Mid Atlantic Gardens - Yours, Ours and Theirs forum: Shade Gardens #5~July/August 2011

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luvsgrtdanes
Jul 29, 2011 3:36 PM CST
Name: Ronnie
Southeastern PA~Zone 6
I Love MAM~So Happy Together
We came from here http://cubits.org/MidAtlanticMusings/thread/view/57327/#new_...

Now that we are in the heat of the summer how are your shade gardens doing?
Please post pics and let us know how your keeping up.

Photo Courtesy of Stormy
Thumb of 2011-07-29/luvsgrtdanes/9761a5
It happens in a flash, but the memory of it last forever. It can not be borrowed or stolen, and it is of no earthly good until it is given away. So if in your hurry you meet someone who is too weary to smile, leave him one of yours, for no one needs a smile quite as much as he who has none to give...

Imagestormyla
Jul 29, 2011 3:49 PM CST
Name: Stormy
Valley Forge Pa
I Love MAM ~ So Happy Together
Thanks for the new thread Ronnie! Big Grin
Imagesheryl
Jul 29, 2011 5:09 PM CST
Name: Sheryl
Middle Tennessee, 6b
Wow, Ronnie - you are the queen of the new threads, today. Thanks!

Stormy, you know that Actaea is the new designation for Cimicifuga, right?
Imagestormyla
Jul 29, 2011 5:27 PM CST
Name: Stormy
Valley Forge Pa
I Love MAM ~ So Happy Together
Oh Yeah, That's right. Thanks Sheryl! I only tried them once and could not get them to grow past one season. Did you get the one with the chocolate brown stems?
Imagesheryl
Jul 29, 2011 7:26 PM CST
Name: Sheryl
Middle Tennessee, 6b
I believe so. Take a look if you're curious: http://www.terranovanurseries.com/gardeners/actaeablacknegli...
Imagestormyla
Jul 29, 2011 7:45 PM CST
Name: Stormy
Valley Forge Pa
I Love MAM ~ So Happy Together
The one that I had was called either black or chocolate something or other, but it wasn't that one.

I like the shape of the leaves on that one.
ImageNJBob
Jul 29, 2011 7:59 PM CST
Name: Bob
Vernon N.J.
I also had the chocolate one, got 3 years out of it but got smaller each year. A lot of places sell them as shade plants, but if they don't get decent sun they turn green.
Imagestormyla
Jul 29, 2011 8:10 PM CST
Name: Stormy
Valley Forge Pa
I Love MAM ~ So Happy Together
Glad to hear that it wasn't just me Bob. RCN/Deb has some beautiful ones. I don't know what her secret is with them.

She also has one of the most beautiful stands of Solomon's Seal I've ever seen. I grow the variegated fragrant one in several different spots. It is thriving but is not increasing rapidly at all.
ImageNJBob
Jul 30, 2011 1:19 PM CST
Name: Bob
Vernon N.J.
Thumb of 2011-07-30/NJBob/f1c591
The Hosta section of the garden.
Imagesheryl
Jul 30, 2011 5:24 PM CST
Name: Sheryl
Middle Tennessee, 6b
Wow, very nice! How many years have you been working on that one, Bob?
Imagesheryl
Jul 30, 2011 5:31 PM CST
Name: Sheryl
Middle Tennessee, 6b
Re: Actaeas - well, TNN's site suggests giving it more sun and more water for best coloration. It will get *some* direct light during the day, so we'll see. I'm not real big on watering plants, so if it doesn't thrive, it might be a no-go for me.
ImageNJBob
Jul 30, 2011 7:42 PM CST
Name: Bob
Vernon N.J.
I think this is the 6th year for this garden. This is the garden path , lined with Heuchera.
Thumb of 2011-07-31/NJBob/9fc8fe
ImageRoses_R_Red
Jul 31, 2011 4:49 AM CST
Name: Teri
Mount Bethel, PA
Beautiful shade gardens, Bob. I was happy to read that it takes quite some time for the helleborus to finally bloom. Mine are due, probably for next year.
[Last edited Jul 31, 2011 4:51 AM CST]
Quote | Post #731905 (13)
Imagestormyla
Jul 31, 2011 8:05 AM CST
Name: Stormy
Valley Forge Pa
I Love MAM ~ So Happy Together
Your hosta garden is really beautiful Bob. I think that Hosta are very effective when grouped together like that. My gardens might be better served to do some serious Hosta moving and take a lot of them out of the dryer areas and plant more of them together. The only problem that I have with that is the slug and earwig population is so dense over in the moist area.

