2 May 2012

Beauty Lives Here!

Can’t hardly believe that its almost a week since I managed to damn near blow my entire garden season budget in one outing, but that’s what happens when you spend your free time compiling a list of ‘must have’ additions from your favourite woodland plant nursery! It was also the first time I’ve had the thrill of meeting a fellow garden blogger.


I came home from work tonight, tired and dragging the derriere more than usual, but found myself wooed by the ‘kids’ as they continued their stretch forward as the weather warms. It was nice to actually see the sun ever so briefly, then be rewarded with some long overdue rain, and then sun again that glinted off the foliage of some of my new additions as they continue to settle in and meet their new neighbors.

I love the newly emerging deep purple-chocolate stained leaves of this Epimedium. While I prefer the long spurred varieties, this yellow beauty always makes me smile whenever I take the time to get down on hands and knees to appreciate its beauty!

DSC_0026 The prerequisite ‘squeal of delight’ was heard when I discovered a bud on Paeonia mlokosewitschii – affectionately referred to as ‘Molly-the-Witch.’ I can hardly contain my excitement, but mustn’t show favouritism in front of the other ‘kids’ – especially some of the newer additions that I am still reveling over! One has to admit that she is a delightful specimen, with wonderful rounded leaves that are a bluish grey green with a delightful blush overlay! Sigh!

DSC_0015  Deborah bought this divine plant and then kindly offered to split it with me. I have always loved Lathyrus vernus, the shrubbier perennial ‘sweet pea’ – and this cultivar ‘Regenbogen’ always delights unsuspecting gardeners who stumble upon it. I think it was actually the first plant I noticed as we approached the Lost Horizons benches on our trip!

DSC_0013 DSC_0010 I brought out the cathedral mirror as well as the reflecting water bowl and positioned them, ready for another year! I have a feeling the reflecting bowl will require filling more than I would like to admit this coming year, as drought like conditions have been predicted for the province!

DSC_0001It was with mixed emotions that I snapped this photo. Three weeks ago I had what should have been four luscious flower buds on Glaucidium palmatum, the sublime Japanese woodland plant that ensnares my heart! After a week of sub zero weather with snow and rain, three of them seemed to whither before my eyes. I caressed and coddled it, but lost three of the four. Of course with the addition of a second plant, I hope I have increased my likelihood of having at least twice as many next year! Garden mathematics…. I tell you!

DSC_0008Small as he might be, there was a second squeal of delight to notice that Corydalis woroshillovii has made a return appearance in the Rare and Unusual border, after having spent a dormant season underground. I thought a diminutive Anemonella thalcitroides ‘Cameo’ was tiny….. but this sweet Princeling takes the cake! 

DSC_0037 I was most surprised to notice that Kirengeshoma koreana is much later to emerge than its cousin K. palmata. I love that its blooms [K.koreana] are more upright on the plant and that it blooms earlier in the season. Of course there is nothing to compare to a majestic stand of Aconitum commingling with this woodland favourite. It has become one of my signature late summer/fall planting combinations that I suggest to clients.

DSC_0017 Some things in life are priceless, including the mesmerizing beauty of Arisaema candidissimum. Few things or people in life can distract my attention once I’ve zeroed in on the elusive Meconopsis, yet that is exactly what happened when I noticed five or so pots each containing a blooming candidissimum. I chortled when Gabi mentioned that someone else almost ‘fell into the compost pit’ when their eyes locked on this beauty! Is there any wonder?

DSC_0030Diphylleia my Diphylleia, won’t you bulk up and wow me with your fabulous foliage once again?’ I am confident that in its new, safe from the damage of being trodden upon by an overzealous gardener location, that once again I will be swooning with its boldly magnificent foliage, not to mention the blue fruit on ruby petioles. Why oh why my Diphylleia are you not more readily recognized and utilized in the woodland garden?

DSC_0040 DSC_0041 It makes you want to run your fingers along it’s pleats does it not? I have always been enamored of the fabulous foliage of Veratrum nigrum, sometimes referred to as ‘False Hellebore’ – though why it has this name I will never know. Its flowers which rise .5 – 1m above its sumptuous foliage are tiny, star shaped flowers of a deep wine purple colour. My first specimen bloomed the year after it was planted, but has remained decidedly inactive since, so I could hardly resist adding another. Of course slugs and snails consider this beauty to be a delicacy so I have already procured a roll of copper mesh to help protect it!

DSC_0049One day soon, the lacy foliage of Adiantum pedantum will appear like fingers, gently caressing the tomentose foliage of Saruma henryi, another must have plant for the woodland garden.

DSC_0044  Forgive the blurriness of this photo, but it best describes how quickly the ‘kids’ decide that its time to start frolicking for another year. Here’s hoping this Sunday’s ORGHPS [Ontario Rock Garden and Hardy Plant Society] Plant Sale can tantalize and seduce me with a few more rarities! Unbelievable as it sounds, there are still a few pockets of space throughout the property!


Deborah at Kilbourne Grove said...

What! Empty pockets where? I am amazed at how much everything has grown in the last week. Looking forward to Sunday, I will try and keep you under control, lol. Oh, and guess what, I saw Betberg, GORGEOUS!!!!!!! You are going to love it.

Barbarapc said...

So many beautiful things Barry - stay away from my blog today - extolling the virtues of my old part-time employer Loblaw. More on Amsterdam in the days ahead. Was thinking about visiting you at your nursery, but semi-fearful that I might be thought of as a stalker. While I'm desk-tied at the moment working on a design, would like to come by in a few weeks time to say hello....is there a good time? (barbarapc@cogeco.ca)
Just realized how ridiculous that is...in the spring there probably isn't a 'good time...'.

Anna said...

So disappointing when these disasters strike as with your glaucidium palmatum, so you just have to be optimistic about the following year. That's what I tell myself when my snowdrops miss a year - then cry! :) I gather that you still have some pennies left to spend today. Have fun - look forward to hearing what you and Deborah fall for this time.