John Markowski shared today’s photos:
I garden in zone 6B in Central New Jersey and battle tough conditions including poor draining clay soil and herds and herds of deer and rabbits. After years of fighting against my conditions, I finally caved and now focus on ornamental grasses and native perennials that are mostly deer resistant and tolerant of wet soil.
I tend to favor foliage over flowers and have a soft spot for any plant that provides multi-seasonal interest. I also love plants that are low maintenance (don’t we all) so I can still make softball games and not have to ignore my family in favor of plant upkeep.
A study in green: Amsonia hubrichtii (Arkansas blue star, Zone 5 – 8) in the front with delicate, willow-like foliage, and behind it a viburnum with contrasting leaf texture and green flower buds that will open to white flowers. Later in the season, the amsonia foliage will turn bright gold for fall. Click here for more ideas on great foliage combinations.
A back bed is full of shades of green, tall red leaved penstemon (Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ Zone 3 – 8 ) stands out boldly.
Flower buds on baptisia with clematis flowers glowing behind them.
The beautiful blue flowers of baptisia (Baptisia australis, Zone 3 – 9) are native, drought tolerant, and deer resistant. What’s not to love?
More selections of baptisia blooming in the garden. Learn more about growing these great plants here.
A view of the front bed is packed with plants and color, anchored in the front by blue catmint (Nepeta x faassenii Zone 4 – 10) and framed by a dark leaved selection of ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius, Zone 3 – 7 ). Both are tough, hearty plants that can thrive in most gardens.
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