This is the first hydrangea I ever grew from seed and in June of 2008 (believe I started it in 2002/3) it bloomed. I do have prettier hydrangeas, but this is a case of mother's pride. It has been a brave little plant having had to be moved 3 times from it's final pot. Recovered well each time and seems to be a hydrangea that doesn't need much water. Growing in fertile soil - sandy base. Looking forward to seeing what it does for me this year.
Calamintha grandiflora 'Variegata'
Have had this plant for 3 years. Originally from a Quebec nursery - carried it home on the train and stuck it in the shade, in the ground, in this pot. From time to time it sends out a dark green shoot that I'll yank off. It blooms beautifully for about a month, and then the rest of the time, it just has these nice spotty leaves. Not as vigorous as other mints that climb out of prison and do their worst all over the garden - a really good little 30cm (1') plant.
This is a plain vanilla pinellia (again from seed). Growing in dry shade, this little aroid originates from Asia. It took about 4 years for it to achieve this size. It is very slow to emerge in the spring. This is the first year it was photo-worthy.
Dependable, blendable, memorable. A lovely shade-loving fern that handles dry sandy soil and looks lovely all summer long.
A biggish perennial (175cm 5+ feet), it dependably blooms and has no insect damage whatsoever. This year with the backdrop of the Persicaria polymorpha - I thought it looked quite handsome.
Clematis x durandii
Here is Clematis x durandii doing what it does best - mingling with a bushy plant - my Persicaria polymorpha. The internodes are very long on this clematis - so it looks very sparse between the party of its leaves and flowers and it's skinny stems. I had planned for it to be a vision of purple/blue with my lovely yellow Elizabeth magnolia - however, Liz fizzed in a matter of 3 years and so Durandii just scrambled along the ground and made friends with one of my all time favourite plants - Persicaria polymorpha (seeing how many times I can mention this plant in one post....think that's 3). C. durandii blooms for at least 6-8 weeks and requires nothing more than a friend to lean on.
Deutsia 'Chardonnay Pearls'
I am not a fan of Deutsia generally - there's that 48 hour period when I do love them when they are big and blousy and blooming. However, this all comes to an abrupt end and they become big and green and a giant waste of space. However, this Deutsia is chartreuse, and its little blossoms look like wee pearls before they open. It keeps its good leaf colour all summer long and has the manners to stay nice and small.
Japanese Tree Peonies
I know, the blossoms don't last long, but I don't care - they are beautiful. Heard Stephanie Cohen offer this advice, "Buy the most expensive one you can afford - because it will last longer than you do!" This $10.00 White Rose unnamed treasure enchants me every year. Chances are I would have had more blossoms sooner if I'd spent more money, but at the time $10.00 was all I had.
Hosta 'Pineapple Upside Down Cake'
A great piece of punctuation in the garden - love those pointy leaves. Slugs were bad last year, but this fine little specimen did just fine. It is a lovely front-of-bed hosta.
Also called Thimbleweed because of its seedheads. A dainty - slightly overfertile - woodlander. Excels at dry shade.
Echium russicumA relative of our very common blue viper's bugloss. Bought one plant, and then ordered a seed package. I enjoy their twisting spirals and how they changed colour throughout the month. My soil is probably too fertile in this part of the garden - but here they'll stay as they are front and centre in my early a.m. coffee drinking window. Don't know how perennial they'll be for me, but now that I know how easy they are from seed, I know I'll be planting more to replace any that don't make it.