Wonder Garden Heads into Late September

Life in the WG remains remarkably floriferous, with thanks due to the month’s early downpours. Such delicious sustenance no doubt reassured our weary perennials that life was indeed a venture worthy of setting down roots.

Admittedly, before the rains, it was touch and go for the August-planted specimens we acquired from Dancing Oaks Nursery (Monmouth, OR), but those new additions, including a century-old blue aster and a willow-leaved salvia, are now perking up. Whew.

Right now, despite intense competition from any number of reds, oranges & purples, the WG’s boldest color is the sumptuous yellow of Rudbeckia laciniata, beaming like a searchlight along Division. Though this cutleaf coneflower is capable of 10’ in the best of conditions (stream bank, flood plain, etc), it can still reach 5-6’ in full sun and average water. Also know that this North American native can tolerate some neglect, as discovered in one of our home gardens (not saying whose).

No doubt you’ve been seeing boatloads of black-eyed Susans, a.k.a. rudbeckias, chatting their heads off since early summer. So much percussion! Way too much noise!  This green-eyed cutleaf Susan keeps its own counsel till, drawing itself to full strength, it sings sweet joy.