Our plant sale is going on. Annuals are half off and perennials are by three, get one free (any varieties, mix and match). So if you have an empty space in the garden or a container to fill or just like to try out a new plant, we still have a lot to choose from.
A couple interesting perennials:
lady's bedstraw - grassy foliage with fairly tall, tiny but deliciously fragrant gold flowers
kent beauty oregano - grown for its flowers, rather than flavor, the flowers deepen to a pinky rose and dry well
anemone - late summer and fall blooming perennial with white or pink flowers like a single rose, prefers part shade
Once the bees have finished with the lavender flowers, cut off the flower stalks. Also prune your plants now to achieve a better shape.
Our thyme walk continues to bloom. Having different varieties means a much longer blooming season. And the bees - bumble and honey - just love thyme flowers. They work the area nearly all day long. Another bee favorite is anis hyssop with its spike of purple flowers. I like it (the leaves) mixed with peppermint for a refreshing tea.
I haven't yet seen signs of monarch caterpillars on the milkweed (swamp in the garden and wild out back) yet. There's also a milkweed moth which produces a caterpillar the same colors, but hairy! I'm seeing more butterflies, too - mostly small - loads of loopers and also skippers, but a few biggers ones too - an occasional yellow or black swallowtail and a couple of commas.
Annual vines are now established and with the hot summer weather will begin to grow like crazy. Remember they like a lot of moisture especially in the beginning. The mina or firecracker flower has put out the most growth so far (ahead of moonflower and hyacinth bean) but the others will catch up soon. Mina produces a spray of yellow, orange, and red flowers late summer and fall and the hummingbirds do like them in our garden.
Many perennials can be cut back after flowering. Some will rebloom, and all produce nice new foliage.