Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Taste of October (Starts Tomorrow Anyway!)

I sure love the weather this time of year! Cool mornings and mild days. As I type, it's clouding up with a chance of sprinkles this afternoon. The image above was taken today and you can see how important yellow becomes in this view; obelisks matching the mums. Color in the garden doesn't have to just be from plants!

Janice and Kay were very active removing plants today and Kristine came in to pick hot peppers and continue removing seasonal plants from the reception garden. Our annual collections, since being planted in May and June, have obviously increased in biomass and are quite a chore to remove, load and haul back to our compost pile. We'll spend most of October working on removing our annual beds and "putting them to rest". Larry accomplished some planting and all of our push mowing. I spread lawn fertilizer (in anticipation of the rain) and may try to spray some herbicide on our late season weeds. Rick and Tony are slowly replacing the dry gravel "sea" in the Japanese garden which necessitates a lot of trips with our carts. They're doing a great job and it's nice to see the sea take on a better look with fresh white gravel.

To the right is a nice, perennial ornamental grass called Korean feather reed grass (Calamagrostis brachytricha). This grass will get 3-4' tall and bloom like this (picture taken today) even in part shade. Some years the foliage will even turn a yellow-orange. We have lots of this grass around the gardens and really like it. It's easy to divide as well and and while hard to find, is hardy for our area. The golden knotweed (Persicaria amplexicaulis 'Golden Arrow') below is great in part shade with its golden, lance-shaped leaves and late pink flowers (picture taken today). We have this perennial throughout our shade garden where it receives ample water, dappled light and lots of compost. This plant will get 24-30" tall and is a mild spreader. We enjoy the combination of both leaf and flower on this hardy plant.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Soggy But Productive

This day has been overcast and we had some decent rain from 9 am until 11 am or so. The occasional light drizzle is keeping things damp and the garden can certainly use more of this rain to be certain. The picture above is of a nice white Japanese anemone (Anemone hybrida 'Whirlwind') with its clear white blooms and yellow center. This plant is about 36" tall and looks great with a dark backdrop where the white really "pops".

Marv, Terry, Janice and Marianne have been accomplishing a "pre-emptive" strike on some of our annual beds prior to cooler temperatures. We will pull annual beds as soon as they begin to fade and when cooler temperatures are on the horizon. Larry has been doing odds and ends and is also repairing some of our irrigation lines and heads. The Grumpies kept busy with plant removal then moved inside to help test/repair twinkle lights for our annual holiday lights display. Tony and Rick are finishing up collecting old gravel from our "dry sea" in the Japanese Garden. The Saturday crew picked up most of it but we're making sure that certain "focus areas" are addressed prior to regraveling (happening tomorrow if the weather holds!).

Nice shot of our 'Silver Dollar' eucalyptus (Eucalyptus cinerea) in one of our seasonal beds. Native to Southeast Australia, this is a small tree that would normally reach 25-60' tall. Here we have it started from seed and once planted, it will "spring" up to 3-5' feet during a hot summer. The foliage is aromatic and pinching/cutting back stems will create a bushier look. We love the bluish silver leaf coloration as do florists and flower arrangers. It's interesting to note that there are over 700 species of Eucalyptus distrubuted primarily throughout Australia and that region in general. The tallest flowering plant (Angiosperm) in the world is the Australian mountain ash (Eucalyptus regnans) with the current record holder at over 320 feet tall. Only the coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) and Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) of North America (both Gymnosperms) are taller! As a side note, in 1872, William Ferguson measured a downed Australian mountain ash in Australia and it was estimated to be over 500 feet tall!!! A great book about the worlds giant trees and those that climb them is The Wild Trees by Richard Preston. What a great read! Neat coral bells (Heuchera 'Citronelle') below that offers some nice color in a partly shaded garden. This plant benefits from organic soil, plenty of water and decent drainage.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Cool & Damp On The Way!

I think I caught a nice "peak shot" of one of my favorite ornamental grasses above. The annual feathertop grass (Pennisetum villosum) is one of those that we plant throughout our annual beds with the knowledge that they will start to contribute in mid-summer and really hit stride this time of year. The creamy inflorescences (flower/seed heads) really show up and add great texture. We plant about 300 each spring realizing that we'll have to wait three months for their showy contribution.

