“Then summer came, announced by June,
With beauty, miracle and mirth.
She hung aloft the rounding moon,
She poured her sunshine on the earth”
-Leslie Pinckney Hill, excerpt “Summer Magic”
Although the main event of spring blooms has passed, the arboretum has lots of blooms for those who are willing to slow down and look. One show-stopper that is easy to pass by is the great masterwort (Astrantia major) in bloom in the cottage garden along the back of the greenhouse. The blooms look like little fireworks and are beautiful when observed up close despite their diminutive size. Another unique bloom hidden among the planting beds is the Tricyrtis latifolia (Toad Lily) in the Rockery near a boxwood (Buxus microphylla). These flowers have an unusual shape and bright red speckles on the petals. Some other beautiful plants to observe are the Clematis vines (Clematis ‘Madame Julia Correvon’ and Clematis viticella ‘Etoile Violette’) growing on the trellises on the front of the propagation greenhouse. The blooms have big, bold purple blossoms and the seedheads they form will be just as showy as the flowers themselves.
Other plants are not so subtle. Visitors entering the Cottage Garden through the main gate will see Spiraea japonica ‘Dart’s Red’, which is a vibrant shade of deep magenta, all along the front border. There are also a number of other pink blooms in the Cottage Garden including Asclepias syriaca (Common Milkweed) and the pink Hibiscus and Phlox will be in bloom later this summer.
For those who prefer muted tones, Pan’s Garden is still in bloom planted with predominantly white flowering plants. The highlight during late June is the Astilbe ‘Deutschland’ which sends up sprays of delicate white flowers. There are also white blooms on the Magnolia sieboldii in the Woodwalk just around the corner near the towering rhododendrons. The Magnolia blooms face downward for an excellent view of the flowers. Closer to the parking area, the prominent flowers on the Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Snow Queen’ are on full display alongside the Shingle Barn and Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’ is in bloom near the entrance to the propagation greenhouse.
Enjoy your summer and stay safe!