Still more of what goes on in our garden here
by Art Drysdale
by Art Drysdale


Art Drysdale, a life-long resident of Toronto and a horticulturist well known all across Canada, is now a resident of Parksville, British Columbia on Vancouver Island, just north of Nanaimo. He has reno-vated an old home and has a new garden there. His radio gardening vignettes are heard in south-western Ontario over radio station Easy 101 FM out of Tillsonburg at 2 PM weekdays.

Art also has his own website at

July 1, 2018

Above, several of our Yucca filamentosa evergreens in bloom last year adjacent to our seawall; a reddish-coloured Hydrangea also in bloom last year; and a small group of rose campion (Lychnis coronaria) in our front garden; Below, another rose campion with a firefly sitting on a bud; our daisy bush (Brachyglottis) which grows on the side of my office; and our Himalyan honeysuckle as it appeared last year. Author photos.




You have!

At the end of last week’s item here, it seems to me now that I made it sound as if the few plants I had written about were the only items in our garden that were performing at that time. Not true!

There many other plants—evergreen, deciduous shrubs and herbaceous perennials that are either out in bloom now, or will be soon. For example, in the category of evergreens (broadleaf) our two large Yucca filamentosa along the seawall are going to be in bloom very soon. In driving uptown in Parksville just today (Friday) I noted many of the Yuccas are already out in full bloom, That happens every year with many plants and the reason is that it is always slightly warmer in the town than down here in San Pareil where our presence right on the water gives a cooler growing atmosphere and hence we are always slightly behind with most plants than they are up in the city!

That phenomenon applies to a multitude of plants starting with the flowering cherries and continuing on with the rhododendrons and flowering dogwoods.

As I walked around the garden today I noted a number of plants that are almost ready to be in flower, such as a couple of our hydrangeas (although, again, I noted several of the same types out in full flower along the main drag in Parksville).

A perennial that is currently in full bloom in our garden has a difficult name! Brachyglottis or daisy bush has good medium-sized yellow daisy-like flowers—thus its common name. I have learned that many gardeners who do grow this do not grow it for the flowers but rather for the some-what fuzzy silver-grey leaves and stems. The gardeners who keep the plant pruned, thus generally preventing the formation of flowers, are most often flower arrangers who like the silver look of the foliage and stems.

We like both the foliage and flowers and so will give the plant only a trim in the fall after the blooming has completed. Although we have not had hardiness problems with this plant (not even winter die-back after tough seasons), I suspect the plant is only hardy here in British Columbia.


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