Sunday, October 28, 2007

Queen For A Day

This week, the monkshoods have become the queens of our garden; certainly there's not a ton of competition in the category of very late fall, big and silky blue flowers, but the monkshoods would stand out even in May. Usually there is the added bonus of having these giant flowers contrasting with the fire engine red fall foliage of the Japanese maples, but our very wet, mild weather this year has slowed the coloring of the maples.
When I was young and footloose, I spent a lot of time backpacking and lollygagging about in the mountains of Wyoming, and will always remember bright sunny days rambling down cool, wet canyons filled with fields of monkshoods taller than my head. The clumps of aconite in my garden are a little piece of Wyoming mountain sky, here in the flats of Iowa.
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Oftentimes, I think my plants are those that evoke memories. And those that do not evoke them are creating them. :-)
This monkshood is also a star in my garden for the last several weeks. Do you know if there are other varieties of monkshood with other colors for this time of year? I planted some a year ago and each plant came back as about 4-5 plants. Will this continue?
Philip... it seems to me that the clumps get a little woody or something, and tend to spread out into a looser clump that isn't quite as cool.
Here's a question for you. Have you ever tried growing these from seed? Or are they best purchased as a potted plant?
Shady... well, not on purpose; they seed all over the garden by themselves.
I have a soft spot for blue flowers, I am going to put this on my list of plants to try.
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