Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A Walk on the Wild Side

In 2008 the Helen M. Kippax Wild Flower garden was opened at the Royal Botanical Gardens.  And like most new wildflower gardens it looked like a pile a mulch populated by a bunch of weeds that seemed to have seeded themselves far from each other in a random unsightly manner.  Three years later you'd never realized how ugly the egg was that it had hatched from - it is just glorious.

Bart was only slightly more excited than I was to get to the gardens.



 Comparing the formal bed above to the wild flowers below - I think it looks pretty good.


Of course it really doesn't matter if I like it or not, it's all about the birds and the bees.  This Vernonia fasciculata was well over my head.  If you were looking for a nice big beefy plant that isn't bothered by pests, it certainly would be one to consider.


I wouldn't have thought about using Allium in a wild-flower garden, but now I think, why not?


 I am the only human in the world who can't grow Liatris.  A few weeks ago it would have been purple and lovely.  In my garden it goes from green to dead without the purple stage.

Here's something that would work in many gardens - Ruellia hornilis with the lovely common name of Hairy Wild Petunia.


After the murderous summer we've had, look how well it's done.  Apparently it's from the Acanthus family.  Also read that it's a noxious weed in the southern states.  I'd be willing to give it a patch somewhere just to see how it does & keeping my fingers crossed that our winter would knock it back a peg or two.


You can't even imagine how sad this patch of garden looked just a few years ago.  The transformation is amazing.


I often feel that the home gardener doesn't plant Echinacea in large in enough quantities.  I think they have it just about right here.


The white candles belong to Veronicastrum.  It grows nicely in the shade too, but will flop a little more giving the white wands swoopy shapes.


Bart dragged us from the wild flower garden to the edibles where a chef was cooking up a storm.  More on that tomorrow.

1 comment:

Kim and Victoria said...

Public gardens are so nice; so much space! Our local botanical garden started a new section about three years ago. Yes, a lot can change in three years!