowers
Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’ (Coral Bells)
Zinnia Cut and Come Again (Zinnia elegant pumila)
Other
Bark: Lagerstroemia (Crape Myrtle)
Pod: Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Plant)
Container
Porcelain Ikebana vase. Rectangle Blue Zen (6.75L x 3.75W x 2H inches)

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower designs across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday – July Complementary

In A Vase On Monday – July Complementary

Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share an arrangement every Monday using materials collected from our gardens.

Before thinking consciously of today’s vase in terms of complementary yellow and purple, I had in mind tall stems of fading sunny Rudbeckia, the green cone-heads featured prominently, and backed by a large purply patterned Canna leaf. I also wanted to use pieces of bark saved from a Lagerstroemia (Crape Myrtle), especially this lichen-covered section.

Lichen and Lagerstroemia (Crape Myrtle) Bark

Using two floral pins or frogs I began by inserting the bark.  Next the rudbeckia and canna went in as planned.

Before long I had rescued a stem of Tansy from last week’s vase for more yellow and more texture.

In A Vase On Monday – July Complementary

More purples slipped in—Angelonia and Euphorbia ‘Blackbird.’ Much of the bark which was expected to provide a strong impact receded in favor of the angelonia.

Euphorbia ‘Blackbird’ (Spurge)

Dahlia ‘Fireworks’ has disappointed this year, giving only one or two blooms at a time, but the flowers called out when I was cutting materials and found their way into the design.

Dahlia ‘Fireworks’

Materials
Flowers
Angelonia ‘Purple
Dahlia ‘Fireworks’
Euphorbia ‘Blackbird’ (Spurge)
Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower)
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Foliage
Canna
Lagerstroemia (Crape Myrtle) Bark with Lichen
Container
Oasis Lomey 11″ Designer Dish, black, round
Two Three-inch floral pins (frog)
Black Stones

In A Vase On Monday – July Complementary

In A Vase On Monday – July Complementary

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower designs across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday – Old-Fashioned Blooms

In A Vase On Monday – Old-Fashioned Blooms

Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share an arrangement every Monday using materials collected from our gardens. Thunder and lightning was exciting briefly late Saturday night, but the activity brought very little rain.

Zinnias began flowering ten days ago, cheering up the garden with colorful old-fashioned loveliness.

In A Vase On Monday – Old-Fashioned Blooms

By early June when daffodil foliage had finally died back so I could reclaim some space, I was losing interest in gardening because it was so extremely hot. But I found an old packet of Zinnia ‘Cut and Come Again’ (Zinnia elegant pumila), packaged for 2017 by Botanical Interests, and sprinkled out the seeds. Simple, colorful, heat-loving and reliable—what could be easier?

In A Vase On Monday – Old-Fashioned Blooms

In-between the time of planting seeds and harvesting the flowers, I celebrated a birthday with lots of family. The container today is one of a pair of mugs I received during a big family get-together that unexpectedly turned into a bit of a birthday fest for me. The cups were crafted by my niece’s mother-in-law, featuring beautiful form and blue glaze. The blue batik table runner was made by my sister using special Japanese fabric.

Mugs and Table Runner

Light in the dining room was fading so for staging pictures I draped the table runner over a chair in the foyer. I decided to include another gift. This spring I began teaching yoga and meditation regularly so this Tibetan meditation chime from another sister was particularly thoughtful.

In A Vase On Monday – Old-Fashioned Blooms

Well back to this Monday’s design, a single stem of fern-like foliage of Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy) inserted into the mug created support structure that worked well to hold the zinnias in place. As well, there is a cluster of Tansy flowers just beginning to open.

In A Vase On Monday – Old-Fashioned Blooms

The flowers look sparser from the back but I love the color of this largest zinnia.

In A Vase On Monday – Old-Fashioned Blooms

Materials
Flowers
Zinnia ‘Cut and Come Again’ (Zinnia elegant pumila), Botanical Interests. Heirloom. (packed for 2017)
Foliage
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Vase
Stoneware mug. Mary Murray, Mountain Forest Pottery, Brevard, NC.

