Plants you love now but didnt before

Lilyfinch z7 mid tnNovember 22, 2010

I was just browsing the bluestone catalog , and saw liatris, a plant that i never cared much for. No particular reason, i just didnt want it. My mother even gave me a clump a few years ago that i passed along to a friend. Now for some reason, i think next spring im going to plant a few clumps! lol

Do you find yourself eventually giving in to a plants charm?

Is there a plant you swear will never touch your soil?

I used to dislike hosta because they were always planted in a monotone row against home foundations. Then i received a magazine with pics of a gorgeous hosta bed that was done so beautifully! Now what little shade i have is full of different varieties.

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I've only been gardening since 2005 so I haven't gotten to that point yet. But if I stick with it long enough I'm sure i will.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 8:02AM
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I've never liked alyssum, but this year when a rosy purple one is blooming full in the church perennial garden, I've
changed my mind.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 9:59AM
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Anything pink, if it was pink I did not want it. Now I find myself wanting to put the red to the side and add more pink.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 10:07AM
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I was never that fond of nasturtiums, but now I love to plant them in the vegetable garden. They look so pretty around the climbing beans and they're actually supposed to help keep pests away from the melons and squash.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 12:42PM
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Somebody gave me great huge clumps of liatris/gayfeather a few years ago. I planted them but never really liked them. Last year I just dug them all up, gave away nearly all & threw the rest over the hill behind the garage. When I saw them coming up this spring, I thought anything that determined deserved a second chance. Then I found out the butterflies & bees love them. Now I'm growing more & planting them again. My neighbor brought me a nice clump of the white one last month.

My neighbors laughed when I pulled out all the cone-shaped evergreen shrubs in front of the house and replaced them with designer hostas. They didn't laugh the following year--they smiled.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 1:15PM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

LL, and the flowers are good in salads too!

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 1:19PM
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christinmk z5b eastern WA

Too funny lilyfinch! I was thinking about starting a similar thread (was going to entitle it 'Plant Prejudices'). Great minds must think alike ;-D

I am always doing it. There isn't any good reason for my not liking the plant except for looks or what it reminds me of (such as a lot of wildflowers/drought tolerant plants remind me of the "weeds" around here, lol).

But I am trying to get better with making snap judgements about plants without at least giving them a try. Most of the things listed below are things I have never much liked the look of but decided to try out this year...

Asclepias- butterfly weed. No good reason! Bought one last year to see if I could change my own mind about it. The golden orange of my 'Gay Butterflies' is a little on the garish side (like hot pink it isn't one of my fav colors!) but I am warming to it. Will admit that it is very useful, since it blooms at a time when everything is stressed from summer heat. Moved it this fall to a better spot so will see what it does this next year!

Arisaema- jack in the pulpit. Now I like weird-o plants, but this was a little out there for me. Maybe because the blooms are so unlike "typical" flowers? Or maybe because they remind me of peace lilies which I dislike, LOL! Anyhoo, I bought one this year to give it a whirl. My dad thought they were awesome looking and wanted me to grow one for him too;-)

Baptisia- false indogo. I have had a prejudice against this plant for a long time! Stayed away from it because I thought it was a mass of foliage that would take up to much space in the garden and not bloom long enough. Bought a 'Purple Smoke' this spring and look forward to it proving how wrong I was about it ;-) Have to say I already like the foliage on it...

Belamcanda- blackberry lily. Now to be fair, I haven't had the greatest luck growing plants of this. My dislike is specifically against the cultivar 'Hello Yellow'. Gosh what an ugly color. It was a flat, monochrome golden yellow.

Goodness, I guess I do have a lot of plant prejudices! Lol.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 1:34PM
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Lilyfinch z7 mid tn

Im glad im not the only one who cant love every plant! Secretly i also really dont care for black eyed susans, the foilage looks so crispy all the time!

Gardenweed, my mom gave me white as well and thats a good filler i could have used! I cant believe im going to have to buy plants i couldnt wait to get rid of!

Cmk, I have a tiny baptisia plant, with only 6 inches of elbow room. Last spring i saw a giant one in full bloom, just beautiful! But it was the size of a large hydrangea and up to my chest! it may be moving from my garden as well.

countrycarolyn, i feel that way about red and orange and most yellow! the only reds that squeezed into my garden are the red of 2 roses i have.
Grandmachris, i always thought they weren't that great either, but the faint scent is so pretty! Next year ill be planting it near roses.
LL, my mom has a knack for growing nasturtiums, but i dont. Mine just sprawled everywhere. Hers filled in so nicely! I didnt know they repelled some bugs, very helpful!

