In dampness

In this garden with areas that are consistently damp I am occasionally alerted to plants that thrive in dampness by ones growing in the shallows of the koi pond. Unsurprisingly, Joe Pye weeds have established here, but more curious is a panicled hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata, below) seedling that has grown for several years in the bog area of the pond. This shrub is hardly appropriate for the location, but I intervene as little as possible, so here it will stay, at least for today.

One of several Korean wax bells (Kirengshoma Korean, below, and also K. palmata) grows with greater vigor in part sun, but it also wilts regularly in the afternoon heat. Others in shadier and drier ground grow a fraction of the size, but they do not droop in the heat. By accident of location, the longest period of sun is the hottest, evening sun, so the wilt diminishes at sunset. Today’s heavy rainfall will sustain this wax bell for several days, and perhaps damper ground will enable a longer period of bloom.

The yellow bell flowers will open in the next few days.

Several beautyberries thrive in damp soil, though a white berried seedling also flourishes in dry ground where it grows tall with supporting branches of an Okame cherry. While I claim that flowers are unremarkable, I hedge a bit on the small but colorful flowers of ‘Purple Pearls’ (Callicarpa ‘Purple Pearls’, below). These hardly show from a distance, but with branches that arch to a stone path they are readily viewed.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Chuck says:

    I have several plants that are full to part sun that wilt in the sun…and it bothers me enough that i find myself dragging a hose around to rescue them..I have some hardy generiums that look awful while the sun is on them…is this normal?

    1. Dave says:

      Woody shrubs have more stored moisture, so wilting perennials are a greater problem. If these are newly planted it’s likely they’ll adapt, but if planted this year they might need to be moved to less sun.

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