August 22, 2011

Red and Green Theme

Gladiolus 'Atomic', G. primulinus 'Mirella', a miniature all red species-type of Glad, in a vintage vase that was my mothers, on our front porch.

 Many try to avoid the brighter colors of August, especially the bright red, carmine and scarlet flowers that can seem so harsh when viewed in a catalog on a snowy January evening, but in-the-season, these brilliant colors somehow 'work'. Maybe it's because of their tropical heritage, or their hot tones seem less horrible when it is 90 degrees outside, or maybe it is a simple as the fact that there is a lot of green around to balance out all of the red. I can't explain how I discovered all of this red in the garden today, but I did - maybe I am finding my inner Christopher Lloyd, or maybe all of my P90X workouts is making me more agro, and I am just seeing red, maybe even, I am starting to become bored with my typical, more thoughtful 'designer' color palettes.... most likely, I am beginning to actually like red in the garden ( even though it isn't even Christmas).
Abutilon ' Firefly', is a nicer selection of the Flowering Maple. This cultivar remains small, almost dwarf. Our stay under 24 inches tall, yet are covered with red bell-shaped flowers all summer long ( and in the greenhouse, for much of winter, too!).

Red Geraniums ( Pelargoniums) are fine, but the variegated leaf forms are by far the best. They remind me of my childhood, so I always try to keep a few in the greenhouse and on sunny windowsills in the house. Nostalgic and attractive even when they are not in bloom.

Begonia boliviensis, a rather new hanging species begonia for baskets and tall containers for summer fire.

Variegated 'Crown of Thorns' 'White Lightning' ( Euphorbia millii) looks great in the winter, when it only has foliage, but in the summer, the summer thunderstorms coax out the bright red flowers making it worth while as a deck plant.

Yeah, these are those Chinese geese that you saw in many June posts. Almost full grown.

Red Single Dahlia's enjoy their season - August. Mixed strains of 'The Bishop' and seedlings, adds needed color to the perennial border.


  1. I don't think that is 'Atom.' I grow it, and have seen it in the catalogs of many reputable sellers, and it always is red with a crisp white edge to the petals.

  2. I am wondering too if it is Atom. I bought 96 bulbs from McClure and Zimmerman listed in the catalog and on the label as G. tristis - I thought it was too good to be true, and lookey here - they are some red variety arises.

  3. hcgvid2:33 PM

    Check out High Country Gardens Video Tutorials on Youtube!


  4. Reds never looked so wonderful! I am leaning to bolder colors lately too. The geese photo is so sweet!


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