Mulch and weeds have consumed a good portion of my gardening energies of late. When you are sweating with armloads of garlic mustard (Alliaria petiolata), it’s easy to forget what gardening is all about, so today’s post is an attempt remind myself—and everyone who reads this post—why all the sweat and bug bites are worth it.
ABOVE: View from the kitchen door, April 26, 2012. Spiraea ‘Magic Carpet’, lavender, golden marjoram, and self-sown wild blue phlox (Phlox divaricata).
For me, putting plants together and seeing what they do is at the heart of my gardening obsession. Collecting as many interesting plants as I can get my hands on is high on my list, too. These pictures of the front garden at Hackberry Point are meant to show how those two passions—or obsessions—have come together thus far. I hope you enjoy them.
Above: Variegated lily-of-the-valley (Convallaria majalis ‘Striata’) with foamflower (Tiarella ‘Oakleaf’), crested iris, ferns, epimediums, and wild blue phlox (Phlox divaricata).
Above: Alas, I can’t find the label for this gorgeous purple-leaved heuchera. Name or no-name, it’s a keeper! It is growing with heuchera ‘Autumn Bride’, Caryopteris ‘Hint of Gold’, an Agastache ‘Golden Jubilee’ seedling, and enthusiastic-to-invasive self-sowing bronze fennel (Foeneculum vulgare ‘Purpureum’).
Above: Spiraea ‘Golden Elf’ adds a splash of gold to this combination and grows happily with tricolor sage (Salvia officinalis ‘La Crema’), Heuchera ‘Caramel’, a variegated sedum, and purple-leaved Euphorbia amygdaloides ‘Ruby Glow’. Self-sowers Lychnis coronaria ‘Angel’s Blush’ and wild blue phlox fill in.
Above: Chinese ginger (Hexastylus splendens, formerly Asarum splendens) with ajuga, European ginger (Hexastylus europaeum, formerly Asarum europaeum), rue anemone (Anemonella thalictroides), and dwarf mondo grass (Ophiopogon japonicusi).
Above: A favorite hosta that came down to Maryland from my garden in Pennsylvania, Hosta montana ‘Variegata’. It is underplanted with European ginger and foamflowers (Tiarella cordifolia ‘Susquehanna’)
Above: This is the bed that forms the oldest part of the garden. It’s under an elderly redbud and on the edge of a steep drop off that starts just beyond the tree’s trunk. Hellebores, double bloodroot, and Dutchman’s breeches (Dicentra cucullaria) are first to bloom here. By April 20, yellow trillium (Trillium luteum), originally from my mother’s garden, and Solomon’s seal (Polygonatum biflorum) are in bloom. Hellebores, large merrybells (Uvularia grandiflora), and stinking gladwyn (Iris foetidissima ‘Citrina’) foliage cover the ground around them.