Dealing With The Daylily Hill-It Is Imperative
The word imperative was used in the post about cutting down the Muhlenbergia capillaris. There was good reason to refer to that seasonal chore as an imperative. An online dictionary defines this term as something that demands attention or action; an unavoidable obligation or requirement; a necessity. It is the bulbs emerging that demand the cutting of grasses and other spent flower stalks now. Like Tulipa clusiana ‘Lady Jane’ shown here on April 3, 2008.Besides, these brown stalks are getting quite tired looking. The birds have picked the seed heads clean. The time has come for the gardener to crawl around with felcos in hand and level the playing field on the daylily hill. This garden bed is the main view from the lower deck. It is home to the majority of the daylilies, hence the name. There have been some design changes done to improve the flow from summer to fall. Click here to read that story.Looking down from the top of the daylily hill we see those imperative bulbs again, also on April 3. Tulips, hyacinths, daffodils and muscari dot the slope among the hellebores and Spiraea ‘Magic Carpet’.Late spring shows the LA hybrid Lilium ‘Royal Fantasy’ beginning their show along the path edge. Other asiatic, oriental and orienpet lilies will join the fun soon. By September the sedums, phlox, echinceas and many others carry the program.Those later blooms are still standing on the hill. Or should we say were standing. The task is completed and may be checked off the list. I just love checking things off the list too. The bulbs can now safely grow taller without the booted lady stomping on their faire heads. All good.It was such a nice day that another cutting job was done as well, the Calamagrostis ‘Karl Foerster’ was cut to about a foot tall. It had plenty of green blades showing so we didn’t cut too short, although it would not have damaged anything if it had been.Looking at the photo, maybe it should have been cut shorter. Nah, it will perk up soon. More lavender twigs have been stuck into the earth at the front, Verbena bonariensis has been spread throughout from plants that had self sown in the gravel paths. This bed that used to be the driveway of the house next door that was torn down to build the garage is looking more full than ever. Many types of blue tall asters were added last fall to the wild white ones that have seeded in this bed for more color and fullness. There are no bulbs being imperative in here though. The smallest hole to plant anything requires a pickaxe to do the digging in the car compacted gravel. It is truly a wonder that anything grows here at all, but those plants that love rocky, sunny spots are making it a garden finally. Dianthus, penstemons, blue fescue, catmint, ice plant, salvia greggii join the Karl F., lavender and rosemary. Blue oat grass, Helictotrichon sempervirens, is doing especially well. That might be one in the lower right corner of this photo. They look so similar to the blue fescue, but are a little taller and don’t get so overgrown quickly like the fescue does. But for everblue weed control, the fescue is the first choice. It can be, in fact it needs to be divided ruthlessly. It is used here to fill a bed until a design plan enters our dreams as we sleep, the preferred method of garden creativity.Just to show that all is not gray and dreary here, Hamamelis ‘Diane’ has opened a few more furry buds to cheer us as we work. Much appreciated, my dear.