In A Vase On Monday – Old-Fashioned Blooms

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower designs across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday—Tansy Buttons

In A Vase On Monday

In A Vase On Monday

Again I am joining Cathy’s weekly challenge In A Vase On Monday as she encourages garden bloggers to create fresh arrangements each Monday using materials found in our gardens.

A surprise flower, a lone sprig of the herb Tanacetum vulgare (Common tansy) with gold daisy-like buttons, was the starting point for this week’s vase.

Several blooms of Camellia sasanqua ‘Yuletide’ serve as focal flowers. Although I used ‘Yuletide’ last week also, choices are limited at this time of year. Besides, the heavy yellow stamens precisely echo the rich hue of the tansy.

In A Vase On Monday

In A Vase On Monday

Clippings of dark green cypress and chartreuse sedum feather out to soften the edges of the ceramic glazed container. Color and texture in the tips of the foliage accentuate the flowers.

In A Vase On Monday

In A Vase On Monday

Materials List

Tanacetum vulgare (Common tansy)
Camellia sasanqua ‘Yuletide’
Sedum
‘Carolina Sapphire’ Arizona Cypress

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting. Visit her to see what she and others are placing In A Vase On Monday.

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – August 2014

I missed last month but today I once again join Christina of Creating My Own Garden of the Hesperides for Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD). To my dismay after many attempts I do not have deep or wide vistas where foliage is the main highlight, so I will concentrate on the foliage of individual plants.

After seeing how other gardeners rely on Brunnera, I added this silvery-leaved plant in spring and am pleased with the way it brightens up a dark corner. Its name is Brunnera macrophylla ‘Silver Heart’ (False Forget-Me-Not).

Brunnera macrophylla ‘Silver Heart’ (False Forget-Me-Not)

Brunnera macrophylla ‘Silver Heart’ (False Forget-Me-Not)

Helianthus angustifolius (Swamp Sunflower) is towering above the western border, adding welcome height and structure to that area.

Helianthus angustifolius (Swamp Sunflower)

Helianthus angustifolius (Swamp Sunflower)

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine) flowers profusely in spring but its foliage is attractive all summer.  Here it is still covered in early morning dew.

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

The native Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry) is forming flowers and will make a delicious meal later in the fall when the berries ripen to teenager purple.

Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry)

Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry)

The fern-like leaves of Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy) add nice textures to the border. This plant is very aggressive, but I have learned to be aggressive in pulling it out when it wanders too far.

Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)

Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)

Near the Tansy, something is eating the Ageratum. It has looked like this most of the summer. Most years I try to pull up the Ageratum so it does not overrun the border, but I have not been attentive enough to the garden this year. A few remain and the purple flowers will provide some relief to the autumn border. This is the first year the leaves have looked so poor.

Ageratum

Ageratum

In spring I began planting sedum in the hell strip between the sidewalk and the street where the grass refuses to grow. The sedum has not performed spectacularly but I think it is very slowly filling in. Before the homeowners association sends us a letter this fall telling us we need to replant our strip, I tried to get ahead of the game by also planting Ophiopogon japonicus ‘Nana’ (Dwarf Mondo Grass) . It has been so miserably hot since I bought it last week I could only manage to get a small portion of it planted so far.

Ophiopogon japonicus 'Nana' (Dwarf Mondo Grass)

Ophiopogon japonicus ‘Nana’ (Dwarf Mondo Grass)

Ophiopogon japonicus 'Nana' (Dwarf Mondo Grass) and sedum in the devil's strip

Ophiopogon japonicus ‘Nana’ (Dwarf Mondo Grass) and sedum in the devil’s strip

 

Also near the street is a small planting of shrubs encircling crape myrtles. I would very much appreciate it if someone can help identify this shrub. It is not one I love, but it requires very little maintenance and survives rain or drought equally well.

Unknown shrub

Unknown shrub

Unknown shrub

Unknown shrub

Visit Christina at Creating My Own Garden of the Hesperides for more Garden Bloggers Foliage Day features.

