If you are not quite ready to go all the way…

If you aren’t quite ready to go all the way…

is my most popular power point program with Garden Clubs.  The subtitle is

…mixing native plants with your existing perennial gardens.

The titillating title catches the eye and the sub-title closes the deal.  Members of Garden Clubs already have gardens and to tear them up and start over again is unthinkable.  Starting a new prairie garden in another area, however, is a great idea.

Here are some ideas:

Use Little Bluestem  (Schizachyrium scoparium) as an accent in your garden.

Add Bur Sedge (Carex grayii) to a shade, partial/shade garden with Astilbe.  Native Foxglove Beard Tongue (Penstemon digitalis) and Prairie Alum Root (Heuchera richardsonii) bloom in the background.
Rattlesnake Master (Eryngium yuccifolium) makes a stunning counterpoint to Blue Fortune Agastache, a hybrid between a Korean and non-Illinois USA native.

The parkways of this Batavia, IL sub-division are planted with a matrix of Prairie Drop Seed (Sporobolis heterolepsis) and filled in with native Blue Wild Indigo (Baptisia australis) and Foxglove Beard Tongue (Penstemon digitalis) along with non-native daylily and achillea.

I re-did this garden after many of the original plants had died.  I added Aromatic Aster (Aster oblongifolius), Little Bluestem, and Prairie Baby’s Breath (Euphorbia corollata) to the existing ‘Autumn Joy’ Sedum and Asian grasses.

Native Purple Prairie Clover (Dalea pururea) and Wild Petunia (Ruellia humilis) make a charming edging to any garden.

3 Responses to If you are not quite ready to go all the way…

  1. Pat Clancy January 17, 2011 at 5:20 pm #

    What a great concept for a presentation, Pat! Most all of us started out this way and are still hanging onto a few place holder hostas! Your photos are great.

  2. Anna Moeller January 17, 2011 at 9:45 pm #

    Pat, thank you for the photos and reminder that spring will come again and we can start planning our gardening adventures now! Because of your beautiful blue indigo, I have added that little beauty to my garden and I can’t wait to see how it does this summer. I love the prairie baby’s breath too and hope to add some this spring. Thanks again for the inspiration!

  3. Karen S January 24, 2011 at 11:24 pm #

    Thank you for the beautiful photos. I am eager to see more and make changes in my own flower beds using some of your ideas. Hurry Spring!

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