There is one plant that i swear will never ever ever be in my garden, that is yucca. I even told my best friend i never want a plant from her bed that has yucca in it just in case theres a tagalong! lol

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 2:33PM
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I have to say I was really prejudiced against RED flowers. I love roses, but only pink please. No red peonies, hollyhock, or aster. Ever. There was a lot of (icky) red monarda in some unkempt beds against the back stone wall when I bought my house. It's an eager spreader, but I was ready to take it on and rip it out -- and then the hummingbirds came. I fell in love with my hummingbirds -- who come every year and make a nest in the overgrown honeysuckle behind the stone wall. They just love those red monarda. They'll take my Jacob Cline too, but only as second best. So I succumbed -- I grow cardinal climber for them, and buy dark red pentas. I now have a Niobe clematis, and I love it -- the hummers don't seem so interested in that. So that is just me broadening in scope. See -- we ARE capable of change! And funny, everyone seems to have the same liatris story. I felt exactly the same as you lilyfinch, but I've broadened, and I love the contrast in form that liatris (dark pink) provides.

Also, I always petty much hated marigolds. But my husband lived for many years in India, where he says they grow as big as dinner plates. They always remind him of a place he loved, so I've broadened to feel (somewhat more)appreciative of them. And they do look great with my favorite color PINK.

Someone should start a thread about flowers we love because someone close loved them. But that's OT.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 7:16PM
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Thyme2dig NH Zone 5

I think the one plant that I really don't want in my garden and my mom has been trying to convert me for about 15 years is Myosotis forget me not. 'Forget me YES' is how it stands in my garden. There is just something about that blue. I really like blue, just not THAT blue. I'm sure at some point my mom will bring some to me and I'll be converted but as of yet I don't want any.

Another plant I'm struggling with is Spiderwort. The foliage looks so messy to me but I've been tempted to try it. It may make it into my garden someday.

LF, I secretly pull the black eyed susans out of my gardens and throw them in with the pulled weeds! Shhhh...don't tell the other gardeners!

Lucia, I'm with you on the marigolds. I think I never liked them because so many people tend to line them up in neat little rows and that is not my style of gardening. However, I've been doing lettuce in window boxes and have been mixing in marigolds and I have to say I really like them a lot. Even collected seeds from them this year.

In terms of colors I always stuck with cool colors and steered clear of hots. When I started the backyard I wanted to make that a really hot area since it is further away from the house. I have been really happy picking out yellows, oranges and reds for the backyard and happy with the results. I hadn't put in too many perennials this year but I'm sure next year I'll be searching out the hot ones and expanding my horizons.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2010 at 7:58PM
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I always say yucca is yucky, lol. I will never grow that plant, people around here plant it in all kinds of spots, yuck yuck yuck.

I do not like cannas either, I eradicated a few spots that had them when I moved in. There were still a few spots that had them, so I let them grow. The foliage that year was awesome, leaves as long as my arm, I feel in love with the foliage. The next year I had a horrible attack of japanese beetles, well they tore those cannas up. Next year same thing when the jb's weren't attacking anything else. So this year I am getting rid of all of them. Beautiful foliage, but I can't get it out of my head what they looked like after the jb visit.

Oh and I use to not like lantana, because of the foliage. When I found out some are hardy here, and how long they bloomed I quickly changed my mind.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2010 at 9:26AM
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shellva(Camden 7b/8a)

I have never liked anything orange and I've never liked sedums. This past growing season has changed all that. I had planted a clump of butterfly weed I grew from seed that was orange but georgous; I think it helped that it was planted with complimentary plants too. Butterflies galore.

Then my husband and I went to a neighborhood this fall where the inhabitants were all a little coo coo for sedums. Butterflies and honey bees galore. I now have 3 cuttings growing in my kitchen window and I purchased a plant. The bought plant had so many butterflies on it, definitely a keeper.

If a plant attracts butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds, it earns my respect very quickly!

Oh, and for anyone else out there who can't wrap their mind around the color orange in the garden, just check out hosenemisis's "my garden is peaking" post over in the cottage garden galary. Grant it, not the garish orange of butterfly weed but still a good example of how shades of orange can be used to very pretty effect in the garden.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 6:46AM
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pippi21(Z7 Silver Spring, Md.)

I am not fond of orange or brown at all, yet I have butterfly weed seeds on my Wish List this year. I'm not just a foliage person..but in other people's photos, they blend in..foliage alone seems to have no purpose in the gardens in my mind..Zinnias is one of my husband's favorite flowers and I planted them to satisfy him this year and they were beautiful but I should have planted them towards the back of the bed as they got quite tall..need to learn to read those pkgs. better. I've got my eye on some red zinnias in a book..I do not Autumn Joy sedum but now they have come out with so many new colors of it. I'm sure there are more that I don't like..and have changed my mind about, but I'll have to think about those later. Sr. Moment!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 8:35AM
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CMK - Baptisia is one I've loved consistently, will always make room for and never been on the fence about:

    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 10:14AM
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Lilyfinch z7 mid tn

Pippi, i also had trouble with giant zinnias! they took over a bed that i thought theyd be a nice filler. whoops!

