Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Red Summer Annuals

 At my parents' house today, I changed out the spring annuals for summer ones.
My mom likes red and orange flowers, and I try to keep it low maintenance because she works, has arthritis, and takes care of my disabled dad and brother.

 In this pot out in the middle of the yard, I replaced pansies with purple fountain grass and a cute little striped miniature rose. My dad commented a while back that he liked red & white striped flowers, so when my neighbor got some of these at a grocery store for just $3, I grabbed one for my parents and one for myself! I also discovered some emerging tulips here that I forgot I'd planted. I think they're red.

 I should've gotten a better "after" pic here. Rainbow chard and pansies were replaced with dahlias, some red spikey flowers and a purple sweet potato vine. The dahlias are huge, very symmetrical, mostly red with some yellow... But I knocked most of the petals off when I watered them. I think I'd drought-stressed them before planting. I don't care for the perfect / symmetrical look of most dahlias, to me they look artificial or something. But I think my mom will like them. I find it a fun challenge to try and understand what styles other people like. As an artist and graphic designer, I've had to be able to do that for clients. Sometimes it's more difficult than others.

 In the hanging basket, replaced most of the pansies with a red petunia and a sweet potato vine.

 I planted this cross vine on the side of their house a year or two ago. Found the metal cot at a thrift store, actually two of them, and planted them each with cross vines at my house and their house. Theirs has grown waaaaay bigger than mine! Also planted freebie white irises here along the side of their house, a few boxwoods, purple heart, and hanging baskets with sedums.

On the left, the foundation bed includes red Autumn sages, oxblood lilies, purple cannas that have bright orange flowers, gallairdia (sp? Too busy to look it up.), pinky orangy puffball cone flowers, and some various seeds I just threw in today.

Around the left corner of the house I planted a red rose bush a while back... It's huge and sprawling and should explode in blooms soon. Maybe you can help me identify it. In their front yard I've planted a red crape myrtle (at far left of photo) and a red tipped photinia (because my parents like them) which I'll train as a tree.

Thanks for looking!

Update: The dahlias finally bloomed again. My mom just texted me a photo to ask what it is. I'm glad she likes them as I thought she would!


  1. Hi Laurin. I have not had a chance to check in for a while. You have been busy with blog posts and gardening projects! Since your mom likes red flowers, have you tried scarlet sage, Salvia coccinea? It is a tender perennial that reseeds. Humming birds love the flowers. It blooms heaviest in the fall.

  2. Thanks Michael! Ooo that is a pretty salvia, I just looked it up. It looks just like my sea nymph salvia except for the color. I'm not sure whether my mom really likes salvias, though I planted red salvia greggi there anyway for something easy.

    I caught some dog-walking strangers admiring my yard yesterday and they asked questions about the autumn sage and whether my plants were "xeriscape", it was so exciting! Just made my day! haha I remember you saying people have taken pics of their kids in front of your yard, that's so cool.