Posts tagged nepeta

Oh, It’s a very good year

After my huge disappointment last year with my hydrangea, I was fully prepared to return to Kilbourne Grove and find horrible and wilty hydrangea. I had been reading people’s blogs, and they were all talking about how hot and dry the summer had been. No one is watering my garden while I am away (no one had been watering it when I lived in Toronto either), I am a firm believer in the sink or swim method. As a weekend gardener (and now long, long distance gardener),  I cannot afford to coddle plants. So I was very prepared.

And very pleasantly surprised.

My ‘free’ hydrangeas are really settling into their space and starting to fill out.

Hard to believe that these were all ‘blue’ hydrangea at one time. I was a bit of a hydrangea snob, would not take the bright pink ones. Now they are all various shades of pink, and purple, not a blue to be seen. I now that you need acidic soil to keep them blue, which we do not have in Ontario, and I am actually starting to prefer these colours.

I love how the Allium christophii seed heads look with the hydrangea. I wish I had been there when they flowered, very curious how it looked.

You can also see some seed heads of Allium ‘Purple Sensation’, these have been planted a number of years, but I wanted to extend the Allium season by planting the christophii.

The Hakonechloa ‘Aureola’ is just one of the variety of plants that I am testing at the base of the hydrangea. As you know, I have muscari planted there and when it finishes flowering I find it a bit tatty. Along with the Hakonechloa  I am testing Nepeta, Hosta and Geranium ‘Rozanne’. The geranium was the first to go, I dug it up and moved the plants to the Allee in September. I love the plant, and it certainly flowers heavily, weaving its way through the hydrangea. Unfortunately it also weaves its way onto the path, and I prefer something a bit more tailored looking in this section of the garden. You can also see at the top of the photo the nepeta. Looking at at here, I am not feeling it, but I think I should give it another couple of years before I make a decision. See how messy the muscari seedheads get, must hide them.  We shall see how the other plants make out over the next few years.


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A Return Visit to Larkspur Lane

Memories, ah, memories.

I returned to Kingston last week and visited my friend Janus at Larkspur Lane. I showed you her garden last August, but June is a magical time, (and not just because that is when I was born). Nothing is eaten, heat or water stressed, everything is so perky and fresh.

A few peonies were still in flower,

Buckeye Belle

Janus had a “senior moment” and couldn’t remember the name of this peony, but don’t worry, I will get it out of her!

She is really starting to like hostas, and they are starting to bulk up in her garden. When I look at the size of them (I am such a size queen), I realize that I never leave mine to grow long enough, either I am dividing them, or moving. I want some big ones too!

I love the contrast of the broad leaves of the hosta, against the finer leaves of the nepeta,(I can do this),

or against the strappy leaves of the iris,(I can do this too),

and what doesn’t look nice with peonies and alchemilla. actually all my arrangements at work lately are including these, and hosta leaves of course.

Some martagon lilies arising from a bed of hosta.

One of her latest “Rainforest Sunrise”.

Janus is also a bit of a size queen.



Onopordum acanthium,


After all, you can never have too many delphiniums.

And for all those wondering who has won the book giveaway:

the draw from Ian’s hat revealed Melissa’s name, Congratulations, you are now the proud owner of a slightly battered edition of Beverley Nichols ‘Down the Garden Path’.

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