Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Daphneville in Ypsilanti: the Thompson Garden part two....

Daphne cneorum 'Pygmaea' and Ranunculus millefoliatus
I have to be honest: I'm taking wild stabs at the names of the daphnes: I know that Jacques and Andrea do label plants in their garden (they went diving and prodding more than one specimen that I'd ask them about and invariably extracted a legible label: quite a trick!)--and I'm sure that they could have done it with many of these daphnes--although they undoubtedly know what many of them are off the top of their heads. Or maybe not--this is not by any means all the daphnes in that expansive garden! Quite a few had bloomed and a few, like oleioides and alpina, had yet to bloom. I think I can honestly say that aside from Arrowhead Alpines--where Brigitta had no end of giant daphnes--I have never seen a better collection more artistically grown than at the Thompson's--which is why they get a blog posting all to themselves!

Daphne cneorum

Daphne x hendersonii
I'm almost willing to guess that this is 'Ernst Hauser'....it looks like mine anyway (if mine were still alive that is).

Daphne x susannae
I am guessing wildly that it is 'Cheriton'. I believe I still have 'Cheriton' alive at least. Although a fraction of this size.

Daphne x susannae
This reminds me of 'Anton Fahndrich'....unless we're dealing with an x rollsdorfii and it's 'Wilhelm Schacht'...I'm now leaning to the latter as I look at it again.

Daphne x hendersonii
I believe this could be a Guiness book of Records x hendersonii: unless it's just cneorum and I misread the leaves? It would be a champion cneorum as well, of course.
Daphne x hendersonii
I'm pretty sure of my I.D. on this...although I'm not sure if it's 'Lupp' or 'Kath Dryden' or another pink variation...

Daphne x hendersonii
This could be 'Aymon Correvon' or even 'Fritz Kummert'...or even 'Marion White': they are all equally lovely...

Daphne cneorum  and Daphne x hendersonii on right

 And here's another champion x hendersonii with its cousin above it...


Daphne cneorum
Surely there cannot be many gardens with daphnes like this scattered about with reckless abandon?

Daphne x rollsdorfii
Another wild guess--although I'm not willing to venture a cultivar.

Daphne 'Stasek'
The one and only hybrid I can be positive I'm right on--unless it's a variegated cneorum instead!
Daphne x schytleri
Not sure which clone of this cross (arbuscula x cneorum) but I'm reasonably sure it's this cross.

Daphne x rollsdorfii
Another mystery! Guessing as to the cross.

Daphne x susannae
Possibly 'Cheriton' again or 'Anton Fahndrich' with a wonderful view of the garden, and check out that columnar tree in the distance! What a place...

Daphne x rollsdorfii
More mounds of fragrant ecstasy!

Daphne x arbuscula
I end with this wonderfully tucked specimen of either arbuscula or one of its hybrids. I'm hoping Jacques or Andrea will confirm some of these names. But whatever name you inflict upon them, daphnes are sublime in any form.

I was humbled to see them grow so abundantly and so well. And hope you've enjoyed them too!

Iris and Trillium at the Thompson's

I have visited hundreds of gardens in dozens of states and countries...any one of which has been a "favorite" for a while.  But right now (and perhaps forever), I believe my very favorite garden in the world is in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Andrea and her husband Jacques have created a haven that feels vast (and it is many acres I believe), every square inch of which seems to be perfectly planted with nary a weed the day I visited. Two more gracious and wonderful people you will never meet. And their dogs are pretty cool too! But what a garden! I am picking only two genera: Iris and Trillium, that happened to be in peak bloom on Mother's day when I visited. In Denver it was snowing and freezing new growth. In Ypsilanti it was Heaven on earth! Notice that each plant could win a medal in an British competition, and there are no end of choice plants!

A sessile Trillium in front of a sea of Epimedium: wonderful foliage and flower contrasts throughout!

Another view of the same spot...

A similar vista nearby with Trillium luteum in a very greenish form...

I love the brown seedling popping up among the blue SDB....

"Not our best pink" aver the Thompsons. Pretty good to my eyes...

One of a half dozen clumps of Iris lacustris 'Alba' (they gave me a seedpot full of seedlings!)

I'm sure this SDB has a name: tell me Kelly N. if you know!


Lots of trilliums in front, but get a load of those monster clumps of Podophyllum!

Stylophorum and Trillium grandiflorum pop up everywhere: such weeds!

More of those pesky weeds...

Part of a mass several meters across of Iris lacustris!

Did I mention that Jack-in-the pulpits in a dozen forms were everywhere too?

Another massive mat of Iris lacustris 'Alba'

Love this yellow SDB
There is something about pale yellow--just love it! I regret not sniffing it: the smell was undoubtedly lemony...

A symphony of foliage and flowers...

Yet more trillium and poppy--joined here with Primula kisoana...

Next...the Thompson Daphne extravaganza!Stay tuned...

