Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Wildflower Wednesday

I am mostly doing an update of the area where the tree used to be in the front yard for this month's wildflower Wednesday, hosted by Gail, of Clay and Limestone.  Most of the plants are native wildflowers.   I went out Sunday evening, and took over a hundred photos.  I was able to get them down to 50 some.

I've been putting photos of views from our front porch on Facebook.  A lot of the flowers for this post have been shown there recently.  The Joe Pye weed is tall and full of blooms.

The bees and wasps have been enjoying the blooms of the Joe Pye Weed.

This is a kind of mountain mint that I don't remember planting.  I wonder if it's a cross between a couple that I have.

Across the way, to the area where the tree used to be, here is one of three wild quinine plants.

The whorled milkweed plants have had a nice long bloom season.

I have two of these mallows that get a couple feet tall.

I seem to collect liatrises, but don't keep track of which is which.  I have spicata, aspera, punctata, and I think, scariosa and psyconostachya, all native to our area.  Not all are blooming yet, and the rabbits have eaten some down.  If you know which are which, feel free to help me out. (Added 4/14/13:  I'm pretty sure this is aspera.)

This one should be showing color in a few days.

I deadheaded the 2 Culver's root plants, and this one is blooming again.  It is one of the favorites of the bees and wasps.

This is the first of the three wild quinines that I planted, and I look forward to the other two growing to this size.  The bees and wasps like them, too.

The cup plant that I got from a plant sale some acquaintances had in their yard this spring is getting ready to bloom.  It has grown lots, and sent up a number of stems from the ground.  I have it near the front sidewalk.  I have a feeling I'll be doing some trimming to keep it from spreading and sticking out too far.

I took the little fence off to protect another plant the other day, but left the mesh, because I know the rabbits will eat the woodland phlox and phlox pilosa plants to the ground if I remove it.  I'm tickled they are growing again.

The monarda fistuala was quite the pollinator magnet, but the bloom time sure was short.  I will probably deadhead this, but am not sure how far down to go.  I see it has new growth from the ground.

The babtisia plant in the lower left had some genista moth caterpillars on it, as did the other ones in the yard.  I trimmed them back, and am hoping I don't find more. It looks like I caught them in time, but noticed there are more on some other plants that are related to these, so I need to get out and get those.  It's hard to see the tall, spindly plant that is leaning over the fence.  I'm going to show one of its blooms in the next photo. 

I don't remember planting this, and don't know what it is, but it may be a boltonia of some kind.

These switchgrasses are 'Prairie Wind', not native, but supposedly they don't spread as much.

 Walking on the path between the two grass clumps, there are a number of tall plants.  I think this is rigid goldenrod sprawling a bit.

It should be blooming soon.

The ironweed has been blooming awhile.

There are a couple clumps of this liatris.  They got very tall and stayed green awhile, but are now nice and purple, and the bees are loving them.  I am enjoying them with the gray headed coneflowers, which I've deadheaded once, so they aren't as tall and floppy as they had been.  (Added 4/14/13: I have been able to find various tags I had stuck in the ground near plants this spring.  This one is Liatris pycnostachya.  Someone wrote, "Eureka" on it with no puncuation, and after looking around, I found that this is a cultivar.  I need to keep reminding myself that I will not have prairie perfection.  If these flop a this much this year, I may decide to take them out.)


Oh, there are still a few stems that have not opened the blooms yet.  I think they are kind of cool in this stage, too.

This is a different, shorter liatris across the path.

It may be aspera.

I took a number of photos from the sitting area near the benches.  This is the wild senna plant I bought from the UNL Statewide Arboretum last year.

I've seen a number of bees on it each morning.  The other day, I counted 8 of them.

The rudbeckia maxima only had a few blooms this year, its second year here.  I hope to see hummingbirds on the agastache and black and blue salvia soon.  Oh, and I just read they like the wild senna as well.

I deadheaded one stalk of the rudbeckia maxima, but left this one.  I was hoping for more blooms, but it doesn't look like there will be any this year.  I like the look of the seedhead, though.

Purple coneflowers, beauty berry bush, pitcher sage and rattlesnake master are some of the plants in this photo. 

