Awesome evergreen groundcover for dry shade. Spreads gently into a mass of beautiful yellow “blooms” (they’re really bracts, not blooms) in spring over lustrous dark foliage. Great for cut flower arrangements. Did I mention she’s green all winter? Completely carefree once established.
Goldenrod / Solidago canadensis May 10, 2012
Smothered with yellow flowers in the fall, a great companion to New England aster. Spreads rapidly into a big clump. Full sun, completely drought resistant once established. A deer-resistant plant NATIVE to North America.
Goldenrods bloom in autumn and provide vital sources of pollen and nectar for bees and other insects in the late summer and fall throughout North America. Honey bees collect large amounts of nectar from goldenrod prior to winter, and other bees use pollen from goldenrods to provision late-season nests. Plant some in your garden today to give our pollinator friends the boost they need to get through the long winter.
“[Goldenrods] are still wrongly accused of causing hayfever. Therefore, it bears repeating that goldenrods, like aster, Joe-Pye, ironweeds, and all the Composites, are insect-pollinated, so their pollen is heavy and sticky in order to facilitate transfer by our six-legged friends. It is the wind-pollinated plants like grasses, ragweed and many trees (I am allergic to maples for example) that produce the great quantities of light, airborne pollen that get into our noses and throats and cause the immune reaction known as hayfever.”
— William Cullina, The New England Wild Flower Society
Guide to Growing and Propagating Wildflowers, p. 197
Chrysanthemums December 8, 2010
Chrysanthemums, or mums, as they are more commonly known, are wonderful fall bloomers. After the entire garden has faded, the mums come charging in to add more luscious color, even into those first frosty nights. My mums routinely last through November, and even into December. And unlike the mums one can buy in grocery stores each fall, all these varieties return year after year and slowly expand to make a large clump you can divide and share.
I have 2 pink colors: Chrysanthemum koreana ‘Mei Kyo’ has a profusion of lovely bold pink daisies with yellow centers, and Emperor of China has bold pink buds that mature into full, pale pink quill blossoms, several to a stem. Both reach heights of 2-3′.
The yellow button mum, Chrysanthemum pacificum, is a dwarf at 8-12″ high, wonderful for edging the front of a bed. There is a white edge on each leaf, which highlights the foliage, making it a real presence in the garden all summer long.
And last but not least, I have an peach-orange mum, extremely vigorous and prolific in bloom, also taller at 2′ high. I love the orange color in my fall bouquets.
Mums make great plants for the fronts of beds, and also, since they are late to emerge in spring, great companions for spring bulbs like daffodils, whose foliage has often nearly disappeared by the time the mums come to life.
Full to part sun for most prolific bloom. Drought-proof once established.
Sun Drops May 31, 2010
A wonderfully cheerful yellow mass of flowers in late May, over dark green foliage that really makes the flowers pop! Loves a sunny spot and completely drought-proof once established. Spreads slowly to make a large mat of foliage. 15″ high, great for the fronts of borders or for edging a bed. Paired here with an artemisia for foliage contrast.
Yellow Primrose April 14, 2010
This dainty plant flowers in April, with delicate yellow flowers 6″ high over lime-green leaves. Spreads agreeably to make a large clump. I started with one about five years ago, divided it many times, and now have about 10. I’ll dig a large clump for you to take home for $5. Limited quantities, alas.
Great for the fronts of borders. Prefers a shady moist spot. Mine get morning sun only.
A wonderful edging plant, great in the fronts of borders or along a walkway or wall. Beautiful even green foliage all summer long about 12″ high. Yellow flowers in June. Semi-evergreen through winter. Can be used as a groundcover in full to part sun.
Bushy Celandine Poppy (Chelidonium majus) April 5, 2010
Bright lime green foliage makes a beautiful carpet in spring. Yellow flowers begin in mid-April and continue through the spring and often into summer. Very long blooming, spreads gradually by seed.
Full sun to full shade. 2′ high when fully grown.