Friday, July 08, 2011

Bordering On A Summer

Borders are tricky, they can put out lots of color and then take a rest.  That's where annuals come in keeping things interesting and colorful until the next big display.

Blue Paradise is one of my favorite phlox introduced by Piet Oudolf.  It is not as sturdy as say David Phlox, but it is well worth staking for the continual summer and fall display if deadheaded.  Note it is blue in the morning.

And Magenta in the afternoon

The Knockouts are taking a break and the phlox and shasta daisies are filling in the display.

The border is anchored by annuals impatiens, snapdragons, coleus and allysum.

Impatiens Wild Thing
I started this from seed and only had eight out of twenty-five seeds germinate.  It is a wonderful impatiens, compact, strong and very floriforus, probably not in the nurseries because of its germination habit.

I also grew La Bella Snapdragon that I saw at the Chicago Flower and Garden show.  It was difficult to find the seeds but finally did at a Chicago based seed company called Germania.

Red Rum Daylily will be cut down when done blooming to make way for the impatiens Wild Thing and the Lime Coleus to take over.

The secret to effective borders is to have many plants peeking out to keep the interest up in down flowering times.

Jack Frost Brunnera peeks out all summer with its lovely foliage, a gerber daisy, roses, snapdragons and a shasta ready to bloom.

Peeking out is really the secret for an effective border, but this is where it becomes tricky to just have something leaning forward rather than being smothered by other plantings.

Blue Sunshine Geranium is my new favorite, much more delicate than Rozanne and allows everything to peek out!

Rozanne is a great geranium but it tends to climb over other plantings rather than weaving around and through.

Intensia Blueberry Hill belongs in the garden.  I had it in my containers and it looked messy and flopped, so I took it out and let it peek out behind other garden plantings, just lovely.

Keep the borders tight with plantings, verticals help keep the eyes moving along looking for patterns.  Obelisks, trellises, fence planters and arbors keep the garden interesting.  The irises on the bottom right keep the eye going upward even though it is only foliage.

Another thing that keeps a border interesting is the use of tall and short plantings in succession.

Some plants in a sunny border are banished to the back where shade takes over.  Here is Maggie Daley astilbe with Ghost Fern very happy even though everything in front of them is part of a sun loving group.