garden phlox is a popular summer-blooming perennial and a new
variety introduced this year is quite eyecatching. Called 'Peppermint
Twist' this tall garden phlox bears large flower clusters
that bear stunning bi-colored flowers. Each flower petal is bright
pink with a distinct band of white running down the center, giving
the flower a pinwheel pattern. The flowers bloom atop compact,
16-inch stems. It has good disease resistance.
coneflower is another popular summer-blooming perennial that
provides a long season of bloom. Hybridizers have been developing
many nice, new varieties in recent years and one of the more
outstanding introductions is the variety 'After
Midnight.' It's a dwarf variety, growing just a foot tall
that bears large, dark-magenta-purple flowers with a black-red cone.
The flowers are fragrant, which is unique for purple coneflower. The
large flowers bloom atop well-branched, blue-green foliage. Like all
purple coneflowers, it'a a favorite of butterflies and bees.
are many nice ornamental grasses for fall and one of the most
colorful is Hakonechloa macra 'Nicolas.' It forms a handsome clump of
arching, green leaves that take on orange and red tones by early
fall. The vibrant colors last through fall and really brighten up a
shady spot in the garden. It's a compact ornamental grass, growing
just over a foot high and as wide.