This spring, I moved the rattlesnake master from where it came up in the east bed, near the parent plant.  It is not as tall as the other, but I'm pleased it is blooming.

I have been planting native grasses around.  This one is blue grama.  This, and a few others, I got just a couple weeks ago, at buy one, get one free.  I cut each in half before planting, so I really got a great deal, but am needing to keep them watered since we're having 100 degree highs.  That's another liatris under the wire basket, which is keeping the rabbits from eating it.

I hosed the aphids off of the purple milkweed plant the other day, and noticed today, I need to again.  The 'Jim Crocket' aster is not native, but it is doing well here.  I recently found out it is named for the Crocket from The Victory Garden.  I remember watching that regularly.

We've been heading west, and now have turned, still facing west, but now going toward the north.  I'm not sure why, but this wild senna, next to the tub, has gotten very tall and bushy, but is not continuing to bloom like the other one is.  Behind the bench trellis is a Joe Pye weed that had volunteered in the east bed.  Like the rattlesnake master, it is blooming at a shorter height than the parent plant.  I have one more volunteer I need to find a spot for or give away next spring.

The gooseneck loosestrive in the tub has gotten stressed and dry a few times, but is hanging in there.

This is the wine cup plant that is under the bench trellis the pot of gooseneck loosestrife is on.  The plant has been sending a number of runners around, which do not seem to be taking root anywhere.  I planted a white blooming one across the way, under the chair, but it is slow growing.

This yarrow, 'Terricotta' is not native, but it is one that I moved from another part of the yard, and I like it in this spot so far.

Facing north, the liatris here may be 'Kobold' that I got before knowing about the native kinds, but they are volunteers from the curb bed that I moved this spring, so they could have mixed with the native ones I've had around for awhile in other areas.  The little red blooms are heleniums, 'Ruby Tuesday'.  The yellow blooms are rudbeckia 'Goldquelle'.  All of these are plants that I moved from other parts of the yard, and are not native.  The honeysuckle on the left was given to me by a neighbor when we first moved in.

We are now heading back toward the east.  I sure like the gray headed coneflowers, even though I've been tying them up to keep them from flopping.  I tied this clump of liatris, too.

These flower heads do not look gray to me so far.

Turning a bit to the south, have I mentioned I like the gray headed coneflowers and liatris together?  There are more of these coneflowers heading closer to the fence.  (The vine on the light is what I call Larry's weird sweet potato plant that he chose a number of years ago.  I had planted a clematis on there, too, but it died after a few years, so the sweet potato won.  I have been having to pull out a number of the sweet potato plants out now that there is no lawn that gets mowed around it.)

There are a couple little bluestem grasses in this area that are starting to bloom.  The wild quinine here is smaller than the other two.  The dried up phlox will probably have to come out.  I want to plant native larkspur in this area.  (Those are the leaves of the wild quinine on the right.)

We'll take a brief look at the area on the south side of the fence, closer to where a sidewalk would be.  I am having trouble filling in the spaces.  I hope everything grows larger next year.  You can see there are a number of plants the rabbits have been eating, and the wire baskets are now protecting them.  This switchgrass is 'heavy metal'.

This little bluestem was in a larger pot than the other ones, and it continues to be larger.  I am excited to see the blooms coming up.  All were planted last year.

The Mexican hat plants that I put in this year are doing well. 

The gray headed coneflowers are in sort of a diagonal row, which ends on this side of the fence.

Here's another liatris.  I can't remember what the plant behind it is, but it is nice to have some plants that have not bloomed yet.

Here's the view from the other side.  The big bushy plant is a euphorbia of some kind.  Behind it, and to the right, is the native switchgrass I decided to try, even though it can supposedly be aggressive.  It's hard to see, but is starting to bloom, and is shorter than the others I planted.  It doesn't look to be spready, so maybe it spreads by self sowing.

The gentians have been blooming for awhile. 

Here's one more view from the front porch. The orange blooming Mexican sunflower is not native, but is an annual I plant because the monarch butterflies like it.

Here's a photo of the black eyed Susans from the curb bed.  The goldenrod, which I don't think is a native one is about to bloom again after having been deadheaded recently.

