Thursday, April 12, 2012

Epimedium time

Day 85
The Daily DuBrule

It is so much fun to walk around the gardens this week. Things are changing really fast. I knelt down to take this picture the other day. On a whim, I brought home this tiny gnome statue and placed it by the fence post so I would notice it and smile as I walked out the garage door. I forgot, as it was winter, that this marvelous Epimedium was planted next to it. I don't know the name of this plant but I do know that it is unlike any others I have seen. It was given to me as a gift by my friend Lisa who loves to surprise me with rare plants she knows I don't already have. It grows over 12" tall, the leaves have burgundy markings, and the white flowers with burgundy centers bloom for a couple of months. 

Gnomes just pair naturally with Epimediums. This genus looks like it belongs in a bed of moss, where the little people dwell. Today I was walking a client through the shade gardens at Natureworks and was astounded at the beauty and complexity of the various Epimediums there. Paired with Lathyrus vernus, which is now in full bloom, it knocked both of our socks off. 

Epimediums are not cheap, nor are they fast growing. But they are totally, 100% worth it as an investment in your shade garden. They laugh in the face of dry shade. They thrive where lesser plants melt down. They are not usually eaten by critters and have good leaves all the time. And when they are in flower, well, the world is a happy place and the gnomes and the fairies dance. Watch for it. 

1 comment:

  1. How serendipitous that I read this blog now. I tour my yard daily, multiple times per day. I specifically look very hard at an area where I planted my first epimediums last fall. I can't remember which I bought from you but I bought two. I finally saw some leaf stalks appearing. I also wrote to a friend and recommended them for his dry shady area by the road. Then I log on and you've written about them. Sometimes it all comes together and you feel like your all on the same wavelength. I want to explore more epimediums this year. I hope you're going to have some!