The sun has actually shown on us a bit between all the bouts of summer rain here at the farm and it has allowed the perennials are really start showing off there best faces. We still have lots of plants in bloom now to fill up any empty spots that have been haunting you in your garden.
It is thriving in the back of my shade garden and is tall enough to stand out back there with it’s long lasting blooms. The flowers are really pretty, white with flecks of pink, and look very delicate against the green broad leaves.
Here is a great view of an established day lily planting. These ones are Hemerocallis ‘Big Bird’, a great lemony yellow and a steady summer bloomer. We have many different heights and colors to choose from at the farm, not just your general tall orange garden variety. They are always a reliable choice and can be established quickly even in an unreliable place like here by the side of the road.
We also still have shrubs and trees galore if you want to take advantage of the all the rain and do some serious planting. The Buddhas are happily watching over these lovely climbing hydrangeas, a great choice for planting on a stone wall.
And here is the ever popular Hydrangea ‘Endless Summer’, the loveliest steady blooming large leaf blue variety. If it starts to turn pink on you, try giving it a little acidic fertilizer. Come and get them while they last!
So, I promise to do another posting soon. Feel free to let me know what you want to hear about in the comments. I apologize that it took me so long to get this post together. I need to start making a habit of getting out of the greenhouse for a few minutes every few days and get into the office to post more regularly. It is just so hard to pull myself away!
Just have a look at the size of them already, and this is just in an 8 inch pot!
You can let them hang wild like you see here, or you can transplant them out of the hanging pots we grow them in and easily train them to grow up a trellis or fence. When given some blooming fertilizer regularly, they should bloom all summer in full or even part sun.
This one is Passiflora ‘Purple Haze’. It is a lovely P. caerulea hybrid that has large showy flowers with white and pale purple petals, a dark purple center, and a white and purple corolla.
This one is Passiflora ‘Inspiration’. It is truly stunning with a very large frilly flower with lavender and purple petals, a lavender center, and a white and dark purple corolla.
As if that wasn’t enough, here is one of the few true red passionflowers we have found to be as prolific a bloomer as the purple ones. This Passiflora ‘Lady Margaret’ has large flowers with crimson red petals, a white center, and dark red corona with white tips.
We have an ever changing supply made fresh on site right here at the farm!
One of the most common questions I seem to get from both novice and experienced gardeners alike this time of the year is “How do I keep my myrtle topiary alive indoors through the winter?”. I will admit they can seem a bit finicky, but just like any houseplant, all they need is the right balance of sunlight and water to sustain their growth. Well, that’s the short answer, anyway.
The long answer is that myrtle (we grow myrtus communis compacta, a small leaf variety) has been kept clipped this way as topiary for hundreds of years because it responds so well to being clipped into shapes, even if grown in a pot indoors.
We grow our topiaries on sight in the greenhouses at the farm. This requires practice and patience but also allow us to supply you with a well established plant that you will only need to maintain without too much trouble. Most of the topiaries we sell are already 1 1/2 to 2 years old and already well formed.
Most people find there myrtle plants thrive in the summer months. This is because myrtle prefers full direct sun. They can take a large amount of water in these conditions, especially for an established potted plant and so do best with regular, maybe even daily, watering in the summer. It is also best to clip your topiary often during it’s high growing season. This will not only make it easier to keep sufficiently watered, it will also keep the growth looking full and the shape well formed.
As the days get shorter in the fall and into the winter, the growth is likely to slow down considerably on your myrtle topiary. So should the amount of water and clipping necessary to maintain it. This means you won’t have to water or trim it as often! This is good, right? Just water it generously when the soil has dried out, you don’t have to soak it or mist it and the soil doesn’t want to be wet all of the time, watering approximately one to three times a week depending on how warm and dry your home is in the winter should do it, and just give it a quick trim when it starts to look shaggy, maybe once or twice a month.
Move your potted topiaries around inside if you don’t have a lot of light where you want to keep them. For instance, they look great on a mantle or tabletop but don’t get much sunlight, so once a week or so move them to a sunny windowsill for the day and give them a little water. This can be enough to keep them looking great through the winter months and ready to be enjoyed for years to come!
If you have had your topiary for some time or it’s growth has become much larger than the diameter of the pot that it is in, or if your New England home is drier than the sahara in the winter (I’m looking at you woodstoves and radiant heat) and you are finding it difficult to keep your topiary watered (i.e. I water it all the time and the damn thing is always dry!) it is time to transplant it into a larger pot. Pick a pot just slightly larger so the proportions will still be right, we have a great selection of terra cotta at the farm, and if it is particularly pot-bound you may want to loosen the roots a bit when transplanting. Always use a pot with a hole in the bottom and put something for drainage in the bottom of the pot like gravel or some broken pottery pieces. Myrtle requires good drainage. And make sure to stake and tie your topiary to support it’s shape, we use bamboo and raffia for this and both are readily available (bamboo stakes at most hardware stores, raffia at most craft or floral supply stores), inexpensive and have a natural appeal.
If you live nearby and want us to re-pot a topiary you got from us, we would love to have you bring it by. If you are not local or can’t stop in, you can email us with any questions you may have about something you got from us that I haven’t covered here.
These make great houseplants in most climates as they prefer bright indirect sun and regular watering and will bloom throughout the year. In our northern climate, sometimes they do best with a bit of direct sun through the winter months.