Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Texture and Tiny-ness in an Aster

If a newly planted perennial made it through this summer in my garden, you can be sure that it's a tough cookie. And, believe it or not, I actually did have a couple that survived, despite the heat and drought. (To be bluntly honest, I also had quite a few that didn't!)

One new variety that I am particularly excited about is Snow Flurry heath aster (Aster ericoides 'Snow Flurry'), which I purchased from High Country Gardens. This is one of the daintiest little plants that I have seen in a prairie garden, but unquestionably it's one of the hardiest too. Here it is, up close and personal, in front of a rose verbena that is reblooming a bit this fall.

When I widen the photo out just a bit, I've got a rather pretty little vignette, with a small sand lovegrass that seeded itself into this corner, the rose verbena carpeting a fair amount of ground, and the Snow Flurry aster lightening the front edge with its pure white, dainty flowers. I especially like the contrast in leaf size that the Snow Flurry aster provides - so many prairie natives are simply "medium" in leaf texture.

The Snow Flurry aster is actually much smaller in scale than I expected, based on its description in the catalog, so I'll be curious to see what it does in less drastic years. For now, however, I'm enchanted, and I fully intend to order a few more to try in other spots throughout my beds.


Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

Looks good. I like High Country Gardens too. It's nice to see one of their offerings in an actual garden doing well.

Gaia Gardener: said...

Have you ever ordered anything from them, Sherlock?

Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

Yes. A lot of plants actually. I've had good luck with most of the plants. I want to try more of their really drought tolerant plants after this year. I think some of their plants (while good with drought) don't like the heat we have here. Their better suited for higher elevations where the growing season is dry by cooler. The chocolate flower which barely got any water this year is from them and boy did it grow and bloom this year. I want more. I'm going to try and sow some of the seeds. If that doesn't work, I think I'll be ordering more. I got my purple globe thistle from them. It's super easy. If I ever get my plant index together, I plan on listing where I got most of my plants like from HCG or this or that friend, etc.

Gaia Gardener: said...

Interesting, Sherlock. I'm trying to get records together about my plantings, finds and so forth as well. I've got a data base started, but so far I've entered mainly the plants I've identified growing in the wilder areas of our property. I need to get busy on the plants I've put into my garden beds.

Tricia said...

I am also a huge fan of HGC. In my case, I think our area (Western NY) is a bit wet and not sunny enough, but I love the idea of drought-tolerant plants to save watering. I am planning a post over the winter comparing HCG and Bluestone Perennials' shipping methods. HGC wins hands-down. I love their deep pots.

I envy you two having so many plants you need a database!!! A list will do for us at the moment!