Tag Archives: Garden Bloggers Foliage Day

Greetings Of The Season

From A Tree In Foyer Of Carolina Inn 2016

From A Tree In Foyer Of Carolina Inn 2016

This santa rests on tree boughs at the Carolina Inn where I traditionally meet a special set of friends for lunch each December.

From my garden, the frost-adorned achillea and wisps of hydrangea flowers are an abbreviated nod to Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD).

Achillea filipendulina (Fern-leaf Yarrow)

Achillea filipendulina (Fern-leaf Yarrow)

Hydrangea macrophylla

Hydrangea macrophylla

As Christmas Eve arrives Yuletide, a mainstay of color at pmbGarden for many weeks, is wrapping up its brilliant show.

Camellia sasanqua 'Yuletide'

Camellia sasanqua ‘Yuletide’

Wishing you joy and peace!

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – November 2016

Governors Park Foliage

Governors Park Foliage

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD) is hosted monthly on the 22nd by Christina at Creating my own garden of the Hesperides.

Inside my autumn garden the foliage I wish today to note is this Lycoris radiata (Spider Lily). Flowers should precede the leaves, but sadly did not. These were planted a couple of years ago.

Lycoris radiata (Spider Lily)

Lycoris radiata (Spider Lily)

I thought I would share a couple of scenes from a recent walk around the neighborhood. For the longest time it seemed we would have very little fall color and the leaves would simply drop without marking the occasion. Suddenly last week trees along the highway and inside my neighborhood lit up to make it really seem like autumn.

Specifically there are lots of colorful red maples that have been planted in rows along the sidewalks. They have turned bright red and look beautiful in the glow of the sun. But I really love the older trees.

This post oak is one of the grand remnants of an old farm, an anchor to the past on the land where my subdivision now sits.

Governors Park Foliage -Quercus stellata (Post oak) North American species of oak in the white oak section. Native to the eastern and central United States.

Governors Park Foliage -Quercus stellata (Post oak) North American species of oak in the white oak section. Native to the eastern and central United States.

Many of our houses face an elliptical-shaped common area (the rest are tucked into cul-de-sacs). Within this loop are several groves of old trees, hardwoods as well as pines. The trees in the image below approximately mark the midway point of the loop. Behind the trees sits a pond where occasionally a blue heron spends time.

On Friday when I stood at the south end of our “meadow park” looking north, the sky was blue, yet eerily darkened by smoke from wildfires in the western part of the state.

Governors Park Foliage

Governors Park Foliage

When I reached the grove of trees pictured above I took a few more minutes to gaze upward through the treetops. As peaceful and lovely as it was, the scent of smoke was overwhelming and I hurried along home.

Governors Park Foliage

Governors Park Foliage

By Saturday morning shifting winds had cleared the air. Meanwhile the fires are partially contained but have scorched thousands of acres.

Many thanks to Christina at Creating my own garden of the Hesperides for reminding us the important part foliage plays in our gardens (and surrounding environs). Check out her foliage and that of other gardeners across the globe.

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – October 2016

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD) is hosted monthly on the 22nd by Christina at Creating my own garden of the Hesperides. For the past two months my sun scorched foliage was largely uninspiring, but October brings a new perspective to the garden.

When I visited my cousin last weekend in the N.C. mountains she sent me home with a huge hydrangea, rooted especially for me from one that stood at my grandmother’s back stoop and filled my childhood self with delight many years ago. I planted it against the fence on the south border near some trees, where it should get morning sun and afternoon protection.

Hydrangea macrophylla (from my grandmother's)

Hydrangea macrophylla (from my grandmother’s)

Nearby and around the corner Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ is switching to autumn color.

Hydrangea quercifolia 'Ruby Slippers' (Lil' Ruby dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangea)

Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ (Lil’ Ruby dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangea)

Much of the foliage of interest in the garden at this time of year comes from a flush of growth from plants that died back or fared poorly in the summer heat. Fresh leaves on columbine, candytuft, Lamb’s Ear, yarrow and iris all add to the garden’s recovery.

