Mid way through the eighth month of the year, I’m happy to report that there are a few things other than Knock Out Roses in bloom. No matter what the weather may bring, my Limelight Hydrangeas never disappoint. In my opinion, this underrated plant deserves to be in the ‘Sensational Shrubs’ category. It’s very low maintenance and the reliable bloom display comes on just as the rest of the garden seems to have petered out. The flower heads are large (6 to 12 inches) and emerge soft lime green, transitioning to cream in high summer. As Autumn arrives, the tiny individual blossoms fade to parchment-tan and pink. By November, dried panicles are perfect for cutting and ready for autumnal arrangments indoors. I’ve even seen a crafty gardener or two weave some panicles into holiday arrangments too!
Also blooming are the old fashioned Hosta plantaginea. These old standbys are a workhorse in the shade garden providing sturdy, upright scapes and shiny lush foliage. This well known Hosta is native to China and was first identified by Jean-Baptiste Lamarck in 1789. Because of its many wonderful attributes, it is still used extensively in hybridization today. Hosta plantaginea is a common sight in many older shade gardens and is prized for its very fragrant pure white flowers.
These plants were donated to my hosta garden from a dear friend of my partner. She tells us that the original plants traveled from Germany in a steamer trunk of her great grandmother’s. That would put the journey back into the mid 1870s. While I can’t verify that story, I do know that many Hosta were imported into Europe long before they were in the West, so her timeline would hold true. Hmmm. In any case, generations of Hosta lovers know that few things are as lovely as the perfume of plantaginea in the summer evening air.
Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day is a Meme created by Carol at May Dreams Gardens. Gardeners post images of what’s blooming in their garden on the 15th day of every month. To see what’s blooming all over the world today, visit Carol’s blog.