I love plant-intensive gardens, planning them, planting them. I’ve learned a lot about spacing and air flow over the years, so the garden isn’t as dense as in previous Augusts, but I’m still just as plant crazy after all these years.
I still have the tendency to up-end things and throw a wrench in the garden, like a passion flower reputed to grow to 20-30′ — I’m hoping to train it up and then across the horizontal beams of the pergola, so the flowers dangle at eye level. But I’ve also developed more of a feel for a zone 10 garden that doesn’t slight the remaining months of the year in favor of one season over another.
I was crazy about knotweeds for quite a few years. Still am, actually, but I no longer grow them or many other perennials in the garden.
Occasionally, like in 2013, the garden was very summer-forward. Working out the longest perennial show possible in zone 10 was incredibly absorbing but still left seven or eight months of nice weather with lots of bare ground.
I still like to try out summer stuff in containers though.
Apart from garden styles and trends (“the new naturalism”), in a little home garden, balcony, sunny window, there is a wonderful freedom to simply celebrate that emotional connection to the plants themselves.
Living surrounded by these once-in-a-universe masterpieces is a privilege that just never gets old. Hope you’re getting lots of garden time this August.
I know I’ve said it before (probably too many times) but the things you can grow that I can’t – like passionflowers and, with two exceptions, Persicaria – always astounds me given the relative proximity of our gardens. It sets me wondering if differences in soil or wind or sun exposure are responsible, or if I simply give up too easily or don’t pay sufficient attention to new plants during their infancy. I love that Senecio confusus and the variegated Manihot.
Still plant-crazy after all these years.
Eriogonum giganteum var. compactum: love the name of that, gigantic and compact. Like the town of Hill Valley.
@Kris, I think I’m going to try your garden star, ‘Cousin It,’ again here under the ‘Moonlight’ grevillea which is throwing considerable shade now. Passionflowers have been difficult to establish for me too, because I’m usually not offering optimal conditions. It already looks like this vitifolia might be in too much shade…I think that rule of killing a plant three times needs to be revised!
@Hoov, there’s very little info on this compact form, where it was discovered etc. I saw a mature plant recently in a botanical garden and it was nice and compact, so it’s no misnomer!