And now for another installment of the Procrastinating Gardner, a little late perhaps, but what did you expect? In my last blog I wrote about adding some easy color to the garden via summer blooming annuals. In this entry I’d like to talk a little about some of the summer blooming perennials that I’m using and admiring.
It’s time for me to tweak my perennial beds and the name of the game is great summer color. I’m in love with two perennials in particular: Rudbeckia ‘Goldstrum’ and Perovskia/Russian Sage, and I believe that every Minnesota garden should have at least one of these stellar summer flowering perennials. ‘Goldstrum’ also known as the hardiest ‘Black-eyed Susan’ boasts a ton of large, deep yellow flowers with black eyes that bloom now and well through the summer. Russian Sage is a great perennial for the height it adds (nearly 4 feet), extremely long lasting blue blooms, and its tough tolerance of the summer heat. I am also fairly addicted to Pomegranates – whether in juice form, tea form or plant form. That’s right – now I can have pomegranate in my garden with the awesome summer blooming ‘Pomegranate’ Yarrow, which feature triumphant large pomegranate red flower clusters that are notable long lasting and intensely colorful. Also be sure to check out some of our Minnesota native perennials, from the funky purple Liatris to the bodacious orange Asclepias that are just starting to show their color now.
Lastly, lets not forget Sedum, one of the most exciting perennial plant families -whether it’s the standard and always stellar Autumn Joy Sedum or some of the funkier new varieties, Sedum remains the king of the late blooming perennials. With so many cool varieties out there it would be impossible to list them all here, but I’d like to highlight a few that I am especially excited about. Mr. Goodbud Sedum, in addition to having one of the hippest names, is a great new introduction to the Sedum family – smoky, grey-blue foliage make it stand out amongst the green in the garden and in late summer the plant is covered in light, ruby red blooms that have no equal in impact. I’m also super excited about all the new ground-cover Sedums that are making their way here to Sunnyside. The Blue Spruce Sedum in particular caught my eye and earned an instant place in my garden – short stalks of sky blue foliage that truly resemble the foliage of a spruce cover the ground and produce larger stalks topped with freakish yellow blooms in late summer. I’m so Sedum crazy this year I even planted an all Sedum garden next to my garage which seems to have the driest and toughest soil in my yard (oh, yeah, did I mention that Sedums are the most drought tolerant perennial?)
I could go on and on about perennials, but I’d rather have you come visit, check them out and chat with me about gardening. I have a few more ideas about planting shrubs but it the spirit of my procrastination I’ll save it for later.