I forgot to take a photo of the black eyed Susans growing in the vegetable garden.  I'm thinking about moving some to the front yard, but am not sure if I want to keep all the self sown ones in check.  Do you grow black eyed Susans?

At 9:03 p.m. CDT, it is currently 95 degrees.  In a couple days, it looks like we'll have a string of highs in the 90s, which I guess I'm looking forward to.  Some 80s would be OK with me.  I hope we get some rain soon.

I am looking forward to seeing what wildflowers others have this month.  I hope you are able to spend some time in your gardens in all this heat most of us are having.


  1. Those pesky rabbits-I like your solution to the problem.
    Your photos reminded me that the Liatrus are missing this year as well-the deer HAVE been busy.
    And I have finally WRITTEN down that I want to try the Culvers Root. It's not only beautiful, but anything the bees love is great.
    Have a good week, Sue

  2. Your weeds don't look like weeds anymore, they are domesticated so maybe they should be elevated in category, hehe! And they are beautiful too. Those liatris i love most.

  3. Beautiful and Interesting Plants - Thanks For Sharing-Your Garden Looks amazing in this Dry Hot Weather!

  4. Hi Sue. Your front beds are packed with a riot of wildflowers. Just beautiful!
    I love the gentians with their blue blooms and the Black Eyed Susan's. Well to tell the truth I love them all. LOL! Have a lovely week.

  5. Simply amazing how your yard fills in from just a few months ago in the winter....I just love the variety of plants here as always...

  6. Love the wild senna plant and the gentians. Your garden is really looking good! I think the natives take the hot, dry weather better than some of the others.

  7. You have so many great tall perennials. With some of our shrubs looking like they're not surviving this summer, I'm thinking I may have a space coming for some joe pye weed.

  8. Great garden tour. Love all your liatris, also the Mexican hat and the gentians.Oh, and the wild senna! I've got to get one, or three!

  9. I enjoy looking at your garden, and am just amazed at the wide variety of natives you are growing! I am trying to increase natives each year, but also hoping to avoid the invasive ones, lol! I have some of those unusual tall snaky liatris that you have, and am trying to figure out which types they are also! I love the big pop of lavender color they are providing right now! The pollinators go crazy over them too!
    Keep up the good (hard) work you are doing!

  10. I enjoy looking at your garden, and am just amazed at the wide variety of natives you are growing! I am trying to increase natives each year, but also hoping to avoid the invasive ones, lol! I have some of those unusual tall snaky liatris that you have, and am trying to figure out which types they are also! I love the big pop of lavender color they are providing right now! The pollinators go crazy over them too!
    Keep up the good (hard) work you are doing!

  11. Hi Sue!! You've been having a great time adding to your collection of plants - such a great variety!! I know what you Really Need, though... a bigger yard!!!! (Or another plot!) ;-) Great post.

  12. Sue, How wonderful! I have wildflower envy! have many I wish I could grow...Maybe someday a tree will come down (not fall). Happy gardening.

  13. What a lovely variety of natives you have, Sue! I have also had a problem with my baptisia this year, but it's been so hot I have done anything about it yet. I hope it's not too late--the nursing home garden where I volunteer had army worms devouring the baptisias. I hope mine survives!

    I was also tickled to see your tall liatris. I have several plants that are 5 or 6 feet tall this year, and I was trying to figure out what happened. They're just now starting to bloom. I was wondering if they mutated or are supposed to be this way?

    Hot, hot, hot here, too--funny, but if the temperature is "only" 90 these days, I'm relieved:)

  14. Going back to the beginning of your post--others have written about Joe Pyes, too. I think I really must add it to my garden. My Liatris are finished blooming--they didn't last as long this year. But they are so stately, and great as framing plants in cut flower arrangements. As others mentioned it's still hot here, too. But we'll have a lovely weekend coming up--with temps in the 80s. That will be so nice! So much beauty blooming in your garden now!

  15. We just got back from a walk in "our" park...they have been restoring the prairie there for many many of the plants in your yard are growing there too. Just beautiful in both locations. Come visit'd like it here!

  16. Wow - I love the view out your front door. You've got such a wonderful variety. Love that liatris!

  17. What a beautiful and so very interesting garden!


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