At a certain point in August, the garden is swept up in a wave of yellow flowers. This is largely due to what I like to call the Susans, members of the genus Rudbeckia.
Here’s a view of the house and Front Garden from the street. There’s a sidewalk in there, but from this perspective it is swallowed up by flowering plants. You may be able to tell that the wave of yellow is made up primarily of Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida, also known as Orange Coneflower) and Brown-eyed Susan (R. triloba).
The Susans are cheerful and prodigal self-sowers, and in this way have pretty much take over the late summer Parkway Bed.
It’s not all yellow these days. The Bee Balm (Monarda didyma) is fading but still has remnants of color. Actually I never realized before what a champion bloomer it is. The Bee Balm started blooming weeks before the Wild Bergamot (M. fistulosa), and maintains some color well after the Wild Bergamot has faded away.
Also in the Sidewalk Border, River Oats (Chasmanthium latifolium) is starting to get interesting. I have to cut off most of the seed heads before they are entirely ripe, to prevent excessive self-sowing.
Here’s a view of our front door from the sidewalk, with Brown-eyed Susan in the forefront. You can see that Brown-eyed Susan has smaller but more numerous flowers, and is taller than Black-eyed Susan. Don’t tell the others, but R. triloba is my favorite Susan, though she is also the more aggressive when it comes to self-sowing. This Susan responds very well to being cut back.
Swamp or Rose Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) can also be found among the non-yellow current blooms. I’d say it is blooming almost a month later than usual this year, and rather sparsely.
Still, I’m glad it’s made a showing. Oh, I just noticed the tiny red and black critters in this photo. Anybody know what they are?
Here’s a view of the Driveway Border. Yellow blooms are complemented by the blue flower spikes of Anise Hyssop (Agastache foeniculum).
Yellow Coneflower (Ratibida pinnata) is the champion bloomer of the Driveway Border. It began to flower in mid-July and is still going strong. I would like to propose that this plant be known affectionately by the common name of Clown-nosed Coneflower.
Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia rotundifolia) is not as imposing as it has been in past years. It suffered during the cold spring, but its orange daisies are still adding a bit of zing to the Driveway Border.
Here’s some Joe Pye Weed (Eutrochium maculatum) growing in the Driveway Border with ‘Italian White’ Sunflowers (Helianthus annuus). On the right you can see that the Front Island Bed’s Cup Plant (Silphium perfoliatum) is still pumping out a few blooms.
The Golden Glow (Rudbeckia laciniata) did not respond well to being cut back hard. They’re about half their normal height, and with not nearly as many flowers. Next year I may leave them alone, or cut them back by just a third.
They are sporting some gigantic galls – at least I think that’s what these are.
Here’s a look back towards the street from the grassy path in the Front Garden.
That’s it for now, I guess. Are you riding the yellow wave in your garden?