More Monardas, More Butterflies, and a Troll Bridge
‘Raspberry Wine’ Bee Balm (Monarda didyma) is the first of our Monardas to bloom.
I already did a post about its big luscious flowers. There are a couple of other Monardas in the garden, though.
First, there’s Wild Bergamot (M. fistulosa). Wild Bergamot has smaller, more demure flowers of lavender-blue. It blooms a bit later than ‘Raspberry Wine’. t’s more tolerant of drier soils than M. didyma varieties. It also tends to need more support, without which it may flop. Both plants grow 4-5 feet tall in our garden.
There’s a big patch of Wild Bergamot in the Driveway Border that combines nicely with the Cup Plant (Silphium perfoliatum) just starting to bloom in the Front Island Bed. I
Like other Monardas, Wild Bergamot is loved by pollinators. This Black Swallowtail was feeding while Judy took pictures the other day.
‘Purple Rooster’ is another Monarda in our garden. It’s another Bee Balm (M. didyma), but shorter at about 3′ tall.
The flowers are smaller and have a rich purple color that’s unusual for Monarda.
Here it’s an underplanting for Sweet Joe Pye Weed (Eutrochium purpureum) in the Front Island Bed.
And that same Black Swallowtail wanted to try ‘Purple Rooster’ in addition to the Wild Bergamot.
I love this view of our front door from the sidewalk. You can see all three types of Monarda that we grow.
I almost forgot to add a few words about powdery mildew. Both ‘Raspberry Wine’ and ‘Purple Rooster’ have been pretty mildew resistant in my garden, as has the Wild Bergamot. That doesn’t mean they never get infected – most years the powdery mildew shows up in late August or in September, but it is generally not too bad.
On a totally different front, you may remember my little garden tableau inspired by the story Three Billy Goats Gruff. The only thing I was missing was a bridge for our troll. But finding a bridge of the right size was a challenge until Laurin of Ravenscourt Gardens suggested a source.
And now our troll has his bridge. What do you think?