Saturday, June 20, 2015

A botanist's garden

a
Dr. Robert Faden, left, Dr. Anton Reznicek
 I am always surprised that some botanists don't seem to garden at all. I have read that when Asa Gray was shown Dicentra eximia in a garden once (a plant he collected and named), he said he couldn't recognize it unless it was pressed on an herbarium page! Dr. Faden, retired from the Smithsonian, and Dr. Reznicek--still very active at the Herbarium of the University of Michigan--are engaging in animated conversation. I wish I had recorded it! These two are not only great botanists, but extraordinarily good gardeners too! Some day, perhaps, we can revisit the Faden extravaganza in Virginia, but now we will rewind to Mother's day, when I attended the North American Rock Garden Society's annual meeting in Michigan, which was organized in large part by Tony and his wife Susan. It was one of the best meetings I've attended of any group, and a highlight was visiting the Reznicek garden--which is both beautiful and a living, breathing herbarium of the best plants imaginable! You shall see quite a few of these, because I lack restraint! And the pics turned out pretty good if I don't say so myself. I'd revisit this post in a week or two: Tony will no doubt correct my many mis-identifications (I shall note his corrections in RED)...So you shall see what a mediocre botanist I am by comparison!

Here's part of the NARGS rabble
 You can see what a steep hillside climbs above the two houses the Reznicek's own and garden upon. You'll be seeing more of the crevice garden at the end...


Cardamine heptaphylla?
My first test: there are a wealth of white Lady's smocks (or are they cuckoopints?)--an early cress that graces woodlands across the Northern Hemisphere. There are a number of white ones--I'm guessing wildly here...


Here you can see it artfully naturalizing along with the wonderful native Celandine poppy (Stylophorum diphyllum) a plant I love and seem currently not to have in my garden.


A wonderful wall where many gesneriads have been tucked in, and ferns are spreading by spore. this is what great gardening looks like!

Cardamine macrophylla?
What collector in their right mind would be content with a single species of a good genus? So there has to be a pink Lady's smock as well...

Lonicera
Each of the Michigan gardens I visited had a fabulous specimen of this yellow honeysuckle. Perhaps someone will provide me the name (hint hint)--not easily found on Google--so don't try.





I have never seen more wonderful daphnes than in Michigan. This is a form of x hendersonii, I believe..

Iris henryi
The foliage on my I. henryi had winter damage--obviously protected more here...


Dodecatheon meadia

Corydalis sp.
Tony complained this corydalis was terribly weedy--

He must have had resistance pulling it out!

Many epimediums were coming into bloom...

And this dainty white violet

I am envious of Cinnamon fern--since my garden lacks a moist enough spot to grow it well...

Paracaryum raemosum
An unusual Asiatic borage one rarely sees in gardens...
Iris lacustris 'Alba'
As if the blue form weren't rare enouh....


And the blue form: the avatar of this conference!


An amazing stone with ferns producing sporelings all over it...and lots of gesneriads!


A closer view

More of our native Celandine poppy (Stylophorum diphyllum)


I love ferns when the croziers are emerging--in this case a choice Polystichum.


A wonderful slope carpeted with woodland gems...


The contrast of Jeffersonia diphylla leaves and Pachysandra procumbens is marvellous!

Trillium erectum 'Album' I suspect

Mertensia virginica



Fothergilla gardenii

Lots of interesting graminoids...Tony's specialty


He'll know what this one is...







Corydalis nobilis in full glory

Epimedium grandiflorum in many forms...


Pteridophyllum racemosum
The strangest member of the poppy family!

Lots of odd woodlanders...you won't see THESE at Wallmart.


Lunaria rediviva
The perennial money plant--something we could all use!

Who doesn't know or covet this?

Mukdenia rossii and the great Trillium blooming together...

I should know this!


Ranzania japonica and Beesia

Another shot of Beesia: looks so much like a ginger!

Glorious sessile Trillium (help!)

The lushest clump of Prosartes lanuginosa I've ever seen (used to be Disporum)

I know I should know this woodlander: Tony! help!

Very happy clump of Caltha palustris by the bog...

Darmera peltata and Stylophorum--a great combo

Great woodland textures...

Trillium recurvatum (below) and T. luteum above

Trillium luteum

Escobaria leei
I was more than a little suprised to see this rare New Mexican cactus (from the Chihuahuan desert) growing contentedly--albeit in a protected microclimate...

More wonderful epimediums..

Rhododendron ?dauricum
or possibly a form of mucronulatum?

Even more rhodies...

Two very cold winters have not been to the taste of palm trees--but they appear to be alive!

I remember this smelled good...

The classic Epimedium x sulphureum

Allium zebdanense

A seemingly restrained white violet..

Maianthemum (Smilacina) stellatum in a congested form

A handsome aucuba, although I recall Tony said he did protect it some...

This is trillium country--and I believe recurvatum, grandiflorum and luteum all grow not far away in nature

Daphne genkwa: had to include it although it's out of focus!

A handsome mass of Camassia leichtlinii

Iris koreana

I was impressed with that Trillium recurvatum as you can tell...

The crevice garden

The crevice garden 2

Daphnes love the crevice garden

I believe that's Artemisia assoana in the middle.


Iris humilis (or arenaria or flavissima--depending on your reference)

Aquilegia canadensis

A splendid Thalictrum. Not sure which species...


An unusual member of the mint family

Pitcher plant bog with Helonias bullata

Arabis bryoides

Epimedium sp.

Primula kisoana f. alba

You never know who's coming around the corner: Harvey Wrightman!

A lovely stand of bog bean (Menyanthes trifoliata)

Paeonia aff japonica

Hydrangea petiolaris clinging to a wall...

Orontium (not so) aquaticum
I believe I heard Tony saying this was a form that didn't grow in water!

I was surprised that Acis nicaensis was a reliable garden plant here...

Yet another Stylophorum: they love it here!

Tony, a spellbinding speaker!

Back to the crevice garden












Corydalis bracteata