Audrey's Plantmania

An Annapolis gardener sharing her bounty at bargain prices

Sweet William / Dianthus barbatus July 19, 2017

This Dianthus is one of my new garden favorites.  A prolific bloomer with an extremely long bloom time (late April – June) make it a star in the spring border.  Since it grows only 12″ tall, it is a fantastic edger along the front of your beds.   Comes in many shades of pinks and whites, and is a pollinator magnet!  Prefers full sun, but grows well in any soil and is very drought-tolerant.

It is also a great cut flower which is long-lasting in a vase.

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Harlequin Glory Bower Tree / Clerodendron March 21, 2017

This tree is covered with white, fragrant blossoms in the late summer heat of July and August, and the butterflies adore her.  I often see 3-4 butterflies hovering at the same time over this tree.  After the flowers drop, a beautiful red calyx is left behind, often with a blue berry at the center — two seasons of marvelous interest!

Grows to be 8-10′ tall, 5′ wide, requires half to full sun to bloom.  Full sun.  Read more about it here in Fine Gardening Magazine.

 

 

Monarda ‘Raspberry Wine’ / Bee balm May 8, 2013

bee balm beebalm2Monarda ‘Raspberry Wine’ blooms prolifically over blue-green foliage in the summer, about 2′ high.
Full to part sun. Extremely drought-tolerant and a butterfly magnet.  Spreads rapidly to make large clumps to divide with friends!

 

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

 

 

Comfrey ‘Hidcote Blue’ (Symphytum) March 13, 2012

A superb plant which is happy in both sun and shade.  Drought-resistant once established.

Gorgeous delicate blue flowers preceded by pink (!) buds in spring.  Large leaves almost look like lambs ears, only less fuzzy.  Evergreen leaves provide winter interest.

Slowly spreads to create a large massing of plants.  Can be used as ground cover plant.