Saturday was a very productive work day. Janice and Tony worked with another eight or so volunteers clearing some of our annual beds in preparation for a cooler week. It was nice to have Kay there to help keep everyone on track and to run a cart back and forth. Jim H. and I worked with 20 individuals called "Weekenders". They all had orange, County Sheriff vests and are part of a program that allows them to do community service in lieu of fines or jail time. We removed gravel from the "dry sea" in the Japanese garden and it was a great effort by everyone. Larry helped keep the groups going and did some work over at the horticulture center. It is important to note that during our workday, there were 3,000+ high school kids and parents in the near vicinity for a regional cross-country meet. Needless to say, it was a chore trying to drive our carts due to all the obstacles. We did it though...One of our best workdays for sure! Check out the neat Heucherella 'Alabama Sunrise' below which is a cross beween coral bells (Heuchera) and foamy bells (Tiarella). This variety has golden foliage in spring that ages to the green that you see below. Looks like an exciting variety regardless and does well in part shade with moist, but well-drained soil. See the neat maiden grass (Miscanthus sinensis) variety called 'Cabaret' which has lots of color along the leaf blades.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Fruitful Friday

We had another productive Friday with perfect weather. Marv, Terry, Marianne and Janice were here today and just about everybody had to do some watering as it seems to be drying out a bit. Next week looks cooler with a nice chance of precipitation. Dr. Gredler, Kay, Rose, Hal and Doris all helped out as well. Rick and Tony starting repairing some of the boulder retaining walls that were damaged and affected by the floods. Heavy work but they're doing well. Tomorrow is a big work day with lots of plans. We hope to excavate out the old dry gravel sea in the Japanese garden (lots of work) and replace all of that gravel (45 cubic yards) with new, clean gravel. We've wanted to do this for awhile and will be happy once this is done. The existing "sea" was under water for three months and the siltation has prompted this project. Beautiful celosia (Celosia plumosa) below. This variety, 'China Town', has a great combination of bright red plumes and maroon foliage. What a dynamite plant and it looks great with the golden pineapple sage (Salvia elegans 'Golden Delicious') in the background.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Dynamite Thursday

Above is the pink Woods aster (Aster x dumosus 'Wood's Pink') along our woodland walk garden. This aster can tolerate quite a bit of shade, stays compact at 18" tall and is mildew resistant. There are also other color forms including white, blue and purple. We've planted large drifts of this wonderful perennial along a long woodland edge to great effect. Speaking of wonderful perennials, the shot below really shows how the blackberry lily (Belamcanda chinensis) received it's name. This perennial had orange, tropical looking blooms in mid-summer that have transformed in to these interesting seed clusters. These are frequently used in arrangements and are particulary showy (or more evident) when paired with plants with yellow or chartreuse foliage.
As always, we've had a productive day. The Grumpies hauled plants, swept sand in to the cracks of our newly cleaned brick paths and patios and otherwise did their normal assortment of gardening tasks. Dick H. fixed our John Deere Gator thank goodness and has saved us lots of expense as a result of his handiness. Larry, Jerry and Janice were here as staff and we had a great weeding/cleanup crew of Geesje, Marilyn, Bev and Glenna. They created numerous piles of debris. They left a large garden area looking very tidy and we hope these beds will continue to extend the season until that imminent frost finds us. We're continuing to water as there doesn't seem to be much rain in the forecast and are looking forward to a productive work day this Saturday. The perennial below was new to me a couple of years ago and I'm impressed with its long duration of bloom. The golden valerian or golden lace (Patrinia scabiosifolia)
has been blooming since the end of June and still looks great today (as seen below). The foliage is below 18" but the wispy flower clusters extend up to a total height of 3-4' tall. This is an eyecatcher from a distance and combines well with grasses and other full sun perennials.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Could Use the Rain

Today is overcast although I think there is only a 30% chance of rain. We're running our irrigation again although we hope Mother Nature will help soon! I took another nice shot of the Colchicum seen above. We have lots of questions from visitors about these as they appear everywhere (8,000 throughout the gardens). That clear pink color is quite noticeable as this bulb peeks out between and amongst plants. I wish we had the budget to plant more although the planting window (August) for this year has passed. See a previous posting for more info on Colchicum.

