Garden Fundamentals - Learn about plants and gardening

Archive for the Favorite Plants Category

Senna hebecarpa

Senna hebecarpa, by Robert Pavlis

Senna hebecarpa, by Robert Pavlis

Senna hebecarpa is rarely grown in gardens but it deserves to be used more frequently. It is a perennial that can grow to 180 cm (six  feet) and has unusual compound leaves. Both of these features make it look more like a shrub.

Common names include American senna, wild senna and the northern wild senna. It is a North American legume, that hosts nitrogen fixing bacteria in it’s root nodules. —————- Read More —————-

Allium thunbergii ‘Ozawa’

Allium thunbergii 'Ozawa', by Robert Pavlis

Allium thunbergii ‘Ozawa’, by Robert Pavlis

The last plant to start flowering in my zone 5 garden is  Allium thunbergii ‘Ozawa’, the Japanese onion. As I write this it is October 26, 2014 and we have not had a real hard frost yet which is very unusual. Most common fall flowering plants like mums are finished flowering but the Japanese onion is still going strong. It is not bothered by early frost or snow. —————- Read More —————-

Dictamnus albus

Dictamnus albus, by Robert Pavlis

Dictamnus albus, by Robert Pavlis

Dictamnus albus, the gas plant, always makes a big splash in the garden when it is flowering and even when it is not flowering it is a very interesting plant with good leaf structure.  Even the star-shaped seed heads are interesting. So why is this plant not seen more in gardens? It is very slow growing and I think it costs nurseries too much to get it to a saleable size. Fashions have also changed and this fantastic plant has been left behind in favor of more modern plants. That is a real shame since few garden plants will match the presence of a mature Dictamnus. —————- Read More —————-

Arisaema thunbergii ssp. urashima

Arisaema thunbergii ssp. urashimais, by Robert Pavlis

Arisaema thunbergii ssp. urashimais, by Robert Pavlis

Arisaema thunbergii ssp. urashima is a great aroid that adds some excitement to the garden. Known as the dominatrix jack-in-the-pulpit, it appears in late spring and is gone by late summer. Its special feature is a long, dark purple, whip-like spadix that can reach 45 cm long, in true dominatrix fashion. —————- Read More —————-

Corydalis solida

Corydalis solida, by Robert Pavlis

Corydalis solida, by Robert Pavlis

Corydalis solida is a great spring ephemeral that brings an unusual color to the garden at this time of year. How many of our spring flowers are red, pink or purplish red? Spread them around the garden between larger plants and enjoy them while the larger plants are still sleeping. By the time they grow to any size, C. solida will have gone underground for a summer snooze.

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