Happy Bloom Day from Chicago's south suburbs, where it's 98 degrees one day, 58 the next; and where one can't be sure if there'll be blazing sun and oppressive humidity, or torrential rainfalls and power outages. The weather has kept us on our toes this month. While a little beaten up after over 5 inches of rain last week, the gardens here continue to bloom nicely, even as weeds and tree seedlings sprout in record numbers and grow at record speed.
Starting at the top left and going clockwise. here are some of our June blooms: The hellebore 'Mrs. Betty Ranicar' started out white earlier this spring, is still lovely in June, and has aged to a pretty soft green. The Lawn Man wanted to see more annuals blooming, and brought home (among other things,) some white and red New Guinea impatiens - plants we haven't had here for a few years. Last fall's pansies are still hanging around in spite of last week's oppressive heat, and the mini-rose that has outlasted all the others has half-open buds and is fuller and healthier-looking this spring than ever before. Last year's Lacinato kale came back to bloom and set seed which I'll collect for next year's vegetable beds.
I fell in love with Tahitian bridal veil (Gibabsis geniculata,) in a hanging basket when I saw it last fall in the Master Gardener office. Although it was labeled as African bridal veil at the nursery, when I wanted to learn more about it, everything I found on the internet calls it Tahitian. Whichever, it's lovely. The blooms close in the early evening, and open again each morning. It's growing and blooming well even with very little sun.
Lamium 'Pink Pewter' has settled in well after a few years of underwhelming performance, and has been blooming since April. The hanging basket begonia was another gift from the Lawn Man, who was a bit underwhelmed by the overwintered double impatiens cuttings which grew very slowly during our chillier-than-usual spring. In the center, snow peas, also a bit slow this spring, have the loveliest blooms that would be just as much at home in an ornamental garden as they are in our vegetable bed. They look like little orchids to me.
The blooms of Heuchera 'Lime Rickey' are tiny, but I enjoy them all the same. I enjoy their delicacy, and they glow in the waning light of evenings enjoyed relaxing on the patio. I've been a little afraid of spiderwort's spreading ways, but I've always loved them and said yes to a few passalongs. Penstemon 'Huskers Red' has been a stalwart of our June garden since the beginning. It was one of the first plants I added to what was, eight years ago, a barren bed of mulch under three huge silver maples. The yellow foxgloves Digitalis grandiflora have been here almost as long. A few more were started from seed two years ago and they're blooming for the first time this month.
The tall blue bellflowers Campanula persicifolia 'Telham Beauty' were passalongs from Mom, taking the place of the ones that broke my heart just a little when they didn't make it the first time I tried them here. Their translucent violet-blue blooms have been favorites in several gardens before this one. They glow just as beautifully in moonlight as they do in midday sun, and our bumblebees visit them from early morning to dusk.
Penstemon digitalis is a native plant relatively new to our garden and blooming for the first time this year. It's a little floppy thanks to our torrential rains, but it's pretty all the same, and the pollinators are loving it. It's time to divide Geranium x Cantabrigiense 'Biokovo,' and it's a little worse for wear after the rain, but the bees don't seem to mind a bit. Nepeta x faassenii (catmint) attracts lots of pollinators too, and I like its shorter, less sprawly form better than 'Walkers Low' (a misnomer if you ask me, since it gets about three feet tall. :) Oops there's another pea blossom - guess you can see I really like them! And finally, in the center is Centaurea Montana also known as Mountain bluet, and a favorite of mine for longer than I can remember.
There are quite a few other things blooming here in June, but lest this turns into a book as I wax on over this month's blooms, I'll leave it at this for now. Happy Bloom Day all. To see more June flowers from gardens all over, please visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens.