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This Weeks Standout Plant In Your Garden

16 years ago

I thought we could use a thread to post photos/descriptions of plants in your garden (new introÂs or old classics) that are real standouts in your garden this week. In my garden it was a hard choice but I am going to go with Kniphofia pumila that earlier in the spring many of you kind soles tried to help me edit out of my shopping cartÂbut what can I say I am a compulsive shopper. A few things I will add about this plant is to date I have been very happy with the foliage, the flower color is actually more chartreuse than the photo reveals, this is a full sun plant that I have in part shade and seems to be doing fine. So what is the standout plant in your garden this week?

Comments (54)

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Stachys monieri 'Hummelo'. It is a type of betony. I have grown big betony, Stachys grandiflora, for years but just discovered this species last year. Vigorous and lots of growth for only one season in the garden. Tall stems with hot purple-pink spiky flowers. No staking. Nice foliage. In full bloom now. I will definitely be buying more of these. So sorry about no photo!

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I have many clematis blooming now that I am very happy with... they are really showing their stuff this year, but I am most excited about this one that I've been working on for 3 years. It started from a tiny seedling. It is about 10' from the road and was intended to catch passersby attention. It really has done its job. I love pulling in the driveway and seeing it. Its been blooming for a couple of weeks now and still going strong.

    {{gwi:1082738}}

    And here's Stachys 'Hummelo'. I don't quite have it worked out yet with any companions, but it has got tons of potential. This was a very small division that I planted last August. I have about a dozen total that I am trying in various spots. I think it will be a winner once it gets going. All of them are strong. I noticed one of them has a flower stalk that splits into 3 secondary flower stalks.


    {{gwi:1082739}}

    I am also very excited about a new hydrangea paniculata 'Quickfire' that I got last year in a 4" pot. Its claim to fame was that it turned pink/coral early in the season. It was so small last year, I didn't expect much for a while. BUt it is growing well and is just starting to flower and surprisingly has lacecap type flowers. I didn't expect that. (or maybe I forgot? Or maybe it was a mislabel) But anyhow, my first lacecap!!! That's a surprise! No picture yet.

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  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    wendyb,
    love that clematis growing up the tree. I'll bet it's an eye catcher! What's the variety?
    Emily

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Yes, it really shines there. That's Ville deLyon

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wendy, let me post QF picture here while you are working on yours.:-)
    It's indeed lacecap form of paniculata. It's indeed start blooming about one month before PG thus should become pink about one month earlier.
    Mine were 1G rooted sticks last fall.
    One went in the ground, another in a pot.
    So far it does look like a winner in the making.
    {{gwi:1011702}}
    {{gwi:1011703}}

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    George, those are beautiful. My picture would be depressing next to those. I just have 1 or 2 blooms starting up and a few more small buds. Very nice!

    How did you overwinter the potted one? I wouldn't even think to do that with a shrub, but it's a great idea.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wendy, overwintering paniculatas is piece of cake.
    I simply repotted it from 1G into 5G and stored in my equivalent of the cold frame (pool house), but if I'd left it outdoor nothing wrong would of happen either.
    Few drinks of the water during the winter it is all they need.
    Since they are z4 hardy you'll have no problem with overwintering in a pot.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Great photos! I am adding new plants to my wish list. :-)

    Astilbe fanal

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Gorgeous photos, all. Thanks to everyone for participating, but especially to KT for her endless energy in starting interesting posts, which makes this such a nice forum to visit.
    Your pics inspired me to take some of my own. My favorites at the moment are echinacea 'sundown':
    {{gwi:1082741}}
    and a lily (maybe orienpet?) possibly named 'oriana':
    {{gwi:1082742}}

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Well -- poop. For pics of my echinacea and lily, go to my web album please! Hope I didn't disrupt anyone's ability to load this thread.
    So I used the code in the faq put together by very nice GW members: "img src=http..." width = 450"... I wonder why I got the red x? Any thots?
    Thanks!!
    ML

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    mayalena,
    I love your echinaceas! There is such a subtle color difference between the Sundown and Twilight. How old are your plants? I planted a Sundown last year, and it seems to be struggling, amongst the sea of purple coneflowers in my garden.
    Emily

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hi Emily. I planted 'sundown' in spring '06 and 'twilight in fall '06. I saw many people in earlier posts worrying that they don't come back reliably. I'm keeping my fingers crossed!
    ML

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    whitegarden,
    As much as I like white swan I LOVE my 'Becky Daisies' I think their best asset is hiding their browning petals so they look good over a very long period of time.
    cdo and doug,
    Thanks, I have never grown kniphofia before so I am not sure what to expect. Have you grown them?
    Ego, Ego, Ego,
    You did it to me again I saw you post and ran out bought H. 'Miranda' 'Berlin', 'Shamrock', and 'Claude'. If I could have found Nachtigale i would have bought that too. I have to admit that i am on the fence about 'graywood' although I think the plant is extremely elegant I not sure if that is what I am looking for in a Hydrangea(might change my mind on that one tomorrow). This is such an amazing year for Hydrangeas in New England what would you think of starting a Hydrangea thread on this forum for folks to post bloom time, info, photo's ect?
    Emily,
    I gave up growing dinner plate dahlia's a number of years ago not only because they are pretty labor intensive but their bloom time even for the early Dahlia's was too late in the season. 'Thomas Edison has re sparked a passion. Your salvia commitment must keep you very busy but seems as though it would a blast to keep this very special salvia in gardens.
    ginny,
    I am thinking that Stachys monieri 'Hummelo' could be a classic garden plant of tomorrow. Very cute.
    Wendy,
    My clematis guru...I have to admit that it was a very bad idea to plant young clematis in the garden where they have to compete with shrubs...ugh what an expensive lesson.
    pm2,
    great color astilbe.
    mayalena,
    Thank you for the nice comments and great photo's(although I think we were all expecting biscotti!! Hope your trip was everything you dreamed it would be.) I would love to do a mutual thread maybe this fall on front entry gardens yours as well as your other gardens looks BEAUTIFUL. The need for the front entry garden to be planted with year round knock your socks off interest is one of the biggest challenges a gardener can face. kt

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    mayalena, I had similar troubles initially posting my picasa photos. You can't reliably get the URL there. I right-clicked on the red-x picture and I was able to "view image" in PicasaWeb but thats not very intuitive. I knew it cause I had that problem before!

    They now provide the html code to post a clickable thumbnail in forums like this. Go to your picture in MyPhotos (not public gallery). Select the picture you want. On the right there is a link for "Link to this Photo". Click that and select the code in "Html to embed in website". Then back in the GW Message box put the img src tag and paste the selected html code. End with a closing ">".

    I'm going thru the steps as I describe them. Here's what I came up with:

    When I did it the other way, it looked fine on Preview, but didn't stick. It was only in my cache.

    kt, you can put young clematis on young shrubs, sometimes. My best displays are not on shrubs though.

    Here I'm trying the other way of grabbing Picasa URL. I did a right click on the image and then "copy location" (Firefox) and pasted that in an img src tag here. I can see the picture now, but I wouldn't be surprised to see a red x later.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wendy, I ended up at your albums page and looked through your daylily, hostas and perennial photos. You have some very nice varieties. I especially loved a couple of your purple daylilies. I am not usually a daylily fan, but I have noticed lately that the purples are calling to me. [g] Would you mind my asking where you bought your daylilies? Special Edition, 'Purple' and 'Purple D'Oro'?

    I also wanted to ask for the name of a lily that was in your album without a name. It had a white center with deep pink tips. It looks familiar. I can't remember where I saw that recently...very pretty!

    I am sure I looked at your albums last year too. I remembered some of them. You are doing a really nice job with your garden. :-)

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Dear Wendy,
    Thank you so much for the tutorial! Sorry to hijack....
    Here's this week's photo:

    ">
    Well...I am getting better, I think, but still have funny stuff showing. I'll work more on it.
    Best,
    ML

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    kt...I just wanted to respond to your comment about giving up growing dahlias. Emily's Thomas Edison is so gorgeous, I would love to grow those large dahlias too, but I don't think I could do the large dahlias either. I tried a large Dahlia a few years ago and it just didn't work for me. This year I tried three bulbs from Brent&Becky's that were all under 24", so I put them in containers. I planted them late on June 3rd and the first bloom opened on July 7th. One plant has not bloomed yet. Obviously it is not a knock out like the Thomas Edison but I am very happy with them and they have been easy. I plan on trying more again next year. Photo was taken on a cloudy morning.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    ML,
    my fault. grab the code for "embed html in website" and just paste it in the message box. No enclosing img src tag needed. How did I screw up when I was following my example at the same time????

