The bearded iris, blue star, white and Kilian Donahue clematis, and bleeding heart have all reached the end of their annual flowering cycles. Other beautiful perennials are blooming to take their places. Most of the summer perennials in the garden are long blooming, care free, and drought and deer resistant.
Veronica Royals Candles is a short plant that does well towards the front of a sunny flower bed. Its spire-like violet-blue flowers grow on tidy, deep green foliage. It blooms in zones 4 - 8 from late Spring to late Summer.
Scabiosa Butterfly Blue is also a short plant that does well towards the front of a sunny flower bed. Its pincushion flowers grow on very compact plants that have ferny blue-grey foliate. It blooms from late Spring to early Fall.
This photo contains a bearded iris in the far right corner, scabiosa butterfly blue and veronica royal candles in the foreground, a huge clump of flowering Japanese iris in the center, and flowering lamb's ear and white delphinium in the background.
The white delphinium have been in our garden for several years now. Delphinium, a standard in cottage gardens, contain tall, large mounds of dark green, glossy foliage that are adorned with huge spikes of showy, spurred flowers of white, blue, lavender, or pink. They grow in zones 3 - 8 and can be quite tall, reaching heights of 3 - 4'. They bloom for most of the Summer, but the require staking so that the flowers do not break off in hard wind and rains. Last fall, I planted blue delphiniums with these white ones. They did not get very tall or bloom this year. Hopefully, they will survive the season and come back next year with big beautiful blue flowers.
The white clematis is no longer blooming in my sun bed, but the dark purple clematis has taken its place. This clematis has been in the same spot for several years now. I over-pruned this it a couple of years ago, but thankfully, it survived and has grown back beautifully. I enjoy clematis because they come in a wide variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. Additionally, the different types of clematis bloom and rebloom throughout the year, so it is possible to have clematis blooming before the last frost in Spring until after the last frost in Fall. The large grass like clumps in the foreground are spiderwort which will bloom numerous petite, purple flowers in the next couple of weeks.
The photo below is of my sun perennial bed. It contains clematis to the left followed by spiderwort , coneflower, and Russian sage which will bloom later in the year. Purple Nepata Walker's low catmint, and campanula blue-eyed blonde are in the middle of the bed. Petite, fuschia aarmeria dusseldorf pride are in the foreground.
Salvia May Night is a medium sized plant that grows 18 - 24" tall in zones 4 - 8. Its spikes of blue-purple bloom all summer long, and its leaves have a strong herbal smell. Once established, it is extremely care-free, deer resistant, and needs little maintenance or water. It does, however, respond well to sheering after blooming in order to promote fresh foliage and blooms. Other varieties of salvia are available in shades of pink, fuschia, blue, and purple. Our salvia is contained in the friendship garden with japanese iris, day lilies, bearded iris, and peonies.
Peonies are also a medium height plant that can grow 2 -3 feet tall in zones 2 - 7. Over time, they form a bush-like appearance. Unlike most of my other perennials, they are not long blooming. However, their huge size, gorgeous flower, and fragrance makes up for the fact that they only bloom for a few weeks in late May an early June. Our gardens contain peonies in shades of white, blush, light pink, and fuschia.
The photo below is of the friendship garden. Currently, the purple bearded iris, salvia, purple and white Japanese iris, and fuschia peonies are blooming. They will eventually give way to orange and yellow day lilies in the summer, and aster in the fall.
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