Tuesday, June 10, 2014

No Snowbell

Cool and damp today. It hasn't gotten out of the 70s, but the high humidity feels oppressive. Rain has threatened all day, and we could really use it, but instead humid sunshine broke out. The weather is all over the place, very unsettled.

This was unsettling too: I had to remove the new snowbell, Styrax japonica, from the border around the gravel garden. It did not make it -- all the new leaves shriveled and died this spring and it never flowered.

This is what I had in mind -- a beautiful flowering snowbell I saw at Wave Hill Garden in mid May a few years ago. So very pretty.

This is what the flowers look like close up. I planted my little snowbell where I could look up into it and see those bell like flowers. It did bloom last year just after I planted it, but not this year.

Should I replace it? I do need a small tree for afternoon shade on that side of the gravel garden. I don't know what to do with that spot now.

On to less unsettling things.

'Blue Ice' amsonia is so different from the pale blue billowy amsonia hubrichtii or tabernaemontana. 'Blue Ice' is almost purple, stays very low and blooms when the big amsonias are finishing their brief flowering. (By the way, all my worry about the wine colored 'Forest Pansy' redbud was for naught.)

I divided my original 'Blue Ice' plant and put it in several places, and the repetition is great now. When I sit in the rockers on the patio I see waves of royal blue, first under the birdbath, then in the middle distance under the blueberries, and then in the far distance under the doublefile viburnum. This totally works.

Rosa glauca seems happy in its new home by the dry creek bed, if you can say such a gray, moody plant looks happy.

It's spindly, and the pink blooms are sparse, but this very odd rose has a calming effect. Its dark foliage, open habit and cool restrained color is a contrast with the riot of meadow behind and everything going on around it. I don't know why, but I like this strange rose.

But if you want a more classic, pretty, fragrant and flowery rose, Knockout Blushing Pink by the front steps is all of that. Boom.

By the way, I like the dark red Shaker bench placed along the brick wall near the door. I wasn't sure it fit the style of the house, but there it is.

I can not believe how neon yellow the Japanese forest grass Hakonechloa 'Aurea' is. And it has stayed bright yellow for weeks now. I like it with the gray stones, the cool blue dwarf spruce and the pretty white flowering dwarf deutzias on the opposite side of the walk. Whoever designed this (it was me, it was me!!) did a great job.

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