Below is the tropical elephant ear (Colocasia esculenta). For us, this plant has gone thru a long transformation from a "grapefruit-sized" bulb (actually a corm) ordered from Florida that was planted in a pot in April and nursed along to be this bold giant. This species is also the edible Taro that has been cultivated in tropical regions since 5,000 B.C. It is thought to have originated in Malaysia although is very widely distributed and naturalized now. Both the leaves and corms are edible after being cooked. Our interest of course is the bold effect in the gardens. We'll wait for a hard frost to knock down the foliage. Then we'll dig the bulb, cut the foliage, rinse all soil off, air dry it and store it at 55 degrees F until the following April where it goes thru the same cycle again. We lose some stored bulbs to rot and still purchase 50 new bulbs each year. There are many exciting species and varieties of Colocasia as well as it's close relative, Alocasia. The unsightly bottom picture shows some yews (Taxus) that we're removing today that died after being submerged for 16 weeks. These yews have been shaped and pruned 2-3 times each year for close to 20 years. Too bad they'll be gone as we'll have to start over with new plantings (perhaps more flood tolerant woody plants!!!).

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My Favorite Time of Year

The image above was taken by Santos McGill, a wonderful photographer. This shot is in the garden and Santos is talented (and very patient) at waiting for the hummingbirds to get comfortable with him around and getting that perfect shot. Lots of hummingbird activity this time of year! Incidentally, the plant is the 'Black & Blue' salvia (Salvia guaranitica 'Black & Blue') featured in a previous blog. I like this time of year, both for the weather and the small "respite" before our busy October. Janice, Larry and Jerry did their normal Tuesday routines and Rick and Tony accomplished a lot more re-graveling and pressure washing. Kay, Heidi, Geesje, Barb, Bill and Kristine all helped out in the gardens as well. Tuesdays usually have both less staff and volunteers but we sure keep busy!

Great grass below. This is the golden Hakone grass (Hakonechloa macra 'Aureola') that we've positioned throughout our partly shaded areas to offer both color and texture. It is slow growing and fairly expensive. However, it combines well with hostas and other bold-leaved plants that would be more prevalent in shady area. I don't feel that this grass can be over-used. The straight species (Hakonechloa macra) is green, although you can try 'Albo-striata' for white variegation, 'Aureola' as seen below is the standard but my favorite now is 'All Gold' (see at bottom, photo taken at Boerner Botanical Garden near Milwaukee) that literally glows. There is a new variety called 'Stripe it Rich' that has white variegation on yellow leaf blades that looks very promising. Another new variety is 'Beni-kaze' that is normally green but gets wonderful red tones in late summer thru fall. Regardless of the variety, Hakone grass is a must in the partly shaded garden.

Monday, September 22, 2008

A Bit Of Closure...

It was a productive Grumpy morning with most of the guys helping "disassemble" the plant sale. We sorted plants, took down tents, and otherwise called it "quits" for this event. We will still be selling mums, bulbs and bagged compost over the coming weeks as we still have both the supply of and demand for these products. Our carpenters, with some minor exceptions, have completed the new storage shed and will finish up the final touches in the next week or two. This structure should help alleviate some of our storage concerns at the visitors' center for the near future.
Note our fall hanging baskets to the right. We have spaces for 24 large hanging baskets throughout the gardens. In mid to late September, the summer baskets are rotated out and we hang these for wonderful effect well in to October. They look like freakish, yellow jellyfish! Yellow mums hold their color fairly well although we are perpetually checking these for watering. These baskets are started back in June and nursed along for us to utilize this time of year. The yellow really shows from a great distance (see these at the top of the picture, along the pergola, at the beginning of the blog!). Mums may seem ubiquitous at times but they are unmatched for color in the late season garden. The trailing plant in these baskets is the golden creeping Jenny (Lysimachia nummularia 'Aurea') that was planted back in June with three little mums sprigs to start these baskets out. I got a great shot of 'Blue Star' morning glory (Ipomoea sp.) today which is on the obelisks in our annual vinca (Catharanthus) collection. Note the darker blue "star" on the light blue petals. This is my favorite morning glory and was an All-America Selections back in 1949. How many generations of gardeners have enjoyed this variety over the past 59 years then later regretted the rampant reseeding of this annual that then engulfs the garden. Watch out for morning glory babies the year following the "enjoyment phase"!... Check out the close-up at the bottom. This is the foliage of the variegated sycamore maple (Acer pseudoplatanus 'Variegatus') that is in our color rooms garden. This maple is marginally hardy for us but has a nice protected location. We receive lots of questions about this plant and certainly have grown to appreciate the variable leaf patterns every year...

