Limelight and Quick Fire make great companions!

ostrich(3a AB)August 7, 2009

I love how the lime blooms of my Limelight go with the pale pink blooms of my Quick Fire:

Also, the lacey blooms of QF are quite different from the conical blooms of the Limelight. So that makes a nice contrast.

Ditas, this photo also gives you a better sense of scale for my LL and QF.

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Great picture!
I assume this is just the left half of the bed you was creating couple of years ago with crabapple in a center.
Could you show the whole thing to see how you balanced left and right sides of it?
If I recall correctly Black Lace sambucus was there as well. Correct? If so, I'd like to see it.
Is it a weigela 'My Monet' in a lower right corner?

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 11:07PM
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Oh Ostrich - how beautiful!!! Â;) You redid your 'Island' or is this another one? I love it ... thanks for sharing!!!

Is that Little Spire, peeking at the right?

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 11:15PM
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ostrich(3a AB)

Thanks, George!

I am so impressed by you - not only do you have good eyes, you also have a super memory too! How do you remember all these details!? Yes, I did have a Sambucus Blacklace in the space behind QF. However, it was rather poorly balanced, so I moved it to the far right end of this bed, and now it is looking great there. Much more balanced that way. I have also moved the Ninebark Summer Wine to where the Sambucus Blacklace was, and it is now doing well there too.

Yes, that is a weigela My Monet. Its foliage is just absolutely amazing! Very, very pretty indeed.

I cannot believe that I didn't take a shot of the entire bed this evening! I will do that when I have a chance again this weekend.

Thanks again!

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 11:18PM
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ostrich(3a AB)

Oh Ditas, I guess we posted at around the same time! :-)

Thank you! Yes, this is the same island, but just a different shot. Also, it is now blooming much better than before. I did move things a little bit there, and planted many, many more perennials there since last year.

Ditas, that is indeed a Little Spires Russian Sage. I love that thing! It is so very pretty. The only thing is, my bed is just a little rich and moist for its liking, so it flops over a little bit. Still, I like it so much that I will just keep it there!!!

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 11:22PM
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I'm approaching the point when I clearly remember conversations happened years ago and still can't figure out where did I put my glasses after five minutes passes :-)

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 11:52PM
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ostrich(3a AB)

Good morning, George! You are too funny about memory.... doesn't that happen to ALL of us???!!! Sigh...

Anyway, here's a pic that I took just now:

As you see, on the right hand side, I have the Sambucus Black Lace and then the Pinky Winky in the background - the Sambucus is not as full as I might want it to be, but it's OK, because it's probably still recovering a little bit from the brutal transplantation that I inflicted on her last fall!!! The PW is also rather small due to the "severe pruning" by those ridiculous Bambi earlier this year. Around them, I have lots of perennials. I think that overall, the balance is much better than before the "shrub musical chairs" that I played last fall!

My only question now is: should I prune off those lowest branches of the small crabapple tree, to allow more room for the other plants surrounding her, and to promote more top growth?

    Bookmark   August 8, 2009 at 7:42AM
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G'morning , again, absolutely awesome Ostrich! - What variety of Crab A did you plant? I planted a Royal Raindrop in '06 (in a sm island I created at the time) and already I had to raise him a bit ... site does not have an even exposure to sun unlike yours so one arm was reaching out a bit more.

I seem to remember a Peony some where there, did you take her out or is she in the back?

Enjoy your day out there!!! Â;)

    Bookmark   August 8, 2009 at 9:30AM
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Re: crabapple pruning.
I'd say, yes. Not now, but in a spring.
If you'll remember (memory, memory!) make a picture from the same point in a winter, when all perennial stuff(noise) will be gone and that picture will serve you as a good structural reference point for the next year.
I like your island very much, but still think that it lucks strong vertical evergreen accent at the lower point (where the sambucus is).
Just for a moment try to imagine Picea pungens 'Fastigiata' (blue) or even blue Atlas cedar (if hardy) instead of it and you'll see what I see :-))

    Bookmark   August 8, 2009 at 9:31AM
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OMG gorgeous island! Please post a photo of the view from the other side, it would be very instructional. I'm mostly wanting a peek at your Summer Wine, mine are framing my tall front steps (typical Chicago suburb cement steps with iron railings)and I'm curious how much room there is in your bed. They get pretty big. I wish I could get a bed shape like that, even with the hose it never looks as good once its cut out as yours does.

