Sunday, May 26, 2013

Merry Month of May

There are many lovely months in the garden, but it's pretty hard to beat the month of May. I think the main reason that May is so beautiful is because the usual garden pests haven't had a chance to settle in. Everything is still green and fresh, and new blooms show up almost every day. Sometimes I don't even remember what they are! And look closely, you'll see my reflection in the glass...
One of my favorite parts of gardening is the fragrance of the many different things I have planted. This is my Chinese fringe tree in bloom, looking very lacy and delicate. But I had totally forgotten how fragrant these blooms are, almost like a jasmine, and strong enough to spread through my whole back yard.
Here's another fragrant favorite, my Sunny Knockout rose. What? You say you didn't know there was a fragrant Knockout rose? Only the yellow is fragrant, while also having all the best qualities of a Knockout rose. This thing will bloom all summer long, and has grown to almost mammoth proportions. No diseases to worry about, but I have to admit that the Japanese beetles love it. At my house, their favorite roses are always the yellow ones.
What's that pretty pink flower on the arbor in the background of the above photo, you say? Ah, that's the most fragrant flower of all. Zepherine Drouhin has moved up to the top of my favorite rose list this year. Thornless, incredibly fragrant, and just plain gorgeous, it's a must-have rose for me. It should be for you too. 
Iris is another pretty flower that is often fragrant. And you can't beat an iris for plain old fashioned beauty in the garden. 
Florentine Silk
No fragrance on this one. I'd call Amsonia hubrichtii a filler plant. Pretty foliage, charming blooms in the spring, but it's main attraction is in autumn when the foliage glows golden. They look best when planted en masse, and I haven't quite got that down yet. More are definitely needed. 
I only wish this gorgeous Fourth of July rose was fragrant. But it's beautiful enough to pass without it. Another one of my favorites. 
 I think I have this ninebark Diablo planted too close to the house, because it doesn't really have a chance to arch gracefully. It just looks crowded all the time. It's also hard to photograph so you can see how pretty it is. The arching stems and purple foliage are really pretty, especially during bloom time. 
As beautiful as peonies are, they are another one of my poorly sited plants. Just not enough sun and air movement to make them happy. Still, they do bloom very prettily each spring. After that, the foliage looks awful all summer. Maybe someday I'll move them to a happier spot. But then again, peonies also don't like being moved, so I don't know what's worse.
My plants love it in the Merry Month of May, don't you?


  1. Your garden is looking so pretty Robin. The green in the spring is always so pretty before the summer months fades things out. I love that Florentine Iris and the rose on the arbor is so pretty. You are talking me into finding a place to put a Fringe tree. LOL!

  2. Your garden is lovely. I have all of these except the Chinese fringe tree. I've so been wanting a fringe tree and had no idea they smelled good. Makes me want one all the more. That peony will be happy to be moved come fall-the bonus is you can divide and make more. Mine will be divided this fall too. Happy Gardening. P.S. Zephirine Droughn is like my favorite rose of all too!

  3. Oh my gosh, more beautiful plants to put on my list of must haves...

    Your garden is lovely.


  4. Robin girl ! I am so glad to get that hint about the yellow Knockout rose because I avoided them (even though they are so easy care) due to no fragrance .. I have Zephirine D. TOO!
    But it took some hard hits this past winter .. I have to energize her to get her lush and blooming again .. yours is beautiful and full!
    You are so right about May being so beautiful when the weather and garden cooperate .. some times we are working so hard we forget to appreciate it ? .. I have so much more to do to get mine up to speed for just plain maintenance .. more dirt and compost to spread them the mulch .. I better get going NOW ! LOL
    Gorgeous pictures !

  5. Robin you have some love elements to your gardens... love the rose climbing up that arbor!

  6. As usual, Robin - all your plants are gorgeous! I love that climbing rose. And thornless? A bonus! Does it require a lot of sun, or would it do OK in part sun?

  7. I love the reflective glass in the top photo and your iris are fab too. It's a really nice time of year :)


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