Monday, June 13, 2011

New Plants

While on blog vacation I took some time to purchase plants.  You may remember that at the end of May Canoe Cove held it's annual plant sale.  I helped out with this sale and more than a few goodies made it home with me.

LOTS of plants to choose from!
I also visited the farmers market and several nurseries in the last few weeks.  The list of new plants has grown long and lengthy.  My new friends include:

Anemone sylvestris 'Macrantha'

  • Euphorbia
  • Siberian Iris
  • Monkshood                            
  • Martagon Lily *
  • Asiatic Lily *
  • Joy Pye Weed
  • Solomon Seal
  • Hostas
  • Hardy Geranium
  • Lemon Balm
  • Feverfew
  • Blue Spruce 'Neon Blue'
  • Anemone
*Some of you might recall that last year I proclaimed my disdain of lilies.  All I can say in my defence is that I had sale fever.  The Martagon Lilies were half price and they are small and dainty and red which really appealed to me.  I thought I would try them.  Then, due to a catalogue misprint, the mail order company sent me a complimentary package of Asiatic Lilies.  So apparently, I can conclude, that if you proclaim to hate Lilies, the universe will conspire to inundate you with them.

I also have some Surprises.  The thing about a plant sale.  You never quite know what you will end up with.  I took home three pots of an unknown ornamental grass.  Before anyone panics - I confirmed with the donater that they are clumping grasses, NOT RUNNING.  She simply didn't know the name as it was a gift from a friend.  I am intrigued to see if I can identify these in the future.  Another neighbour donated unknown plants that came with her house purchase.  After much searching through gardening tomes she believes they may be Evening Primrose (Oenothera).  I can't resist a mysterious plant so I took this home and will find out for myself.

The final Surprise will be a puzzle for all of us.  A tray full of corms was offered up for sale and the story went like this.  A friend of a friend came from Toronto to live on PEI some years ago.  That person's family ran a nursery and they brought many fancy plants with them.  They later left PEI but left this plant behind.  My neighbour has been growing it in her garden ever since.  Every spring she plants the corm out in the ground, in a sunny spot, and it sprouts large tropical looking leaves.  She described the leaves as looking like that of a leopard.  Yellow, orange and spotty.  This plant has never flowered but the leaves are decorative all on their own.  In fall, she takes the corm inside for safe keeping.  After many years this plant has produced numerous baby corms which she brought to the sale.  I offered to take a corm home and grow it in my yard.  As it grows I'll take some photos and post them here.  Hopefully together we can solve the mystery identity of this plant.


  1. It's a great list of plants, Marguerite. And I love surprise plants. When my favorite daylily grower retired and moved to a different part of the state a number of years ago, he had a number of sales to sell off his remaining daylily stock. In the final sale, we were invited into the daylily field to dig up any remaining plants we wanted, which were sold for $1 each!! Since it was May and nothing was blooming and nothing was labeled, they were all mystery plants, destined to become delightful surprises later in the season. The only down side of surprise plants in my experience is that I sometimes become pretty obsessive about trying to correctly identify them. (I never have identified any of those surprise daylily varieties -- but not for lack of trying.) -Jean

  2. Glad to see that you brought home some great plants. Look forward to seeing your unknown ornamental grass...and the mystery plant/corm. A picture is worth a thousand words.

  3. hello Marguerite, I read your reply to my last comment, so sad the the nursery treats it's plants so harshly,
    how exciting with all these wonderful new plants, interesting to see what developes from the unknown I have several unknown plants some from other peoples gardens some bought as bargain packs, it all adds to the wonderful mix, Frances

  4. Oooh, exciting! I love mystery plants, actually I love plants period. Feeling gloomy that I can't add any to KG this summer, I will have to enjoy watching yours instead.

  5. I laughed at the universe conspiring to make you love lilies! I hope you do love them, now that they will be in your garden. What a wonderful list of plants - and mystery plants are so fun. Can't wait to see your spotted leaved leopard plant!

  6. What a great list of plants! How exciting to grow the 'unknowns' though; we will all be waiting to find out what they are!

    I am not a huge fan of lilies either but this year I did buy six of the smaller variety.. short and red... Guess the fact that I don't know the variety says it all ;-)

  7. I wonder if the corms might be Canna LILIES. Good photo at Victoria's backyard blog, almost in the middle of her header photo.

  8. Marguerite I love a good plant mystery girl! I will be so curious to see what those ornamental grasses turn out to be and those corms !
    I have had the odd mislabeled plants that pop up in the garden and I have no idea what they were or by then, what they were supposed to be .. but posting pictures is a great way to get other gardeners to help you figure out what they are!
    Plants with history or stories attached are fun aren't they : )
    Glad you are getting some plant therapy girl ! hehehe

  9. Jean - Even though I'll try to identify these plants I'm pretty sure many will be unidentifiable. It's hard to let go of that need to have a label though isn't it?

    Janet - I can't wait to take some pictures of that corm. Unfortunately it's just a tiny tiny shoot right now so we'll have to wait patiently until it really starts to grow.

    Frances - I like the plant sales too because you never know what you might find. It's nice to think I have a piece of someone else's garden.

    Deborah - It must be hard not being able to purchase new plants but just think of all the planning you will be able to do. Sometimes I find I buy too many things on a whim. Already I'm looking to relocate plants that I didn't think it thoroughly. If I had restricted myself to spending more time planning I'd have a much better organized garden.

  10. Holley - It seems to be the year of the lily for me. Who knows, maybe I'll develop a deep love for them after all!

    Bren - wouldn't that just be uncanny if it turned out to be a lily?! But I'm not sure it will as Beatrice said it has never developed a flower in all the time she's had it. We'll have to be patient and see what happens as it grows.

    Joy - I love a plant with some history attached. Probably why I love gardens that show personality. I know there's a story hidden there just waiting to be told.

  11. Marguerite, Mystery plants are always fun as long as they aren't invasive and don't have invasives in with them. I once bought a mysterious and cute euphorbia at a spring plant sale, which appeared 20 feet away by runner in the fall. Luckily I got it all out. Carolyn

  12. I've been looking for martagon lilies . Unfortunately my favourite bulb catalog is not offering them this year probably because I have decided I want one. :) I agree mystery plants are fun unless they are invasive or should I say spreadacious :)

  13. Carolyn and Melanie - I tried to be good this year and not take home invasives (I did manage to stay away from the knotweed) but a good mystery is too tempting. My mother always said I never listened!

  14. I wrote a comment yesterday but it vanished into thin air. The jist of it was this: possible post topic for you which would really help me (and possibly others) out--- what, oh what, can I plant in July. I know I am missing the optimum planting time but want to start getting perennials and trees on the go. Can I still plant trees in July? Are some better than others for late planting? What about perennials?

  15. Jane - Great idea! I will definitely post on this in the coming week. I work on my garden all summer long but generally the idea is that the temperature heats up in summer and the soil dries out making it harder to dig, and therefore harder to plant. As well you can't rely on mother nature to water plants for you mid-summer. So if you're planting you need to remember to water frequently to get your new plants settled.