Dicentra 'Luxuriant' and astilbe after daffs?

teddychicago(5)May 29, 2010

I have a large bed of yellow daffodils in front of my house. After they bloom and the leaves yellow, I am left with an empty bed and want something else to take the space. I have been putting out containers these past few years but I would like to create something more "cottagey." Also, this bed is mostly shaded by the time the daffodils fade, with a few spots of morning sun only.

A landscaper has recommended putting in some Dicentra "Luxuriant" and pink Astilbe. I don't want hostas so he came up with this idea.

Can anyone share their thoughts on this? I am still researching the bloom times of these plants (don't know if the landscaper remembered I had daffodils here). But I'd love to hear any comments, ideas, etc... thanks so much!!

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silverkelt(Z5b/Southern Maine)

Those will look great together.. the dicentra will probable bloom before the astibles,

You can add in some foxgloves for the cottage effect, they do fine in limited light, as does columbine, the columbine and the dicentra will bloom around the same time, then the foxglove and asitibles can take over..

Ive had very little success wintersowing astibles(I know others have great success), but foxgloves and columbine are easy wintersowers for me.. you can actually wintersown the bleeding hearts, the old kind will come true from seed, but they take years that way to get any bloom from them..

So if it was me, I would probable purchase the astibles and the burning bleeding hearts (or get some of the old kind, They get MUCH bigger.. the new ones bloom a little later around here and are much shorter, but they are nice as well) and fill in with columbine and foxgloves..

I love daffs, but hate them as well.. great EARLY spring color with no fuss really.. but then its over.. I just put them in as pockets around the garden.. I dont do whole beds of them.. I know its way more dramatic that way.. but I like summer perennials much more.. and while some peoples garden fade after spring.. mine starts then..


    Bookmark   May 30, 2010 at 8:12AM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

Sounds pretty, but remember that the dicentra will go dormant in the heat of summer. I already have a couple that are starting to fade. I am in zone 7, though, so maybe it is different in zone 5. I mix in hellebores, hosta, anemones, and others to lessen the effect of the dicentra disappearing on me.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2010 at 4:22PM
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gardengranny2(6 CT)

Teddy, dicentra eximia 'Luxuriant' (aka fringed bleeding heart) will start blooming early in May for me (zone 6). It will continue to bloom until fall, as long as it receives sufficient water and you dead head. It can also take a fair amount of sun--should that be a concern.

I think the combination of astilbe and fringe bleeding heart would be lovely. As an aside, you might also like to add alchemilla mollis (ladies mantle).


    Bookmark   June 2, 2010 at 8:18AM
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newbiehavinfun(7a - Southern NJ)

Also, don't be surprised if your astilbe goes dormant early during its first year. The first year I put in astilbe none of them bloomed and they died back. I thought they were goners but they returned the next spring! And when astilbe get large they can be quite gorgeous planted in a mass.

I second the recommendations for columbine, foxglove and lady's mantle. All are performing well in my Zone 7 garden without much fuss, and I believe that they will do better a couple of zones north where they don't have to deal with as much heat and humidity.

And I'd like to add a recommendation for heuchera if you are gardening in shade. I don't know if it will be evergreen in Zone 5, but there are so many varieties with lovely foliage.

Happy planting!


    Bookmark   June 2, 2010 at 10:31AM
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Happy, indeed! Thank you for all your input. I have researched the plants you suggested and they are all beautiful in their own special way. I wish the bed were big enough to fit everything.

I will certainly update this post on what I ultimately decide. Thank you again!

    Bookmark   June 2, 2010 at 10:31PM
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