Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day & Foliage Follow-Up May 2018: The Garden Comes to Life!

Welcome to My May Garden!
May has arrived and it's time for another Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day and Foliage Follow-Up! The garden has come alive with a succession of new growth, buds and blooms daily. After one of the coldest April's on record, the month of May is bursting out all over with temperatures in the 70's and blue skies, accompanied by occasional spring showers to help the flowers grow. Come along for a walk in my Long Island May garden.
Perennial Border May
The tour starts with the perennial garden bordering the patio in the backyard. There is a variety of new growth to be seen as the new silvery-white foliage of Stachys (Lamb's Ear) and white trim of variegated hosta emerge. Along with Lamb's Ear and Hosta, Astilbe, Daylily, Salvia, Echinacea, Balloon Flower, Mont Blanc Allium and Peony Itoh 'Bartella' are making their appearance.
Itoh Peony 'Bartella' May
The foliage of the Peony is amazing at this time of year with burgundy hue and green undertones, which will eventually turn to a deep green. Buds are forming and will start to open in a few weeks.
Ajuga 'Chocolate Chip' May Blooms
Ajuga 'Chocolate Chip' forms a mat of purplish-blue blooms in May. I use them as a ground cover around boulders in the raised garden bed. The pop of color is always amazing!
Garden Gal with Black Mondo Grass
Garden Gal is displaying her Black Mondo Grass in planter. Behind the statue is Peony 'Karl Rosenfeld' getting ready to bloom.
May Foliage Combination
Here is one of my favorite foliage trios. Try mixing the foliage of Heuchera 'Caramel' (backdrop), Sedum 'Brilliant' (center) and Heuchera 'Palace Purple' (front). The colors complement each other and are especially vibrant in spring. I talk a lot about foliage combinations in my newest book Landscape Design Combinations
Weeping Evergreens in Pool Garden
In the pool garden is Weeping Norway Spruce (center) with Weeping White Pine (backdrop) and Golden Hinoki Cypress (center). 'Stella D'Oro' Daylily and 'Globemaster' Allium are along with the evergreens for some spring and summer blooms, and you will also notice some grasses and azalea in the distance. We will get a closer look in a bit as we walk to the other side of the garden.
Kwanzan Cherry Blossoms May
This is the second year for the Kwanzan Cherry I planted last year. It has already gotten even more magnificent and will continue to get better each year as it matures. I think it has some of the most beautiful blooms out of all the flowering trees. It's sad that the old maple tree that once existed in the space had finally reached its time, but I am so happy with its replacement!
Kwanzan Cherry Tree in its Second Season (Planted 2017)
Here is a full view of the tree as seen from the back corner garden.
Fragrant Viburnum 'Carlesii'
Back around the other side of the garden is Viburnum 'Carlesii' with its highly fragrant blooms that adorn the shrub in spring. When there is a breeze, you can smell its sweetness  across the property. 
Japanese Forest Grass
When it comes to foliage, Hakonechloa (Japanese Forest Grass) displays wispy golden fronds with green stripes on a rounded plant, which adds brightness to a shady spot.
Patio Garden 
Along the patio garden, compact Hosta 'Golden Tiara' emerges in front of Caramel Coral Bells and alongside ornamental grasses, Juniperus 'Blue Star', ornamental onion and lilies. A mature grafted Montgomery Globe Spruce towers over the perennials. I enjoy when it gets all its new "candles" of growth in springtime.
Azalea 'Girard Fuchsia'
In the back garden is Azalea 'Girard Fuchsia' with its colorful blooms. Azaleas are short flowering, but I do love their brilliant color, which is a sure sign of spring!
Limemound Spirea and Allium Globemaster Buds

