Jessica Walliser
June 9, 2011

Perennial garden bed
Photo by Jessica Walliser
Take a peek at my drought-resistant perennial garden bed in full bloom.

The perennial garden beds have been simply spectacular the past two weeks. The peonies are now in full bloom, the bearded iris are strutting their stuff, and the forget-me-nots have filled my front shade bed with a big drift of tiny blue flowers.

I didn’t do much planting in the front perennial garden beds this year because we have been giving so much attention to the backyard. I did manage, however, to tuck some zinnias, cosmos, bells of Ireland and love-lies-bleeding into the beds in hopes of getting some season-long color in there. So far they seem to be doing just great.

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Much to my chagrin, one of my favorite self-sowing annuals has decided to take over the world and germinate about a million little seedlings throughout the driveway garden bed. I normally love Verbena bonariensis for it’s skeleton-like structure and butterfly-magnet flowers, but despite my best deadheading attempts last year, I obviously did not remove enough of the seed heads before they ripened. Ugh.

This weekend, I must get in the garden bed and yank out most of the seedlings. I’m going to try to leave only a handful of plants behind so I’m not stuck with the same situation again next year. We’ll see how that goes. Perhaps I’ll try to share the love and pass some seedlings along to friends, with fair warning, of course.

The other shining star of the perennial garden beds right now is the blue salvia. If ever there were a stalwart plant for my baking-hot driveway garden bed, this is it. Plus, I’ve never had to stake it or do any sort of fussing, outside of the twice annual lopping it gets to generate new blooms. I have several different varieties but my favorite, by far, is May Night. Such a beautiful, clear-blue color!

Ah, yes, summer has begun.

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