May 2017 Garden
In 1557, a gentleman by the name of Thomas Tusser compiled a collection of writings he called “A Hundred Good Points of Husbandry”. In the April section of his works he wrote, “Sweet April showers Do spring May flowers”. The proverb known today was originally a short poem, which served as a reminder that the abundant rains in April would bring about the arrival of beautiful May blooms. The wonderful month of May is here and since it’s May 15th, it is time for another Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day and Foliage Follow-up! There are new additions for the 2017 season, so come along with me as we venture to see what is blooming in my Long Island garden.
The April rains with temperatures now moderating in the 60’s has brought life back into the garden as colorful blooms spring up everywhere. Ajuga ‘Burgundy Glow’ ground cover adds interesting foliage and bright purple blooms to the May garden.
Heuchera ‘Caramel’ (Coral Bells) and the Ajuga ground cover make a striking foliage combination when planted together.
The back south garden to the left and behind the pool area is accented with azalea, which are now blooming. The new Girard’s Crimson seen next were recently planted to replace the aging plants that were on the other side in the pool area.
Part of the joy of gardening involves watching the evolution of plants as they mature over the years and the anticipation of planning new additions as time goes by. As an avid gardener and designer, I am always planning away in my mind!
This garden statue of a girl and boy with their dog was a gift from years ago, one that I cherish. The statue now has a refreshed backdrop with the new azalea.
With the month of May comes new foliage along with blooms. Here is a combination of Heuchera ‘Palace Purple’ Coral Bells (foreground), Sedum ‘Brilliant’ (Right), ‘Caramel’ Coral Bells (Backdrop) and Ajuga (Right of Boulder) with Mugo Pine and Compacta Hinoki Cypress to the left. Way behind the mentioned is evergreen Juniperus ‘Gold Lace’.
As we move along to the front eastern gardens, we come across the Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar and Skyland’s Golden Oriental Spruce that reside there.
The Oriental Spruce, planted in 2008, has now grown to a height of approximately fifteen feet. Another Skyland’s has joined the back gardens, which we will visit in a little bit as we come back around to the other side of the property.
Here is Spirea Double Play ‘Big Bang’ with its wonderful May foliage, displaying hues of golden-orange and pink. Pink blooms will follow in June.
Let’s venture back into the pool area where giant Globemaster Allium are preparing to open into large ball-shaped lavender blooms. The original three bulbs have multiplied into seven buds and I look forward to these magnificent blooms in June!
Here is a wide view of the southern section of the pool gardens, with Weeping Norway Spruce, ‘Stella D Oro’ Daylilies, Allium Globemaster and Spirea ‘Limemound’. In the backdrop is a Weeping White Pine and Hinoki Cypress.
Back around to the northeast side of the garden is Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar with Gold Mop Cypress and Coral Bells ‘Caramel’. I love the new caramel colored foliage on the Heuchera.
Moving to the perennial border, Lamb’s Ear, hosta, lillies and Mont Blanc Allium buds rise above the garden, waiting to bloom in June and Peony buds that grow larger by day appear above wispy foliage. A grafted Montgomery Globe Spruce borders the patio and rises above the garden and is a favorite place for birds to raise their young.
This May, a mother Morning Dove watches over her baby in the Globe Spruce right near the patio. She feels comfortable enough with me that I can walk right up to visit and say hello each morning…simply put…precious!
The month of May wouldn’t be the same without May Night Salvia, which is now starting to bloom with its vibrant purple flowers on 12-18 inch stalks.
Here is the newest addition to the back gardens. While at the local nursery I noticed this Dianthus ‘Raspberry Surprise’ with its large pink blooms and sweet fragrance. Dianthus ‘Raspberry Surprise’ grows to a height of just ten inches, is hardy to USDA zone 5 (-20 F/-29 C) and blooms from spring to summer in full sun. I am test driving this perennial before recommending it to clients.
Another new addition is this magnificent Kwanzan Cherry that replaced a troubled maple tree in the southwestern corner of our property. I have always had an admiration for these beautiful double pink blooms in May and now own one of my own…so exciting!
Here is a bloom up close. I will wait in anticipation as the tree matures and widens over the years. I know it will just keep getting better and better!
There are a lot of new larger additions this year. Another ‘Skylands’ Golden Oriental Spruce was recently added to the back garden. It is starting off at five to six feet in height and will mature over time to resemble the one in the front of the property. ‘Skylands’ Spruce is hardy in USDA zoned 4-7 and reaches an eventual height and width of of 10-35 feet high by 4-12 feet wide.
As we come close to to the end of the tour we pass by the two Weeping Japanese Maples on the front lawn. Above is Acer palmatum Green Viridis, which reaches a height of 5-10 feet tall by wide…
and here is Acer palmatum ‘Tamukeyama’. which stays a a smaller stature of 6-8 feet tall by 8-12 feet wide.
If you have toured my gardens before, you are probably familiar with the Coral Bark Maple by the side driveway garden, which is now displaying its brilliant new foliage. Below is Weigela ‘Spilled Wine’ with its burgundy foliage. Pink blooms will emerge in June.
Here is Dicentra spectablis (Old Fashioned Bleeding Heart). It is not in my gardens, but in a client’s. I couldn’t resist taking a photo and had to share. Maybe a new addition in my own garden next year?
As we come back around to the patio, the succulent planters are all ready out and displaying a variety of Sedum and Sempervivum (Hens & Chicks).