Intelligent Rhythm in the Garden

The idea that we are living within a world swirling with unseen energies is not new.  The Chinese idea of Tao comes closest to what mystics, tribal peoples and modern day physicists explain as the basis of all life.   The Tao, as Alan Watts writes, is not God “in the sense of ruler, monarch, commander, architect and maker of the universe,” but an “intelligent rhythm” (Watts, “Tao: the Watercourse Way” P 40):
“The great Tao flows [also “floats” and “drifts”] everywhere To the left and to the right, All things depend upon it to exist, And it does not abandon them. To its accomplishments it lays no claim. It loves and nourishes all things, but does not lord it over them.   A flourishing garden spotlights this intelligent rhythm and is our everyday “repository of life …….with no claim to its accomplishments”.  Alan Watts uses a watercourse as his principal metaphor for the Tao.       A stream, he says, cannot be held in a bucket and such is the nature of the Tao, or energy that lies within and aro…

Pleasure in the Pathless Woods

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods, 
There is a rapture on the lonely shore, 
There is society, where none intrudes, 
By the deep sea, and music in its roar: 


Childe Harold, Canto iv, Verse 178

by Lord Byron

Bubbling Urns - A Summertime Joy

Bubbling Urns - A Summertime Joy a fun water feature !
Its 92 degrees outside right now. Sweltering. The air hangs like heavy drapes upon the landscape. There is no breeze. The garden quietly endures. So what can you do to lighten the oppressive atmosphere?

ADD A BUBBLING URN -  a recirculating water feature

Why do this? Because the sound of water and its dynamic presence ( ask the great Dr. Emoto) add life and energy to a stultifying summer garden... 
Bubbling urns and fountains bring sparkle to your garden. You can build a recirculating water fountain cheaply by buying parts in a hardware store or more expensively by going to a pond supplies vendor....I am not good at hardware so I buy kits.

Bubbling Urns are set atop an underground reservoir that keeps re-circulating the water. Once the urn fills with water, the water spills over into the underground basin, which pumps the water back up through the urn.
flavio website

There are many how-to do-it videos on You Tube..…

Penstemon Arabesque™ Red - 2014 AAS Flower Winner

Penstemon Arabesque™ Red - 2014 AAS Flower WinnerPenstemon Arabesque™ Red  is an exciting new hybrid perennial that has great vigor and flowers beautifully. No staking required. Loves heat. It’s striking red and white bicolor flowers are large and bell-shaped.  They grow 18 - 24 inches high.  They attract both hummingbirds and butterflies all summer. They come back every year. Arabesque loves full sun and  add height to the middle of the flower bed or in containers. Remove spent flowers to encourage continuous flowering. Zones 6-9. Penstemon are perfect in cottage gardens too. Sturdy and should be better known. When I was just starting out in the profession I had a French gardener boss who loved Penstemon We grew it from seed in the greenhouse....
other colors too!

' Penstemon barbatus 'Elfin Pink' with Nepeta 'Walker's Low'

Luscious Flowers for Your Garden!

Time to try some luscious flowers in a pot or in the are some for your consideration:

PEONY 'SORBET' (Paeonia lactiflora ‘Sorbet’)

The unusual pink and white 5-7" double blooms of this hybrid are  delectable! The fragrant flowers look amazing in early summer and the handsome foliage turns red in autumn.

These bushy plants grow up to 4' tall and require little care. Suitable for any climate and soil type. Space 36-48" apart.
Zones: 3-8    Light: Full Sun to Partial Shade
Deer tend to avoid.

LOLLIPOP HELENIUMHelenium puberoleum Round, chocolate-brown flower heads with rustic yellow and bronze highlights provide a bright display that blooms summer and lasts well into autumn. Globe-shaped blooms make a pretty contrast to vertical blades of Iris. Loves sun.
Zones: 4-9    Deer Resistant 


Bloom PeriodJune-JulySun ExposureSunSoil TypeAny with careHeight24 in.Bloom Size5 in.Highest AwardAll American Daylily Selectio…

Spring Mornings

Three is nothing as delightful as a clear, crisp morning in spring...I took this at the Everett Rock Garden at NY Botanical Garden. A must-see for Garden lovers.

'Lavender Mist' Meadow Rue

Thalictrum rochebrunianum
Lavender Mist Meadow Rue
Deer resistant perennial! This Japanese native has blue-green columbine-like foliage in spring and shoots up willowy purplish stalks that are 6-7’ tall. In July these burst intoairy cloudsof lavender-pink flowers with prominent soft-yellow anthers. 

It has a delicate bearing.  Its sprays of lilac flowers rise above shorter plants. Place at the back of a border; can withstand some shade; Intolerant of intense heat and humidity. Prefers rich, loamy soil. 
Best used in borders, meadows and naturalized areas. Plant in a group. Zones 5 - 9