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

 

Iberis sempervirens (Candytuft)

Iberis sempervirens (Candytuft)

Iris germanica (Bearded iris) and Achillea filipendulina (Fern-leaf Yarrow)

Iris germanica (Bearded iris) and Achillea filipendulina (Fern-leaf Yarrow)

Stachys byzantina (Lamb's Ear)

Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear)

I am excited to see Anemone coronaria returning, though this is not spreading as I had hoped.

Anemone coronaria

Anemone coronaria

A couple of different Chrysanthemums bring not only beautiful flowers this time of year but also some welcome green.

Chrysanthemum 'Sheffield Pink' (Hardy Chrysanthemum)

Chrysanthemum ‘Sheffield Pink’ (Hardy Chrysanthemum)

Chrysanthemum with Salvia guaranitica 'Black and Blue'

Chrysanthemum with Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’

Veronica spicata ‘Pink Goblin’ (Speedwell) does not bloom well in its current location but after several years it is forming a nice mat of ground cover which I would like to extend to other areas of the borders.

Veronica spicata 'Pink Goblin' (Speedwell)

Veronica spicata ‘Pink Goblin’ (Speedwell)

Betula nigra (River Birch) and Lagerstroemia (Crape Myrtle) are front yard trees with interesting bark.

Betula nigra (River Birch)

Betula nigra (River Birch)

Betula nigra (River Birch)

Betula nigra (River Birch)

Lagerstroemia (Crape Myrtle)

Lagerstroemia (Crape Myrtle)

I bought another Iris domestica (blackberry lily) in early summer but never got it planted. Looks like it really wants to survive. Also, see how green the fescue grass is? After aerating and reseeding, it no longer resembles its brown-patchy self from August.

Iris domestica (blackberry lily)

Iris domestica (blackberry lily)

Hedychium coronarium has bloomed poorly this year, but continues to form flower buds. The leaves are quite beautiful. I think I will move part of it to another location where it can have more water.

Hedychium coronarium (Ginger lily)

Hedychium coronarium (Ginger lily)

Hedychium coronarium (Ginger lily)

Hedychium coronarium (Ginger lily)

Euphorbia ‘Ascot Rainbow’ brings reliable color and texture to the garden throughout all seasons.

Euphorbia 'Ascot Rainbow' (Ascot Rainbow Spurge)

Euphorbia ‘Ascot Rainbow’ (Ascot Rainbow Spurge)

Planted along the corner of the front porch Daphne odora ‘Aureomarginata’ is a great evergreen shrub for year-round enjoyment and has late winter, sweet-scented flowers as well.

Daphne odora 'Aureomarginata' (Winter daphne)

Daphne odora ‘Aureomarginata’ (Winter daphne)

Daphne odora 'Aureomarginata' (Winter daphne)

Daphne odora ‘Aureomarginata’ (Winter daphne)

To wrap up today’s foliage review I chose this gardenia hip. The orange color will deepen in the coming days.

Gardenia hips - Gardenia jasminoides

Gardenia hips – Gardenia jasminoides

Many thanks to Christina at Creating my own garden of the Hesperides for reminding us the important part foliage plays in our gardens. Check out her foliage and that of other gardeners across the globe.

Late June Garden Highlights and GBFD

Daylily

Daylily

Summer arrived officially on Monday, and right on schedule the season was underscored by higher humidity and temperatures this week. The late June garden is full of flowers. Cicadas vibrate their song, hummingbirds sip at the offerings of Monarda and Salvia greggii ‘Furman’s Red,’ fireflies pulse their glowing presence in early evening. Sitting on the front porch we often observe Carolina anoles (Anolis carolinensis) scuttling about. They exhibit a range of color from brown to green and occasionally we see males with extended red throat fans searching for mates.

Day lilies have added bright color and interest to the eastern border, much happier than in recent years.

Daylily

Daylily

Daylily

Daylily

Last year Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers,’ a dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangea, quickly faded to brown under the severe heat and drought. Now with sufficient rain, after three years it at last has fulfilled its promise of colorful summer flowers. These started out crisply white and have taken on a blushing red aspect.

Hydrangea quercifolia 'Ruby Slippers'

Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’

Hydrangea quercifolia 'Ruby Slippers'

Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’

Phlox paniculate and Cleome hassleriana (Spider Flower) have made a welcome return to the western border.

