Garden Photo of the Day

A Lovely Last Call

Agapanthus Graskop – the last flower of the year

It's a lovely 'last call' for Jeff Carlton's garden. It's not goodbye, it's see you again soon!

"I took these shots on a gloriously beautiful first day of fall. I think the fall colors always seem more vibrant or maybe it's just me enjoying them with the cooler, less humid autumn air and knowing that soon they will all be dormant until April."

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Agastache Arizona Sunrise

Butterflies are even a little ragged in September

Coleus Kiwi Fern

Euphorbia Blackbird

Euphorbia trigona Caryopteris Touch of Gold

Heather with Gentian in back

Meyers Lemon

Montauk Daisy

Phlox Bright Eyes and Montauk Daisy



This daylily is STILL flowering!

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  1. bsavage 09/29/2015

    Very beautiful, Jeff! I love your abundance of blue flowers! This is such a bittersweet time of year, but I love the fall garden.

  2. User avater
    HelloFromMD 09/29/2015

    Beautiful Jeff. I envy you your Gentian. Mine has bit the dust this year. I ordered another one this year but its neighbors out competed them. Oh well, will try again. You'll have to share with us, how to grow saracenia! They're spectacular. I also have a dark euphorbia given to me by a friend so don't know the cultivar. Hope it's not Blackbird. Yours is so beautiful! Mine is a washed out black so I'll be looking for Blackbird next year. Everything looks great. Is that pink muhly grass in the back? How do you like it? good grower?

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      Blackbird has been a real showstopper all season I hope it returns next year. it's sort of hit and miss for me with hardy euphorbia. that is pink muhly grass and I love it even when it's not in flower. Sarracenia are easy easy easy. mine are growing in an old sunken bathtub to create a small "bog" . I do nothing to them other than removing old spent pitchers when they break or turn brown

  3. greengenes 09/29/2015

    Great to start my day with these teasers! They are all so beautiful! It is a sad time to see summers end but that's when you go and buy flowering kale and pumpkins! Happy fall!

  4. User avater
    meander_michaele 09/29/2015

    'morning, Jeff, all wonderful "portrait" shots of beauties worthy of their closeups. I am in lust for the alluring deep blue of that agapanthus 'Graskop'...of course, you have it positioned just perfectly so that it pops off the charts in front of the orangey/red other flowering about a mini tutorial in color wheel effectiveness! You know that I am rooting for that dark mound of gorgeousness, the euphorbia 'Blackbird', to make it through the winter and live on. Has it already survived a winter or two for you? And, how about that heather...will it be in bloom for quite a while through fall and maybe even into winter?

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      the heather will flower until probably Thanksgiving. this is the first year for Blackbird and we will see what happens next spring. Graskop is great. the flowerstalks of unopened buds are almost black opening to that dark blue, with a good winter mulch it survives well and flowers July through September here

  5. hortiphila 09/29/2015

    Jeff, I hope you know the cultivar name of that fabulous daylily??? as I am spellbound.....

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      no idea as to the variety and I don't even remember where I got it so many years ago. it flowers heavily in July then keeps on through September but not as heavily

  6. user-4691082 09/29/2015

    Oh Jeff, how I love to see your photos. I have a different agapanthus cultivar. It only flowers in July. Do you deadhead yours to keep it blooming this long? Now I see I need to procure a bathtub! I would plant black bamboo in mine. I really don't want gardening season to be over?

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      ihave another variety of Agapanthus,,,,,,,,Stormy Skies which is much taller but only flowers in June usually, Graskop just keeps on . I have had black bamboo but it always always escaped it's confines I finally took it out

  7. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 09/29/2015

    Stunning as usual, Jeff. Of course I have to agree that E. Blackbird is a knockout. I've never actually seen a photo of a specimen look so fine. It's going on the list. Is it next to lavender? Your gentian looks great. Is it G. scabra? I just bought my first, fall-blooming gentian this past weekend. I have several spring bloomers that I adore.
    Nice to know that 'Graskop' grows outside for you. If mine ever gets large enough to divide I might stick a division outside in a warm microclimate to see how she fares!
    Thanks for keeping up with the autumn inspiration!
    Poor butterfly!

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      it is next to a lavender and I have really enjoyed the blackbirds this summer. don't know about the Gentian, I got them as a "bundle"

  8. PeonyFan 09/29/2015

    Fabulous photos! Thank you.

