Rock Garden, mid-JulyThere’s a happy chaos of color in my gardens this month!

Coreopsis verticillata ‘Moonbeam’ has been blooming for two weeks now.  Here it is complemented by May Night Salvia and Veronica spicata ‘Blue Bouquet’ (aka Speedwell), each at the end of its bloom cycle.  One of the hens and chicks has sent up a thick, odd-looking flower spike as well:071The wild Ox-eye daisies (Leucanthemum vulgare) are nearly finished for the year, and the Cleome has just begun:044

In the same jumble, Scabiosa ‘Butterfly Blue’, planted here just last year, opened its first flower.  There is one other stem with a bud.  It is definitely creeping; I hope to see it leap next year!023

An adventuresome stem of the bright pink rose grew its way right through the ferns:030There is a plethora of dragonflies in the garden this year.  I can’t remember ever before seeing so many! 056The tall Balloon Flower I transplanted from a friend’s garden last summer has its first blooms above the ferns and the last few flowers of Geum ‘Mrs. Bradshaw’:120Jason from Garden in a City identified this Coreopsis verticillata as ‘Zagreb’:070My shorter Balloon flower (Platycodon grandiflorus), possibly ‘Astra Blue’, is in full glory: 067I am not alone in my love for these flowers!038Bright red Bee Balm (Monarda didyma ‘Jacob Cline’) overlooks the Balloon Flower.  I prefer purples and pinks, so this scarlet is not my favorite Monarda, but it doesn’t bother me in this space as much as it did last year.  I did clip a good portion of it back early in the summer to keep it a bit shorter and encourage it to branch out more:066Talk about a bad hair day!065More Cleome play nicely with Coreopsis grandiflora, possibly ‘Sunfire’ (thank you again, Jason!), while the first Black-eyed Susans are opening in the background:034

When the Coreopsis finishes blooming, these French Marigolds, ‘Durango gold’ will have their chance to shine:046

Finally, at the far end of the rock garden, Cleome spinosa ‘Violet Queen’ impatiently waits for the Rudbeckia to begin blooming and keep it company:007

Bright colors dominate the containers on my side porch, as well:068067 (2)I’ll write about these plants in more detail in a later post.113127

Elsewhere, here is the first bloom of Cosmos  bipinnatus ‘Summer Dreams’.  I love the pink blush suffusing its petals:052In the front garden, the Astilbe bloomed profusely and are nearing the end of their run:018The Asiatic lilies are also fading fast, but still retain some of their gorgeous shades of yellow and pink:019The tropical Hibiscus on the front porch must have heard it was Bloom Day!083The Oxalis is very happy in its outdoor summer home.  The filtered light and high humidity agree with it:094The color on this Rieger Begonia is more intense here in its porch corner, away from the  direct sunlight it received during the winter and spring on my kitchen windowsill:097Many thanks, as always, to Carol from May Dreams Gardens for hosting this monthly garden party!  I hope July is happily chaotic in your gardens too!011