I can hardly believe the month of May has just about passed us by. The garden really takes off in May and is actually my favorite month in the garden along side June. Everything is still so fresh, there are many shades of green complimenting each other and the flowering shrubs and trees are in their prime time. It’s warm but not too hot for gardening and rains enough to keep things happy.
Even though most of the perennials are still growing and about to set buds and the annuals are young and not yet filled in, my garden is at its best for color, fragrance and over all beauty in May. I walked around today and took photos of the things I love best about my garden at this time of year.
The tree peonies utterly amaze me. Here I sit in Canada and I’m able to grow such tropical looking beauties. These will continue to bloom through June along with the Herbaceous and Itoh peonies.
The lilacs are stunning, and so fragrant. Every morning we sit on the porch for breakfast and absorb the sweet aroma. There is nothing better than this. I grow french lilacs, korean lilacs and chinese lilacs. All are beautiful and all smell divine.
Vinca is a great groundcover for part shade to shady areas. I planted 3 different colors together and love how they have all grown into each other.
I planted 3 Beauty Bushes and am glad I did. Our bees love this shrub and I love the fountain shape it developes as it matures.
The Iris are just starting here and one of my favorites is Bumble Bee. This Iris is mid size and retains a great shape all season. Iris are also useful as a slope stabilizer.
A smaller shrub but very pretty is the Pearl Bush. It is loaded with pristine white flowers for about 2 weeks. Useful in smaller areas.
Another great ground cover for shade is Lilly of the Valley. I particularly like this cultivar which has pink flowers instead of the usual white.
One of the earliest perennials to bloom is Nepeta. It starts in the spring and blooms non stop through to fall. A good hair cut mid season does wonders to refresh the flowering. This is also a real bee magnet.
My favorite architectural shrub is Viburnum Maresii. The lateral branching on this shrub is second to none. It also is covered in large white flowers which attract pollinators. Makes a great specimen plant.
The pulsatilla have now gone to seed and I think I like the seed heads all most as much as the flowers themselves. I will trim them off in a few weeks to avoid too much self seeding.
May is a very busy month at our farm as this is the time we divide the daylilies for our daylily business. It’s also the time I plant new cultivars to add to the collection. Flava, an old yellow cultivar is always the first daylily to bloom in the field.
I planted a pink Dogwood tree many years back but unfortunately the deer destroyed it. Now I visit my Mom’s garden to enjoy this spectacular small tree.
Not to forget the apple orchards which are in full bloom during May. The entire countryside is filled with blooming apple orchards, and of course the companion dandelions which are grown to attract the bees for pollination. This is the one time of year I actually think these yellow flowers are beautiful.
Put these wonderful plants together and you have a very pretty May garden.