Archive for May, 2012

Each evening, as the sun is lighting my garden at it’s prettiest, I wander around my garden to see what’s blooming. And I talk to my flowers.

Some of you are thinking, “you do that too?  I thought I was the only one.”

The rest of you probably just think that’s crazy. It is.

For those of you that talk to your plants, I thought you might like to see what’s growing in my garden this week.

Let me introduce you to my friends:

Burgundy Penstemon

burgundy Penstemon or Beard Tongue

Burgundy Penstemon a.k.a. beard tongue: These bloom for quite a while. Penstemon are native to Indiana, but these are a cultivar. I like the foliage, and each year I’ll have a couple of baby plants from them. I deadhead very little because I like free plants.

Hot Pink Penstemon

Hot Pink Penstemon or Beard Tongue

Pink Penstemon: This is a short cultivar of penstemon. I love the hot pink blooms.  Anyone notice the dandelion?


Pinks or Dianthus

Dianthus: This is some sort of dianthus or pinks, although, I don’t know which one. It sort of looks like Sweet William, but it’s short. To the left is a coral bell with unusual leaves.  Growing through the plant is grass.  I guess I have some weeding to do.


Harebells or Campanula Rotundiflora

Campanula rotundiflora a.k.a. Harebells: Native to North America.  Last year I split them so I have them in several places in my front bed. They are light and airy.  The background blurry flowers are stock, an old-fashioned annual.

Clustered Bell Flower, Dane's Blood, or Campanula Glomerata
Campanula glomerata a.k.a clustered bell flowers, or Dane’s blood: These are native to Europe prairies and forest edges, but have naturalized themselves in North America. The deep purple is fantastic. It’s a perennial and it usually has lots of babies

Canterbuty Bells

Another campanula, this time, Canterbury Bells. They come in a variety of colors, but I have a thing for purple.


Purple Larkspur

Larkspur: a reseeding annual related to the perennial delphinium (they’re in the same genus). Mine have gone crazy in the garden, but I love them! This year, they are about 3 feet tall and are just starting to bloom. I’ve decided to stop trying to buy delphiniums, and just let the larkspur take off. There’s only one thing not to love –they are poisonous, so don’t plant them in a field with grazing animals or if you have curious toddlers.  In the back are sherbet colored tall snapdragons.

Jackamani Clematis

Jackamani Clematis: huge, purple, and prolific, this thing has climbed all the way up the front post on my porch. I love it, but make sure it has room. Apparently the trick for clematis is shaded roots and sun on their leaves.

Purple Columbine

Purple Columbine: I posted this flower last month too. It just won’t quit! It’s about 3 feet tall. A section of it that I moved this spring is only about 18 inches high. The flowers are about 2 inches across. It’s very large for a columbine.

David Austin English Rose

David Austin Rose -Carding Mill

This rose is an early birthday present from my folks. It’s a beautiful David Austin Rose called Carding Mill. The deep peach with blue love-in-a mist (nigella) are just spectacular.

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I gave away lots of love-in-a-mist plants. It’s a reseeding annual that is just now blooming. They are very easy to grow.

Last week, some old friends and a few new ones, gathered at my house for a potluck of sorts.

The instructions were to bring at least two of the following: wine, dessert, flowers, seeds, or more flowers.

At seven o’clock, ten of us gathered, for what will be the first of many dessert and flower potlucks.

Jane and Molly brought Scotcheroos. Rachel brought a Rhubarb and Raspberry coffee cake with coconut ice cream. Claudia brought rose water cupcakes with pink icing swirled on top. I made a flourless chocolate cake with strawberry sauce; and Marlys brought a terramasu coffee liquor torte –yes, it was amazing.  All of it was amazing.

Anika and a couple of others brought wine. Mary and my mom brought a double share of flowers.

After sitting on the back deck sampling the desserts, we took a tour of my veggie garden and flowers.

And then it was time to share flowers.  There were dozens of plants to be traded.  At least three of the attendees were relative newbies to gardening, but they provided treats and desserts, so we provided them with flower starts and gardening advice.  Any experienced gardener knows, that you shouldn’t have to buy basic hostas, stella doro daylilies, or coneflower, as these all spread pretty well.

Everybody left with at least a few new plants for their gardens.  The newbies probably ended up with the most, but that’s fine.  We got them off to a good start.  Now they can spend their extra gardening budget on unique flowers for next year’s exchange!

I fully planned on taking photos of the dessert spread, and of handing out plants, but I got so engrossed in what I was doing, I completely forgot.   You’ll just have to imagine a gaggle of happy gardeners (and future gardeners) high on too much sugar and giddy with their new flowers.

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