    PM, Thanks for the kudos. I haven't uploaded from this year yet. Better stuff coming!

    That Asiatic Lily is 'Lollilop' Fairly common. When I first got it many years ago as my first lilium, I wasn't aware about up-facing and front-facing and it looked good in the pot. When I planted it in the garden, I didn't like it cause the beautiful tops are not seen from the view side. So I stuck it in my "holding area" (which has now almost evolved into its own garden space - LOL) and I use it for cut flowers.

    The Purple d'oro was a bareroot Home Depot experiment. Ya know how every spring they come out with all the box'ed plants way too early, but are so tempting? I decided to give them a shot. I potted them up early with dahlias and they were fine. Kinda short like Happy Returns but very long lasting. Gets better each year.

    'Purple' was from Cataldo in Littleton. 'Special Edition' was from "Perennials by Susan".. a very special backyard nursery in Amherst NH who specializes in daylilies.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I used to grow Thomas Edison too. It was a great dahlia. Last year I grew this one. I think that was Fringed Star.

    This year there's one planted, but I haven't seen it bloom yet.

    My tricky part with Dahlia's is trying to overwinter the tubers. I have tried many times and many methods and have finally given up. I just get new ones each year. It satisfies the planting urge in March/April too.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wendy...you are so organized to find the names and where you bought them. I am impressed. :-) I just love the Lollipop Lily. Actually I love most lilies but with the darn lilyleaf beetle, I just keep it to a couple. I would have a ton of them if it wasn't for that pest. I haven't tried an Asiatic yet.

    You were really lucky with the Home Depot daylily. I bought a clematis Duchess of Edinburg in a box and was so surprised that it worked out fine. Who would have thought? I have heard of Cataldo's in Littleton but not the one that is in Amherst NH.

    Your Dahlia is gorgeous! How tall does it get? I haven't even tried to winter over Dahlias but it cost me less than $3. per bulb at the end of May and that is less than some of the 4" specialty annuals at all the nurseries. So I wouldn't mind buying them new every year. Of course, I am sure there are some that are much more expensive than that.

    I understand about the holding area. [g] Mine actually looked better than some of my borders this year too. lol

    Thanks Wendy! Look forward to seeing more pics from this year. :-)

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Ooops! Forgot...mayalena, that is really a gorgeous lily! I remember seeing one in the White Flower Farm catalog..it was one of my favorites. I bet you are happy with it!

    Did I mention that I loved all the photos everyone has posted! [g]

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Here is mine, purple petunia pirouette. Love that color.
    {{gwi:1082752}}

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Katy, 'This is such an amazing year for Hydrangeas in New England what would you think of starting a Hydrangea thread on this forum for folks to post bloom time, info, photo's ect?'

    It's indeed one of the best year for hydrangeas I've ever experienced.
    However, being in a most southern part of NE I always feel some sort of discomfort(guilt?) when posting pictures of my [blooming] hydrangeas here. It's like bragging in a front of someone who can't have it. To initiate such thread would be even more improper in my books, though I'm always glad to participate in discussion about my favorite summer plant.

    Re: Grayswood and other lacecaps in general. They are less showy/flashy than their mophead counterparts and after they past their prime bloom time they go into 40-50 days aging period when they doesn't look very presentable to say the least (that's why many people cut flowerheads off at that time), but many cultivars (not all) have an outstanding and I mean it, outstanding late summmer/fall show of the aged flowers which not many of mopheads could provide, IMO.
    Grayswood is the one of those best two-stage performers.
    Contrary, Nachtigale is nothing to write home about in a fall.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wendy...you are so organized to find the names and where you bought them. I am impressed. :-)

    Yes, organization is my thing...I could probably find the date,price and pot size on most of them too:

    {{gwi:1082753}}

    And to keep to the topic, here is another Standout Plant This week (and trying bigger thumbnail size)

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wendy - Have you tried wrapping your tubers in saran wrap? I have done this for several years and have had really good luck. I also put my overwintering tubers in a small cooler in the coldest (dirt floor) part of my not-so-cold basement. (Now if I could manage to overwinter caladiums I would be a happy girl!)

    My favorite thing in my garden this week are my just starting to bloom Portulaca - a cherished childhood memory flower.