  9. User avater
    gringopeligroso 09/29/2015

    ¿¿¿STILL flowering??? What a workhorse!!! AND, STILL presenting it's best side for the camera!!!!!
    Just curious: I also love the Mexican/California Agastaches and plant them most years.
    But, altho listed as hardy for our Zone, And, altho they love our hot, dry summers, I've yet to have any of them live through our winters. I suspect it's because of the "ample" moisture from rains, ice and snows. You're farther East of us and receive even more precipitation during the dark side of the year. Do your's return from the roots? If'n so, I'ld pay to know your secret!!
    The Herbal Hyssop (Hyssopus officianalis, a close relative) DOES return, altho it's a short lived perennial for us. It also reseeds generously, but not invasively. Any insights would be greatly appreciated!!

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      the Agastache does over winter here IF it well drained area. the Salvia Wild Thang in that same bed has been unstoppable this year

      1. User avater
        gringopeligroso 09/29/2015

        Thank you, Sir!! I have a new bed of gravel, sand and rock which I put together to over summer my cacti and succulents. As an experiment, I tossed some California Poppy seeds among the rocks and gravel and to my delight, I had very happy poppies until the serious heat of late July!
        (They are a challenge here even as a spring wildflower.) They've even re-seeded but not sure the seedlings i noticed yesterday will live through the winter. While a bit late for this year, (altho I seem to remember seeing the local box store had just received a few 1 gallons last week,) I will try them again in this VERY sharply draining bed which the poppies seem to revel in! Appreciate the advice and new direction in which to head!

        1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

          is that Agave bovicornuta i see on the left? i also see Kumara plicatillis,,,,,,,,where are you?

          1. User avater
            gringopeligroso 09/29/2015

            I'm not sure of the Agave as I've been tryin' to key it out. Perhaps you're right and I'll be checking out your lead later this evening. The Agave was a gift...with no tag. Kumara is a totally new name to me....have those darn taxonomists been at it again while I was sleeping???????? Party Animals..(it's always the quiet ones...) I know and purchased it as Aloe plicatilis from either eBay or Etsy.
            As you've no doubt observed these guys are in containers, as are many of yours, and not EVEN hardy here. We're in far Eastern Oklahoma, on the edge of the Ozarks, Zone 6. Arkansas is about 20 minutes away. The Southern Great Plains start about 20 minutes travel time in the other direction!

          2. user-1020932 09/29/2015

            let me know if that truly is A. bovicornuta, i have been searching forever for one locally and yes,,, Aloe plicatillis is now Kumara plicatillis. your A. quadricolor has lottsa pups! i have moved all the cacti and succulents inside that i am going to keep. i have given A LOT away, more going away tomorrow and the rest will sadly be composted. . friend me on Facebook if you use that,,, i am Jeff GoodEarth there

          3. user-1020932 09/29/2015

            P.S. i'm glad you gave me your general location as i might sneak in under cover of darkness and that bovicornuta could very well disappear :)

          4. user-1020932 09/29/2015

            here is an Agave americana that i'm gonna miss. it has outgrown my capabilities for over wintering and i can't seem to find a home for it. not sure why it posted sideways

          5. User avater
            gringopeligroso 09/30/2015

            Either it's late and I need to hit the sack...which is pert-near true..or the pix didn't post at all. My loss.
            My brother in law gave me a few of the americanas several years ago. He lives in SE New Mexico. Found out they weren't hardy in (then) Zone 7. (SE Oklahoma) If'n I see him again this Holiday coming, I'm going to see if'n he has any left he can throw into their van. Too bad we're not neighbours. I'ld be happy to overwinter it for ya.

          6. User avater
            gringopeligroso 09/30/2015

            Well, I googled it, and apparently that's what I've got!! THANX for the taxonomic tip!!! Bummer tho that it very rarely (if ever) sets pups...sigh... But, makes me appreciate the gift even more!!
            And, as far as disappearin'.....mabey we could work out a "horse trade" instead ??!! We'll keep the lite on fer ya!!

  10. GrannyMay 09/29/2015

    Love the fall blues! Also the oranges, pinks, yellows and greens! Thanks Jeff!

  11. sheila_schultz 09/29/2015

    Gorgeous shots Jeff... the colors are so intense and vibrant, love 'em! Count me in as having Blackbird envy. That's one gorgeous euphorbia! Hope it overwinters.

