August 13, 2009

Late summer is the time when perennials finally become full

My perennial borders are finally coming into their own.  Late summer is prime time around here. 

No matter how hard I try to get some early-bloomers in there, the borders never really shine until mid-July.  Peonies and iris seem to fade so quickly in June, but my summer bloomers seem to go on and on and on. 

Black-eyed Susans, coneflowers, salvias, shasta daisies, butterfly bushes, yarrow, penstemon, and spurge mixed with annuals like larkspur, gomphrena, calendula, snow on the mountain, zinnias and cosmos. 

Then there are the ornamental grasses adding height and texture here and there.  I think it’s hard to go wrong growing flowers. 

I started loving flower gardening first, vegetable gardening second.  When I got my first job at 16 it was in a flower shop. 

I made a mistake taking an order and got ‘demoted’ to the greenhouse where my first task was taking stem cuttings of a plant called a wandering Jew.  They actually grew!  I was hooked immediately and knew how I wanted to spend my life. 

A major in horticulture was a no brainer for college and here I am all these years later still getting dirty every day.  I think most flower gardeners will attest to their allure.  I know so many people who have made flowers into a second career once they found out how wonderful gardening really is. 

A nursing friend now has a landscape design firm, a former PR rep is busy maintaining flower beds for others in the city, and, most interestingly, a civil engineering pal now owns her own organic cut flower farm.  It’s true that you never know where life will take you – and how fortunate we are when it takes us into the garden!     

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