Planting/Design Help? Pretty Please?
I live in a 100 year old house in urban St. Paul--Cathedral Hill, close to the Cathedral. The house is condos. I have slowly been carving out garden area and doing some planting in the small back yard. One area has me baffled however. Would any of your Minnesota nice people be able to offer suggestions?
The area is about 14' long and 2 1/2' deep. It is south facing and borders on the house. Because of the house eaves, it misses the rainfall. I do water when I can, but the area is typically dry and hot: it gets the full brunt of the sun.
Right now, as you see in the photos, there is a Wine and Roses Weiglia (sp?--it is about 4' tall) in the center. On each end is a badly flopping and quite ugly, but healthy, salvia (I don't know what kind). Next to the salvia on the left is a daylily that blooms only briefly, and next to the salvia on the right is bee balm that also bloomed once this summer. I'd like to keep the Weiglia because it is healthy and blooms beautifully in spring/early summer. I can't stand the floppy salvia, and nothing else I've tried (the daylily,the bee balm, purple coneflower) has worked. I'd like to pull everything out except the Weiglia.
Any recommendations for very hardy, drought resistant, yet pretty perennials? I keep envisioning what I've already tried and failed at: a salvia on both ends, with daylilies (maybe stella d'oro would bloom more?) next to them. Is there a non-flopping type of salvia? Another way to go would be a small fir or evergreen to "anchor" each side. I also wonder if peonies would work.
Basically, I'm clueless. What would you do with this area? Any suggestions would be most welcome! Thanks.