It’s the end of November and we are surprised that we still have a few blooms that haven’t been zapped by frost. Yes, it is a November that has been pretty mild — it had to have been in the 60s today, and sunny to boot. But even so, two salvia stalks, that blanket flower and cardinal lobelia are holding on.
Time to take stock of what has worked this year — or not. Here are some favorites:
— Cardinal lobelia. Love the red, love the long blooms, love how it stands out. Need to get more.
— Sneezeweed (Helenium). We have red/yellow/orange blooms that pick up so many other colors in the garden. It bloomed a long time too. Only quibble is we don’t have enough to make it stand out. Hopefully it will need dividing soon. In the meantime, it’s on next year’s list for the Master Gardeners plant sale.
— Red-hot poker.
The blooms (more red/orange/yellow) only last for a couple of weeks, but the effect was spectacular. These seem to need frequent dividing, in case someone wants to put a hand up.
— Blanket flower. I was ready to give up on them last year, but this year they have done fantastically. More long blooms (or new blooms), red and yellow, so eye-catching too. it apparently is easily established from seed, which is good since I recently found a packet.
— Black-eyed Susans. Our drift of them is gorgeous, just needs to be repeated at the other end of the front bed. Maybe we should try the ones that have some red/burgundy in them.
For the same amount of effort of growing from seed, flowering tobacco has outdone zinnias (which admittedly now look really good, aided I presume by that spurt of hot weather.) Would like some that are deeply scented next time. I may have finally learned to spell this properly.
— Rose campion. These magenta flowers are among my favorites in June. Can’t get enough of them.
We have so many, and the varieties are fairly well mixed. The front bed is full of them in April. What more could you want as you come out of winter?
— Coleus. This annual was slow to start (and did best in pots), but adds some nice zing now. Hoping to overwinter some so we get a jump on 2010.
— Yucca. I wasn’t a fan when we were given a bunch a few years back, but they’ve really grown on me. Love the strong leaves and how it looks in winter. And was surprised at how they bloomed this year.
— what the deer discovered: asters and clematis. Too heavily munched. The light blue asters that covered the porch railing last year barely make it to the bottom of the porch.
— David phlox didn’t do much this year.
Some shots of what’s come out in the past week or so, or is just starting to bloom