Creating a wildlife haven one plant at a time

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

September Blooms

Fall flowers are essential for all the insects and birds that feed on nectar. Pollinators need sustenance to prepare for winter or build energy reserves for their journey to their overwintering grounds. In our garden, September sees more pollinators as populations migrate through to their final destination. 

It is Garden Blogger Bloom Day, so lets take a look at what is blooming in our Georgia Piedmont, Zone 7b, habitat garden. 

In our wildflower garden, which runs along the main road of our subdivision, the white doll's daisy (Baltonia asteroides) blooms are abundant. September is peak flowering time for this native perennial. Despite the small flowers, it makes a bold statement. 

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The flowers are reminiscent of another native perennial that blooms in early summer, prairie fleabane (Erigeron strigosus). 

The passiflora incarnata vine climbs through the white doll's daisy using it as a natural trellis. The result is that many of the fritillary caterpillars use the white doll's daisy stems as a place to form their chrysalis. 

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One of my favorite features of a wildflower gardens is when plants mingle, creating lovely companions, like this coreopsis and white doll's daisy. 

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Another great example, is the homestead purple verbena (Verbena canadensis) with another coreopsis spp. The verbena was planted in early summer to fill in some gaps in this bed. In the corner little blue stem (Schizachyrium scoparium) is starting to come into its fall color and will make a beautiful show. 

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This is the first year for the white solidago (Solidago ptarmicoides) to bloom in our garden. This wildflower is unique in that it has aster-like flowers; hence the common name prairie aster, but the foliage is more goldenrod-like. This perennial tolerates drought and dry soil. The tall stalks have leaned over so the flowers are closer to the mulch, but pollinators don't mind. I could stake it but this way the seeds don't have so far to fall. Maybe next year we'll see a few more plants. 

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The first of our asters to bloom, New England Aster (Symphyotrichum novae-angliae), is feeding our native bee population. 

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bumblebees are especially attracted to the yellow centers

The rough-stemmed goldenrod (Solidago rugosa) cultivar 'fireworks' has spread prolifically on an area we affectionately call pollinator hill. Partnered with Helianthus hirsutus it creates a lush vegetation of yellow flowers in the fall.

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four toothed mason wasp

Another beauty is this stone mountain daisy, a reseeding native annual. Every year it is a surprise to see where it will show up in our garden. 

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Cutleaf coneflower (Rudbeckia laciniata) is in its second year in our garden. It needs some better companions to really make it proud in the landscape. Thus far, it hasn't been to robust. It is a long blooming perennial providing nectar source for bees, butterflies, wasps and other tiny pollinating insects.

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Southern Meadows Blog
sweet red-banded hairstreak resting on the petals

Want to see more fall blooming gardens? Jump over the May Dreams Gardens for a list of bloggers who are sharing their inspiration. Happy Bloom Day!

18 comments:

  1. Lovely stuff in your garden. I like the Baltonia... you reminded me of the name. I have a little bit blooming now here in eastern Canada. All these September plants are so great!

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    1. Thanks Jeff. Glad you stopped by to visit. Amazing the range of some plants and their fortitude.

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  2. Stone mountain daisy is very pretty. I looked it up, and see it's a false sunflower, so no wonder I like it, I have those and like them! Nice bumblebee and aster photo.

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    1. Thanks Lisa! Stone Mtn. Daisy is native to our area and we have a festival at Stone Mountain in Atlanta every fall when this flower is blooming. This gorgeous flower is definitely worth celebrating!

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  3. I like Erigeron, such a no-fuss but useful and pretty plant!

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    1. I agree. Many consider it a weed in my area but I celebrate it and let it grow where it reseeds.

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  4. I don't know how I've never grown boltonia but I planted one this year and it is fantastic.

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    1. It is fantastic! Glad you discovered it and embraced it in your garden.

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  5. I love that Boltonia but it won't grow in my part of the country. It's wonderful to see that your passionflower vine will creep right through it. Although I was able to successfully grow passionflower in my former garden, I've had a horrid time getting it to survive in my current one but, finally, one plant I installed in a large pot seems to have found its sweet spot as it produced its first bloom this month while weaving itself through a nearby shrub.

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    1. Passion vine grows everywhere in my garden. I do have to pull some of it otherwise it would completely take over the garden beds. Right now, they are stripped bare from all the fritillary caterpillars. Glad that your determination paid off and yours is finally flowering.

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  6. New England Aster is fantastic but can't survive in our hot climate.It would be my pleasure if you join my link up party related to Gardening here at http://jaipurgardening.blogspot.com/2020/09/peacock-flower-beauty.html

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  7. Beautiful photographs of the butterfly and the mason bee. Recently I was trying to capture a mason bee but she just did not want to hold still for me.

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    1. Thanks. Mason bees are hard to photograph as they are smaller bees and yes, they aren't still for long. Try putting your camera on the action setting when taking your shots.

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  8. Love your Sunflowers. Also the Verbena/Coreopsis combo.

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    1. Fall is my favorite season in Georgia. There weather is just right and there are so many fabulous flowers!

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  9. What lovely native flowers! I lived in Toccoa for many years but didn't get into gardening until I moved to New Zealand.


    Feel free to share at My Corner of the World

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    1. I am sure gardening is very different in New Zealand. We have lived in different growing zones and countries and there is always a huge learning curve learning to garden with different soils, climate and wildlife pressure not to mention getting to know all the native vegetation.

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One of my favorite things about blogging is the conversation with readers. Leave a comment and let's get talking. ~Karin