Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A establishing meadow

We transformed the mulched beds in front of our small mountain house into a new 'meadow' border last fall and this spring. It's probably best described as an informal perennial border, rather than a meadow, but we're working on it.

Rain and warmth this summer have nurtured these plants.  We lost a few over a very tough winter, but mostly they've thrived in the heavy clay soil (somewhat amended).

The Joe-Pye has been great;  in the Piedmont, it sulks without extra water.  In the mountains, this plant is a wonderful butterfly nectaring spot.

The purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea), always short-lived, looks great, and was a magnet for this swallowtail butterfly (I think a Giant Swallowtail, as it had two stripes on its wings and isn't something I see often, but they're not evident on this picture).



And I'm looking forward to seeing the Arkansas Ironweed in full flower, and the Solidago, and the asters, too.

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