Tag: Aromatic Aster

Companion Plants for Asters

Aster means “star”, and certainly Asters are stars of the autumn garden. But stars need supporting actors, or the show can be pretty boring. For example, those one person shows where the star spends two hours impersonating, say, Teddy Roosevelt. Be honest, would you pay good money to see that? I didn’t think so. Which …

The Garden in Mid-September

Happy Bloom Day! On the 15th of every month Carol from May Dreams Gardens hosts Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day, enabling gardeners to share and compare what’s in flower in their little patch of earth. In our garden the most bountiful blooms at the moment are provided by Brown-Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia triloba). This Rudbeckia makes me …

Name My New Border!

All my beds and borders have names, though most are rather pedestrian. There’s the Sidewalk Border, the Driveway Border, the Patio Border, etc. The most evocative name I’ve come up with is the Left Bank Border, for the area north of the ‘Donald Wyman’ crabapple on the far side of the driveway. Now I have …

More Garden Space for Me!

So I have some exciting news! You may remember last October I wrote about how the city forestry crew had taken down a dying maple on the parkway west of the driveway. It turns out the city will NOT be replacing that tree (something about too close to the driveway). This creates a new space …

A Little Slice of Fall

Autumn seems to be taking over in a hurry. Suddenly I find I need to wear a jacket when I go outside. The Crooked Stem Aster (Symphyotrichum prenanthoides) is covered with tiny sky blue flowers. Then there is Big Leaf Aster (Symphyotrichum macrophyllus). I have finally admitted to myself that Big Leaf Aster (or as …

The Five Best Native Blue Flowers

CLEOPATRA:          Is it true that when Caesar caught you on that island, you were painted all over blue? BRITANNUS:         Blue is the color worn by all Britons of good standing. In war, we stain our bodies blue; so that though our enemies may strip us of our …

Blooms of Late September

When we returned from vacation a week ago the garden was looking a bit neglected. The grass was overgrown, perennials were flopping and needed rectification. This past weekend I started getting things back into proper order, but also took stock of our autumn blooms. Of course, autumn is about asters, and I have many species …

Summer Finale: August 2013 GBBD

We are at the mid-point of August. Mid-summer flowers are fading, late summer bloomers are peaking, and the very first flowers of autumn begin to open, like scouts checking out a new territory. I am very impressed with Yellow Coneflower (Ratibida pinnata). The flowers are very long-lasting, and the bright clear yellow wears well through …

West-Of-The-Driveway Bed

About two years ago I put in one of my newer beds. It’s situated between the crabapple tree on the north and the sidewalk on the south. A thin strip of lawn separates the bed from the driveway to the east, and on the west is the neighbors’ lawn. Though it gets a bit of …

2012, the Year of Unnerving Weather

Extreme weather dominates my thoughts about gardening for this past year. It started with extreme winter mildness. This may sound like a contradiction in terms, but it was unnerving for those of us accustomed to harsh Chicago winters. January was about 8 degrees warmer than normal on average. Snow melted, the snowdrops (Galanthus) came up …