Soon Ornamental onion 'Globemaster' will put on its show. The buds are forming now and will be in bloom next month. Behind the bulbs is Spirea 'Limemound'. It's all about the foliage right now, but pink blooms will follow.
Pool Garden
As we pass by the pool garden once again, you can now get a long view of the space. The garden is starting to come into its element.
Front Entrance Garden
Now its time to take a stroll up to the front of the property. As we approach the front walkway, there are weeping trees, Japanese Garden Juniper and 'Caramel' Coral Bells.
Weeping Japanese Maples on Front Lawn
On the front lawn are two Weeping Japanese Maples that were planted over twenty years ago. The green 'Viridis' variety to the right towers above me at about eight feet tall while the red variety stands at about six feet. The twisted trunks bring interest to the garden in winter, but the new spring foliage is breathtaking!
Lamp post Garden
Here is Weeping Norway Spruce with Heuchera 'Palace Purple'. Also in this lamp post bed is Japanese Garden Juniper, 'Magic Carpet' Spirea, Salvia 'Caradonna' and Variegated Iris.  
Spirea 'Magic Carpet' and Variegated Iris
Here is the Spirea and Variegated Iris at a closer view. I noticed the iris has formed its first bud for Bloom Day!
Weeping Japanese Maple 'Viridis'
As we circle back around, here is another view of the larger of the two Weeping Japanese Maples with a closer view of its twisted trunk.
Fernspray Hinoki Cypress and Spirea Double Play 'Big Bang'
Walking towards the corner raised garden is Spirea Big Bang 'Double Play' with its vibrant foliage and soon to be large pink blooms...while Salvia 'May Night' is getting ready for its magnificent purple blooms at the end of May.
Salvia 'May Night'
There is always something to look forward to in the garden, which is why it is such a passion for me. Now that the gardening season has begun, I look forward to new blooms daily and time well spent nurturing the garden. 
May 2018 Garden: Hope You Enjoyed the Visit!
Thank you for visiting and I hope you enjoyed this month's tour. Special thanks go out to our hostesses Carol at May Dreams Gardens, who makes it possible to see blooms on the 15th of every month with her meme Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day and Pam at Digging for hosting Foliage Follow-Up. I am also linking with some other wonderful hosts and hostesses at Floral Friday Fotos, Macro Monday 2, and Nature Notes at Rambling Woods. Also check out Garden Bloggers' Foliage Day at Creating my own garden of the Hesperides, Wednesday Around the WorldDishing It & Digging It and Image-in-ing weekly photo share every Tuesday.

Sharing my passion with my two books: (Available on Amazon!)

~As Always...Happy Gardening!~

Author: Lee@A Guide to Northeastern Gardening, © Copyright 2018. All rights reserved.


  1. Lee - Your garden looks fabulous! I have a weeping Kwanzan cherry which is not quite as exuberant as yours but I have hopes. My son has a 25 year old Kwanzan that is about 25 feet in diameter and a glory.

    1. Thank you Pat! Your primroses are so beautiful and you have so many other colorful blooms. I enjoyed the visit to your garden as well!

  2. Replies
    1. Thank you Carol and also much thanks for hosting this wonderful meme each month. As you probably know, I really look forward to it!

  3. Stunning as always! Happy spring and happy GBBD!

    1. Thank you for your kind words Peter. Your May garden is wonderful with so many blooms! The Buddleja globosa is so interesting and the Rosa rugosa 'Yankee Lady' is vibrant! I loved the tour!

  4. Your garden is just amazing. An inspiration to us lesser gardeners. And that cherry tree? Wow!

    1. Thank you Dorothy! I enjoyed the tour of your gardens, and you are so far ahead of us here in the northeast! The Gerbera daisies are looking especially magnificent! Happy Bloom Day!

  5. Oh my goodness Girl, when your garden decided to start popping it exploded. Fabulous! Just seeing your black mondo grass so big and healthy makes me green. Mine all died back to the ground this year. A first for it. I was afraid I lost it all but it is up about an inch tall so far. Happy GBBD.

    1. Hi Lisa. We went from winter to summer-like temperatures almost overnight, so the garden is kicking in. Your gardens are certainly looking very colorful and your Baptisia and Catmint seem to be thriving with the lack or rain! We have had the opposite with non-stop rain here all day!

  6. Lee, as always I admire your May garden. My favorite is the Pond garden, the evergreen plants are stunning. And what the weeping maples! Happy GBBD!

    1. Thank you Nadezda! I loved the photos of your beautiful African Violets. Happy Bloom Day!

  7. Hi you have some gorgeous landscaping at your place that planter is eye catchy

    1. Thank you Arun! You have a nice assortment of blooms. I especially like the first photo of the sunflower.

  8. Your garden is looking gorgeous as usual, and as usual I'm gaga over your conifers! They have such amazing texture and color. Thanks for posting with me for Foliage Follow-Up!

    1. I appreciate your kind words Pam and thank you for hosting Foliage Follow-Up over all these years. Although I know this is the last time for this meme, I will still celebrate it by posting photos of foliage each month! Again...thank you for all your wonderful posts!

  9. Lee - I can tell you have invested years, not to mention a lot of thought, into your garden. Every corner is a delight to the eyes! We are in the midst of landscaping our new house, and I know it will take years for it to approach yours, but that is part of the joy of the journey. Have a terrific weekend!

  10. I always enjoy your garden photos. We are a few weeks behind you in seeing our spring leaf-out and blooms.

  11. Stunning posting, Lee! Don't you just love this time of year? It's been a tough spring here, but my gardens, like yours, have started to look lush again. Happy GBBD! P x

  12. Wow! Your garden is simply stunning, Lee. It's amazing what a difference a month can make; I think we had our last snowfall a month ago. Your cherry tree is beautiful, and I'm so impressed with all the blooms on such a young tree.


Thank you for visiting. I love reading your comments and knowing you have been here, and will try to reciprocate on your blog. If you have any questions I will try my very best to answer them. As always...HAPPY GARDENING!


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