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Plant Sale Is Over

Tomorrow we inventory the remainder of the plant sale items, take down tents and otherwise, close out the fall plant sale for 2008. It is a monumental task to facilitate this every year but we had another good year despite some weather-related challenges and were glad to extend the sale thru this past Saturday. Above is a nice shot of nasturtium (Tropaeolum sp.) in our herb garden. Nasturtiums are a great ornamental and there are many species to try at home. All parts of this plant are edible and there are many aesthetic and functional uses for Nasturiums. Incidentally, the Janesville Area Herb Society does a wonderful job taking care of the herb garden and has done so since the inception of the gardens. What a great, knowledgeable and organized group! Below is a nice shot of the blue/orange theme around our entrance sculpture. Should be another good week coming up!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Summer's Hanging On!

Above is a nice shot of the annual blue anise sage (Salvia guaranitica 'Black & Blue') in bloom as part of our orange and blue theme. They seem to peak a couple of weeks before frost but do become a hummingbird favorite this time of year. Today started with a beautiful morning that warmed quickly to become quite hot this afternoon. I'm really not complaining as these days are numbered as we get closer to October. I stopped by the last day of the plant sale and saw a great turnout of volunteers to help facilitate the sale. I'm not sure how well the sale went in its entirety but I did see traffic start to pick up as I left. Larry, Janice, Jerry, Dr. Gredler and Greg were all out in the gardens today.

To the left are some of the giant papyrus (Cyperus papyrus 'King Tut') that we planted this spring. They have topped out at close to 7' and are frequently asked about. Papyrus is in the sedge (Cyperaceae) family and while just a seasonal in our climate, they can add wonderful texture in the bed or even water garden (where they would just as happy with submerged roots). We have four varieties of papyrus out in the gardens this year and will continue to use it in the imminent future.

Even though the gardens are past their "summer peak", there is still a lot of color out in the gardens. The image to the right was taken in front of the Parker Education Center. We are removing any annuals that look "cruddy" and are still trying to "stretch" our displays despite the cooler evening temperatures that are taking their toll on these tropicals. We're only a couple of weeks from a frost and a quick transformation of the gardens with fall colors, fall clean-up and bulb planting. Below is a nice close-up of the perennial donkeytail spurge (Euphorbia myrsinites) that we've used throughout the gardens but specifically this year as part of the orange/blue theme. In warmer climates, it's a spreader. I love the texture and durable nature of this plant. We've also used it with great success in containers.

Friday, September 19, 2008

A Rewarding Friday

Above is a nice bunch of Colchicum autumnale 'The Giant' blooming. See previous blog. Not much time to blog but we had a great day with lots accomplished. More later! See nice autumn clematis (Clematis terniflora) below on our pergola. Unfortunately, you're missing the delightful scent...

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A Nice Day Off

Today was my first day off in 17 days as a result of the demanding plant sale schedule. It was a perfect day in terms of weather. My younger daughter and I like to go on "adventures" and did so this morning as well. The picture above is of a labyrinth planted down at a wellness center in Beloit, WI. This was part of an "adventure" last week. Labyrinths have been around for thousands of years (some have been found to be over 4,000 years old) and are not truly a maze. There are no wrong turns; a labyrinth is "unicursal". Upon entering the labyrinth, your turns will eventually lead you in to the center and then a return trip to the entrance is easily accomplished as you reverse your course. This is a smaller labyrinth but wonderfully planted and maintained with a grass walkway. Path materials will vary as will the number of turns, some being quite elaborate. Some labyrinths can be found as paving patterns in hospitals or churches. Some feel that to walk the labyrinth imbues one with heightened awareness and helps with spiritual awareness. I can't attest to that but we both thought it was pretty cool.

Today we hiked thru the Kishwauketoe Nature Conservancy near Williams Bay, WI. This 230 acre preserve is the largest intact wetland remaining in the watershed of Geneva Lake and was really a treat to hike thru (see picture below). We had great temperatures, no mosquitos and didn't see another soul. What a nice escape. Apparently Kishwauketoe is a Native American word for "sparkling water". We saw lots of it and although we didn't cover the four miles of trails, we do intend on returning in the near future.