I don't think you need to trim the crabapple at all. What cultivar is it? It looks perfectly balanced to me, and more leaves mean faster growth, no matter what anyone else says, LOL. I asked an arborist I know about my "Charlie Brown" Prairiefire and he said to keep as many branches on it for as long as possible, for that reason (quick growth).

George, Sambucus is a woody, and conifers don't always play well with others, so how about a miniature bird's nest spruce at its feet instead? Just for contrast in foliage texture and color, and to satisfy that "winter interest" craving? A true miniature, so that it doesn't take up too much space, anywhere it touches an herbaceous plant it will die. IMO the vertical evergreen is way overdone, and would certainly spoil the billowly look of these selections. Just another opinion, please don't take offense.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2009 at 11:46AM
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cyn427(z7aN. VA)

I agree with prairiegirl about not pruning the crabapple. That is a wonderful garden-very, very pretty. Cynthia

    Bookmark   August 8, 2009 at 1:57PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

Love that island bed. So wish I had room for one. Was drooling over Quick Fire and Limelight and Pinky Winky this morning at local nursery but simply do not have room.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2009 at 7:29PM
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Since you guys are familiar with quick fire, would you mind taking a look at the pictures in this link and tell me if you think this shrub is quickfire? I bought it unmarked at the greenhouse and I can't find anyone who can give me a positive ID on it. If it's not QF do you know what it is? Thanks!

Here is a link that might be useful: What Hydrangea is this?

    Bookmark   August 8, 2009 at 11:45PM
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ostrich(3a AB)

Thanks everyone! George, I don't think I have room for a vertical evergreen, but I will look into it... thanks for your suggestion!

Prairiegirl, the crabapple is a Sugar Tyme. So it is not supposed to be huge... but we shall see! :-)

I took a photo of the bed from the driveway, and here it is:

However, now that I read your message again, did you mean taking the photo from my neighbor's side? Oops... perhaps I misunderstood!!! Please let me know...

    Bookmark   August 10, 2009 at 9:26PM
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Ostrich, Your bed is beautiful and so full. I have hopes that my island bed will look as good in a few years. I don't have any Russian Sage yet, but I keep looking at how yours stands out. I may have to squeeze some in.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 7:17PM
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ostrich(3a AB)

macgyver, believe it or not, this is only the 2nd year that I have this island, and many of the perennials were only planted last summer/fall!!! So they do fill in quickly and yours will look good too soon!

Oh yes, you gotta get some Russian Sage - it's such a wonderful, beautiful and carefree plant! Love the scent too. BTW, I have Little Spires, which is the dwarf and it is much more manageable than the regular one.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 9:45PM
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"I don't think I have room for a vertical evergreen..."

Yes, you a place where Blacklace is right now.
And I could make a bet that in a couple of years you'll be thinking about my suggestion again when sambucus start swamping all around itself.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 11:25PM
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Hi Ostrich - I got my Little Spire in '05, he was only a dwarf for a couple of years ... seems to grow taller each year. He is in f/s, so it's not like he is reaching for the sun. I have the regular one as well in a different site, Little Spire is almost as tall. It must be my soil ... like Annabelle is taller than many I see around! LOL

BTW my LS is also a prolific seeder, I've been plucking tinee Spires around the area. I'm keeping him where he is for his lovely scent!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2009 at 12:10AM
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ostrich, thanks for posting another pic, truly virtual touring at it's finest! But yes, I did mean the other other side, LOL.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2009 at 9:40AM
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