Sunday, September 28, 2008


The dwarf aster 'Purple Dome' I planted last fall is filled with intense purple blooms. I didn't realize that it would bloom at the same time as the false dragonhead, which has pale purple spiky blooms. Actually, my notes show the latter bloomed in August last year, so maybe it's late this year? At any rate, I love the echo of these two shades of purple on either side of the garden. This not very good picture gives a hint of this serendipitous pairing. Don't look too closely at the untrimmed, untidy mid-section.
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, September 27, 2008

White Flower Farm in the news

Okay, I know they're more expensive than some other places, but you really do get good quality from them in my experience. Anne Raver has an article about WFF in the New York Times that makes me long to see their border in full bloom. 280 feet by 20 of beautifully grown perennials must be breathtaking. Her memories of the packages her parents ordered from them rang a bell with me, too.

Fall orders

Have just ordered the "Crescendo" collection of daylilies from White Flower Farm for the pathway garden, and ordered a less pricey (and probably less elegant) collection of daffodils from Van Bourgondien to go with them. The plan is to have flowers and foliage from spring through late summer. The collections are about twice what I need, so I have the delicious problem of deciding where to put the extras - in the cutting garden along the side of the house? Or along the back fence?

I also ordered paper whites, Tommy crocuses and more English bluebells and feel very smug that for once I am not, like Henry Mitchell, having to take a drill to the ground in January to plant the bulbs!

Gardens in Scotland

This was not a garden trip, nor a walking trip, but we tucked in some of both, anyway.

Crocosmia were everywhere, even along the roadsides. When I spoke to our kilted guide at the Edradour Distillery in Pitlochry about them, he called them montbretia and said he had them in his garden, too. Wikipedia tells us "They are commonly known in the United States as coppertips or falling stars, and in Britain as montbretia."

Here they are at the distillery garden

and here they are mixed with daisies.
Posted by Picasa

In Glencoe, they were growing along the roadside, with the lowering hills in the background.
Posted by Picasa

I also enjoyed the dahlias, these in a village garden at Glencoe
Posted by Picasa

and these in a bouquet at Glamis Castle.
Posted by Picasa

We kept running into strange pairings throughout the trip, undoubtedly due to their cooler weather, like sweet peas in early September, when the autumn sedums are in bloom. Will globe thistle bloom with tiger lilies for us? They made a charming pair at Armadale Castle on the Isle of Skye.

Tuberous begonias adore the cool, wet shady climate, and I should not be surprised that they cook and die in Virginia. These pots were at our B&B in Pitlochry.