    Deb

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Deb, overwintering calladiums is very easy.
    If you grow them in a pots, don't remove them, withhold water and just let them die naturaly, keep them in a pot anywhere where temps will not fall below 42-45F (the higher the better). Don't water!!!
    When you are ready, bring them somewhere where temp will be in a 60's, dark place is OK, change soil, water well once and forget about them for another 25-30-40 days. In that time frame you may ocassionaly water them, but very-very lightly, just the surface of the pot, otherwise they'll rot.
    As soon as you see something is pocking thru the soil bring them to the light and now you could start watering.
    Usualy takes 55-70 days to have a decent looking pot full of calladiums. I start them in a January and by mid-end of March they are already in leaf.
    If you want a faster results use bottom heat. I don't.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    What beautiful vignettes. I don't have a photo to share, but the best feature of my garden this week is the corner planting of moonbeam coreopsis surrounding a new Ilex crenata "Steeds." I know MB coreopsis is overdone, but it is in its prime right now and it always makes me smile. It shone right through the heat wave the past few days, not getting the least bit droopy or fried. It is the first thing I see when I get out of my car in the drive, as it rounds the corner on the walkway to the front door.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Good morning!
    KT -- I forgot to mention how I love your photo -- great composition, and beautiful kniphofia. Thank goodness you ignored those voices of reason. More photos please! And I would love to contribute to a front entry garden post. I LOVE front yard gardening, tho it is a bit like being in a fish bowl. I hope the flowers are a small gift to my neighbors, and those who walk and drive by.
    Wendy -- I will try again with one more pretty photo. I appreciate your attempts to make me a more skilled forum participant!
    Delph, scabiosa, salvia and rozanne hiding somewhere:


    And Prairiemoon, whom I still think of as Adam.... That is that WFF lily! What a good memory you have. I rarely shop there, as I've gotten a couple of invasive beasties from them (as dtd mentioned in another post, I assumed they would only sell terrific treasures at those prices!), but I am loving that lily.
    Have a wonderful day, all.
    ML

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I would love to see more photos from everyone. If you don't want me to keep posting my own photos, better get busy. [g]

    Since there is a little lull and I have a little more time, I have gone back over the thread and see that I missed a few things. As mayalena pointed out, kt's Kniphofia is a standout. I have never tried to grow one. Do they come in different colors, kt? I was also wondering about the geranium behind your Kniphofia, is it holding itself up or have you given it support? I have a Rozanne that looks similar but it flops.

    Whitegarden, you really do have a 'white' garden. :-) My echinaceas are behind schedule due to hungry groundhogs. I lost a new Harvest Moon that was just planted in the fall.

    ego...all your foliage is so attractive and healthy. That violet color of the Grayswood is so pretty. I hope you will post it again in the fall.

    Emily...Your Dahlia is really spectacular. I just love that color! How tall a plant is it? You did well if that is your first Dahlia.

    ginny..so your Stachys is like the photo wendy posted. I think of lamb's ears when I think Stachys. That looks very different. I like the no staking part.

    wendy...that Ville de Lyon really does light up that area. It looks so dark behind that tree, but you must have the clematis in sun I imagine. That is very organized wendy! I try to keep a computer spreadsheet but that is as good as it gets. [g]

    wendy and ego....so this Quickfire is a paniculata. I loved your photos of it ego. I'm usually a mophead fan but that lacecap form is very attractive. The Quickfire in the white pot is so well done. The plant and the pot are almost equal in mass and the shape and shine of the container...just lovely.

    tina...I had that petunia last year and mine did not look as good as yours. Your's looks like a real violet. Pretty.

    ego....I have only had hydrangeas for 3 years, but this is my best year too. Why is that? I have hardly had rain and I thought they prefered lots of moisture. I am further north than you and I can't grow all the varieties you can. I only have, oakleaf, 3 Endless Summer's thanks to kt :-), Samantha, added Annabelle last fall, All Summer's Beauty, and Madmoiselle Emille Mouillere pictured here. You are lucky to be able to grow so many varieties. I would enjoy a thread about Hydrangeas. I think someone who has a lot of varieties should start that thread. Would that be you? [g]

    Deb...I had a bed I was working on and got a late start..mid June and I needed some color quickly, so I picked up two six packs of portulaca Sundial Peach and it is really lovely. It amazes me how fast it is filling in and how it keeps on blooming without deadheading.

