Today’s photos come from John Story and Diana K. Weiner and feature their garden in the Sullivan Catskills in New York. They write that their passion is propagating and planting interesting plants and hosting garden parties to celebrate the season. I wish we all could be invited to those garden parties! They sound like a lot of fun. But here’s a virtual garden party with some of their favorite images from their garden.
Unusual plants are a feature of this garden. This planting is presided over by a variegated red bud (Cercis canadensis ‘Alley Cat’, Zones 5–9) and is filled with unusual plants, such as the Japanese cobra lily (Arisaema ringens, Zones 6–9) on the right side of this picture. It can be a bit of work to track down unusual plants for the garden, but that can be part of the fun for plant nerds! It is very satisfying to locate a hard-to-find plant and then have it thrive in the garden.
This planting has a romantic, cottage-garden feel to it. A tall milk thistle (Silybum marianum, Zones 5–10) on the left has classic purple thistle flowers and spiny foliage dramatically marked with white patterns. Spikes of purple flowering sage (Salvia nemorosa ‘May Night’, Zones 5–9) bloom between poppies (Papaver somniferum, annual) and huge spikes of blue delphinium (Delphinium elatum, Zones 2–7).
An ‘Aphrodite’ sweet shrub (Calycanthus ‘Aphrodite’, Zones 5–9) stands at the back of this bed, fronted by the purple patterned leaves of Persian shield (Strobelanthes dyerianus, Zone 11 or as an annual), creating a planting that doesn’t depend on flowers for color.
Bring on the flowers! Huge flower heads on the panicle hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata ‘Limelight’, Zones 3–8) on the back left are fronted by masses of good-old impatiens (Impatiens walleriana, Zones 10–11 or as annual).
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Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!
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