Upon returning to the changing scenery of the Fairegarden after some out of town overnight stays, getting recharged and well rested, finding inspiration at every stop, the glimmering dawn revealed a scattering of frosty fairy dust on parts of the garden. Only sporadic, it was as if the wee folk had brushed only their favorites with a stroke of their wands. The daylily referred to by Mister Semi as Fire In The Hole, aka Hemerocallis ‘Raspberry Rasper’ had decided to try its hand at fall blooming. It has been a race to see if the buds could open before the cold would put a stop to this intrepid blooming. This, the first flower was flash frozen before it could fully unfurl. There are still buds in waiting as the days rewarmed.
Son of Cosmos sulphureus ‘Cosmic Orange’ has grown to normal size, as opposed to the unchained growth of the Pater. Click here to read about his ebullient efforts. The petals of this offspring are double. Seeds have been scattered in the area and some will also be saved for next year’s orange themed area.
The marginally hardy Salvia ‘Indigo Spires’ has been an enchanting performer. So much so that two more of this statuesque blue beauty were added to the area known as the white/yellow bed. It really should be the white/yellow/blue garden, but that is too cumbersome a moniker. The frost fairies must have been buoyed by the boundless blooming, for many of the spikes are smeared with icy sprinkles.
Let us pull back a little to show the masses of sapphire spires. The spent stalks of the veronica collection can be seen to the left, the raw umber rods offer winter interest, along with a few enchinacea seed heads still standing.
The red rose, Rosa ‘Altissimo’ wraps around the rusty metal clothesline pole that is now repurposed as a trellis along with R. ‘Moonlight’. The ruby hued single bud was barely glittered and opened without damage.
Golden spikemoss, Selaginalla kraussiana is used in container plantings as a ferny groundcover. The tips have been dipped in the frozen icing and sprinkled with sugar. There are little bonsai pots filled to overflowing with it that have already been brought into the safe haven of the greenhouse/sunroom for the colder months. It remains to be seen if this can withstand the onslaught of freeze/thaw that is our southeastern US winter out of doors. When the temps fall to their lowest point, usually mid February, we might have to make room for this blue glazed container inside.
A volunteer seedling buddleia has a sparkling sheen. Once the flower color reveals itself on these self sown gifts, the decision is made whether a place for them in the garden can be found. All butterfly bushes are grown as standards here, staked with sturdy metal poles to hold the weight of flower laden stems, to use less of the precious garden floor space. Like a floor lamp versus a table and lighting device in a small living room. Added: click here to read about the Butterfly bush standards.
The rising sun quickly does away with the magic of the diaphanous fairy frosting. It is not quite time for winter to take over the garden just yet. Much of the foliage still bears the green of summer, but the colors are changing more each day. The lower angle of light gives a new aesthetic.
Soon enough the architecture and structure will be the inspirational wellspring for to do lists and garden blogging posts. The metal pineapple sculpture, first mentioned here, a gift from the Financier many years ago was recently unearthed and repositioned. The garden had evolved since it was staked in place with rebar in 2000, burying its beauty. It deserved better.
There is no hibernation of the garden here. It does not get put to bed, covers pulled over its head. Evergreens, hardscape and those plants that die well will keep us in thrall until the renewed green of spring arrives. Some, like the Sleeping Maiden snooze through the four seasons, however. Click here to read her story. She is surrounded by the native wild ageratum, Conoclinium coelestinum inherited with the property and planted with bronze carex self sown seedlings.
It is the time for form, texture and color to take the stage as the transition of seasons tick tocks along. The orange sedge, Carex testacea ‘Orange New Zealand Sedge’ is part of the new manifesto of container gardening here. Permanent evergreens, one plant per pot will, it is hoped, provide beauty and ease of care. There is another plant of similar form that is the delight of the Fairegarden at the moment…
Like the fireworks on the Fourth of July, Muhlenbergia capillaris remains at the forefront as the color fades to honeyed hues. The pinkish purple collects the rays of the sun still.