Thursday, September 13, 2012

The Autumn Garden

Goldenrod, Asters, and Perennial Sunflowers form the bulk of the autumn nectar flow and native plant garden. Here we see Solidago rugosa 'Fireworks' combine with the pink version of the New England Aster, Symphyotrichum novae-angliae.

They're the perfect little combination for an eye catching perennial boarder. They grow in the same conditions, flower at the same time, and are roughly the same height, and the colors really pop in the summer sun (though I recommend photographing them more toward the afternoon).

Helianthus maximilianii is probably among the more common perennial sunflowers sold today. Rarely have I had a year where it hasn't fallen over however.  

Skyblue Aster, Symphyotrichum oolentangiense, is doing great as a knee high, pale blue flowering nectar source. As years go on it seems to fill in thicker with more flowers. I remember last year they were quite barren looking but still angelic in how the blooms were spread out. Because of its low height I don't think falling over is an issue.

Butterflies have been landing on all of these but the Skyblue Asters seem to be a favorite.

Aromatic Aster, Symphyotrichum oblongifolium, is one aster that doesn't even try to stand up. They pretty much slink along the ground all year then puff up with flower buds come fall. They're an excellent boarder plant.