On November 29, 1922 King Tut’s tomb was opened and it’s golden treasures were finally revealed to the world. So in honor of this historic event, I thought it would be nice to share some of Crabtree Gardens’ golden botanical treasures today.
I’ve compiled photos of some of our flowers and plants that I thought could be considered gold, even though the colors lean towards yellow and a bit of chartreuse. They are all garden stalwarts and need no special care.
First on the list is the sunflower or helianthus. This beauty self-sows all over our gardens. I don’t know where it came from, perhaps the birds, but I just love it for the numerous stems of flowers it provides for cut arrangements.
Next on my list is sedum (unsure of this cultivar). Many people despise it because it spreads everywhere, but this tiny plant is welcome anywhere it shows in our gardens. It graces us with these bright yellow flowers and covers bare ground easily. Even if a tiny pieces breaks away from the plant it will root without much help. It takes drought and is basically carefree.
Oneothera, or evening primrose is also a ground cover that gives us a bright show in spring. It too is an aggressive mover in the garden and it is truly a die-hard. I love to intermingle it with iris because they can really stand up to each other.
The Asiatic lily, lilium is grown from a bulb and will readily propagate itself (spread) from the base rewarding you with other small lily bulbs that can be moved around your garden. It’s relatively pest free for us, with the exception of a wandering hungry deer or bunny. This particular variety was labeled as ‘Connecticut King’ however I see conflicting information about that name on other sites so I will just call it a yellow Asiatic lily.
The leaves of this heuchera ‘Key Lime Pie’ have a golden/chartreuse color that remains all growing season here in our Zone 5 garden. It is also an easy care perennial that can be considered a ground cover. It divides easily and is a quick grower and we use it where ever we need a jolt of brightness. Here it is inter-planted with geranium sanguineum and gives the best color if planted in sun but it also can take some shade well too.
Although the color of this iris will become more of a peachy-gold, I love the golden color of it’s outer petals as it unfurls the treasure of peach in the center. Iris, which is a rhizome is extremely easy to grow and again, would be considered a ground cover. I hope you are getting the theme here- easy care ground covering plants that require no maintenance. They are truly treasures to us!
And of course no garden could be complete without the happy faces of rudbeckia hirta or Gloriosa Daisy. Self-sowing and covering ground these golden beauties are very hardy and provide weeks of color in the summer and fall.
Another easy care golden beauty is the daylily. This particular cultivar was already planted at the Cottage when we purchased the property. I have not yet tried to identify what cultivar it is. If any of you do know, I would appreciate your thoughts.
The “king” and most important golden flower grown here is the herb solidago or more commonly known as goldenrod. It blankets our field with a golden haze in September and is a favorite plant of many pollinators because of it’s ecological friendliness. I found this fantastic article about it written by Scott Shalaway called Get Into Nature: Insect live cycles begin and end with goldenrod. There are numerous medicinal and cosmetic uses for it too. I can’t imagine not having it in a garden!
I hope you consider using some of these common and easy care plants in your gardens. Their easy-care nature and easy adaptability will reward you with a treasure of color for many years.