Shellva, i have a garden friend who loves sedums too! I agree that they attract alot but they havent won me over yet. I bought and planted a butterfly weed plant the year before. This past year in its spot grew a look alike but it kept getting taller and taller and my neighbor finaly told me it was no milkweed, just a random weed! I was so dissapointed. Ill try again next year.

Gardenweed, what a great picture! The shade of violet blue is so pretty!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 10:38AM
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It's comforting to see others who aren't fond of orange in the garden at all, and particular about reds and yellows. And I'm sure yucca has its place ... but not in my garden.

I think that "right plant, right place" is, once again, the operative phrase. The placement of the plant with its neighbors can make a world of difference.

I never much liked anemones, but have seen a lovely planting of these early spring bloomers in a local park and now feel differently about them. And the Japanese anemone ... well, most of the trees here have lost nearly all their leaves but a. 'Windswept' is still blooming her little heart out. Gotta love that!

BTW, I love baptisia for the greens and pods for fall arrangements as much as for the summer flowers. Great plant, and so undemanding.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 11:32AM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

I'm always surprised at how many people don't like orange in the garden. I guess my focus is more on what attracts what and I don't worry too much about color combos. My favorite orange flower is Mexican Flame vine. The butterlies love it and the vines look attractive well into the fall.

I tried sedum again this year, but once again it failed to impress. I've yanked most of the plants.

Same experience with those giant zinnias. I'm sticking to the shorter versions next year. Psycho cosmos get pretty tall too, but they provide such a beautiful backdrop and they're easier to manage than the zinnias.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 11:34AM
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christinmk z5b eastern WA

That is a great pic gardenweed, thanks for showing. My poor 'Purple Smoke', I was unsure where to put it and ended up moving it twice this year! Finally found the perfect spot for it behind my 'Mardi Gras' Helenium. Not sure of the exact bloom time for Baptisia, but am hoping it sticks around long enough for the first blooming of the Helenium in early summer. Might be a nice combo if it does!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 1:31PM
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CMK - glad you liked the photo. My 2010 garden notes say my baptisia bloomed May 12 this year and that "many seedpods formed by 6/12." I don't grow helenium but would guess the baptisia blooms too early for them to march in step. The 'Chandelier' pale yellow lupine growing a few feet from the baptisia bloomed May 22 so that's a possible combo.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2010 at 6:56AM
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christinmk z5b eastern WA

Thanks for the info gardenweed. Actually, my 'Mardi Gras' starts blooming early summer (July, sometimes last week of June depending). Guess the Baptisia will bloom by itself, which is okay with me too ;-)

Don't you just love the color of 'Chandelier'? I love pale/butter yellow- honestly I could have a whole garden that color!

    Bookmark   November 28, 2010 at 12:59PM
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Ooh - love that baptisia photo! That's one I wanted for a while before I planted it.

For me, hostas were a big turnoff for a long time. Too many rows of identical scrawny hostas - blech. But, then I discovered the big ones. I finally have a few, but they don't seem to love me, either - I've lost a few. The others seem to be fine, however.

I still haven't found the liatris love - I wonder if that is next?

    Bookmark   November 30, 2010 at 9:18PM
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Narcissi are a new love, I received many complements from the two rows of white Narcissi along my sidewalk that I planted in September and bloomed this November, planted with Alyssium. I miss the snow in my native P.N.W. now that I live in a snowless part of California and my white garden is my white garden is to mimic snow.


    Bookmark   February 3, 2011 at 5:18PM
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Lilies (hated the foliage) and ANYTHING orange. Now I love both.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2011 at 11:05AM
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newbiehavinfun(7a - Southern NJ)

Columbine. I'll admit that I'm still not a fan of the multi-colored variety, but I've overcome my prejudice in steps. First Nora Barlow, then a lovely tall yellow one (with spurs!) that floated seed over from my neighbor's yard.

I will never get over my hatred (yes, I feel that strongly about it) of yucca. It's been such a trial killing the ones that we inherited when we moved here. The only thing that worked (and I'm not entirely sure that the yucca isn't still seething below the surface) was painting concentrated RoundUp on every leaf, front and back. With the first clump (there are--hopefully WERE--several in our yard) we tried digging up the entire root. We got about four feet deep by four feet wide by eight feet long, thought we got it all and then filled in with new soil and planted flowers...and then the baby yuccas started popping up amongst my newly planted bed. One even cleverly disguised itself amongst daylily foliage and I didn't catch it until it was over a foot tall. So in that bed I am continually pulling up yucca babies. The neighbors across the street have a few clumps in their yard, and when it flowers I am seriously tempted to sneak over there in the middle of the night and clip the flower stem before it's pollinated so seed doesn't float over. Die, yucca, die. Please?

    Bookmark   February 4, 2011 at 3:35PM
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