After reading all of the entries, I too want ‘Molly the Witch’. Even without seeing the peony who could resist the name? I suggest for Ailsa Francis’ yellow fetish, another ironclad true perennial, the yellow foxglove, Digitalis grandiflora. It blooms in early summer and off and on again until late fall, year after year. It also comes true from seed so the plants increase yearly.
Marissa Butler reminded me of the wonderful qualities of mint. It is a thug in my herb garden crowding out the gentle growers and I have been known to attach it with a spade. I have tried and failed to keep it in bounds, but you are right it does have wonderful flavor. It simply needs to be imprisoned in a pot. I need a better attitude and more mint juleps.
Naturally, I agree with Marie-Ève Laforte. Lilacs are one of my favorite plants and their traveling scent, a longed for perfume. If you have never met, ‘Sensation,’ a purple lilac with each petal ringed in white, I would like to introduce you to it. It is a beauty on the bush and in the vase. I also can’t help but pass along a tip. For the longest lasting cut lilacs, cut all of the foliage of the stem. If you want foliage along with the flowers, the foliage should be on its own stem. It is too much for one stem to support both foliage and flowers. Simply cut the stem on a slant, no smashing with a hammer, and put it in water with a floral preservative.
A walkway in Suzy's Long Island garden meanders through a lilac grove to a gazebo beyond.
I too like Mary Leone’s wouldn’t want to be without zinnias, in all their disguises. Let me offer a timesaving tip for prolonging the bloom of cut flowers. If they have a floral preservative in the water they last even longer. There is no need to change the water, only top it off when it gets low. A floral preservative stops bacteria from growing and feeds the flowers. Tests show it can often double the life of cut flowers.
Nancy Bliss beautifully summed up one of the joys of gardening—the memories and the friends we make along the way.
The truth is, each of the entries was a pleasure to read. I walked back down memory lane, appreciating the many beautiful and diverse plants that nature has graciously given us.
You can read all of the entries here.