16 August 2009

Lilies in the (Annapolis) Valley

I mentioned a couple of lilies in my last post, but since then, they've all started popping open in earnest, and the yard is awash with fragrance and colour. Mind you, with the Oriental lilies I have, the colours are mostly variations on a shade of pink, but that works fine for me. Let's have a walk around the yard and smell them all, shall we? We'll begin with Orienpet 'Purple Prince', which is still looking mighty fine.

How I figured out which were which: I went back and looked through a list of bulbs I got from one small company, looked at their photos versus my photos, and have made a note yet again of where the heck they all are. This one is named after a Dutch opera singer (which wouldn't be my choice of musician genre to name a plant after, but anyway): 'Willeki Alberti' is very vigourous and is just beginning to open up her huge blooms.

Actually, 'Willeki Alberti' ties with 'Stargazer' as being the last Orientals to open this year. 'Stargazer' isn't as tall as it normally is, but has plenty of flowers. I'm thinking seriously about ordering 'Yellow Stargazer' this year, but I refuse to deal with one particular mailorder company here in Canada, so hope I can find it elsewhere.

'Acapulco' is out in the back garden making a colourful contribution along with some very (powdery mildewed) monarda, and hot pink coneflowers and phlox. But 'Acapulco' is definitely the strongest colour in the group. And the most sweetly scented.

It took me a long time to figure out that this is actually 'Tom Pouce', but its not as vigourous as some of its kin and is in a little less sun, so the colours aren't as strong as some have. It's actually been rather daunted by the enormous Clematis recta 'Purpurea' beside it, which has to be divided and moved next spring.

Having no such qualms about being overwhelmed is 'Cobra' oriental lily, growing enthusiastically alongside one clump of 'Raspberry Wine' monarda. This monarda is very very vigourous but I have it planted in half a dozen sites and am encouraging its vigour. You'll see why in a bit.

We had a look at 'Zagora' orienpet the other day, when the flowers were first opening. It's definitely a favourite.

You can see why; along with very striking flowers, it's prolific, and tall; the shorter stems are newer growth. I think more orienpets need to come live here.

Making nice with Sidalcea (prairie mallow, checkerflower) is the stunningly awesome 'Dordogne' oriental lily. Behind it is also my 'Black Lace' sambucus, which has gotten inspired this year and shot skyward. This is a nice grouping of plants but I can't claim design talent. I just planted the lilies where there was a gap in things growing.

Okay, I mentioned the bee balm earlier, and that we have a LOT of it around the yard. We also have a LOT of globethistles, which can be seedy and vigourous but smell great, have neat architectural appeal, and also are a great magnet for butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds.

And the hummingbirds are extremely active and voracious right now, and are drawn to all the different monardas we have (which aren't that many: we have 'Jacob Kline', 'Raspberry Wine', 'Bluestocking', and one other that looks sort of like 'Bluestocking'. The white one went among the missing, and I don't have the pretty candy floss pink one that many people have. But the hummingbirds are happy with what we give them. And I'm happy with what they--and the rest of the garden--give us.


  1. Wow. That's all I can say. Wow. There it is again.

    However, as an aside (and as a Canadian gardener) can you give us a hint about which mailorder company you refuse to do business with? You can whisper in my private ear...

  2. Jodi, those blooms are so gorgeous! Some of those pinks are just spectacular. Very nice!

  3. There is something very festive about such a rambunctious gathering of lilies!

    I'm sure you can't help but smile in your garden these days. :)

  4. Hi Jodi~~ 'Zagora' is going right to my wish list. What a fabulous lily!

    I take it Orienpet is the moniker for oriental and trumpet crosses. The 'Purple Prince'...wow! It's also going on my list.

    I can vouch for 'Raspberry Wine.' Of all my monardas its blossoms have lasted the longest.

    Your garden must smell delicious!

  5. wow lilies are soo beautiful. adorable pics.

  6. Your lilies are so beautiful and I'm a tad envious....I dug up all my lilies...gave in to the lily beetle which I couldn't eradicate. Simply, I found it too much work to check each lily and squash the little nasties, their eggs and larvae every morning.
    No lilies, but my consolation is the Green Envy coneflower which I planted this spring...the colour of the flowers is smashing!

    Cheers, Kathy

  7. What fabulous lilies. I have no trouble with having lots of pink lilies. I seem to have a lot of pink anything. You've given me a new list.

  8. Great hummingbird shots,jodi! I too love the orienpets. My 'Robert Swanson' got waaaaay taller than usual this summer. Not sure why, but it was fabulous. The fragrance was lovely and so strong. Love it! It actually looked very much like your 'Zagora.'

    The only lily I have open now is 'Sumatra.' All the rest are done, unfortunately. For size and fragrance, 'Muscadet' does it for me. It grew much shorter this year than in the past, for some reason. I see you had some of that going on in your garden this year, too.

  9. I too will add Zagora's to my wishlist. Just a stunning delicate flower.

  10. Oh my my, these lilies are just gorgeous. My nose was twitching thinking I could smell them.

  11. I love all your Lilies, please don't ask me to choose a favorite. I meant to order Lilies last fall & let it slip by me, I definitely need to order some Orienpets this year. I don't think it's possible to have too many Lilies.

  12. Lilies are one of my favs and I love the look of the orienpets will have to try to find them particularly Zagora....thanks for the lovely tour.

  13. Jodi, what a beautiful selection of lilies. They don't seem to last long enough here, so am happy to see yours blooming. I hope you find a yellow stargazer-now you've got me wanting one.

    The hummers are a dilight to see. I have only seen a couple and not anywhere near my monarda. I will plant more and maybe they will come. :) Thanks for a lovely post.

  14. It is such a treat to visit your garden in mid-August and see it looking so beautiful! We're in the dog-days of summer now, and almost everything is withdrawing, waiting for the first cool breezes to come through town.

    Wow. That 'Dordogne' oriental lily is just amazing - and I love the shot of the globe thistle and hummingbirds. And to see the lilies with the bee balm!

    I was thinking of you tonight as I went to the Nat'l Hurricane Center website and saw the predicted track of Hurricane Bill. I hope that it turns north sooner - and curves away from NS. Take care!

  15. I love all the lilies, I'm planning to add more next year. The smell is worth the wait for sure. I have 'Tom Pouce' and Stargazers, the rest of yours are new to me.
    Great hummingbird pictures.

  16. Can you hear that sigh Jodi! It's a combination of delight and wistfulness. Your lilies are beautiful! They disappear so fast in the southern heat. But, while they're here they are so wonderful. I can see how spectacular they are in a sunny, not too hot garden and with my favorite monarda, too. JK is a splendid red. Love the hummingbird photos...gail

  17. Fabulous! I love all of them. I think I have the Zagora under a different name.

    If you want a yellow lily, may I recommend Yelloween. It's wonderfully fragrant and a great subtle yellow.

  18. Thank you for posting your lilies. They are so beautiful to see, and since I can't grow them well in our heat, it is a rare pleasure. I've tried, but they reduce and reduce until they fade completely away.~~Dee

  19. The lily you refer to as Zagora, was sold to me a few years ago as Albany.
    Regardless of the name, it is spectacular!
    The fragrance infuses the entire garden, and I too, vouch for their proliferation.
    Nect to Casablanca, it has become my favourite.

    I'm having a problem with my Black Lace Sambucus.
    It's new this year, and while it has grown a couple of feet, some of the leaves have been falling.
    No sign of pests, no drainage problems, it's getting enough sun and it's planted in decent soil.
    Has anyone else had this problem?


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