Sunday, September 7, 2014

Late Starters: September in the Garden

            Large, round, sky blue Morning Glory. Some of these flowers get extra big and look right back at you. They glow like the full moon at night. The center of this one holds the white-yellow blaze of the September sun when the sun shines directly on it.
            Looking like a leaf or a dusky flower itself  (second photo), a pale brownish moth comes to rest on the shaded leaf of a Coral Bell. The Coral Bell grows under the shade of the tree. The wings of the moth are as pale as a fallen autumn leaf.
            Sonya's ring of white Impatiens (fourth down), which she planted during her visit last month. A necklace for the root ball of the weeping cherry tree.
            Joe-Pye Weed. You see them in the wild. Anne and I saw them growing recently in a wildflower patch along the shore of a Quincy peninsula called Nut Island. I remembered then why I had wanted them for our garden a few years back -- they bloom in late August and September. The flowers have a fuzzy, rough-edged look to them, almost as they're made of rougher stuff than finer, more delicate flowers -- rose petals, or Morning Glory. Named for a man who used them to control typhoid fever, I'm told they attract butterflies with their sweet nectar and that they spread and form a large clump. I'm ready for that.
            Dark pink-red Impatiens (third pic down), the blossoms shadowed and bleached by overexposure to the sun. I'm using annuals to bring some color and contrast to quiet, late-season corners.
            The dark pink anemone (sixth down). This darker color is probably my favorite color of all the perennials blossoming now. The plant drinks in the shade of the declining sun and distills it to a rich color. The sun was too bright in this photo; I'll try again later for a better image.
            Soft pink Anemones (seventh down); this variety grows tall and blooms prolifically in a semi-shade location. I count them on them coming through this time every year.
            Blue Plumbago (seventh photo) bloom with phlox-like flowers in August in a semi-shaded spot. After years of nurturing them, picking out all the competing weeds that grow faster and take up the space, the air, the water, the light reserved for them, the Plumbago rewarded me this year with a fair showing of blossoms. The plant comes in different shades of blue and different sizes, including shrubs. Some Plumbago have flowers of a shade called Gentian blue -- a purplish blue. I love the phrase 'Gentian blue flowers.'
            Pink Chablis Sedum, blooming a little later this year than in other recent years. Named for delicate vintage, it's the signal for a seasonal toast. Drink up.