Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Hurry Up and Garden

New Border
I guess I'll be calling this my new border for a while since I still have lots of ideas for it. I said in my last blog that I would be designing it this winter. But heck, seasoned gardeners will recognize themselves in me. I started thinking about all the things that would look so much better next year if only they had a good winter's season of growing roots. So I ordered a few plants (mums and pansies are all I can get here now), and transplanted a few plants. In fact, since my bulb order came in it's been a non-stop gardening fest. And just because I have a new bed to plant in, it doesn't mean I don't have to move things around. So the arrival of a peony and some lilies from Old House Gardens meant that I had to hassle with transplanting a very thorny rose and some daylilies.
'Whirling Butterflies' gaura
There are a few plants that are still holding out this warmish fall season. The gaura 'Whirling Butterflies' is on its second big splash. It has a great one in spring and early summer, kind of peters out in midsummer, and then rejuvenates in fall. I have to cut it back for best flower show.
Purple basil and self-seeded Coral Nymph salvia
Most of my basil is pretty shot by now. A few nights of pretty cool weather a few weeks ago brought the Genovese basil to its knees. But the purple basil is still going strong, although it's quite floppy.
'White Cloud' muhly grass
I bought the 'White Cloud' muhly grass last fall at a plant show. It didn't do much that year but is now flowering quite well. It's much more upright than the pink muhly and it has incredibly soft plumes.
Daffodil leaves on the right, newly transplanted daylily on the left
How weird is this? In a number of places I've got some daffodils starting to come up. No sign of buds just yet, thankfully.
Leaves of the spring starflower Ipheion
And starflower is starting to grow as well. Weird.
Lenten rose (Helleborus orientalis)
Here's a big risk - the Lenten rose. I've been enchanted by all the photos I see on blogs during the dead of winter of Lenten roses, hybrid hellebores, Christmas roses, etc. You don't see them down here very often, which is why it may be a risk to try to grow them. But all of gardening's a risk, right? Anyway, the ones I received were lovely and healthy (from Gardens Oy Vey), so I'm hoping for the best.

As you can tell, I've been in quite a hurry to get plants and bulbs in the garden. I just hope La Nina is kind to us this year and gives us at least a little rain (predictions of a warm and dry winter for the South, ugh!).

This post was written by Jean McWeeney for my blog Dig, Grow, Compost, Blog. Copyright 2010. Please contact me for permission to copy, reproduce, scrape, etc.


  1. Hi Jean! It looks like you need to tell some of your plants that it is not spring yet! Last fall, my alliums started to grow in December. But summer came, and they bloom normal.

  2. What peony and lilies did you order? I love OHG.

  3. Linda - I ordered/planted Monsieur Jules Elie peony and Regal lilies. Both are supposed to be well suited to the south. Fingers crossed of course. I've heard of folks dumping ice on their peonies during winter. May have to do that!

  4. Sometimes we have to push the gardening climate envelope~I hope the hellebores work~I can send you h
    babies if you want more~gail

  5. You have daffodils coming up already? Weird!

  6. Hi Jean,
    Thanks for the tour. There always seems to be something of interest to look at in a garden doesnt there? Even at this time of year.

  7. Hi Jean, My two hellebore tips from older wiser gardeners who took pity on me: excellent drainage and lime. Hope yours do well - it's so exciting to plan a new bed. Your muhly looks wonderfully woolly...

  8. Hello Jean. You have daffodils coming up already and I haven't even planted mine yet, but will soon. I won't see any green from them until April.

    I was determined to plant hellebores in 2010, but that didn't happen. So, again, I'll have to admire the photos from other bloggers. Hope to see yours.

    How nice that you actually design a flower bed. I just plunk the plants in the ground and hope for the best. No wonder your yard is so exceptionally pretty. Planning pays off.


  9. I really like that White Cloud Muhly Grass but I haven't seen it here. I'll have to do some sleuthing! I'm glad your new border is shaping up sooner than you'd planned!

  10. Hi Jean,
    I'd be like you, and not want to wait until spring to start planting in that nice bare dirt.

    My grape hyacinths come up most falls, but I've not had daffodils come up that I can remember. I'm in zone 5b, so that could make a difference.

    I decided I want to see if I can find some pink muhly grass. The first place I looked, they hadn't even heard of it. I hadn't heard of the white kind. I like that, too.

    I just discovered hellebores a few years ago. I have been planting some the last couple years. I'm excited to see how they do next spring. I hope yours does well. It sure looks healthy now!

  11. I just love that muhly grass, so wish I could grow it. I've had daffodils start to sprout in the fall, but the snow here keeps them from progressing until spring. You might have an early blooming from them. Good luck with the hellebores, they are wonderful, if a bit weedy for me.

  12. I've got that hurry-up feeling, too, Jean. The temperature dropped 20 degrees from yesterday, so I'm hoping I can get the rest of my bulbs planted and other fall chores done before the snow flies. I do hope your hellebores do well for you; I was entranced by them, too, and planted some last year. Those early blooms are sure a welcome sight after winter!

  13. Even though I'm very much a right plant for the right location type of gardener, I'm also plant crazy, so I do occasionally push zones. Good luck with the hellebores!

  14. Ooh my daffs did that (put up foliage in late fall) last year and my blooms suffered this spring. I hope you will have better luck. How exciting to have that huge border to design!!

  15. Jean,
    I was so surprised to see foliage from bulbs (I think daffodils) that I'd stuck in a pot recently.

    But, lenten roses do very well here in 7b -- they're the stalwarts in dry shade, but mix well with hostas. I don't grow them personally, but do appreciate them in the Hosta Garden!


  16. Hi Jean, How exciting to see a new area clean for planting. Want some help? Looks like a lot of fun.

  17. I love having a new garden bed to play in. I mean, garden in!! :0) Filling that in will be lots of fun!


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