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      i HOPE that blackbird survives i don't have a good track record with hardy euphorbia though

  12. GrannyCC 09/29/2015

    Wonderful and inspiring Jeff. Amazing how plants keep going despite the weather cooling down.

  13. schatzi 09/29/2015

    It's always a pleasure to see your garden, Jeff. Gorgeous photos of beautiful plants. Love the blues, especially the Gentian. I like Caryopteris but it does not survive our wet winters.
    Same for Agastache, which I love in all its colors. The yellow is lovely. The Agapanthus is a gorgeous blue. Do you bring your lemon in for the winter or does it survive outside?

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      the lemon comes inside for winter. caryopteris does well here IF it's well drained and the Agastache i have planted on a southeastern facing slope,,,,,,gentian is sort of hit or miss for me

      1. schatzi 09/30/2015

        Thanks for the reply, Jeff. Comment: with a job like yours and a garden like yours, one thing you are NOT is lazy! :)

  14. thevioletfern 09/29/2015

    Impressive! I love all the textures and colors you've designed into your garden even without flowers. Absolutely in deep love with that Sarracenia! And that blackbird euphorbia made me skip a beat. Ready for fall if it's this beautiful.

  15. User avater
    LindaonWhidbey 09/29/2015

    Thanks for the fall walk through your garden, Jeff. This really can be such a beautiful time of year with some of the summer show stoppers taking a backseat so that the quiet ones , like Begonias can show off a little. I especially like your A.Graskop and will look for that variety to see if we can enjoy a longer bloom time. Also, have to agree with others here that your Blackbird is a beauty. I'm curious as to whst it looks like in the spring. Does it flower in green before it turns black?

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      no idea about blackbird flowering. i planted them this year,,,,,,,,they were leftovers from a jobsite,,,,i get A LOT of leftovers in my yard

  16. anitaberlanga 09/29/2015

    where is this, zonewise? It's a lovely garden!

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015


  17. CJgardens 09/29/2015

    Jeff, thanks for sharing your gardens again. I see a lot of plants that have not been in other submissions. The euphorbia Blackbird is outstanding so I did some research and it's not my zone by several zones. But also all the pictures of examples were not as gorgeous as yours. You have the magic touch. I'm impressed with the beautiful phlox in late Sept.; is this a rebloom after dead heading? Some of mine will rebloom but not as fully as yours. I had a couple daylily blossoms (variety Final Touch) hanging in there a couple weeks ago but not as nice as yours.
    Wisconsin has had interesting weather this summer but we didn't have floods,droughts, hail, or tornados so no complaining. We had temperatures in the upper 80's last week and tonight we have our first frost warning.
    Another interesting fact about my gardens this summer - I found lily beetles on my asiatic lilies this year. It turns out they're not just on the east coast; they are now in Marathon County, Wisconsin. So far my infestation is not too severe and I squashed lots of larvae. I'm still going to plant 3 new varieties this fall and cross my fingers.
    Another sign of fall in my yard, is the Goldfinches have started to lose their bright yellow coloring. It was fun to watch them, other finches, and sparrows landing on all the seed heads and having a snack.
    Beautiful plants as always, Jeff.

    1. user-1020932 09/29/2015

      that is a re bloom on the Phlox, i had no idea they would flower again so heavily and for so long. they are lasting MUCH longer now that the weather has cooled off. the Montauk daisies planted with them although flowery are somewhat floppy. i don't know if i can cut them back early on as one would a mum or not but i'm going to do that next year. i'm not a fan of all the caging/staging to get things to remain upright,,,,,,,,,,i guess that means i am lazy!

  18. Yeddi 09/29/2015

    So many flowers blooming! Love the agapanthus especially.

  19. Cenepk10 09/29/2015

    That Daylily taunts me ! Love it !!!! I adore daylillies. Also - the composition with the caryopteris is brilliant. Omygoodness !!!! So stunning. I put artemesia & black elephant ears, lambs ears with my caryopteris touch of gold the elephant ears ( forget the real name ) died. Along with the lambs ears. Not a sign of life of the lambs ears- saw the teensiest little black elephant ear coming up. ( let us pray )

  20. janeeliz 09/29/2015

    Lovely, Jeff. That Euphorbia 'Blackbird'.is drop dead gorgeous! As is the Sarracenia and your blue gentian. Makes me wish for a little warmer zone.

  21. galealdred 09/30/2015

    Wow! Euphorbia blackbird. Outstanding. wonderful garden. The Fall always brings out those wonderful colors.

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