Today we’re off to Washington State, where we’re visiting with Melina Mantey and looking back on the year past in the garden.
I don’t know about you all, but after 2020 I am more grateful for my garden than ever before. Being able to follow the growing seasons and the garden chores that come with each new month kept time marching on last year and gave my brain a bit of a break from everything going on. I landscaped every square inch of my garden, even areas I promised my husband I would leave alone, because I wanted to add in even more color and experiment with new plants. I’ve been working on my garden in Zone 8a since 2013, but the biggest changes have happened in 2019 and 2020. As with many people, my garden serves as a self-prescribed medicine for my mental health. And during the most challenging of times is when my garden undergoes the biggest changes and gives way to the most beautiful and uplifting landscapes.
While it can be hard to feel grateful for times that can cause us so much pain, I look around my space and feel gratitude for what I’ve been able to achieve, especially in those moments. And even though some of us are just coming out of the rain, snow, and mud season, I’m continuing to rub my dirt-stained hands together in plant-crazed glee, looking forward to what this year’s garden will bring. Taking into consideration all of the seedlings I have growing in my greenhouse, there will be some beautiful things going on in my landscape (fingers crossed!). Until it warms up, though, let me just go through those seed magazines one more time …
‘Kiwi Blue’ honeywort(Cerinthe major ‘Kiwi Blue’, annual)
This backyard landscape includes rudbeckia (Rudbeckia hirta, Zones 3–7), sedum (Hylotelephium ‘Herbstfreude’, Zones 3–9), hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla, Zones 5–9), coreopsis (Coreopsis verticillata, Zones 3–9), Verbena bonariensis (Zones 7–10 or as an annual), Mexican feather grass (Nassella tenuissima, Zones 7–10), blue fescue grass (Festuca glauca, Zones 4–8).
Trailing nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus, annual) and bee
Hellebore (Helleborus hybrid, Zones 4–9), bellflowers (Campanula sp.), Spanish lavender (Lavandula stoechas, Zones 7–10), pansies (Viola × wittrockiana, cool season annual), little heath pieris (Pieris japonica ‘Little Heath’, Zone 6–8).
African daisies (Osteospermum, annual)
Lobelia (Lobelia erinus, annual), nasturtiums, Martha Washington geranium (Pelargonium hybrid, annual), verbena (annual), ‘Mezoo Trailing Red’ Livingstone daisy (Dorotheanthus bellidiformis ‘Mezoo Trailing Red’, Zones 10–11 or as an annual).
Phlox (Phlox paniculata, Zones 4–8)
Wendy’s Wish salvia (Salvia ‘Wendy’s Wish’, Zones 9–10 or as an annual), hostas, hydrangeas, ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius, Zones 3–7), smokebush (Cotinus coggygria, Zones 4–8), euonymus (Euonymus japonicus, Zones 5–9), black mondo grass (Ophiopogon japonicus ‘Nigrescens’, Zones 5–9), and sedum.
Ornamental cabbage with pansies, photographed in the fall
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