Thymus serpyllum ‘Elfin’
Gardenia jasminoides ‘Chuck Hayes’
Rhododendron ‘Hino Crimson’
Magnolia x soulangiana ‘Black Tulip’
Salvia rosmarinus ‘Huntington Carpet’
Persicaria virginiana ‘Painter’s Palette’
The contemplation garden is an place where the mind can rest. The plantings are simple and very much in a Japanese style. While there is plenty of color in the garden, only one things blooms at a time.
The Hino Crimson hedge that surrounds the garden has dramatic red blossoms that will coat the plants once they are a little more mature. The Magnolia, while there primarily for the thick green leaves and the sense of height in the middle also has dark purple flowers.
The Acer palmatum provides plenty of color both when it buds out and the fresh green of the leaves starts to unfurl and then again in autumn when the leaves turn yellow and red before they drop.
The Elfin thyme carpet is covered in tiny blue flowers during summer. Tucked under the shade of the Ironwoods along the property line, are two plants that are an attempt to brighten the shade. The Geraniums, should the deer leave them alone, could be a mass of pink in spring, and the Persicaria provides lots of variation in leaf color, giving little splashes of red and yellow.
A few other things anchor the garden. The rock outcrop with the cranes provides some visual interest while the wayfarers lantern provides a solid anchor point at the far side of the garden. The fence along the bottom is intended to keep out the cacophony of the cutting garden.
Here is a picture when it was still being constructed. The fence has not been built yet and you can see the mess that was to become the cutting garden. This is also taken at a very unusual event for us – snow. Even so, the Hino Crimsons are blooming.
4/14/21 A Gardenia was planted in the box on the right hand side. Previously, it had Astilbes but they failed. I don’t think there was enough water for them. Hopefully once the Gardenia gets established it will be more drought tolerant. It should provide a nice fragrance in the tea house, and the rest of the time, its glossy green leaves will add to that corner.