Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Shade Path throughout May 2011

It still has its cloud of forget-me-nots, 
      but is wearing more pink these days.
Here is some of what cam be seen in this side garden at Gilmore Gardens in mid to late May...

These photos were taken May 10th. Narcissus 'Thalia' is still looking elegant and scenting the path (more so as they age, I noticed). Everything is still looking pretty prim and proper, not too much sprawling going on. 

N. 'Thalia' nods along over the forget-me-nots (Mysotis) with white bleeding hearts (Dicentra spectabilis alba) on the left side...

and the right (which is street-side)...

 Lily of the valley (Convallaria majalis) running by the foundation wall.

 Just days later, on May 19th, and everything has jumped ahead. The daffodils are long gone, the forget-me-nots billowing, and everywhere foxgloves are shooting up getting ready for their June show. The scented Geranium macrorrhizum 'Bevan's Variety' is spread through out the Shade Path.  I love its show of rich pink flowers at this time of year. They used to bloom with my red/pink rhododendrons, which were miserable with the extreme dryness of this area, at least that is my assumption. They were removed this spring and replaced by a shrub, for which I have long wanted to find a spot. Keep reading :)...
Purple foxgloves (Digitalis purpurea) are shooting up by the maple tree, not minding the dry shade.  The yellow foxglove (Digitalis grandiflora) are also scattered everywhere in this area. This photo shows the climbing hydrangea (Hydrangea anomala petiolaris) that has a good start up the right of the maple tree... with Clematis 'Perle de Azur' climbing along with it.  It will be a few years till these are looking pretty together. More to look forward to! The classic Japanese forest grass (Hakonechloa 'Aureola') is still my favorite, though many new colored varieties are on the market.  It is seen here in the lower right corner. Sometimes restraint in color is better I think than having every this wildly variegated.

That said, here is my new favorite variegated plant (sigh smile).  Jacob's ladder (Polemonium 'Touch of Class'), is just a pretty little plant, and that is before it has even flowered! I love it here with the blue and white.
Here is the classic woodland version of Jacob's ladder (just plain Polemonium), which I love for its delicate beauty also. I usually end up ripping off extra hosta leaves at this time of year to make sure that it is not overwhelmed. Later it goes dormant, so the hosta makes other leaves to cover its neighbor's weaknesses. 

Geranium macrorrhizum 'Bevan's Variety' dancing with the forget-me-nots (Mysotis). A single flower below.

And my new shrub is...
The Oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia). I am excited to have room for it here by the foundation.  It already fits the spot so well and I look forward to it maturing the next few years.

An foliage tapestry... white streaked hostas, geraniums, a small rhododendron in the center and some Japanese anemone foliage in the top left.

Columbine (Aquilegia vulgaris 'Nora Barlow') gracing the path. Several other varieties are along the Shade Path, some still waiting to make their appearance. 

A dark purple variety...

And lastly, the euphorbia adds a hit of charteruse (one of my favorites!) to the right of the path. I like it next to the blue hosta.


  1. Your garden is enchanting. I was thinking how we really don't have many plants in common at all then I got to the end of your post. We share Oakleaf Hydrangea, columbine and hostas. Hostas are new for me...I keep them in pots as the snails gobble them up in my garden but I love the foliage and texture they add to the patio.

  2. your shade path garden is gorgeous and oddly familiar with many plants I love...you may see them in my upcoming posts...but your pics are stunning

  3. Your garden looks so lush. Foxgloves are one of my favorites. I have some that have come up from seed from last year. Lovely photos!

  4. Beautiful photos. I've got a 'Touch of Class' Polemonium too. It's a great plant, isn't it? Love the 'Bevan's Variety' Geranium too. I think I need to be on the lookout for it.

  5. Love your shade garden, we too have a fair amount of shade and we have both used some of the same plants to make a lovely tapestry of foliage. Glad someone else likes shade as much as I do.

  6. Jacob's Ladder is also one of my favorites. Your shade garden is beautiful!

  7. Congratulations on the oakleaf hydrangea! Both of mine are in bloom and so pretty ... I like the photos of the columbine in the rain ... A beautiful, lush garden and nice to see the plant combinations.


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