I have often mentioned how red was my least favorite color among garden flowers. But there are beginning to be more and more times when I eat my own words, and that time is now. Sometimes red gives that little pop of color which just brings the whole garden to life.
Whereas spring in the front courtyard is mainly about the blues, whites and yellows, fall is mainly about the the varied greens of the grasses and other textured plants. The salvia, Salvia greggii, dormant all summer, spring into life. One of those straggly plants that every year I think of removing until now. Here, straggly looks better than bushy as their arching branches reach over the rocks.
In another corner of this garden the same is true of the firecracker fern. I have seen magnificent displays of this plant when grown in good soil but mine stays rather short and retiring until rain and cooler temperatures bring out the bloom.
Under the shade of the Lady Banks rose, dormant all summer, the shy and retiring Oxblood lilies, Rhodophiala bifida, respond to a good soaking rain by sending up their naked blooms. And what a show they put on this year.
And in the back garden there are the annual strawberry gomphrena, Gomphrena globosa and spider zinnia, Zinnia tenuifolia, and they are red too. Although they usually reseed each year I still save save seeds just in case we have an unusually hard winter.
Another red flowering plant that will be moved into the garage for winter is the Japanes Lantern hibiscus, Hibiscus schizopetalus. It is certainly worthy of a home in the entry garden, if only for its exotic frilled bloom.
Look how deep the color is on the blanket flower, Gaillardia pulchella. Cooler nights are responsible for the depth of color. All flowers seem to take on more color during the fall.
Yes. Red is good.
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