    paige.. I am sure they are getting like Stella D'Or daylilies in popularity but I still keep mine. They are so easy care and seem to blend in wherever I put them. Such a cheerful color yellow.

    mayalena...Adam who? [g] Adam used to post a lot more than I do..lol. Maybe that is why you remember me that way. No lily leaf beetles there? By the way...you sent me home from the swap, with that chocolate eupatorium 2 years ago, that you warned me was a reseeder, so I put it somewhere where it couldn't get in trouble and I try to deadhead it before it goes to seed. We really enjoy that plant. It is so pretty. I don't have a photo right now, but wanted you to know it found a good home. :-)

    Is it time to start a part II for the dial up members?

    pm2

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Great plants everyone, I am particularly yearning for dahlias again..now if I can only limit my tuber purchases next spring.
    Wendy,
    I have learned my lesson and I am now searching for garden structures for them to climb, any suggestions?
    Prairiemoon2
    What do you think of the purple daylily Prairie Blue Eyes?


    Tina,
    Love your purple petunia pirouette I dont believe I have ever seen a double petunia before any chance that they are self cleaning?
    Ego,
    It's indeed one of the best year for hydrangeas I've ever experienced.
    However, being in a most southern part of NE I always feel some sort of discomfort(guilt?) when posting pictures of my [blooming] hydrangeas here. It's like bragging in a front of someone who can't have it. To initiate such thread would be even more improper in my books, though I'm always glad to participate in discussion about my favorite summer plant.
    This is one of the few occasions that I am going to disagree with you that sharing photos, information, and passion for a plant that perhaps not everyone in New England can grow is nothing more than bragging. Yes I suppose there would be an element of pride in sharing your Hydrangeas but I will assume there are many zone 4 folks that would love to see and learn about your Hydrangeas, in the same way I am interested in seeing photos of beautiful fall colors everywhere in New England except in my community. I suggested you start the thread because of your vast knowledge about this plant but if youre not comfortable I certainly understand and will start the thread myself hoping you will contribute.
    Cloud9,
    Syran Wrap???? Hmmm Interesting and certainly would keep one bad tuber from spoiling the whole bunch babe
    Paige,
    I checked out Ilex crenata "Steeds." and love it but I have a heck of a time with aphids/ mites and Ilex crenata. I spray with all seasons oil but that doesnt seem to help. Do you have any suggestions?
    ML,
    Great photo but I am a little freaked out when I closed your photo my Picasa file opened..hmm. When things are a little less hectic for me I will definitely put together somethings for a front garden thread in the mean time it will give me something to think about while I am weeding.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Kt,
    re:aphids/ mites and Ilex crenata.
    systemic Ortho solved my problem. One heavy application once every two years.

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    Thanks pm2 and runktrun, I enjoy it even more because I grew it from seed this year.I regularly deadhead so that I get more branches = more flowers:). I loved all the pictures posted here especially the hydrangea pics being such a fan. I could not resist posting this pic of marigolds even though it is such a common flower...being Indian it has a special attraction for me. I also liked the gazanias...also grown from seed this year.

    {{gwi:1082761}}

    {{gwi:1082762}}

  • 16 years ago
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    kt...well what could be better than a 'prairie' blue eyes daylily..lol. But....where are the blue eyes? [g] Very pretty purple daylily kt. Thanks, add another one to the list. :-)

    tina...I took a look at your 2007 album and lots of pretty flowers. :-) Are you growing indoors? They are very cheerful..the gazania and the clarkia are my favorites. I love marigolds too but last year earwigs ate them so bad, they were nothing but foliage almost all season. They were eating the buds before they opened. Very disappointing..so much so I didn't grow any this year. Enjoy them! :-)

  • 16 years ago
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    KT, this is the first year for me with Ilex crenata and I haven't had any issues yet, but I know enough to know that doesn't mean the end of it. I also have a few "Compacta", as I love the shape of boxwood but not the cat pee smell (blech) and "Compacta" is pretty close in looks, albeit darker. Thanks for the heads up that this could be an issue. And thanks, George, for the solution!

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    Katy, what on *earth* is that in your last pair of photos? I really hope it's something that can be grown here. It's fascinating, though not in a normal ... vegetable kingdom way. Yikes.

