Front entry bed

I love it! The blooms just keep coming. One of the glories this week and next is the front entrance. I have a tall trellis on the front wall that is covered with Rosa ‘John Cabot’, an Explorer rose from Canada. This means that the canes do not die back during the winter. Intertwined are a variety of clematis that have yet to bloom. In front of the rose and to the side is Fallopia japonica ‘Variegata’. Yes, it travels but it is tough and so beautiful that I don’t mind pulling out what I don’t’ want or pruning the canes that are too tall. At the front of the bed is Nepeta ‘Dropmore Hybrid’ that always starts out erect but quickly spills over the sidewalk. Astilbe will bloom later.

Festuca ‘Cool as Ice’

I wish a local nursery would grow Festuca ‘Cool as Ice’. Mine is from an Illinois nursery. What I love about it is its white inflorescence – so much prettier than the beige one of Festuca ‘Elijah Blue’ which is commonly grown. They’re approximately the same size.

Iris and alliums

I’ve had two varieties of Iris ensata (Japanese Iris) for years but they never performed very well. Since they prefer moisture, this spring’s rains ensured beautiful blossoms. ‘Oriental Eyes’ is a beautiful shade of purple and have it surrounded by Allium atropurpureum, very similar in color, and Allium nigrum. You should have both of these alliums in your gardens. They are inexpensive, multiply readily, and make a spectacle of themselves.

Rosa ‘Dr.Huey’?

The gardens never fail to spring surprises. On one of my trellises, I had been growing Rosa ‘Home Run’, a bright red. This year, however, it is even more rampant and is dark red instead. After a little research, I am convinced that that ‘Home Run’ must have been grafted onto the rootstock of ‘Dr.Huey’ who has decided that it’s his turn. I acutally like the color better but am afraid that he is going to bloom only in June and not throughout the summer.

Rosa ‘Nastarana’

It’s amazing what a change in the amount of light can effect. I had to replace my Acer tataricum last fall. It looked great for fifteen years and then, by its twenty-first year, was looking misshapen. Because of its height, it blocked the light where I had planted Rosa ‘Nastarana’, a rose that is known to flower even in partial shade and it had. But this year, it is much more floriferous. Yea!

Stay tuned for the next developments. Don’t forget that you can see it all a week from Sunday on the Glorious Gardens of Shaker Heights tour.