Simply stated, my flower beds can look a bit chaotic. I love plants, especially native plants, but I love the animals that live on and with them equally as much. When I come across a new plant, I buy it and figure out where I'm going to plant it later. If a few seedlings come up, uninvited and unplanned, I'm likely just to leave them where they sprout, rationalizing that they obviously like the conditions there. If a plant supports a good cohort of insects, I'm likely to let it remain in my garden, even if it sports tattered foliage for part of the year or if the color of its bloom clashes with the blooms around it. I love my gardens...but I can see how other people might not be quite so enamored of them.
That disclaimer out of the way, occasionally I find unplanned combinations of plants growing in my gardens that really please me, or a single plant that is just simply special in a truly visual sense. Since this is, ostensibly, a garden blog, I thought I would take a moment and share with you a couple of the "pretties" from my garden during the last month or so.
I find myself absolutely loving this combination of blue sage (Salvia azurea) and sand lovegrass (Eragrostis trichodes) from my front garden bed. The blue sage in this photo is a horticultural variety that stays shorter and blooms a deeper blue than the standard species.
However, it is performing well in dry shade and it's more native than hosta, for example, so I'm starting to embrace it with open arms. I have a lot of dry shade.
Here it is with brown-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia triloba). The waning summer phlox are in the background.
I think I've written before about fameflower or rockpink (Phemeranthus calycinus, formerly known as Talinum calycinum), but I really want to show off this clump of it. The foliage looks rather like a rangy version of moss rose or sedum. Like moss rose, it thrives in poor soil and hot sun, with little water. I've never had to water it.
This plant reseeds a bit, which I truly love. It's not enough to be a nuisance - in fact, I wouldn't mind if the plant would reseed a bit more frequently. The seeds must be fairly heavy, because I've never found a seedling very far from the parent plant. I've transplanted a couple of these seedlings and passed a couple others on to gardening friends; they transplant and reestablish quite readily. I don't feel like I'm using fameflower effectively yet, but I'm slowly moving my new plants around to see what I can figure out. Hopefully I'll be sharing some stunning combinations including this plant in future years.
Well, only 3 plants in this post, but it's late and I find myself thinking longingly of bed, so I'll sign off for now. Hope all your fall blooms are reviving your gardening spirit after the heat of the summer!