Phlox paniculata and Cleome hassleriana (Spider Flower)

Phlox paniculata and Cleome hassleriana (Spider Flower)

This phlox, possibly Robert Poore’s, is especially attractive this year. In last year’s drought it scarcely bloomed at all.

Phlox paniculata, possibly 'Robert Poore'

Phlox paniculata, possibly ‘Robert Poore’

Phlox paniculata, possibly 'Robert Poore'

Phlox paniculata, possibly ‘Robert Poore’

Cleome hassleriana (Spider Flower) once again has self-seeded. It has a fascinating flower structure.

Cleome hassleriana (Spider Flower)

Cleome hassleriana (Spider Flower)

Two hybrid echinaceas add spark to the summer garden, ‘White Swan’ and ‘Big Sky Sundown.’

Echinacea 'White Swan'

Echinacea ‘White Swan’

Echinacea ‘Big Sky Sundown’ (Hybrid Coneflower)

Echinacea ‘Big Sky Sundown’ (Hybrid Coneflower)

Hybrid echinaceas are nice and pollinators love them, but the unnamed ones make a larger impact in my garden. Echinacea is reputed to be drought tolerant but adequate rain brings superior performance. It has spread itself in satisfying ways and runs throughout the northern border.

Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower)

Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower)

Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower)

Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower)

More echinacea is planted against the back of the house which has western exposure and so receives the hot afternoon sun.  This view is from slightly behind the border at the corner near the north end gate, looking toward the meditation circle. In this area echinacea plays a supporting role Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm).

Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm) and Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower)

Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm) and Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower)

Beebalm actually makes up the larger portion of this area. Bees love monarda, as do hummingbirds.

Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm)

Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm)

Shasta daisies line a border against the house between the back garage steps and steps leading to the screened porch. (That’s the red monarda peeking through the railing from the opposite side of the house.)

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

Looking very fresh this daisy grows at the far end of the same border, in front of the hydrangeas.

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

Dahlias both bright red and rich deep mahogany or wine red have returned from last year and I look forward to using them in indoor arrangements.

Dahlia (from Libby)

Dahlia (from Libby)

Dahlia

Dahlia

Breakfasting this morning on the screened porch overlooking the garden we watched as a baker’s dozen American goldfinch (Spinus tristis) sat feasting on Verbena bonariensis in a small island at the southwest corner. I have tried many times to photograph bird visitors but my camera produces dismal results at this distance.  Still you may be able to spot the males clothed in brilliant yellow and the equally lovely females wearing more subdued greenish garb.

A baker's dozen American goldfinch (Spinus tristis) feast on Verbena bonariensis

A baker’s dozen American goldfinch (Spinus tristis) feast on Verbena bonariensis

Garden Bloggers’ Foliage Day (GBFD)

For the first time in a long while I missed sharing Garden Bloggers’ Foliage Day on the 22nd with Christina and others, so thought I would include in a few images to illustrate how the foliage is holding up. This time last year even rigorous daily watering, which generally I am loathe to do, could not keep things green. This year feels totally different though. Because of plenty of spring rains and some recent heavy thunderstorms, the June garden feels lush and green.

For some unexplained reason the Cornus florida (Flowering Dogwood) barely tried to flower this year. Perhaps the poor weather last year kept it from properly forming buds last fall for spring display. Its foliage however looks nice. Often by now the leaves are drying and turning brown but this year it remains happy. To its left Callicarpa americana (American beauty berry) has grown immensely in the past couple of years and is forming flowers.

Also ‘Carolina Sapphire’ Arizona Cypress adds evergreen structure to this corner that forms the northwest boundary of the garden.

Arizona Cypress, Callicarpa americana, Cornus florida

Arizona Cypress, Callicarpa americana, Cornus florida

I have kept the flowers of Euphorbia ‘Shorty’ for the time being but went ahead and removed those of Euphorbia ‘Ascot Rainbow’ several weeks ago.

Euphorbia 'Shorty' (Shorty Spurge)

Euphorbia ‘Shorty’ (Shorty Spurge)

Euphorbia 'Ascot Rainbow'

Euphorbia ‘Ascot Rainbow’

This passalong dusty miller makes a nice complement to the ‘Ascot Rainbow’ forming a nice ground cover as it threads itself along the western border. Columbine which was cut back after blooming has freshly regenerated leaves.

