Tuesday, April 10, 2012


As I walked through the garden, I finally realized how much layering for succession blooming I have done in the past few years.  Interplanting for continuous blooming cannot be haphazard, i.e., nothing invasive or plantings that cannot be cut down after blooming.  Lilies don't count because their stalks are so slender other plants can easily grow up around them.

I have lilies coming up throughout the garden with daylilies, roses, phlox and shasta daisies.

Lilies coming up in the front garden behind daffodil and daylily foliage.

Lots of layering here with roses, shasta daisies, phlox, daylilies, lilies, and snapdragons.

Short to tall all the way back, Heucherella Stoplight, rose, daylily Amelia, phlox Blue Paradise and David

Lilies are great to plant between early flowering daylilies like Happy Returns.

Lilies are great coming up through groundcovers placed behind flowering spring shrubs and bulbs.

Foxglove and phlox are just meant to be layered behind shorter plantings.

The rhodies are behind a stone wall right next to my front door.  They are attractive all year, but it is refreshing to look down and see hostas and ferns taking over the show.

Little Lime Hydrangea  is leafing out through the daffodil foliage, grows about three feet tall.

Allium and daffodils come up through Sweet Woodruff in the spring only to be replaced by phlox, iris, daylilies, roses and clematis.

I treat bulb foliage in different ways depending on where it is located and how much it interferes with other plantings.  I give most of the daffodil foliage a little haircut when all of the blooms are gone also cutting off the seed head in the process (this conserves energy for flower production next year).  I come around again a month out and cut a little more foliage off to let in light to other layered plantings.  My last cuts around the end of June just low enough so they do not interfere with other plants and in most cases this still leaves quite a bit of foliage.

I have never had a problem with the daffodils returning for a stunning display the following year, never have left my daffodils yellowing and sprawling all over the ground unless they are in a garden bed where I don't see them.

Blue Spike Muscari coming up in the same area where daylilies will enhance the summer garden.

Heuchera Southern Comfort coming up through the groundcover

Starlight Hydrangea

Even behind and next to Brunnera Silver Wings there are lilies and daylilies taking over.

Valerie Finnis Muscari and Geranium Magnificum are spring bloomers and can be cut down when done blooming for Heuchera Carmel and Heuchera Miracle to fill the area.

There is a row of very large bleeding hearts on the north side of my home, but as we know bleeding hearts die down during the summer with no redeeming qualities except yellow foliage and stems.  This is a Japanese Painted fern ready to take over.

Peach Flambe Heuchera is getting ready and I will remove a few stalks of the bleeding heart to give it more light.  This will not affect the next years blooming of the bleeding heart.

 Stoplight Heucherella coming up under the bleeding heart

Carrots planted under the daylilies - by the time the carrots need lots of sunlight the daylilies will be cut down.

The radishes look very lush don't they?

Same scene a day later, the rabbits have made a visit!


The Country Nest said...

Just beautiful....your gardens are weeks ahead of us here in New England. I truly enjoyed the tour of yours. I can tell you have put lots of work into them.

MrBrownThumb said...

I love the blue hues scattered in the pics. Your garden look lovely already and it is only April.

Larry said...

For being only 150 miles to the south, your lovely garden is so much farther along than ours. Larry

Jennifer said...

Hi Eileen,
You have done a superb job of layering your plantings. Too bad about the radishes! Those cute little furballs have certainly had their fill.
Like Larry, I am surprised by how far along your garden is in comparison to mine. The temperature has gone back to normal and their has been no rainfall to speak of. The garden seems to be waiting.

Darla said...

Quite a few lessons to learn here. Your gardens are beautiful, darn little fur balls!

Lona said...

You are so good at layering plants. I struggle but I am getting better after reading posts like yours. Your Heuchera's are looking so pretty.

Zoey said...

It looks like you have mastered the art of layering! I can't believe how much you have in bloom already. I am weeks behind.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Country Nest,

We are really too far ahead especially with our nightly freeze warnings.


Gatsbys Gardens said...


I really didn't notice the blue hues of the some of the leaves until you pointed it out. It is nice when the greens are all a little different.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Larry,

I am sure this weather is driving you crazy. I am anxious each time they warn of a freeze, so far I think I have done more damage with the sheets on top of the plants.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Jennifer,

It is not good that there is not so much up in your area. The freeze warnings have been making me very anxious. My neighbor asked me today if I had put away my snow blower!


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Thanks Darla,

I have never had my radishes eaten before.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Lona,

I got into layering because I had to in order to grow all of the plants I love.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Zoey,

I have so much up that it will be a real problem if we have a hard frost. I have just above given up covering things.


CanadianGardenJoy said...

Eileen girl your plants are way ahead of mine ! and looking gorgeous .. so neat and orderly it is wonderful!
I have an older bleeding heart that I can actually leave the foliage up for a long time .. it doesn't look bad or turn yellow .. just a fluke I guess.
I hope to get out in the garden today and PLAY ! LOL

Balisha said...

hi Eileen,
My gardens are so packed...they are layered by accident :) Mother Nature sure threw us a curve with this colder weather. Not much was damaged in my yard. Have a nice day.

Gatsbys Gardens said...


I have noticed some frost damage on the phlox, roses and my small hydrangeas, leaves shrivelled. The flower buds may be okay as they had not begun to open.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Balisha,

Actually packing the plants in saves many of them from frost damage. They kind of warm each other up!


Beth said...

Eileen, Everything looks so healthy and green! Love the vinca and the Southern comfort heuchera and the heucherllas. Very beautiful gardens, Eileen. Stunning header photo as well!

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Beth,

I just bought a couple of newer bleeding hearts today. I never know where I am going to fit things in but somehow I find a place.


Pat@Back Porch Musings said...

Eileen, thanks so much for coming by the Back Porch. BPM was lost in the Google shuffle, last month. The blog disappeared from Google Friends Connect, along with all the other non Blogger blogs. If you would like to keep up with me through email, I have a subscription option on my sidebar now. There are other follow options also.

I love seeing your gardens. You are a fabulous inspiration. We are beginning to get our gardens in shape. Postponed this weekend due to some pretty severe weather. Had some hail last night. Just now getting light enough to be able to see what it did to the plants!

Linda said...

Just lovely and more. love the flowers and seeing everything come to life. It brings so much joy.

allan becker said...

From the awesome photo that captions the post, to the clever background graphic design, and to the photo story that follows, no one blogs about perennials, bulbs, and garden design as well as you do.
Every visit here is a surprise that takes my breath away.
I'll bet you must be getting pretty weary of me sending these accolades, season after season....

joey said...

All looks so lush and lovely, Eileen! A great 'teaching' post ...

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Pat,

I am glad to be back to enjoy your blog. You always have interesting ideas whether it be your home or garden.


Gatsbys Gardens said...


I would never get weary of accolades especially from you my first cheerleader when I began blogging.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Joey,

I guess an old teacher never dies!



I guess you don't really mind the rabbits eating the radish foliage? Layering is a wonderful exercise in utilizing space. You're doing a fabulous job of it. I didn't see any weeds either!