30 May 2009

Bright Colours to Chase the Fog

While a significant number of garden bloggers are enjoying themselves in Chicago at the Garden Bloggers Spring Fling, some of us had to stay behind and tend to real life. Like finishing assignments and trying to make head and tail of our gardens. Nature has a sense of humour, however, so she decided to roll the fog in, and it's just too wet for my temperamental bones to be out scrubbing around in the yard. I did, however, take my camera for a little walk and catch some bright colours to cheer myself with.
While I like pastels in other people's gardens, there aren't a whole lot here for a very good reason. The fog washes out such colours and makes them look drab. I like real jewel tones for the most part, and also like to punch things up with colourful foliage. These two cranesbills are Espresso and Springtime; I have to move Espresso because it has a much lower and less-exuberant growth habit than Springtime, which is a Geranium phaeum cultivar.

I'm always gushing about lantanas, and this one is no exception: Landmark Citrus. It's still in my greenhouse because it's planted with some new cultivars that came to me from Proven Winners, and I want them to get well established before I introduce them to Scotts Bay fog. 

Last year, I got my greedy little hands on several new Geum cultivars. I know that often geums are short-lived perennials, at least in my garden, but I had to have these two. This beauty is called 'Mango Lassy', and it's unfortunate that I finished my bottle of mango nectar last night because I have a sudden craving, you know? 

Longsuffering spouse thought it looked a bit like a poppy, but agreed with me that it's a beautiful thing. I just wished they flowered a lot longer than they do. 

The geums and cranesbills are near my fabulous copper beech, still a modest sized sapling but growing well and with gorgeous, gorgeous foliage. 

Snerk. I should have 'David' phlox (one of my favourite plants, even though it's pastel) planted beside this geum and call it my rockstar planting. Because this geum is called 'Cooky'. Heh. 

The double-flowered grape hyacinths are coming out and they look especially striking against the brilliant foliage of 'Aztec Gold' veronica. 

The front garden is forging ahead quite happily, although there's not a huge amount in bloom right now other than the containers I've put outside already. in the right-centre foreground is a new tansy I got last week, 'Isla Gold'. I've bought it just for the foliage, which I think is lovely, and will go well near something with purple foliage like Sambucus 'Black Lace'. 

Many of the containers are still in the greenhouse, but I put these outside last week just to see how they'll do. We're going to track them every week or ten days or so and see how they're growing. 

And I haven't decided where to plant this glorious 'Autumn Brilliance' dryopteris fern yet, but I got very excited when I found it last week at Briar Patch in Berwick. Probably it'll go out in the shade garden, and I'm optimistic that it will do well here. The literature says it keeps changing its colours throughout the season. We'll keep an eye on it and see how it does, but it's definitely a thing of beauty. 


  1. Your garden is certainly popping with color, Jodi! Your geum is such a pretty shade of mango/peach/apricot??!!

    Real life is keeping most of us busy! Those Chicago bloggers sure are lucky this week, aren't they!!??

    Enjoy your garden. It's looking lovely!

  2. Everything looks great! We've been having a very gray, foggy month and I wonder about how it is going to effect the summer blooms.

  3. I too like the eye catching colors. Your flowers are so beautiful.

  4. I really like the foliage on those geraniums and the colors on that fern are just beautiful!

  5. I stayed behind too, just too busy to go anywhere! I like the geum but we have a wild geum that is just everywhere in the backyard. I just can't bring myself to buy one. I like those lantanas too, very nice!

  6. Drool. One of each, please! I especially love the geraniums, tansy, and fern, and your pairing of the muscari with the veronica is nothing short of brilliant. I'm having fun with my lantanas this year, too. And your garden looks gorgeous! This little tour was just what I needed on a grey, dreary Sunday!

  7. Autumn Fern is one of my favorite ferns. You won't be disappointed in it. Those Geums are pretty flowers. I am not familiar with them but I would like to get to know them.

  8. Jodi, I love how you're adding so much color with plants with interesting foliage. I really appreciated lantana's bright blooms after visiting Arizona, where they are perennial and grow into these lovely mounds. I couldn't remember what your experience was with the blue poppies, but I'd imagine our hot dry and definitely NOT foggy weather here is just not their thing! Maybe someone has a unique little microclimate but I'm not going to try. I still have never got a peony to bloom in my yard and am hoping for good luck in that goal for this year.

  9. Hey Jodi...I have an extra "David" phlox I'd love for you to have! Your Autumn fern looks more like it should than mine. I have had mine for three years now and it doesn't look like that. Don't you just love the ferns!
    Your cobalt blue pot is beautiful, it looks good with the grouping.
    I havn't made it to the Briar Patch yet this season...will soon. Blomidon is closer for me...Wow, what a new rock formation in their front bed they have did....we certainly know what they are spending our money on!

  10. your garden is coming along beautifully!

  11. Once again, we're growing many of the same things! My 'Cooky' Geum is finished for a little bit with its blooming, but the double red (forget its name at the moment) is just beginning. They always follow like that.

    'Brilliance' is fabulous here, and I'm sure it will be there, as well.

    I've got two G. phaeum ('Samobor' and 'Lavender Pinwheel') but not the one you show here. MUST find it!

    Love seeing what you're growing, because we like the same things! Your gardens are looking so nice, as expected!

    Missed you this weekend. :-(

  12. Jodi, your colours are beautiful. I really like your lantana, I would settle for any variety but none of our local garden centres are selling it. lantanas are the one plant I promised myself this year after seeing it on so many blogs - I will have to keep looking.

    Hope the fog clears for next weekend. Best wishes Sylvia (England)

  13. Spring Fling would be fun but who has the time:(

    Glad to see you are in your garden. I need to get to mine but I've been too 'stoned'. I think this is the first time in over a week I've actually visited another blog too.

  14. One can never have too many Geraniums, and 'Springtime' would look so perfect in my garden. It's been so overcast here lately, that it might as well be foggy. I wish you could have come to Chicago.

  15. I've finally seen the light ...oranges are perfect in the garden! I won't go for geums...they struggle here and then disappear, but there are very nice dahlias that brighten up a spot! I might even consider the Tomato soup colored coneflower! I do agree, your copper beech is fabulous...there were a few at the Chicago Botanical Garden!
    I wished you had been there...it was great fun...gail

  16. love the geum! I have one called Mrs Bradshaw, she's bright red and very generous!!

  17. Don't you want to pinch yourself after a fruitful photo shoot like this, jodi :) There is something to say about wishful winter dreams ... enjoy your autumn fern... I have them here, there and everywhere to delight me.

  18. We missed you in Chicago Jodi! I hope you will consider Buffalo next year.

    LOVE the phaems; they are among my favorite geraniums, especially as they rebloom. I just planted 2 more.

  19. Your garden has really come alive since I last visited, Jodi! The Geum is fabulous. I haven't had one in years, but will be on the lookout for one now that I've seen your beauties.
    I'm way behind as well. Wouldn't it be lovely if we could get a few days to just stand still and let us catch up with all the work? Of course, we'd have to stay home from work to do it.
    Like you, I'm loving all the colours! Spring is such a time of beauty! Staying home and luxuriating in it should be mandatory, don't you agree? :)

  20. Hi Jodi, Your garden looks great! No more winter... ; )
    I just bought a Geranium Espresso last week - love the shade of the foliage!

  21. Oh, the colors are just brilliant!


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