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – December 2012

It is time to join Christina‘s Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD), a monthly tribute to foliage.

Euphorbia ‘Blackbird’ has been a rewarding addition to the garden this year and GBFD would not be complete without including it. The tips have deepened to a captivating, velvety red.

Euphorbia 'Blackbird' (Spurge)

Euphorbia ‘Blackbird’ (Spurge)

Euphorbia 'Blackbird' (Spurge)

Euphorbia ‘Blackbird’ (Spurge)

The leaves of this Wintergreen boxwood have taken on a bronze hue for winter.

Buxus microphylla var koreana 'Wintergreen' (Wintergreen boxwood)

Buxus microphylla var koreana ‘Wintergreen’ (Wintergreen boxwood)

This bronzing effect is a normal coloration change for this shrub, but it seems more noticeable this year.

Buxus microphylla var koreana 'Wintergreen' (Wintergreen boxwood)-Detail

Buxus microphylla var koreana ‘Wintergreen’ (Wintergreen boxwood)-Detail

The bluish-gray leaves of Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ (Wormwood) are unaffected so far by the cold.

Artemisia 'Powis Castle' (Wormwood)

Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ (Wormwood)

This Ilex crenatea ‘Drops of Gold’ (Japanese Holly) was planted in front of the house in October. It lost some of its gold leaves from the stem tips a few weeks ago, but the plant seems to have stabilized now. It formed attractive, black berries, but only a few.

Ilex crenatea 'Drops of Gold' (Japanese Holly)

Ilex crenatea ‘Drops of Gold’ (Japanese Holly)

Mounds of Lychnis coronaria (Rose Campion) catch late afternoon sunlight along the Southern side path.

Lychnis coronaria (Rose Campion)

Lychnis coronaria (Rose Campion)

A pot of mixed sedum adds texture and interest to a corner just inside the garden gate.

Mixed Sedum

Mixed Sedum

Fern-like leaves of Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy) offer surprisingly fresh greenery to the southwest corner.

Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)

Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)

Daffodils already are sending up leaves beneath the brittle canes of Lantana camara (Common lantana). The lantana will be pruned back hard in early spring.

Daffodil

Daffodil

This cheerful little mound of green is Iberis Sempervirens. Although Iberis died out in the meditation circle this summer, it is growing in several other spots around the garden. This one may be blooming soon.

Iberis Sempervirens (Candytuft)

This potted geranium’s leaf is punctuated with tangerine edges and strongly outlined veins.

Pelargonium (Geranium)

Pelargonium (Geranium)

Thanks to Christina of Creating My Own Garden of the Hesperides for hosting Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD) each month. Check out her foliage observations and those of other GBFD participants.

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – August 2012

Again I am joining Christina of Creating My Own Garden of the Hesperides for Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD). I do not have deep or wide vistas where foliage is the main highlight, but will concentrate on the foliage of individual plants. Surprisingly some of the foliage in my garden appears nearly as it did in spring.

Aquilegia canadensis  and Monarda didyma

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine) bloomed in mid-April and Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm) began the end of May. Both of these were cut back after blooming and Monarda has rebloomed in a few places. Here, grouped into bright- green triplets, the lobed leaves of Aquilegia have regrown into mounds of soft foliage through which opposite-facing and coarser-textured leaves of Monarda emerge on square stems. At the top of this image seed pods of Clematis (Spider Flower) are a clue that it is indeed August, rather than early spring.

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine) and Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm)

Stachys byzantina and Achillea filipendulina

I pulled up lots of Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear) during the summer and was more careful than usual to remove flowers this year before it could set seed.  But here is Lamb’s Ear biding its time and sitting next to another rather aggressive grower, a dwarf Achillea filipendulina (Fern-leaf Yarrow). The soft, hairy-textured silvery leaves of Lamb’s Ear contrast with the delicate fern-like leaves of this Yarrow.

Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear) and Achillea filipendulina (Fern-leaf Yarrow)

Nepeta ‘Walker’s Low’

This Nepeta ‘Walker’s Low’ (Catmint) spills out-of-bounds to soften the edge between the lawn and one section of the northeast border. The spear-shaped leaves are a pleasant grayish-green in color and are fairly aromatic.