I'm sure the gang all did well today and had nice weather (perhaps the nicest left for the next 7 months!). Nice grass below near our terrace garden. This is dune grass (Panicum amarum 'Dewey Blue') from the Eastern United States. It has powdery blue foliage and when it "plumes out" this time of year, it is a real showstopper. Leave this up over winter and cut to the ground in March prior to fresh new growth emerging. Definitely a favorite of mine.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

We Keep Chugging Along...

A true sign of imminent Autumn can be seen above peaking thru some wax begonias. This is the bloom of the "Autumn" crocus (Colchicum autumnale 'The Giant'). It is important to note that this is not a true crocus and there is actually a "real" fall-blooming crocus (Crocus sativus) that blooms in October (we have a couple) and is the source of saffron. The true fall crocus is in the iris family (Iridaceae) while Colchicums are in the lily family (Liliaceae). They look a lot alike although you'll notice that Colchicums send up their foliage in spring then bloom later in the year with no leaves. Colchicum bulbs (very poisonous incidentally) are fist sized, planted in August 8" down, and will shortly send up clusters of flowers to 10" or so. Botanical difference for sure but similar beauty!
Janice, Jim, Bev and three industrious RECAP workers went thru the hot pepper collection and picked solidly for 2 hours. They collected peppers based on rough categories of hot, medium and cool. With waning daytime and nightime temps, the peppers have slowed their maturation so we're picking them with the intent of utilizing/offering them at our clearance plant sale this Saturday. I've been quite happy with this collection and have taken pictures of most, including the most exciting ornamentals. See 'Explosive Ember' below with bright purple and red fruits (hot I imagine, note sarcasm) held above darkening foliage. What a great collection although I doubt we'll ever replicate it as there are so many other things we'd like to try as well!
Lots of progress by everybody today. Dr. Gredler, Tony, Rick, Greg, Marv, Terry, Larry, Jerry, Kay, Don, Thelma, Terry T., Jim, Janice, Bev and RECAPPERS were all part of our productive Wednesday team. We accomplished significant planting, clean-up and path work today along with many other duties. I think all of today's workers will sleep well tonight. Nice shot of the 2008 Perennial Plant of the Year below. Geranium 'Rozanne' was selected by the Perennial Plant Association for many wonderful attributes, not the least of which is it's long bloom time and beautiful blue blossoms!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

What's Still Flowering Well?

Even though we're in mid-September, there's still lots of color to come along (aside from the changing fall colors we see with our trees). The shot to the left was taken today in our prairie with a nice combination of asters, Eupatorium and goldenrod. Our annual beds are looking a bit tired after some nights in the 40s. We're starting to remove any seasonals that aren't looking well in anticipation of total removal after the first frost. We'll need to clear space for our bulb planting in the coming weeks and will have some donations from our plant sale that we can utilize throughout the gardens. With warm soil temperatures, September and early October are still great times to plant.

Janice worked with Heidi and Barb and did a significant amount of clearing throughout our annual beds near the main parking lot. She's also coordinating the picking of hot peppers from our extensive collection. We don't want anything to go to waste and Janice has done a nice job maximizing the organization, maintenance and utilization of this specialty collection. Marianne was off today but came in to count plant sale money. She deserves some time off for sure. Jerry and Larry were involved with many tasks today and helped keep the flood guys moving along smoothly from project to project. I'm catching up with labels including those for the hostas we dug up yesterday. The seven-sons-flower (Heptacodium miconioides) is in bloom below with the late season monarchs getting some nectar. This is actually a large shrub / small tree that will get over 15' tall in time. Vase-shaped with ornamental bark, seven-sons flower blooms in mid-Sept. in to October where the blooms then convert to colorful, light red berries (drupes). This is a great plant and is also extremely insect and disease resistant.

