Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Late Bloomers

Plants that come into their own late in the season.

This year I didn't plant any annuals so I don't have much color in my early fall garden. Agastache Blue Fortune has been blooming since July and continues tirelessly. Perovskia Russian Sage has also been a blooming machine since July--a chaotic, airy masses of silver stems and pale lavender flowers. I think this is a great accent plant behind denser foliage and blooms. In the photo below, the Russian Sage isn't very well placed in a narrow section of the border. Next year I plan to move it beside my helenium. Hopefully this should be a good combo both blooming at the same time. By adding annuals, daylilies and coreopsis or gallardia in the front it should give me a long period of bloom.

This is the third season for my helenium. I like it better every year. Of course you can't see it in this photo, but when I took the picture it was litteraly dancing in the wind. Almost like butterflies with golden wings, swaying and bobbing with each gust. It was a joy just to stand and watch it.

I'm so pleased with the helenium, next year I want to order two of the newer hybrids. Below are photos of Mardi Gras and Double Trouble. Both have "stiff skirts" and more petals. I love the autumn colors on Marti Gars.

Helenium Mardi Gras (Bluestone Perennials Photo)

Helenium Double Trouble (Bluestone Perennials Photo)

These are tallish plants 3-4 feet. They would probably be more well behaved with staking or caging. I didn't do either with mine and it has spread in an arc taking up quite a bit of space.