Mopheads and dunderheads

I haven’t a clue what a dunderhead is, though I have given the title to many for their foolishness. It has nothing to do with mopheads, which are hydrangeas with huge globes of blossoms, but this dunderhead has been negligent in labeling the mopheads in his garden to determine which bloom longer, Endless Summer or Penny Mac, and is Mini Penny up to par.

I’m afraid that my value as an evaluator of plants is subject to debate. Or perhaps there’s no debate at all. I appear hopeless.DSCN0032

Somewhere in the garden are Endless Summer, Penny Mac, Mini Penny, Twist n’ Shout, Blushing Bride, and perhaps one or two others, all remontant hydrangeas that rebloom on new growth, an improvement over old hydrangeas that often suffer Winter damage to branch tips and fail to bloom.DSCN0033

I know where the hydrangeas are, I just don’t know which is what. Certainly not a tragedy for a gardener, I can enjoy each regardless of their name, but a disaster for trying to compare their performance, length of bloom, size and so forth. Thus I will pronounce that Penny Mac and Endless Summer are indistinguishable and perform equally well.DSCN0038

Debate over long blooming daylilies ended long ago with the introduction of Stella d’ Oro, which flowers from late May through frost in most gardens. Other merits of various daylilies are open to discussion, and there are many desirable varieties that bloom for much shorter periods.P1011643

Iris, on the other hand, bloom only for a week, but what a week. By planting different varieties you might enjoy delightful blossoms for a month or more. In my garden the Siberian iris Caesar’s Brother bloomed several weeks ago, followed by the yellowflag iris, and for the past and next week, Japanese iris.P1011641

All are planted in damp soils or in shallow water at the edge of the six ponds in my garden. They perform well here with no care at all, and spread in a mannerly way. I am quite fond of the variegated Japanese iris, beautiful even out of bloom. DSCN0042

Coneflower (Echinacea) have begun to bloom in the garden, as are any number of perennials. I will do my best to keep up over the coming weeks, but I have been known to fall short.


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