Saturday, June 11, 2011

Peaks and Valleys

We are approaching the peak of Black Eyed Susans. Rudbeckia hirta is an annual in my garden, short lived perennial in some climates. In areas of my garden that are highly visible from the highway I try to maintain a succession of something to attract the eye.

Late February and early March, daffodils attract attention in a bed of dry lantana stems.
By April, Larkspur and Poppies attract are the main show.
May sees the emergence of Purple Heart, Daylilies and beginning Rudbeckia

June begins the Lantana show which lasts the summer despite heat and drought.

Lantana montevidensis in white and lavender, my favorites. A bed in the distance in either direction has yellow lantanta, also a butterfly favorite.

Coming behind Black Eyed Susans are Madagascar periwinkles from seed.
As the BES fadeand are pulled, periwinkles will take the stage in shades of pink, rose and magenta.
In the fall they'll be joined by Salvia leucantha which had some sparse spring bloom.

As I pull Rudbeckia, reseeding Melampodium may show up, already noted
in other beds where the ground is bare. Melampodium is a grand summer annual.
It literally comes up blooming and does not have to be deadheaded.

Oh! I almost forgot to mention the Lilacina Crape myrtles that rise above this bed on the east end.
They'll be blooming in a very few days. The south end boasts Duranta and Purple Datura,
soon to be in bloom.

Midafternoon it was 98 degrees here.


  1. In my zone 6a gardens in Connecticut, Black-eyed Susans are still in bud but it looks like we're headed for a banner bloom year.

  2. I have always liked the Black Eyed Susans. Sounds like your temp is about like ours- we were 99 yesterday and it's not even the "heat" of the summer. Get ready!

  3. Rudbeckia are always a great addition to a garden and your photos are the perfect example! I like the year round pictures to show the color for those who drive by, very nice!
    I have one tiny Rudbeckia fulgida that hitched a ride with another plant from our Virginia home. Waiting for it to set its roots and spread.

  4. It appears you've achieved your goal of providing colorful interest in your beds for passer-byes. Rudbeckia is a wonderful choice. I also use this plant as a staple in my flower beds, it's always so cheerful.

  5. Beautiful flowers! There must be many different types of Black-eyed susans, right, or maybe it's where you plant them? Mine bloom brilliantly in late summer to fall, in an area that gets afternoon sun, but hot, SC afternoon sun. They seem taller than most, around chest high, and they self-sow like crazy. When I transplant them, they bloom sooner, so I cut them.

  6. Such a cheerful sight for passers-by. I particularly like the electric blue larkspur and wonder if it would grow in our waterlogged climes. I envy you your sun baked 98 degrees.

  7. Rudbeckia triloba (seed) completely took over a bed that used to have 'Goldsturm' and even though they're huge, I don't think thye'll be blooming for a while. It's been super hot here (100) and my r. hirta is about to bloom. I love its fuzzy leaves. Your garden beds look great! :o)

  8. A beautiful sweep of cheer! Lovely. I like the purple heart with the's a nice combination. Hot here too and dry, dry, dry...

  9. I am sure passersby are enjoying that colorful bed.

    It seems here by the time my larkspurs are up, it gets hot and they begin dying from the ground up.
    I will have enough for seeds though.

    Yours look great in that heat!

  10. I have decided I need more Rudbeckias in my garden. Yours are quite showy! Love them paired with the purple. I look forward to seeing your datura blooms.

  11. I'm sure many passers-by enjoy the changing displays of your garden. I had a much smaller stand of rudbekia in one of my gardens when I lived in Virginia. I always thought they were a cheerful sight. Thanks for faving me on blotanical. I am now following you on blogger. You have a great blog.

  12. It's all gorgeous. We grow a lot of the same plants. Just as the larkspur finishes, the black eyed susans showed up. I didn't realize how prolific they were. I left them and now I love them. I still don't have good luck with vinca returning from seed.

  13. I enjoyed seeing the area and reading about what blooms in different seasons. Our larkspur is blooming now, and the plants will die back when they are finished. I try deadheading to prolong their lives, and once in awhile, a few will live most of the summer, but normally they don't. I am assuming yours probably die in the heat, too.

    I love lantana. I wish it was hardy here.


I look forward to comments and questions and lively discussion of gardening and related ideas.

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