Thursday, June 11, 2015

What’s Blooming in June? by Louise Heern, Clear Creek County Master Gardener

Greetings from 8,700 feet atop Floyd Hill where, (do I dare say it?) it is finally spring! But wait, isn’t June considered summer? As you can see by the picture below, taken late May, it’s hard to tell! But after a long winter, I really don’t care as long as things are coming up green!

As we learned in our Master Gardener classes, my 8,700 feet may be different than yours, but the pictures below show just how quickly things happen up here in June! Most pictures (unless otherwise noted) were taken after June first but before June 15 2014! All the plants featured in this article are in my garden, facing east and protected by a fence. The latter making it all possible. The Lilac’s always bloom first, followed by Thyme, Alliums, Creeping Phlox, Iris, and Lupine (which, by the way, were not red when I planted them)! The Ladies Mantle and Cat Mint are up and green and depending on where they are sited, already blooming.  The Aspen trees went from just budding in early June to completely leafed out and green by June 15. Anemone is also beginning to bloom (above).

I have learned that the variety of the plants we choose make a significant difference in their success in the garden. For example, the Lilacs below are Common Lilac; obviously much better suited for high altitude than say, for example, the Miss Kim lilac I naively planted in another area of the garden. While the Miss Kim does come back every season and even flowers, it is not thriving and is the exact same size as the day I planted it. The Common Lilacs have tripled in size in that same time-frame. The same holds true for the Rugosa Rose and Austrian Copper Rose which are thriving versus the Knock-Out Rose in the rock garden which does return each season, but struggles along at best.
The ‘problem child’ hill (on the left below) before June 15. The Day Lillies, grasses and Cone Flowers are small green mounds. The yellow Iris’ are in bloom as well as the Cat Mint.
By mid to late June the Bleeding Heart, Austrian Copper Rose, Jupiter’s Beard, Salvia and Ladies Mantle are all blooming. I love June!! The Snowball Vibernum is also blooming at this time. (I like to pretend it is a Hydrangea. The closest I will get at this elevation :-).  

The sticks behind the Snowball Vibernum are Russian Sage, which won’t show signs of life until July/Aug.
By late June the Peony are looking good and the Lilac’s and Creeping Phlox have finished flowering.
By mid to late June, many of the rock garden plants are also in bloom. Geranium and Ice Plant are shown below, but Pinks, Campanula, Blue Flax and Geum Quellyom are also blooming.  

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