Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Out to the Island of Long

I had not intended to choose echinacea when I went out shopping today, but there they were. Exciting colour: not your grandmother's echinacea. I tweaked the plans in my head a little and tomorrow they will be planted with a lot of other, very cool perennials, shrubs and small trees.

Below, click on the picture to see the worm better. The seed cones of the flowers are a good food source for birds, too, later in the season as they move south again ahead of cold weather. I like to make gardens for birds.

Below, Clematis integrifolia, quite lovely, as it is very delicate and not at all as in-your-face as some clematis can be. It tends to be sprawly rather than twining.

Clethra - known as spicebush. The air was filled with its scent. A native, it does well in dappled sunlight.

One of my carts. The stripes are an Iris ensata cultivar. It's been a week of arguments about stripes and spots and variegation. Some silver-spotted pulmonaria we planted last week must come out, which is sad, as they were lovely and very happy. Out, too, comes the Solomon's Seal and a lightly striped carex. I think they - spots/stripes etc can be wonderful in the right place. Not everyone agrees. I think these iris are gorgeous.

The bright chartreuse up front are a dwarf campanula and a veronica. The garden, on the Upper West Side, will be planted on a long, narrow terrace with sun one one side and shade on the other. I can't wait to get it planted. With various bureaucratic hold-ups it has been a year in the planning.

Our carts. Parked.

A good day after a rough start. We saw bunnies and butterflies and chipmunks. And birds and bees.


  1. Beautiful! Good to see the Chief Designer still gets to do what she loves....selecting plants at the nursery. I do everything wholesale so it's not practical, but lately when I'm feeling stuck I zip off to Kbosch retail and put together plant combos for inspiration. And yes, it reignites the spark in me every time.....

  2. I love the Clethra. How beautiful it is!!

  3. Marijks: yes, it was a resolution for 2008. I was glued to a desk too much, and being in the nursery amongst all the trees, shrubs and perennials is like - I imagine, taking a hit of a yummy drug: witness the drug Virgin. Alcohol doesn't count, :-) - where we we? Oh, plants. Much more inspirational in some ways...But hey, we buy wholesale this way, so can't you be there yourself? I recommend it. And send some pics of your gardens...?

    Mary - yes Clethra is lovely, and I'd sort of forgotten about it.

  4. While at the nurseries, I wonder if you heard any barking... ;-)

  5. I don't know what you are talking about :-)

    I did bark on a terrace today though, when it was revealed by a sheepish gardener that we had run out of filter fabric and would have to return tomorrow to finish.

  6. Fabulous photos, fabulous plants. I would have walked off with that cart when you had your back turned. I especially love the bright pink echinacea and that vivid blue clematis. Wonderful choices, I have a few of the plants you mention, including Veronica, as this was my late mother's first name. x


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