Euphorbia 'Ascot Rainbow', Dusty Miller and Eastern columbine

Euphorbia ‘Ascot Rainbow’, Dusty Miller and Eastern columbine

Somewhat resembling the passalong Dusty Miller seen above, the Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ (Wormwood) seen below behaves much differently, forming a well-behaved mound of silvery foliage. Something I often show for GBFD, it is at its best this year.

Artemisia 'Powis Castle' (Wormwood)

Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ (Wormwood)

Thanks to Christina for hosting GBFD each month.

I will leave you with two more images I am out of time to describe. I am off to get ready to celebrate 39 years of marriage with my sweet husband this evening. Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.

Lathyrus latifolius (Perennial Sweet Pea)

Lathyrus latifolius (Perennial Sweet Pea)

Petunia Easy Wave ‘Red Velour’

Petunia Easy Wave ‘Red Velour’

 

 

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – May 2016

It is time again for Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD), hosted by Christina at Garden of the Hesperides.

Near the back steps, a passalong dahlia is preparing for its second year in my garden, courtesy of Libby at An Eye For Detail. The foliage looks strong and flowers are forming. I neglected to dig the dahlia last fall so am relieved to see it made it through the winter.

Dahlia

Dahlia

In the upper left of the image above, fragrant Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm) is inconveniently growing up through where the garden hose is stored and needs to be reined back. In front of the monarda, a few dark red leaves of Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue) are visible. Also here several plants of Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower) are pushing upwards through some impertinent clover and a ground cover of Iberis sempervirens (Candytuft). Foliage of Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine) peek through as well. The Aquilegia’s last remaining red flowers nod their heads.

Here is a closer look at the Echinacea and Aquilegia, with seeds formed on Iberis. The textures were not planned but do look interesting together.

Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower), Iberis sempervirens (Candytuft) and Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower), Iberis sempervirens (Candytuft) and Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

The other side of the steps features a long, sunny border fronted largely by Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy).

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

Across the garden in its shadiest corner, several Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’ (Coral Bells) responded well to the recent rains and have grown substantially. Their multi-hued foliage is rich and full for the moment. Meanwhile Brunnera macrophylla ‘Silver Heart’ (False Forget-Me-Not) finished blooming, but the smaller silvery, patterned leaves add a bright pop to this planting area (lower left of image). In back at left fern-like foliage of Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy) and sword-like iris leaves add height and texture.

Heuchera villosa 'Big Top Bronze' (Coral Bells)

Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’ (Coral Bells)

In a small nearby border with a bit more sun grows more Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’. Its companion Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ has similar coloring. A stand of self-seeded Verbena bonariensis (Tall Verbena) with long green, leathery leaves gives a change in texture and color.

Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red' (Beardtongue) and Heuchera villosa 'Big Top Bronze' (Coral Bells) with Verbena bonariensis (Tall Verbena)

Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue) and Heuchera villosa ‘Big Top Bronze’ (Coral Bells) with Verbena bonariensis (Tall Verbena)

Silvery shades of Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear) and soon to bloom Lavender complement more leaves of Bearded Iris.

Bearded Iris, Stachys byzantina (Lamb's Ear), Lavender

Bearded Iris, Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear), Lavender

Four Gardenia jasminoides ‘August Beauty’ have been planted for about three years. Most are finally getting some size and buds are forming.

Gardenia jasminoides 'August Beauty'

Gardenia jasminoides ‘August Beauty’

One of the August Beauty gardenias has been eclipsed by its aggressive neighbors.  Soon the monarda will explode with red, inviting hummingbirds to sip its nectar, and dark pink flowers will grace the echinacea. But for now this spot is a relaxing green with Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ providing white accents—a cool, calm, peaceful interlude.

One Gardenia jasminoides 'August Beauty' has become swamped by surrounding plants.

One Gardenia jasminoides ‘August Beauty’ has become swamped by surrounding plants.

Thanks to Christina at Garden of the Hesperides for hosting. Read her foliage update and see more links to foliage perspectives from many parts of the world.

