Need Ideas Please for a Delware Memorial Garden

gnomey(7b SC zip296)July 7, 2008


My uncle Mel passed away from bone cancer on June 10 and my aunt told me today that she would like to plant a special memorial garden in the corner where his golf statue is. It is a sunny area in Georgetown, Delaware.

I'm in South Carolina and will be sending some plants up there for this project which is close to my heart. I am zone 7b and they are zone 7 and you would think that would be very similar, but often my aunt loses plants that I find completely hardy here in South Carolina.

So I am asking for help here, I hope no one minds. I have some Casablanca lilies and blue plumbago in mind to send, but can you give me some ideas please as to what you might plant in an area to honor one of the most important people in your life? I seem to be coming up short of ideas and I really want to contribute in a nice way because this man did so much for everyone, especially my family.

The area, of course will be well cared for by my aunt, but I don't want to make things too difficult for her, so I don't want to include plants that may be borderline invasive or anything. She has some angel trumpets (brugmansia) that she grows in pots and takes in for the winter. Could she be growing these in the ground there?

Thanks in advance for any help on this special project. We want to choose plants that work together well for a long display, and that's my shortcoming. If we could put things together so that it would have three seasons of interest that would be fantastic.. but I'm stuck at the lilies and plumbago.. which I'm not even sure if it is hardy there.

Any ideas are welcome. :)


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scausey(z6/7 MD)

How about some early spring bulbs (crocus, hyacinth, Dutch iris) and then some later daffodils. Then you could use bearded irises and daylilies; perhaps some euphorbia griffithi for spring color and later foliage interest. Those would all be easy to care for and not particularly invasive. There's so much to choose from! Good luck.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 9:34AM
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annebert(6b/7a MD)


Sorry you lost your uncle - sounds like he was special to you.

Brugmansias will not overwinter there. Lilies and plumbago will be fine. You could plant spring bulbs as Susan suggested and plumbago will come up and bloom after them. Peonies will do fine and should bloom in May. Then how about some purple coneflower for a little later. If you plant cosmos, they will also flower in early summer through summer into fall and should self-seed. Asters will bloom into the fall.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 3:59PM
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gardengranma(6a/6b MD)

I have planted several memorial gardens for close relatives. I like Siberian Iris, Asiatic Lilies (star gazers), peonies (single last through rain) knock-out roses, hydrangea (lace caps), hardy hibuscus, and mums. I would also stress to plant three of whatever is chosen (except for the rose and hydrangea or any other bush) so that it looks good from the very beginning. A small waterfeature (may be a waterfall without a pond) could also be very nice. My whole garden is a meorial garden to the partner who designed its beginning. he wloved it then and he'd be crazy about it now.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2008 at 5:03PM
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gnomey(7b SC zip296)

Thank you all for your help.

Here is what my list looks like now:


grape hyacinth
jonquils (these are very special to me because my neighbor who passed away in November grew them)
Siberian Iris 'Super Ego'
dianthus firewitch
flag iris
daylilies (have a seedling that will be named after him and one called 'Big Smile')
Casa Blanca lilies
blue plumbago
white peony
cosmos (seeds)
Anemone 'Honorine Jorbert'

will get:

dutch iris
asiatic lilies
lacecap hydrangea (have a blue one I can root)
knockout rose
hardy hibiscus (may have seeds)
mums (can root 'October Pinks' given to me by another neighbor who passed away from leukemia)

I had never heard of Euphorbia griffithii before, it definitely looks nice.

Would Eucomis 'Sparkling Burgundy' be hardy there? This garden is in Georgetown, De.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2008 at 10:00PM
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msmeliss58(Z7 Delaware)

I agree with the hydrangea, I've had great luck w/ them here in Milford, DE and Hosta's of course.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2008 at 10:49AM
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