We moved into our home about 6 years ago. I am a hobby gardener.. with only a bit of time, and smallish space that I can spare for my plants. But, I do really enjoy turning my little veg patch in the spring, and watching what has made it through the winter to pop up. So, our first year in this house, I decided to be choosy about what I planted. I like plants that give something back, and don't need a lot of fussing. And our soil is largely clay ... argh.
Given this "wants" list, I have discovered a few very nice plants and decided to post them here. I invite other gardeners to share their favorite plants for our lovely CB climate.
The first one is Rudbeckia Laciniata, Autumn Sun, also called Mountain Coneflower
I love this one because it changes quite a bit as it grows, and forms strong stalks with a lot of beautiful bright yellow flowers by the end of august. Bees love it as well. I planted four individual plants along a half fence. I use this fence as a support and tie the stalks loosely to it once it starts to flower. Each plant starts from nothing in the spring and grows to over 6 feet tall and about 2 feet across.
The flowers grow differently. The cone part develops first and the yellow petals slowly spring out from the base of the cone. The first year, I thought all the flowers were duds, and started to dead-head the plants, but thankfully noticed the petals starting to form.
The leaves are a beautiful deep green and about the size and shape of my hand. The stalks, once supported, are strong enough to last through our winter and provide a very nice visual when everything else is buried under snow.
In the spring, its an easy thing break off the stalks to make way for new growth. And then add a good layer of manure and cedar chips. This location works well because it has full sun and the support of the fence.
I bought these plants at Farmer Clem's on Grand Lake Road.