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The Glory That Is June: GBBD, June 2022

June 16, 2022

Last week, I was visiting the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens with friends on a perfect June day when I got to chatting with a visitor from the Pacific Northwest. When she commented on the beautiful weather (blue skies, sunshine, soft breezes, and temperatures in the seventies), I said, “In my imagination, every June day in Maine is just like this.” I know, of course, that is not strictly true; June can have cool, rainy days and hot, humid days. Nevertheless, when I think of June, I think of long, glorious days and glorious flowers. front garden june 2022

front border year 2 mid-JuneJune is the month when my garden goes from having flowers blooming here and there to an early summer floral display. The front border, now in its second year, is lush with foliage and flowers of Allium ‘Globemaster’, Siberian irises, four varieties of hardy geraniums, three varieties of spiderwort (Tradescantia virginiana), and Lady’s mantle (Alchemilla mollis). The three Baptisia australis that I planted in this border a year ago were not well enough established yet to bloom this year. When they do, they will make the June display even more lushly floriferous.

purple smoke 2022 side slope baptisia and companions

Baptisia x ‘Purple Smoke’ is putting on a lush display on the side slope, where it is accompanied by the fading flowers of Amsonia tabernaemontana, and by blooms of peonies, Geranium x oxonianum, Geranium x canabrigiense ‘Biokovo,’ Tradescantia virginiana and Siberian irises.

walkway to patio mid-June 2022Many gardeners consider spiderwort too thuggish to be welcomed into the garden. In my garden, though, it provides big clumps of colorful blooms for much of the summer, including along the walkway to the patio. volunteer tradescantia 2022Although it does seed itself around enthusiastically, I don’t mind pulling it out where I don’t want it. I often wait to see the flower color on the volunteers (in shades of white, pink, purple and blue) before I decide on their fate. The intense magenta flower on this seedling that popped up in a hidden spot behind the peonies is a keeper.

side slope irises 2022The Siberian irises, which began flowering at the end of May, are now past their peak, but they are still putting on a good display on the side slope. This is another plant that self-sows readily in my garden, and the original varieties that I planted more than twenty years ago have now had their genes combined and recombined by the bees into a lovely range of colors.

Siberian irises 2022

Fragrant garden peonies 2022The peonies bloom later than the irises and are just hitting their stride. The first varieties that opened, in the fragrant garden, are still blooming; and the last varieties to bloom opened their first flowers today. In the fragrant garden, the flowers of peonies ‘Dr. Alexander Fleming,’ ‘Duchess de Nemours,’ and ‘Shirley Temple’ are accompanied by Dianthus gratianopolitanus ‘Firewitch,’ the first flush of roses, and the flowers of the dwarf mock orange (Philadelphus) ‘Snowbelle.’

Rosa Quietness Snowbelle

As glorious as I find this June display of flowers, these early summer blooms are just the opening movement of a garden symphony that will crescendo in the weeks to come. Buds on astilbes, goatsbeard, lavender and spirea will open soon; and they will be followed by the daylilies and all the flowers that join them in high summer. So much garden glory to look forward to!

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day is hosted by Carol Michel at May Dreams Gardens. Visit her blog to see what other gardeners have blooming this June.

17 Comments leave one →
  1. Pat Leuchtman permalink
    June 16, 2022 4:56 pm

    Your garden just gets more and more beautiful!

    • June 19, 2022 7:03 pm

      Thanks, Pat. At this stage of life, it would probably be wise to stop expanding the garden — but I just can’t help myself 😉 .

  2. June 16, 2022 11:03 pm

    Our schedule is completely different here. Although there is plenty of bloom for summer, much of the bloom is already finished, and the ground is dry, and even dusty. It is sort of what I expect from June though. I used to vacation in the Pacific Northwest in June, and found the spring like conditions to be strange, although pleasant.

    • June 19, 2022 7:05 pm

      Tony, I lived in southern California for a couple of years when I was in my twenties, and I never got used to the “strangeness” of the wet season/dry season climate there. I was happy to move back to New England and my familiar four seasons.

      • June 19, 2022 11:49 pm

        We have four seasons also. It just takes two years to get through all four of them.

  3. Ellen Bear permalink
    June 17, 2022 6:09 am

    So glorious 😊😊

    • June 19, 2022 7:06 pm

      Thanks, Ellen, and thanks for hosting me on Tuesday. I’m glad we could finally make it work!

  4. sallysmom permalink
    June 17, 2022 7:51 am

    Everything is so pretty.

    • June 19, 2022 7:07 pm

      Thank you. There’s a freshness and softness to the early summer garden that I find particularly lovely.

  5. June 17, 2022 5:49 pm

    I am SO envious of the peonies. Your thoughtful approach to creating your garden is really paying dividends now, Jean. I’m glad the weather is good and you can fully enjoy it.

    • June 19, 2022 6:00 pm

      It looks such a happy place!

    • June 19, 2022 7:10 pm

      Kris, Just as I always envy your agapanthus. The peonies are actually a short-lived beauty, vulnerable to both heavy rains (which we have had some of since they began to bloom) and heat (which, happily, we have avoided thus far). I enjoy them most when I cut them and bring them into the house and let their wonderful fragrances fill a room.

  6. June 28, 2022 6:41 am

    That’s amazing, Jean! I’m so jealous of how your plants are all standing upright, neat and flowering well. I’ve wanted Baptisia, but didn’t think it would do well here with our wet and cold weather (esp. in winter). Maybe I should try it out?

    • June 28, 2022 12:43 pm

      Sunil, Baptisia is a lovely plant. Baptisia australis and its cultivars certainly don’t mind the cold, but they do prefer well-drained soil and would probably be unhappy if their feet were wet all winter.

  7. permalink
    June 30, 2022 10:34 pm

    Lovely array of June blooms! I am fascinated by the spiderwort family. Need to learn more about them! Jan

    Janet M. Powers

    “I object to violence because when it appears to do good,

    the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.”

    • July 12, 2022 5:28 pm

      Jan, Here are a few things to consider before you invite spiderwort into your garden:
      (1) They are not very heat tolerant. In my cool Maine garden, they bloom for much of the summer; but further south, they tend to bloom in late spring and then go dormant in the summer heat. (You can cut them back to the ground then, and they will often put up new growth and bloom again in the fall.)
      (2) Because they don’t like heat, the flowers tend to be at their best in the morning and to close up as the day heats up.
      (3) The plants tend to flop open from the center as the garden season progresses. I usually put peony hoops around them for support.
      (4) They self-sow rampantly, and you will have little spiderwort seedlings popping up in unlikely places. To remove them, you need to dig out their roots (which look a lot like scallions).

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