I love the shrub below. This is called bushclover (Lespedeza thunbergii 'Gibraltar') and dies back to the ground every year. In the course of the growing season, it will get 5-8' tall with bluish-green leaves followed by the flowers you see below from right now, well in to October. The shrub arches over and needs some space but it is one of my favorite late blooming shrubs.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Hosta Trip

Nice shot of the sunken garden above. Chris and Bob do a nice job on this border and have done so for many years. Terry and I traveled to Beaver Dam (1.5 hrs. away) to visit a gentleman (Paul) that wanted to donate some of his private hosta collection before he moves. We were amazed by the maturity and variety of his collection and were given the freedom to dig whatever we liked. Paul is a member of the Wisconsin Hosta Society and falls in line with all the generous donors of plants from those groups. We came back with over 60 varieties of hostas, most of which we don't currently have in the gardens. These are large clumps that can further be divided. Needless to say, it was worth the trip and our thanks go out to Paul and his wife for their generosity in sharing their plants with Rotary Gardens and our visitors! One of the varieties ('Sun Power') can be seen below although the picture is from a different location.

Marv worked on moving rocks in an area to increase path accessibility (no small feat!) and continues to demonstrate great attention to fine details. The flood fellas kept busy replacing gravel paths and did a great job finishing a tough task. Janice and Jerry kept up with "mobile tidying" around the gardens and continue to clean up debris, remove spent annuals, prune shrubs and accomplish myriad tasks that many might normally overlook. Larry was again the "catch-all" and kept Grumpies and others moving along. Special thanks are in order for all of the staff and volunteers that helped prepare and run the fall plant sale. We had some rainy days but I think it was a successful sale overall. We'll have one more clearance day next Saturday and see what we can clear out! Cool Japanese anemone blooming right now as I type. Below is Anemone hybrida 'September Charm' (pretty sure) that blooms typically in early September. What a beautiful flower and we have many around the grounds.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Definitely Not Singing in the Rain!

I usually blog from home in the evenings but am currently at our plant sale, looking out at a steady downpour which has really minimized attendance at this fundraiser. My jeans and socks are still soaked after running our signs out to the road. We'll have to decide how we'll extend the sale to accomodate for the loss of vital revenue. What a bummer! On the flip side, I've been catching up on all my office work and there is the benefit of not having to supervise anyone today. Marianne is also keeping busy during the "slow times" between the sporadic customer. Oh the vagaries of the weather!!! The image above is part of our blue/orange combo this year. I love the 'Merlin Blue Morn' petunias and they go quite well with the creeping zinnia (Sanvitallia procumbens 'Mandarin Orange'). I feel our color schemes this year were successfully stunning but their time is limited with fall temperatures fast approaching.

One of the neat perennials in the garden that is starting to bloom is toad-lily. The variety below is a close-up of Tricyrtis hirta 'Miyazaki' which is native to Asia and was developed in Japan. This picture is an extreme close-up as the flowers are quite small. However, they are exquisite and "orchid-like". This late-blooming perennial does well in the woodland garden and prefers dappled light (not deep shade or full sun). We've tried various varieties and species of toad-lily but keep coming back to this one for late September/early October color. An early freeze will knock this plant down but the rewards are worth it.
Mums have always been a big part of our plant sale (see picture below) and we usually sell between 3,000 and 5,000 of these every September. They certainly offer great extended color in to the fall and many will bloom well thru October. Many of our customers ask if they're "hardy". That's a trick question to be honest. While the plants are hardy, planting these mums late in the season also requires other special attention. The root mass of these plants is very small in relation to the mass of stems and flowers. It's important that these mums are watered well and set roots prior to the soil freezing. We recommend mulching these mums over the first winter although many of our customers utilize them for seasonal color in a container or other location for that "window of color". Hopefully we'll sell the remainder of our mums this week!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Reaching Zombie Stage

The annual gloriosa daisy (Rudbeckia hirta 'Cappucino) looked a bit haggard today but still had some rich colors. The plant sale was steady but we weren't even close to matching customer numbers from 1 week ago. Marianne and I are starting to feel a bit "zombie-ish" with day eight finishing and a couple left. We hope tomorrow will have less precipitation and more customers.
The image to the right is of a neat goldenrod (Solidago sp.) called 'Wichita Mountains'. The booms consist of many tiny yellow blooms forming an upright column of color. I like this plant a lot but don't see it much in cultivation. Short blog again as it is getting late. The image below is of around 350 irises that we recently planted as part of that display for the 2010 American Iris Society national meeting (Madison, WI). It will be nice to see these in bloom.