The Shrub Bed

     I neglected this shrub bed for many years, only weedwacking it clear of weeds every once in a while. Last summer I bought a new riding lawn mower which did not mulch. Then I had to buy some sort of grass collector and opted for a lawn sweeper. Now armed with an abundant supply of grass clippings for mulch I tackled the shrub bed. Gardening work is  never done but the bed certainly looks better and has been much easier to care for.

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The Roses

Below, the colour of the fragrant yellow daylily blends well with the bright pink of my new shrub rose “Carefree Wonder”. I bought 3 new shrub roses and have waited until each one bloomed to help me decide where to put them.  I rinsed the rose bloom before putting it in water.

Peony

     Here’s the first big bloom of June. This is from a store-bought peony I recently planted. Pretty and fragrant too!  Peonies can grow quite large (3-4 ft. x 3-4 ft.) and will need the support of a peony ring if you wish to keep the huge flower heads upright. Some people like the sprawling effect.  They bloom from early to mid-summer. Peonies can live for 20 or more years in the same spot! They don’t like being kept wet but are otherwise easy to grow. Planting is the key. Plant at the same level it was grown in the pot. Too high or too deep and it won’t grow.

Euphorbia (cushion spurge)

This is one of my very favourite perennials – euphorbia (cushion spurge). It starts out with the bright yellow/green flowers seen below as it assumes its 2 ft. x 2ft. summer shape of a perfect half dome. Its perfect shape is an accent in your garden during the summer as it just stays green. Come later in the season each flower becomes speckled with yellow and orange buds. Soon the whole plant is afire in a lovely fall colour. It prefers a hot dry sunny spot. 

The Garden 2011–mid July

    I had the best of intentions for doing a lot of work in the big perennial bed this season.  So far, I’ve only been in to do a thorough weeding once and have been picking away at it ever since.  The main problem this year has been the fairly constant rainfall with a big hail storm a few nights ago.

 

It’s mostly lupines putting on the big show at the moment.

          

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Here there’s a glimpse of blue catmint and salvia, the brilliant red of Maltese Cross with pale yellow lupines.      

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I only planted these garden phlox a few weeks ago.  Looks like they’ll be happy in this spot.

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Shrub rose time is here.  These are the latest batch of blooms. They’re starting to look a little ragged.  It’s one of my favourite parts of summer – wandering around the property in the evenings collecting roses.

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The Sunny Perennial Bed

A longshot of the whole bed. The arch or birdbath should be able to give you an idea of size. The right side is all shrubs that will provide a screen from the road. The rest are all perennials. A constantly changing landscape.

 

A favourite little figurine. This part of the bed contains shasta daisies, yarrow, delphs, blanket flower and oriental lilies.

 

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