Posts Tagged ‘Coreopsis Mayfield Giant’


For garden colour that spans the seasons from spring to fall, you can’t beat annuals. If you purchase pre-started plantlets, they are often blooming when you plant them and continue unabated until frost ends their year. Cleome, cosmos, and portulaca are all still going strong in my garden. It is the nature of perennials to have a shorter bloom season. Unlike annuals, which have one glorious summer to fulfill their mandate, perennials have several years, sometimes many years, and must direct some of their energy to preparing for the winter ahead.


Nevertheless, the two species of coreopsis represented in my garden came very close to matching the performance of annuals. The winner of this year’s “All Summer Long” bloom award goes to Coreopsis grandiflora “Mayfield Giant”, which put on a marvellous show. Its brilliant golden-yellow flowers have lit up the border all summer and are still blooming as we head into October.


The runner-up prize goes to the closely related Coreopsis verticillata “Moonbeam”. This little sweetheart, with its narrow leaves, has an airy presence and makes an excellent filler plant between larger perennials. Its prolific pale-yellow blooms compliment just about any other plant it is partnered with.


While some of the echinaceas, or coneflowers, have been content with a modest bloom season, some species have out-bloomed both their cousins and my expectations. One of the best has been Echinacea “Green Jewel”. Its interesting green-hued flowers are still going strong.


The roses that I planted midseason have settled in well. I didn’t deadhead them, with the hope of encouraging them to stop blooming and concentrate on rooting. Rosa Radcor ‘Knock Out Rainbow’ wasn’t to be dissuaded, however, and is still blooming nicely.


The butterfly bush, Buddleia hybrid “Honeycomb” hasn’t been too impressive. It struggles in this hardiness zone. Still, I have to give it credit for persistence. It is still blooming and feeding the bees.


In the spring, I planted some very small seedlings of two varieties of agastache (ag-ah-STAK-ee as per Fine Gardening magazine). I was worried that after a long summer of struggling, they wouldn’t survive the winter. However, both have come along in the last few weeks of summer, even putting out some flower stalks, so maybe they’ll make it to next year and come back stronger. Shown above is Agastache barberi ‘Tutti Frutti’ and below is Agastache aurantiaca “Coronado Red”, not really red at all, but a soft orange.


I’ll close with this little sweetheart, Dianthus “Raspberry Swirl”. Like the agastache, it has spent the summer getting settled and is just now putting out a few flowers, way behind its normal blooming time. Worth the wait, though, don’t you think?


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Coreopsis "Mayfield Giant"

It’s been raining this morning, a light drizzle after a night of steady rain. The plants sure appreciated it. I appreciate not having to worry about watering some of my smaller newbie plants who can’t make it on their own yet. For the most part, I rarely to never water my garden and just count on a layer of mulch to keep the ground moist. But I’ve planted quite a few new babies this spring and they still require a bit of attention.

Tradescantia "Sweet Kate"

As many of these plants are still in their spindly, adolescent stage, their overall garden impact is limited, but I thought I’d share a few photos that I took as I strolled around the garden this morning when the rain let up, checking on my little charges. The opening photo is of a coreopsis (Tickseed) that I planted last fall. It overwintered well and is putting on a nice display of arching stems with brilliant sun-gold flowers. This variety is “Mayfield Giant”. I also have a the pretty pale yellow coreopsis “Moonbeam” planted here and there amongst bigger perennials. I’m fond of its dainty flowers and ferny foliage.

Above is the tradescantia (Spiderwort) “Sweet Kate”. I brought it with me from my former garden. It needs a better location here, but is doing well. The contrast between the lime green leaves and the dark purple-blue flowers is striking.

Campanula "Purple Sensation"

In gardening books, there are often chapters about how to plan the layout of your garden. I have a general “plan” for my garden, but don’t feel restricted by rational decision-making. I am happy to indulge spur-of-the-moment whims and serendipitous garden centre finds. One of these was the campanula “Purple Sensation”, above (Bellflower). It’s pendulous bell-shaped flowers charmed me. I had to bring this plant home with me and find a space for it in the garden.

Veronica spicata "Purplicious"

This little veronica (Speedwell) is new this year. It has settled in nicely and I’m very pleased with it. So far,I like the shade of its blooms and nice form better than those of my other veronica, “Sightseeing Mix”. Behind the veronica, you can see a fennel plant, which I grow to attract Black Swallowtail butterflies, and the fans of a few new daylilies.

Alchemilla mollis (Lady's Mantle)

I have a few Alchemilla mollis (Lady’s Mantle) growing with a nepeta (catmint). The latter is just beginning to fill out, but the Lady’s Mantle is doing well. Later in the season, this plant puts out stems of frothy greeny-yellow flowers, but the leaves themselves are interesting in the way they capture drops of water.

Gaura "Karalee Petite"

This little gaura is another plant that grabbed my attention at a garden centre and came home with me. It’s under a foot tall and covered with pretty pinkish blooms, very charming.

I’ll close with an echinacea. In the last few years, an amazing number of new cultivars of coneflower have arrived on the market. I invested in a half-dozen different varieties to try out. I also have the tried-and-true “Magnus”. A few of the echinacea are just starting to bloom. Below is echinacea purpurea “Virgin”.

Echinacea purpurea "Virgin"

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