Very nice Heuchera border too. What is that ground cover that you have planted to the left side of the Heuchera border?
ImageNJBob
Jul 31, 2011 7:11 PM CST
Name: Bob
Vernon N.J.
This section is mostly Ferns and Astilbe
Thumb of 2011-08-01/NJBob/27bce7
Stormy I do like to crowd up the Hosta mixing up the different sizes and leaving no space in between. It keeps the roots shaded and they can get some sun with less watering. If your a coffee drinker throw the used grind around your Hosta slugs do not like it because of the caffeine. I don't know if mothballs would help with earwigs I've never really had any problems with them. Don't use mothballs if you have pets that can get at them, put in sealed containers with holes punched in it so there is no access to them. I use them to keep groundhogs out of my sun garden. They have insecticide in them but don't seem to bother the bees and butterflies only insects close to the ground near them. The ground cover next to the Heuchera is Creeping Jenny to the left and some low growing Sedums between the stones.
Imagesheryl
Jul 31, 2011 7:48 PM CST
Name: Sheryl
Middle Tennessee, 6b
Huh - guess that's the first time I've ever seen the green form of the Creeping Jenny. Does it behave for you? I actually lost some of my 'aurea' earlier this summer in a really hot/dry spell.
ImageNJBob
Jul 31, 2011 9:05 PM CST
Name: Bob
Vernon N.J.
I believe the green was the original, by me garden centers carry both. At first it was a mix of the gold and green, but over time only the green survived. It is aggressive but not that bad . On the left side it does not grow under the shade of the Hosta leafs . And I have to pull it away from the Heuchera on the right once a year. The problem I have with it is every year it gets covered with small white caterpillars that can wipe out the leaves in just a couple of days if I don't catch them in time to spray. They got eaten up pretty good this year.
Imageflowersrjen
Jul 31, 2011 11:56 PM CST
Name: jennifer
central nj
Nice gardens, Bob!!!!
Imagestormyla
Aug 1, 2011 7:28 AM CST
Name: Stormy
Valley Forge Pa
I Love MAM ~ So Happy Together
Bob, I guess that solves the mystery of what ate my Creeping Jenny earlier this year. I never saw that happen before. I never tried putting coffee grinds around my hosta. I do mix them into my planting dirt and I am always planting things around the hosta, but maybe the grinds need to be on the surface. I do spread them on the surface around the acid loving plants. I could try that in the spring next year. Thanks for the tip! Thumbs up

There is still a good amount of space between my hosta as everything I have read says that they need 10 years to reach their ultimate mature size. I have a lot of ferns, bulbs, heuchera, astilbe, epimedium, ligularia, dicentra and other shade loving plants mixed in with them.

The active ingredient from a bug repellant standpoint in mothballs is Napthalene. In my experience it works for a while on certain types of Squirrels and Rabbits, but I've seen some squirrels even pick up and chew on the moth balls. I've never seen any of the napthalene based products repel either voles or Ground Hogs. I once put two whole boxes of mothballs down the holes to their den and that didn't bother them one bit. Thumbs down It might have chased away the moles though as I didn't see them after that summer.

Bob, Your Fern and Astilbe garden is really pretty. Are those Elephant ears that you have mixed in there? If my ferns and astilbe survive the voles, squirrels and ground hogs at the initial planting, they do fine in the moister sections of my shade garden. With the Astilbe, I have to always dodge the light pockets or they will fry. Sometimes I have to replant them as many as 5 times before the voles stop digging at them.

Hilarious! Hilarious! For some reason the ground hogs are particularly fond of Ghost Fern. They rip those out whole and drag them down into their den. I have even witnessed one being drug downward by the roots right from underneath the earth into a newly created tunnel. Grumbling

The only thing that I have found to be temporarily effective on Earwigs is Sevin or harsher products, which I am not willing to spray all over the place. My Hosta are not centralized. They are spread all over my beds, so using strong insecticides on them would cover a lot of territory. A better choice might be to relocate them all to just two areas.

Neither Ferns, hosta, astilbe, or ligularia will survive the wind and dryness under the Maples in my roadside bed. Even Creeping Jenny won't live there. A number of heuchera have toughed it out over there as well as one or two hosta,but generally, sun loving plants do better over there even though it is very shaded. It is a new experiment every season in that bed. Blinking
Imagesheryl
Aug 1, 2011 9:30 PM CST
Name: Sheryl
Middle Tennessee, 6b
I am so happy- Pam is doing a TNN Hellebore co-op and danged if Cotton Candy isn't one of the selections!!!! Hurray! Hurray! Hurray!

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