    Since we've got the new thread on hydrangeas, I'll vote for a weed this week. Butterfly weed, specifically. Mine is the true weed form, and just appeared in my garden a few years ago of its own volition. It's not a color I'd have chosen, but I love it anyway.

  • 16 years ago
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    Only have a quick second as this is The Birthday Weekend (two daughters birthdays) and I am a slave to shopping and the kitchen. Well any how...I wanted to show pm2 a cool snapshot of another Knophofia this one is 'Alcazar'. I have never grown Knophofia before but I will say my gut is telling me it needs well draining soil and from a design point of view much like Liatris you would want to plant more than 3 or 5 in a bed. Sorry about the non thumbnail photo but Picasa is not recognizing this entire file of photos. Gosh when will we ever figure out the techie end of this? And now Daves has video uploading options (how cool is that) of course I really want a video camera now but know I may not live long enough to learn how to do this.

  • 16 years ago
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    dtd....thanks for posting that photo of butterfly weed. I have one little plant in one of my beds and I do think it is a pretty plant. It was good to see what a larger clump of them look like.

    kt...That is a very pretty Kniphofia. I can't really fit the strong reds/oranges/yellows in my borders but that one has just the right colors to me. Looks apricot with nice shading at the top and bottom. I also like the color of the pumilla. It looks like it would go with anything. The photo you posted looked like it still had more buds to open. I am wondering what it looks like when they are all open and how long the blooms last?

    I went looking for more pics of Kniphofia and came across this website that had a lot of photos. Thought someone might like the link.

  • 16 years ago
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    Wendy - I love that Stachys 'Hummelo'. Did you write somewhere on another thread that it blooms for a long period? I've overplanted salvia, and this might be a good alternative where blue spikes are needed. Which, in my garden, is pretty much everywhere.

  • 16 years ago
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    re Hummelo... I bought it last year in bloom and I divided it pretty aggressively, so I'm not really sure it was a fair year to judge it. I do remember that I got some new flower stalks late in the year from some of them.

    On some thread this year I think I said I was surprised that the blooms were short (2-3"), but they have since lengthened up. about 4-5" now so it is a little showier than earlier.

    (we gardeners are always impatient for the "show", aren't we!!!)

    I suspect it will be a long bloomer, but the data isn't in yet!

  • 16 years ago
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    Not that it matters but I think I first mentioned Stachys monieri Hummelo as my standout plant of the week early in this thread, tho I didn't have a photo--no digital camera. Mine are about 28" high, a big difference. Wendy, could you have Stachys grandiflora or macrantha instead, do you think? Or is it just the dividing. As I said earlier, my plants are only a year old so time can't explain the difference. I do have S. grandiflora and they are about 10"-12".

  • 16 years ago
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    Oh, I would say my Hummelo's are that tall too. I was just talking about the actual flower colorful part at the top of the stalk was 4-5"

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    My neighbors voted 2 pics of standouts and they have been this way for a couple of weeks.

    This one of a blue hydrangea which gets darker as the flowers fully open with the nasturtium underneath them. I have no idea what kind of hydrangea it is. Hubby gave them to me about 26 years ago around Easter time. He bought them in the market because they where blue and he knows I love blue flowers.
    I took the chance that they would be hardy to this area and planted them in the bed under the front picture window and held my breath till the following spring. Sure enough they have been there every year and blooming away, except the summer following that bitter cold winter we had. Only 3 blooms that year. The stems readily root right through the mulch when held down by a rock, so now I have the 2 original plants that I keep cutting back as they get to large, 2 others from rooted stems and my neighbor has 6 of them that I rooted for her.

    If anyone can give me an idea of what kind it is, I'd love to know. I never see anyone else growing a blue hydrangea with flowers this deep a blue.
    {{gwi:422537}}

    Also these 2 lonely marigold bolero plants. They have looked like this for the past 3 weeks. This large and full, these 2 blooms just don't want to fade off and seed. I want lots and lots of seeds for this one to grow next year.
    {{gwi:342183}}


    {{gwi:342185}}

    Fran

  • 16 years ago
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    Fran, thank you for the pictures and a great story of your hydrangeas.
    You just proved my point I made in another thread that at least 26 years ago (well before the PennyMac, Dooley, ES etc) was a great hydrangea named a Nikko Blue, that has a deep blue flowers, great medium to dark green leaves and most important IS HARDY.
    Congratulation, you have a 'true' Nikko Blue!

