More from May

The garden was not dry before the weekend rain, but several inches of rain pushes another spurt of growth and adds a bit of depth to its color. With damp ground, recently weeded beds look as if they have been long neglected, and I hope that an additional burst of growth from hostas will cover and shade open ground to minimize weedy growth. The garden is not irrigated, so rainfall is greatly appreciated though with a murmur of discontent for the trivial downsides.

Click for a tour of the side garden
Baptisia ‘Lemon Meringue”

The yellow Exbury azaleas (above) were the last to flower, and they have not yet reached their peak. Within a few days the view along the northern border will be spectacular with red, orange, and yellow azaleas and the tall, white fringetree (Chionanthus virginicus). The scent of the fragrant azaleas is not yet evident, but I suspect the first still, warm day will do it.

The Exbury azalea border

Green and Golds (Chrysogonum virginianum, above) are flowering in damp ground in the side garden where the late afternoon sun peaks in. This low growing native has spread to fill open spaces, but unlike nearby wood poppies it stops when it meets another plant. Wood poppies (Stylophorum diphyllum) grow everywhere in this shaded side of the garden, and thankfully they fade as summer comes on.

Unfortunately, Rainbow leucothoe (Leucothoe fontanesiana ‘Rainbow’, above) is constantly plagued by spotted leaves. The flowers are okay, though not showy and the foliage would be its main attraction if much of it wasn’t spotted. Leucothoe has the distinction of having the plant world’s best common name, doghobble.

The foamflowers (Tiarella, above) quietly increase in size each year, with marvelous foliage and delightful flowers.

‘Little Honey’ oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Little Honey’, above) fades slightly in the shaded side garden, and if it flowers, they are sparse. Perhaps it is too shaded, but it was first planted on the opposite, sunnier border where leaves fried in a half day of sun.

The combination of ‘Lemony Lace’ elderberry (Sambucus racemosa ‘Lemony Lace’) and the purple smoketree is perhaps a bit too garish, but I figure the bold colors will fade somewhat by summer. My wife loves the contrast.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s