Time to start planning for 2009

Since it’s now the height of summer (it seems like the hottest day of the year tends to be about now, and this year is no exception), I’m starting to think about next year’s garden. I’ve updated my future plantings page, so I’m going to take this opportunity to look back on what I mentioned last year:

  • Phlox paniculata: I planted ‘Laura’ right next to the pond. It looks ok, but it’s just not as strong as the native marsh phlox. I’ll see what it looks like next year – it’s really unfair to compare a 2nd year perennial to a first year.
  • Woodland sunflower (Helianthus strumosus): Nope, didn’t get this yet!
  • A Rudbeckia of some sort – one that tolerates clay and shade: I planted a couple more Rudbeckia fulgida (orange coneflower) plants, and got a sweet black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia subtomentosa) for the rain garden. So far so good; they’re both still on the small side compared with my older R. fulgida plants.
  • Echinacea pallida, to mix in with existing Echinacea purpurea: done, but they’re still small and haven’t bloomed yet.
  • Virginia bluebells in the rain garden: done, but they disappeared in the summer heat. The proof will be in the spring.
  • Allium cernuum: planted in the rain garden, and just about to bloom!
  • An appropriate native sedge (Carex stipata? Carex vulpinoidea?) in the rain garden: I got Carex stipata, and they’re the best looking plants in the rain garden now.
  • Dill seed: Grandma Einck’s dill from Seed Savers is looking gorgeous now, and it’s really tasty.
  • Marigold seed – instead of buying flats of F1 hybrids, buy some self-seeding heirlooms – maybe Calendula instead?: I got calendula from Seed Savers as well, and the first bloom appeared this week.
  • Snapdragon seed – any color but yellow, which I have plenty of already – red/purple would be nice: More Seed Savers; I’m just starting to see a wider variety of snapdragon blooms in the garden.
  • more Allegheny spurge?: Nope.
  • more Culver’s root?: Nope.
  • white clover in the front yard: The spring plantings of this did well in shady spots, but not in the sunnier ones. I think I’ll look for some sun-tolerant grass seed for those areas, even though nothing in our yard gets more than a half-day of sun.

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