I love caryopteris, or Blue Mist shrub. It is incredibly easy to grow, takes no care, and brings out its jewel toned fuzzy blooms in early fall. The whole plant swarms with drunken bees the size of small mammals all day long.
|this whole plant was from a single stem cutting I took from another plant last year|
|the color is truly gem-like, a clear amethyst|
It is very easy to propagate. You just take a stem off and stick it in the ground, basically.
So I did that, and now I have Blue Mist shrubs in several spots around the garden.
|another stem cutting, and I got this entire plant in one season|
I also planted a gold leaved variety called 'Worcester's Gold'. The foliage is quite yellow all summer, but when the light amethyst blooms come out in September, the leaves are more light green than gold, thankfully. Even so, it's a combination that is a little bright.
|'Worcester's Gold' is bright --- great from a far, a little jarring up close|
Another fall charmer is chelone obliqua, or turtlehead. It is supposed to bloom much earlier in the summer, in July and August, but the deer strip the buds and the poor plant doesn't bloom.
|at long last, delayed blooms in fall|
Finally, in September, when the deer have moved on to other snacks (their dining schedules are a mystery to me), turtlehead gets to show off its delicate pink furled flowers.
Perhaps if they are closer to the house the deer will leave them alone in early summer and they will bloom earlier (yeah, right, the deer would come up the stairs and into my kitchen if the door was open).
Then there are all the frothy tall sedums and the pretty pink fall anemones, and dusty rose hydrangeas that open in September and look so soft.
|truly immortal, a re-blooming iris|
And here's a return visit from spring --- iris 'Immortality'.
What a nice surprise to see this pristine white iris rebloom in the fall garden. The buds are a strange powdery steel blue color, but the iris opens clear white. 'Immortality' will bloom well into October.
This month is bittersweet, knowing that summer has ended, school is back in session and winter is coming.
But I am charmed by the plants that shine in September to keep the end of the season at bay for just a while longer.