The native Smoketree at the top of the hill has had a long blooming time this year. It's never shown much of the fall color the species is famous before, but I like the tree anyway. The flowers and large round bluish-green leaves are unique and the tree has a very handsome form.
In the long bed beside the driveway -- mulched with hay -- I have some roses, American Beautyberry, Aster 'Miss Bessie', Bee Balm and native mints. One of these roses is Prairie Rose, Rosa arkansana. I also have planted in this bed the other Prairie Rose, R. setigera, but that hasn't bloomed yet. R. setigera is a raging giant, throwing canes and suckers everywhere, while R. arkansana is much more demure, rarely getting more than 3 feet tall. The flowers are sweetly fragrant but the fragrance is not at a traditional rose fragrance.
Another rose I have planted here is 'Nasturana', which I have grown more fond of the longer I have it. It produces such a profusion of small white blossoms that it is very eye catching. The flowers have a spicy fragrance. It's growing here with a Louisiana iris.
Another rose that may prove a giant is the multiflora hybrid 'Violette'. No fragrance but look at that color!
It'll be interesting (if that's the word) to see how many of these roses will remain. After waiting for 4 years, I have seen RRD in my gardens. Those of you familiar with RRD know how bad this is, or could be. If you're not familiar with it google it and you'll see what I mean. It's a bit too depressing to go instead detail; besides, I don't yet know how bad the outbreak will be. The yellow Rosa x cantabrigiensis is gone, along with 'Kathleen', a 'Belle Amour' seedling, and a Rosa eglanteria seedling, all young and relatively small, fortunately. Two others just planted last fall -- a white cemetery tea and another found tea -- I pulled because they didn't look quite right to me. The worst of it is that I keep thinking I see signs of it everywhere -- or am I? The only roses I have lost so far are those along the driveway.
I'm keeping my fingers crossed that RRD won't spread too far. You know that if any of the big roses catches RRD it'll be 110 degrees in the shade and I'll be thinking that I have to remove it NOW.
I am already planning -- and propagating -- possible replacements. Blueberries from here and Baptisia top the list. The blueberries have not proven easy to propagate at all but I'm going to keep trying. I don't want anything in the big perennial bed that gets bigger than 10' because I don't want the view from the house to the pasture blocked. Spicebush is another possibility, but the ones at the Botanical Garden smell like a combination of lemon and cat pee -- blech. But surely ones exist that smell better than that. More Calycanthus... Itea... Golden St. John's Wort... Winterberry in the ditches... The garden is always changing.