|This Month in the Garden: Pollinator Friendly Perennials & Shrubs|
Welcome to This Month in the Garden! For the month of July and start of summer, pollinator-friendly plants are the topic of discussion. With the declining population of bees, it is important now more than ever to include plants in your garden that are helpful to these important members of our ecosystem. Besides the infamous Milkweed, there are numerous long-blooming selections that will not only add color and fragrance to your garden, but will help to attract the well-needed pollinators and give you enjoyment throughout the spring-fall season!
|Double Knock Out Rose|
For beautiful blooms starting in spring that are pollinator friendly, Knock Out Rose is an excellent choice. These prolific blooming shrubs are hardy to USDA zone 5 and have a bloom cycle that starts in spring and lasts well into frost. Knock Out Roses grow to 3-4 feet high by wide and should be grown in full sun in a well-drained soil. They do not require any special care but can be pruned in early spring after the threat of frost is gone to keep them full. They do not require deadheading but if desired you can remove spent blooms to encourage more blooms. They are the most disease resistant roses on the market and are not susceptible to black-spot fungal disease. Note: Roses prefer to be watered from the bottom to avoid fungal issues on the leaves.
|Salvia 'May Night' (Meadow Sage)|
Salvia nemerosa 'May Night' displays deep purple blooms from late May through July on 12-18 inch spikes and is hardy in USDA Zone 3-9. Salvia prefer to be grown in full sun in a moist, yet well-drained soil and are drought tolerant once established in the garden. With regular pinching back of spent blooms, this beautiful perennial can have a repeat performance all the way through fall. Other varieties of Salvia include, but are not limited to, 'April Night' (earlier blooming) 'East Friesland' (later blooming), and 'Caradonna' (taller).
|Veronica (Spiked Speedwell) Magic Show 'Royal Candles'|
Veronica Magic Show 'Royal Candles' (Spiked Speedwell) is known for its prolific blooms from late spring through fall. Hardy in USDA zones 3-8, this hummingbird and bee-friendly perennial displays spikes of deep purple-blue flowers above attractive deep green foliage on a 15-18 inch tall plant. Plant Veronica in full sun to part shade in a moderately moist soil and enjoy its beauty all summer long.
|Veronica (Spiked Speedwell) 'Purplegum Candles'|
Hardy in USDA zones 4-8, Veronica spicata 'Purplegum Candles' is another compact upright Veronica producing pinkish-purple blooms starting in early to mid-summer and lasting through autumn on a 14-16 inch high plant. Plant 'Purplegum Candles' in a location with full sun to part shade and a moderately moist soil. This plant is a major attraction for hummingbirds and bees.
|Nepeta (Catmint) 'Walkers Low'|
Nepeta 'Walkers Low', a dwarf form of nepeta with gray-green aromatic foliage, produces large violet-blue flowers that bloom all summer long. Nepeta 'Walkers Low' is drought tolerant and deer resistant. It can be grown in full sun to partial shade and forms round compact mounds. This perennial goes well with coreopsis and daylily and is hardy in zones 3-8. Other forms of dwarf, more compact Nepeta include 'Walkers Low Junior', 'Blue Wonder' and 'Little Titch'. Nepeta can be easily pruned to maintain its shape.
|Coreopsis (Tickseed) 'Zagreb'|
Hardy in USDA zones 3-9, Coreopsis 'Zagreb' is a popular favorite for areas of full sun and produces a clump of delicate, ferny foliage, with an abundance of bright, golden yellow daisies throughout summer on 12-18 inch fern-like stalks. Coreopsis prefers a well-drained soil and can withstand drought-like conditions once established. Coreopsis will spread so plant it in a place where you have plenty of room and enjoy its beauty. Coreopsis is complemented nicely by either salvia or nepeta. Also, look out for all the newer cultivars of Coreopsis, including 'Daybreak' and 'Sunkiss', each displaying yellow blooms with orange centers.
|Hemerocallis (Daylily) 'Stella D Oro'|
June blooming 'Stella D' Oro' Daylily brings in summer with continuous bright yellow blooms from late spring until frost. This is by far the most popular Daylily selection of all time, performing well in zones 4-11, and flowering for months on end. 'Stella D Oro' forms a dense clump of grassy green foliage, with upright stems of mildly fragrant, golden yellow trumpet flowers on 24-30 inch stems. Plant Daylily in an area receiving full sun to partial shade in a well-drained soil with moderate watering. Removing spent bloom stalks and foliage will increase bloom time well into autumn.
|Echibeckia 'Summerina 'Blazing Fire'|
A new cultivar is here, combining the features of Echinacea and Rudbeckia all into one! Hardy in USDA zones 7-9, Echibeckia Summerina 'Blazing Fire' grows to a height and width of 16-24 inches high by 18-24 inches wide and prefers full sun. It's blooms that are much larger than those of its parent cultivars are on display from early summer to autumn and are a wonderful attraction for pollinators!
|Echinacea (Coneflower) 'Cheyenne Spirit'|
One of the newer hybrids of Coneflower, Echinacea Cheyenne Spirit features daisy-like blooms in vivid shades of orange, red, rosy-red, yellow, purple and cream surrounding a large brown cone all on the same plant! 'Cheyenne Spirit' is hardy in USDA zones 4-10, blooms early summer to fall and prefers full sun and moderate watering in a well-drained soil. Drought tolerant once established, this perennial is also cold hardy, disease resistant, heat tolerant, humidity tolerant and pest resistant. This herbaceous perennial has a mature size of 24-30" tall by 18-24" wide and displays a full upright habit. Echinacea 'Cheyenne Spirit' is ideal for sunny borders, mass plantings, massing in cottage gardens and cut flowers.
|Lillium 'Stargazer' (Asiatic Lily)|
Bringing in mid-late summer, Lillium 'Stargazer' is known for its beautiful coloration and very fragrant blooms. 'Stargazer' grows in clumps that are 12-16 inches in width and reaches a height of 36 inches and blooms from July-August. It is hardy in USDA zones 4 to 10 and prefers to be grown in full sun in a slightly acidic and rich, well-drained soil. 'Stargazer' can be easily divided by digging up bulbs and re-planting (best done in fall). 'Stargazer' is a prolific bloomer that thrives in the garden and is an attraction to pollinators.
|Buddleia (Dwarf Butterfly Bush) 'Blue Chip'|
Hardy in zones 4-9 and blooming later in summer, Buddleia Lo & Behold 'Blue Chip' is a dwarf cultivar of Butterfly Bush, displaying delicate arching branches and colorful nectar filled flowers that are a major attraction for Hummingbirds and butterflies. Lo and Behold 'Blue Chip' displays a low mounding compact habit, growing to approximately 24-26 inches high by 30-36 inches wide. Its neater well branched habit makes it an ideal addition in tighter spaces or small gardens. Another dwarf variety of Buddleia is 'Pugster Blue'. This cultivar displays elongated deep purple blooms on a compact plant, and the pollinators love it!
I hope you enjoyed This Month in the Garden. Be sure to stop by on the 1st. and 15th. of each month as I continue to share gardening tips, information and horticultural adventures! (Linking with: Floral Fridays, Macro Monday 2, Ruby Tuesday and Image-in-ing Weekly Photo Link-Up.
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~As Always...Happy Gardening~
Author: Lee @A Guide to Northeastern Gardening,© Copyright 2010-2021. All rights reserved.