There is a saying,"You can't teach an old dog new tricks." Well, I hope that isn't true! I have been gardening for years and I still have lot's to learn.
At the moment, my garden is 95% perennials, trees and shrubs. Using these resources, I have managed to create a fairly continuous show of color with two exceptions:
1. There is a bit of a lull right after spring bulbs have finished and the perennials haven't really kicked in.
2. And in late August, early September, there is the second lull. The phlox and rudbeckia are finishing then. My roses are back with a fresh round of pretty pinks, and the sedum and turtlehead are just starting to bloom. Still, in comparison with August's riot of color, September is quiet.
Next year I would like to liven up my fall garden, without having to rely completely on fall mums and ornamental cabbages. With the eye to the future, I have been looking around me for inspiration.
I have come back with one question for myself: Why is it you don't have any annuals?
In late August, early September annuals really come into their own. Fall frosts are looming and nearing the end of their days, annuals go full throttle.
Looking at beds of annuals, I learned another thing too. A single plant in a large garden doesn't cut it. Annuals look best planted in drifts.
Hibiscus 'Mahogany Splendor' (Hibiscus acetosella) is the tall burgundy plant on the right.
Ageratum 'Blue Mist'
Rudbeckia 'Irish eyes'
This is a garden in an another Brampton park. Mixed in with the perennials are ribbons
of colorful annuals.
Red Salvia, 'Salvia splendens'
Salvia 'Victoria Blue'
The magic rainbow of colors in the leaves of a Canna Lily
What one would think is an outrageous combination of colors, works in the leaves of this Coleus.
Perennial Fountain Grass, Pennisetum alopecuroids
These vivid orange and red zinnias look great with perennial grasses and hosta as a backdrop.
Purple Fountain Grass, Pennisetum setaceum is an annual here.
Isn't this a great mix of fall colors? Rusty red Coleus, bright orange Geraniums and burgundy Oxalis.