Tag Archives: lady in red hydrangea

Enjoying fall while it is still here

Ignore what I wrote on Friday. There were no bulbs planted this weekend and I blame it on the following:

  • 50% weather – we had a ton of rain late Friday into Saturday
  • 25% familial obligations – soccer game, kids Oktoberfest events
  • 15% smarts – maybe a bit too early for bulb planting here
  • 10% wanting to soak in the autumn-ness – time spent smelling the roses grasses

In regards to that last one, I am typically not one to “enjoy the moment” when it comes to my garden. I am either looking towards the future when yet again moving or adding a new plant or hating on my current day plants that are underachieving.

But this weekend I reminded myself that fall is possibly the greatest time of year in the garden, yet it is oh so fleeting. A famous man once said “Better enjoy the crap out of it while is here.”

With that in mind, more autumn photos for your viewing pleasure.

itea and clethra

Itea ‘Henry’s Garnet and Clethra ‘Ruby Spice’



Physocarpus ‘Diablo’



Physocarpus ‘Diablo’



Hydrangea ‘Lady in Red’



Hydrangea ‘Endless Summer’



Siberian Iris



Viburnum bracteatum ‘Emerald Lustre’



Amsonia tabernaemontana



Amsonia ‘Blue Ice’



Amsonia ‘Blue Ice’




Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Lady in Red’

“Good things come to those who wait”. 
Really? Does that apply with plants also? Cause I ain’t feeling that dawg. I’ve waited and waited and for me at least, the good never comes. In fact, it usually gets worse. 
That is, until my Hydrangea ‘Lady in Red’ took off this spring, and I never saw it coming:

I planted this lacecap hydrangea back in 2006 as I was seduced by the promise of stunning fall color. She was given a prominent location along the path to my front door and I was pumped. 
Well, for three years, I waited for something – reddish/purple fall color, blooms, the deep red veining  – and I got a big bag of nothing. It looked like one of my ‘Endless Summer’ hydrangeas. Nothing terrible, just “OK”. 
In 2009, I relocated LIR to a minor league location to let it fade into the sunset. If the deer found it, so be it. Over the next two years I forgot about it and moved on. 
Fast forward to 2011. LIR decides to put in an effort and damn if she didn’t look good y’all. The foliage was clean as can be with a nice reddish hue and with red veining on the leaves/stems as originally promised:                
She also bloomed her butt off:

So I should leave it be and let her enjoy the new location, right? Wrong. I moved her immediately back to my front bed, where I’m sure she will disappoint again. I just can’t help myself. We’ll see … I’m hoping this will work out, even if she struggles a bit at first in her new home.

It’s been about two months now since the big move and the foliage still looks great. Here she is in late August:

And this week as the cold weather approaches:

At this point, LIR is about 4 x 4 and is located in a spot that gets afternoon shade – hopefully the perfect location. This time I’ll be more patient (you believe that?) and hopefully we will continue down the same positive path.

Have a great weekend.


A little bit of everything out in the garden

Things have been quiet on the garden front over the past week or so. It almost feels like the “calm before the blooming storm” as many of the perennials (coneflowers, daylillies, russian sage, phlox) are about to put on their show but they’re not quite there yet.

Still, the garden is always developing and there are new surprises even if it they aren’t obvious to the naked eye. This includes all of the new visitors to and fro; some wanted and others … not so much. Here’s what’s been going down in my garden ‘hood of late:

One shrub I have virtually ignored since planting it about three years ago is Hydrangea ‘Lady in Red’. I’ve never witnessed the supposed red fall foliage and haven’t had more than 2 blooms total to date. In fact, it has been difficult to tell the difference between it and ‘Endless Summer’. Well, this year it has shown some serious promise with multiple blooms and a more interesting foliage color:

Every time I am outside with the camera, I snap off at least one photo of my Hypericum ‘Albury Purple’. I can’t get enough of the foliage color along with the small yellow flowers. It is now loaded with berries so it stands out like no other shrub in my front bed:

Speaking of berries, my Viburnum ‘Shoshoni’ is also loaded with berries and the birds swarm to them like mad. I’d love to say that I successfully planted another Viburnum cultivar nearby in order to get these berries, but truth is, I have no idea why they have formed now after having nothing the first few years:

A bird photographer I am not. But I don’t let that stop me. I stalk them whenever I can and then try to figure out what I am actually taking photos of. My wife bought me a new book on New Jersey birds so watch out, a new obsession is in it’s infant stage:

I f’n hate bunnies: 
But really dig bees, especially when they are practicing their gymnastic moves:
I tend to lean towards the OCD side when it comes to my garden. I would love to say I like things a bit wild but that would be a lie. Reseeding has rarely appealed to me as it brings up nightmares of pulling tiny seedlings out all spring and summer. I am happy to report, however, that my purple coneflowers have re-seeded like mad this year and they have filled in beautifully – “controlled chaos” works for me:  
I received this Coreopsis ‘Star Cluster’ in the mail earlier this spring from Skagit Gardens and the first blooms have emerged. What do you think? I’m digging it big time: 
Thanks for reading!
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