  • 16 years ago
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    Those are both truly beautiful, Fran. Do the hydrangea flowers stay blue thru their lifespan or do they become lavender and pink over time?

    And I've never seen that marigold. It's wonderful. Great name too. Bolero--Ole! (sorry no accent mark)

  • 16 years ago
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    Hi, I have a hydrangea question...I don't know if the true nikko blue has waxy leaves or ES like leaves..would really like to know.Thanks.

  • 16 years ago
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    Waxy/fleshy/slightly shiny/somewhat textured =NB.
    Thin/dull/flat =ES.

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    Thanks ego45. I just wanted to tell you that I recently came across another serrata (other than preziosa)that is not a lace-cap....its called Little geisha. Here is the link for a pic.

    http://davesgarden.com/pf/showimage/82799/

  • 16 years ago
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    Hi, Tina
    Yes, I know of a Little Geisha, but can't get my hands on it (I don't do a mail-order). It's less known due to its slow rate of growth and absence of marketing/advertizing hype.
    It's a a very cute small/dwarfish hydrangea with a tiny (about tennis ball size) flowerheads. Very suitable for patio container growth, IMO.
    If you have it, I'll be more than glad to exchange cuttings.

  • 16 years ago
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    Thanks Ego45 for identifying the hydrangea. Now I understand why I don't see this one very often in yards. When My grandmother saw a pic of the hydrangeas in their pots, she was the only one who said I would have it "for life in my yard". She didn't know the name of it, maybe she couldn't remember but anyway, she said it was a "real blue hydrangea, not one of those new fangled breeds, the ones that used to grow around when I was a kid". She sure was right.

    I saw your post on the banner year for hydrangeas and when I saw the pics of your old hydrangeas, the 20 year old ones, I said, "that's my hydrangeas color and everything".

    I will have to get some pics of this years blooms and the size of the shrubs. I do prune them to keep them small. 2 years ago, I was physically unable to prune them in late spring and they took over the front walk until I had hubby just "hack back" the sides that completely covered the front walk.

    They bloom on both old and new wood, which makes them a late prune for me, usually late may to mid June. That way I can be sure that the pruning is done on dead wood and I'm not cutting off healthy wood.

    I keep them mulched with bark mulch and oak leaves in the fall. They get lots of acidic fertilizer from pine needles, left over coffee grinds and of course they need lots of water.

    Rooted cuttings of them bloom a clone to the main plant and are in gardens in my own home town and the town next too me which is one zone warmer than me, zone 6.

    Ginny, the flowers basically stay blue through out their bloom. They fade a bit late in the season and in late fall, around Oct, they start to turn a bit lavender, but then at that time of the season, what ever is still blooming doesn't really look as much like it did in full season blooms.

    I have never had them so covered in flowers as they are this year, a real surprise to see so many blooms on them.

    Ego45, one question I have though. I had always thought that blue hydrangeas need to be grown in shade as well as acidic soil. Is the shade part true, because I hope it isn't. I have to have a huge oak tree taken down before a storm lands it on the house and it's leaning toward the house. When the tree is cut down, it will provide much more sun to these hydrangeas. Do you think that will be a problem with the color or will it just mean that the water requirements will increase.

    These are 2 pics of the hydrangeas from last year.

    The larger one is one of the 2 original plants, the smaller one is a 3 year old plant from 3 rooted cuttings that I planted in a different location.

    Fran
    {{gwi:1082765}}


    {{gwi:1082766}}

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Fran,
    yes, hydrangeas need a part shade.
    Future absence of the shade providing tree should have a double effect:
    -flowers will fade and age sooner than when they were in shade, extra watering will not stop or prevnt this process,
    -if it will be exposed to sun in a second half of the day it may wilt, but extra watering will solve this problem.
    It may or may not happen, when you'll take down that tree you'll see.
    re: flowering on both old AND a new wood.
    It's not that easy as you just said. Most likely you confusing the new growth off the old wood with a true new wood. It does look like a new wood, being sometimes up to 2' tall green stem with a flowers on a top, but in reality it's not coming from the ground/base of the shrub, it coming from the one of those lower buds from the old (previous years) wood.
    The whole this thing is somewhat technical and not that easy to explain in understandable fashion, but if you are interested you may want to read very informative comments by Hayseedman on the issue. Link is below.
    Good luck