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – April 2016

It is time again for Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD), hosted by Christina at Garden of the Hesperides.

The dogwood for now is green. There were only a handful of flowers this spring—the most disappointing dogwood display ever. I keep threatening to remove the poor performer but inertia keeps it safe for now.

Cornus florida (Flowering Dogwood)

Cornus florida (Flowering Dogwood)

Below, this this early morning scene highlights the fresh green iris foliage which is very strong and healthy this year. Beside them, in the foreground on the right, green-gray catmint is filling out and up. Looking beyond irises, just beyond the meditation circle, a large circle of daffodil foliage is dying back slowly. Narcissus are wonderful in early spring, but I pay the price of planting them in the middle of the lawn by having to watch the leaves yellow and wilt.

Further back are five evergreens, Juniperus chinensis ‘Blue Point’ (Blue Point Juniper). They were planted to add some height and privacy to the garden. Because I worked around some existing plants, they are not necessarily situated in the most effective way, but they do help with privacy.

At left behind the fence the neighbors’ red maple is gorgeous this year. Back inside the fence the tall trees in the right back corner are Cupressus arizonica ‘Carolina Sapphire’ (Arizona Cypress) awash in the early morning sun that has yet to reach the rest of the garden. And the large shrub on the right is Spiraea prunifolia (bridal wreath spiraea). It is sending out suckers everywhere and needs a severe pruning, my intended task for this morning.

Iris germanica (Bearded iris)

Iris germanica (Bearded iris)

Lots of plants are bringing great promise. Not all, but many, of these early plants have lovely silvery foliage, such as Lychnis coronaria (Rose Campion) and, in the background, overly abundant Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear). Echinacea are maturing, with a few already forming flowers.

Lychnis coronaria (Rose Campion)

Lychnis coronaria (Rose Campion)

Last fall the garden was overgrown when I was trying to plant allium. I just cleared a spot and stuck all the bulbs together. That pretty much sums up my gardening style. I have been reading this spring about suggestions for underplanting alliums to hide their foliage, so lesson learned.

Allium ‘Gladiator’ (Giant Allium) (3 bulbs) Allium ‘Persian Blue’ (Giant Allium) (3 bulbs) Allium azureum (Blue Allium) (10 bulbs)

Allium ‘Gladiator’ (Giant Allium) (3 bulbs)
Allium ‘Persian Blue’ (Giant Allium) (3 bulbs)
Allium azureum (Blue Allium) (10 bulbs)

Here are a few more images to wrap up this April foliage highlight.

Side Path-Iris, Lavender and Stachys byzantina (Lamb's Ear)

Side Path-Iris, Lavender and Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear)

Perovskia atriplicifolia (Russian Sage) and Salvia guaranitica 'Black and Blue'

Perovskia atriplicifolia (Russian Sage) and Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’

Narcissus, Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Plant) and Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower)

Narcissus, Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Plant) and Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower)

Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm) and Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm) and Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

Iris, Lavender and Stachys byzantina (Lamb's Ear)

Iris, Lavender and Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear)

Hemerocallis (Daylily) and Artemisia 'Powis Castle' (Wormwood)

Hemerocallis (Daylily) and Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ (Wormwood)

Chrysanthemum and Stachys byzantina (Lamb's Ear)

Chrysanthemum and Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear)

Thanks to Christina at Garden of the Hesperides for hosting. Read her foliage update and see more links to foliage perspectives from many parts of the world.

Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – March 2016

The 22nd of each month is Garden Bloggers Foliage Day (GBFD) hosted by  Christina at Garden of the Hesperides.

Spring arrived officially this week and today’s photos, taken March 19, reveal the season is well underway. I thought Brunnera macrophylla ‘Silver Heart’ was lost after last summer’s extreme heat so was happy to see these brightly-patterned leaves.

Brunnera macrophylla ‘Silver Heart’ (False Forget-Me-Not)

Brunnera macrophylla ‘Silver Heart’ (False Forget-Me-Not)

What a pleasure to discover the fresh leaves of emerging plants or watch the evergreen ones recover from the harsh conditions of winter. Here are a few glimpses of the late March foliage.

Thanks to Christina at Garden of the Hesperides for hosting. (She may be away this month.)