I have trimmed this back several times this summer and while not evident here, it continues to form lavender-blue blossoms, though not as vigorously as when it first bloomed in early May. Another large mound of Nepeta, planted in the middle of this same border has been invisible most of the summer. It is surrounded by Echinacea and other taller plants and is essentially lost from view. I plan to relocate it toward the front of the borders where it can be seen and appreciated.

Nepeta ‘Walker’s Low’ (Catmint)

Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ (Wormwood)

By mid-March Artemisia was forming slivery-green foliage that has added interest and contrast all summer. It flowered for several weeks from mid-to-late-June, after which I cut it back. The base of the plant is yellowing and looks a bit scraggly still, but these fresh new leaves are fine.

Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ (Wormwood)

Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’

Unlike many of the plants mentioned so far, Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ is one that has not already peaked this year and it is preparing to bloom. Its pale green, waxy-textured foliage is an interesting contrast to the other plants in the garden. This is the first time in many years this Sedum has been so poised and ready to make a statement in the fall. I attribute that to the plentiful rains during most of this summer.

Tanacetum vulgare and Salvia guaranitica

The foliage of Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy) has an even stronger fern-like quality than the Achillea. This is another rather tough-rooted spreader, but I have managed to contain it fairly well recently. Here it brightens up a dark corner of the border, along with leaves of Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue.’

Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)

Rudbeckia hirta ‘Irish Eyes’

Each time I pass the yellow flowers with green centers of Rudbeckia hirta ‘Irish Eyes,’ the strong shape and color of its leaves inevitably draw my attention. This leaf measures 10-by-7 inches.

Rudbeckia hirta ‘Irish Eyes’

Iberis sempervirens

Some plants in the Meditation Circle were chosen to withstand the hot, dry summers we have experienced in recent years. It is hard to prepare for every contingency. Though hot, this is a surprisingly wet summer that has improved the behavior of some plants and hurt others. Penstemon mexicali ‘Pike’s Peak Purple’ (Beardtongue) and Iberis sempervirens ‘Purity’ (Candytuft) have suffered the most. This time last year the Iberis formed a lush evergreen accent in the labyrinth.

Iberis sempervirens ‘Purity’ (Candytuft)

Visit Christina at Creating My Own Garden of the Hesperides for more Garden Bloggers Foliage Day entries.

A Close-up Texture Study

The garden is losing a sense of overall structure as autumn progresses, something I had planned to remedy when I started a renovation project last winter. Indeed there have been enhancements toward this end. The additions of a screening hedge of five ‘Blue Point’ junipers, a white picket fence enclosing the garden and a meditation circle with a labyrinth are all happy improvements. Still, the overall garden framework is and will be a work-in-progress.

Today I have set aside that larger view to concentrate on the textures that reveal themselves when one closely examines individual elements in the garden. With their leaves puddled around their bases or scattered into the neighbors’s yards, a river birch, a pair of crape myrtles and a Chinese elm prominently display interesting bark surfaces.

Chinese Elm


Chinese Elm


Chinese Elm


Chinese Elm


Crape Myrtle


River Birch

The rich green color and fern-like quality of tansy and yarrow leaves are lovely and welcome this time of year.

Tansy (Tanacetum vulgare)


Pink Yarrow

With mild temperatures in the seventies the yarrow continues to set buds, set off by the silvery narrow leaves of a nearby lavender.

Pink Yarrow and Lavender

Eastern red columbine adds garden interest year round. Though the colorful leaves are drying now they add contrast to the burgeoning hellebores leaves underneath.

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

Garden Textures

Including plants of varying textures is a satisfying way to create garden interest and style. Looking back at my garden through the years, I find some textural combinations were planned arrangements, but happenstance is welcome in my world as well.

The fern-like leaves of tansy, narrow grass-like blades of tradescantia, unfurling softness of rose campion, and feathery wisps of artemisia provide textural contrasts to the structures of echinacea, phlox paniculata, sweet pea, and black-eyed Susan as well as to each other.