You are currently browsing the monthly archive for May 2009.

May 011

It’s still May, but it’s summer in the garden. The wisteria and giant white tree peony perfume the secret garden room behind the west border. 

Neither cultivator matched the image of them that had formed in my mind’s eye, loosely based on their catalog descriptions. But, the reality might be even finer.

Sometimes plants exceed my expectations, sometimes they disappoint.  And sometimes, as in today’s picture, it takes years for the vision to be realized.


June 013

The beginning of the purple haze season, with Gladiator alliums starting off purple show. Dark purple iris add a grape fragrance note soon. But, the alliums carry the show for weeks, gradually aging to bronze tones, and finally to driftwood gray as the verbena bonariensis and the lavenders open.

April 2009 042

A single photo showing the whole garden is not something I can manage, maybe an ariel shot.  But then, there’d be little detail.

Instead, I’ll feature a particular section and how it changes throughtout the seasons.  The portion above is from what I think of as the purple haze room.  But, as the photo reveals bronze anchors and blue forget me nots cavort along side shocking pink accents, including grand impression tulips and a tree peony just coming into glory.  An ancient rhodie in the same shocking pink hue echoes the hot theme just out of the camera’s view.

Beyond the garden gate lies a world of secret beauty and passionate obsession.

April 2009 022

On the southern tip of the east border, there are pink perennial tulips with deep red wallflowers and assorted rising perennials.  The tulips really do come back year after year.  You can buy them here, if you need some for your garden.

And no, they don’t pay a commission, but maybe they should. 🙂

front yard

With a dusty of snow, the bare stems, trunks, and evergreens take on a new beauty, reducing the garden to its bones.

September 044

Fall seems gaudy enough on its own. At least, that’s my rational for not adding autumn blooming pretties to outside of this bed.

June 010

The concept of a white garden is vastly appealing to me. Alas, the execution has yet to succeed. This slice of the garden comes closest in summer. As long as I’m ruthless about weeding out the self-seeders that fail to conform to the all white blossom standard.

The ribbon of white in front is made up of wild daisies, technically a weed. But, I like them better than the cultivated varieties. The lavendar cloud is Thalictrum, aka Meadow Rue, which does have alba versions. But, I’ve been too weak willed to discard the lavendar volunteers.

For those seeking low-maintenance landscapes, keep in mind that the most labor intensive part of my yard is the lawn. That’s going some considering I have a couple of real aggressive players, ivy, bamboo, and wisteria to name just a few of the guilty.

Grass is also my biggest weed problem–but, that’s another story.


The white flowers are several different varieties of tulips and narcissus Thalia, which has proved durable and even increases modestly. They’re dainty, late, and fragrant. You can find them here. The rose/lavender tulips are, of course, May Wonders.

I didn’t order May Wonder tulips to replenish…opting for adding more Mount Tacoma instead. So, next year’s display will change. But, for the better?

May 2009
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