Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Wildflower Wednesday: Well Worth the Wait

How's that title for some alliteration?? Well, that's how I feel right now. My midsummer natives are taking their time to bloom, but their eventual arrival has been sweet.

In fact, these bee balm (Monarda fistulosa) have been three years in the making! They're finally blooming after a few years of struggling with powdery mildew. I'm so glad I refrained from pulling them out in a fit of frustration! The bumblebees are happy about it too.

Ready for more alliterative effects? It's also the season of purple plants for pollinators:

This species hyssop (Agastache foeniculum) had a wonderful year last year and they have seeded prolifically, which is fine with me. Before realizing I had lots of little seedlings, I also added some 'Blue Fortune':

Also rewarding me after a couple years of patience are purple coneflowers (Echinacea purpurea).

I know, I know, these are some of the easiest and most popular flowers to grow, but for some reason they've struggled here. But now it's coneflowers-a-plenty around here, with the yellow ones (Ratbida pinnata) going crazy as well.

Soon there will be more wildflowers in full bloom, such as my cardinal flower, Joe-Pye weed, asters and goldenrods. All well worth the wait as well, I'm sure!

To see more wildflowers, visit Gail at Clay and Limestone, the most gracious host of Wildflower Wednesday!


Rose said...

This is a great time for natives, isn't it? And the best part is they seem to flourish in spite of the heat or near-drought. I'm envious of your yellow coneflowers! I tried to start some from seed with no luck, but I'll try again next year. So glad your purple ones are doing well; in fact, it looks like all your natives are thriving!

garden girl said...

Great blooms Rose - so glad your coneflowers and monarda are blooming well. I have definitely found the natives take their own sweet time getting established before they really show off.

I love 'Blue Fortune.' Once I got over my disappointment at how pale the blooms are (the tag showed them much deeper blue, and they were a new introduction so I hadn't seen them before,) I realized what nice plants they are. The pollinators go nuts for them, they're drought-tolerant, and they bloom like crazy for a long time. I also like that they're sterile hybrids, as agastaches tend to seed themselves madly.

Gail said...

I agree with Rose~This is a great time for the native wildflowers~They are so happy and attract all the best pollinators! My agastache is struggling! It's been very dry here...But while it bloomed it was a beauty. gail

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Wonderful blooms. One of my agastaches is Blue Fortune and though it is huge with lots of flowersm they seem very faded this year compared to last. Are yours a very almost not blue color this year?


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