June finds the sun bright and hot here at the Fairegarden. Some plants simply wilt and melt when Summer comes early. Some plants rise to the challenge. Rudbeckia hirta grown from seeds harvested at daughter Semi’s wild jungle garden belong to the latter category.
Sunflowers are the epitome of Summer sun-loving flowers. There has been a learning curve for growing them from seed here over many years. This year, it was noticed that there were babies sprouting from the birdseed, again, in the gravel paths. It seemed too cool and early, but a packet of Helianthus annuus ‘Evening Sun’ was direct sown into the chilly earth on March 16, 2011. Yes, you read that correctly, late winter sowing has produced flowers in June. Will wonders never cease to amaze us?
Not flowers but pretty enough to be included in Semi’s bridal bouquet for a late summer wedding in 2003, are the Hypericum berries from Hypericum androsaemum ‘Albury Purple’. Besides, they match the colorways we are featuring today.
Another heat-loving plant family is Hemerocallis, the daylily clan. These stout-hearted men, women and children keep their heads up, following the sun across the sky during the daylight hours. Chosen at random to represent this group is Hemerocallis ‘Closer Look’.
So maybe not loving the sun, but definitely not minding the heat is the named cultivar of our native Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’. Growing in the dry shade under the stand of tall Loblolly pines at the edge of our property, there is never a complaint from Annabelle. She has been spread throughout the bed from rooted stem pieces dug in winter so that there is now a view of summertime snowballs from the street. Sweet.
Missing the memo about it being summer, the last of the orchids have finally been moved outside even though they remain in flower. The greenhouse/sunroom is too hot and lacks the humidity the Papiopedilums need to thrive and build reserves for their normal winter bloom period. Paphiopedilum Honey ‘Newberry’ x Paph. primulinus ‘Lemon Glow’ blooms will not last much longer after the move outside, but it must be done. Sorry, Honey.
The yellow/white bed is home to a diverse group of plants, some of which are neither white nor yellow, even. Rudbeckia maxima has reached the top of the rusted metal clothesline pole and continues to reach for the sky, pardner!
Getting a close up of the flowers means holding the camera up above my head at arm’s length and hoping for some kind of focus to happen spontaneously. This is the best we can do, but does show the tiny brown true flowers opening up along the tall cone. I love this plant!
The Bloom Day Procession, creation of sweet Carol of May Dreams Gardens that allows for a world wide sharing of what is blooming in gardens on the fifteenth, or thereabouts, of each month, now turns to the real stars shining brightly right now. The early morning light is full of pinks on the spectrum, letting the glamour gals put their best petals forward.
Tawny, tall and again, exuding fragrance is Chinese Trumpet Lilium ‘African Queen’. She is indeed royalty, growing in the knot garden quadrants in addition to joining many other lilies in the Black Garden. It has been noted that the full height range of these tall lilies take a few years to be reached.
For some perspecitve, the Financier, who is of average man-height, stands looking at the vines trying to reclaim the bamboo fencing that was attached to the chain link recently. This particular bulb of African Queen Lily has grown beyond all expectations of verticality. Long may she reign.