There are plenty of plants in bloom this August at The Farm but many are timid and don’t shout out “Look at Me!” Hydrangea Limelight is doing splendidly, but certainly is not a brightly colored attention grabber!
And so even though I’ve commented on loving orange, not all brightly colored blooms grab your attention even if planted in large numbers. I’m thinking of Belamcanda, (blackberry lilies). These are wonderful plants that intrigue me. They are really fun to photograph, even as their flowers fade.
From a distance though, blackberry lilies don’t make a huge statement. The same goes for so many of my August blooms. The bright blooms of July are ending their show. Phlox and Daylilies , Delphiniums, Ligularia, Helenium and Clematis are all winding down.
I find that many of the flowers I grow are quite subtle. They are blues and lavenders. There are Gentians and Roscoea, and dainty Thalictrum.
Some of my plants are small and try to hide.
My favorite whites may be sophisticated, but they are hardly “screamers”!
One of my favorite plants at this time of year is Anemonopsis macrophylla. But again, this is a dainty subtle little thing. It has marvelous buds that last a long time before opening and fill me with anticipation. But showy it is not.
While there is certainly a need for small, dainty and subtle, there is also a need for VIVID! I’ll reassure myself that this doesn’t mean I can’t still love my pastel Japanese Anemonies. I need to change some of my garden habits. I’ve avoided bright Gladiolas and Dahlias. I’ve shied away from bright reds. I don’t even grow many annuals. Perhaps it is ME who is timid. I need to grow fire engine red cardinal flowers, large patches of sunflowers. I am trying to add more sensationally bright foliage. I’m even in zone denial in my effort.
For now, my most colourful areas seem to be places where foliage takes charge, spots where Heucheras and grasses make lovely combinations. Hardly garish!
I do have some bright standout plants that are no less wonderful for being “old”. The Rudbeckia makes a lovely splash against the dark Diablo Ninebark.
The ever increasing patches of various Echinaceas make a bright statement as well.
Red Hollyhocks could be added to the scene. Why no Monarda on display? There is the monkshood which will appear later in the month and which looks fabulous with Anemone Honorine Jobert. Way too many blue lobelias are beginning to appear. No, the end is not here yet! I need to get comfortable with some changes though. So much to consider for next year. Please offer your”bright” ideas!