Wednesday, May 20, 2009

In the yard - things that are looking pretty good

I turned on the sprinklers this morning, even though we have an overcast day. I'm not counting on rain. But it is a bit cooler. Here are a few things I'm liking in the yard.

The pink chintz thyme is just so lovely. It is intensely pink. Later on the blooms will fade and this will be a lovely spring green the rest of the summer. I have to shear off the dead blooms. If I didn't have those stepping stones in there, I could use a small mower. This thyme is 'walkable' meaning that you can step on it and no harm. One web site I visit for drought-tolerant plants says you can train this to be an entire lawn. Wouldn't that be lovely! In a week or so I'm going to divide some of this and expand my pathway. My vision here was a thyme pathway leading up through the water-wise section of my yard. (Click on images to see larger.)
On the west border of the front lawn I have this little wisteria that never gives up. I pruned it mercilessly earlier this spring and didn't expect blooms, but there you are. Yes, I should have mown the grass yesterday, but instead went to the symphony with my friends. You can see a bit of my front corner garden that is all perennials and coming along nicely. I will probably supplement with a few petunias to get some color in there now as most of this garden doesn't start blooming until later in June.
The creeping phlox is always so nice. I've had to add in more of the deep pink as it keeps getting crowded out by the white and lavender. Also in this garden are many perennials that will bloom throughout the summer and fall.
And here is the hard worker of the garden, the Jupiter's Beard. It dies down completely every year and starts fresh every spring. It's about three feet in height now and will grow no higher. Very bushy and green lasting well into the fall, often to the first snow. The red blooms are just starting and will be larger. Then when those blooms die out, you are left with small red buds like you see here, also lasting until the frost.

This plant reproduces like rabbits! I have to pull the many starts like weeds or it would take over everything. I have transplanted volunteers everywhere in the yard. At least the little plants are easy to remove, unlike the viney myrtle.


Jacqui Binford-Bell said...

Your yard is a lot bigger than I had envisioned. No wonder you said it was almost too much to care for. I really do like the thyme. Would like to find a plant like that tolerant to colder winters.

If you set the mower height high you can mow over stepping stones. I do that all the time. Taller grass is also more drought tolerant.

bekkieann said...


Are you familiar with High Country Gardens right there in your own neck of the woods? I've gotten many of my ideas for plants from them, though I must admit i haven't ordered from them.

I have both Woolly Thyme and Pink Chintz Thyme and both are incredibly tolerant of both hot and cold and dry conditions as well as poor soil. I don't like the dull color of the woolly thyme as much and wish I had nothing but pink chintz. Another low-growing plant that spreads like crazy is Ice Plant. It isn't as nice to walk on as thyme, but it covers ground quickly and is covered with colorful flowers in spring and again later in the summer. When flowers die off, the succulent leaves of the plants remain a pretty green.

HCG has many varieties of Agastache which I've found readily available locally but under the name Hyssop. This is a wonderful attractor of hummingbirds.

Jacqui Binford-Bell said...

Thanks much for the High Country Gardens lead. I am definitely going to check out that thyme.

Resources are short this year but good time to start planning out my future patio, deck and walk to the studio. I love doing plans.