The rain garden has come a long way and is almost complete! I finished digging and shaping it, and then I planted six sedges: 4 Carex pensylvanica and 2 C. stipata. Here is what it looks like now:
It's still a little rough, to be sure, but when the forbs arrive it will look more filled out. In general it's going to look rather skimpy this year, but by next year it should be much fuller. The layer of mulch is kind of measly, and I intend to add more after the forbs are in. Here's a (slightly) closer look at the two sedges in there now...
That's C. pensylvanica on the left and C. stipata to the right. The former already flowered; the latter, if it flowers this year, will do so near the end of this month. C. stipata is more upright and has wider culms (stems) than pensylvanica. I intend to bury the downspout extender a little more once we get a good rain and I'm sure that it's in a good spot and the flow is moving well. All in all, I'm thrilled with the progress!
Now this has nothing to do with rain garden, but I just have to say that I love bleeding hearts. Don't misinterpret that; I just find it utterly fascinating that nature developed such a curious-looking flower. Really, what was the evolutionary advantage of this bloom? Maybe this Dicentra spectabilis was bred to have a more exotic, unnatural flower, but I don't really care. It's just so unique!
And yet I don't have the native version of this yet, D. cucullaria. Instead I have D. spectabilis and the tiny D. eximia. It's really only a matter of time until the native joins its cousins here, I guess!
I will be away from the garden for most of this week, and I'm hoping that the rest of my tulips will be in full bloom when I return. I'm afraid they'll peak while I'm gone. Hopefully next weekend the weather will be consistently warm enough to transplant some seedlings. I look forward to finding gifts in the garden when I get home!