Sunday, September 19, 2010


A most satisfactory gardening morning today. Yesterday at Colesville I picked up three variegated liriope - mundane, I know, but finding things that will live under the dry shade of the maple tree is not easy. Plus, they are reliable and attractive. Got them planted, also a Begonia grandis 'Heron's Pirouette' that I couldn't resist. Plant Delights Nursery says, "While the triangular green foliage on the 15" clump is similar to the species, it is the huge and excessively large flower clusters of deep pink that set this selection apart." That went in by the fence along the terrace garden.

Five woodland asters are in search of a home, I'm sorry to say. They do well in dry shade, but they grow about two feet tall, higher than I was envisioning them. So instead of edging the white garden, they may end up under the oak tree...or among the oakleaf hydrangeas and hostas in the corner garden...or spilling over the wall along the walkway garden.

But most satisfactory of all was digging out the erstwhile cutting garden by the raised bed. This has been overgrown with gooseneck loosestrife and a creamy white perennial pea from Mom. Both are attractive for just a few weeks a year - not enough to justify them, sadly. So I uprooted the loosestrife (fully aware that the fleshy roots are still interspersed throughout the bed, but they're not hard to pull out), and cut the pea back so that it didn't look quite so tattered. Then expanded the bed just a bit to make a curve in front. The depth is about three feet along the straight edges, maybe up to five feet along the curve.
So, what to plant?

I'm mindful of the fact that my neighbors see this garden daily as they get in and out of their cars, so it's time to pull it together a bit more. I'd like to put in at least one shrub, maybe an evergreen (cherry laurel?) that won't get too big. Then perhaps a clematis for the trellis where the pea currently rules. Park the echinacea and Stokes asters there, too, until the sun bed starts to take shape.

I'm trying to plan in an orderly way. I've cut out graph paper in the shape of the bed and look forward to cutting out various plants and seeing how they look on the plan. Such an SJ I've become!

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