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"Nature will have none of your false systems. She is supreme, absolute as is her Author. She repudiates our foolishness, and rudely dispels our illusions. Work with her and she responds, aids, and rewards us in proportion to the worth of our endeavours; but if we would outwit her, coerce or restrain her action, and falsify her teaching, at once she gives it the lie by the sterility, destruction, and death of everything we have sought to create in defiance of her laws."
-- LAMARTINE: "Address to Gardeners."
BULBS, TUBEROUS PLANTS AND ORNAMENTAL GRASSES
HERE are plants for every place and purpose -- beauty for formal beds and borders, for the water garden, the rockery, the meadows, the woodland, and especially for the wild spots on our grounds, for wherever we would impose our ideals upon the land we control. Let us not be restrained by the definitions of the classifiers. The botanist would perhaps name a tulip as the most familiar example of a bulb, being "built up of a series of fleshy scales." He will tell you that the gladiolus grows from a corm, the canna from a tuber, and the iris from a rhizome, and has pity in his eye for you if you refer to any one of these as a root. But to the flower-lover, plants that store up in a bulb or any of these fleshy "roots" during one growing season the food that is to last them well through the next season of bloom, are a class by themselves, sufficiently distinct, in his mind at least, for all practical purposes.
Because they have so much latent beauty stored when we receive them from the dealer, and are so little dependent, at first, upon the expert skill of a gardener, bulbs of one kind or another are grown by every one. Some are of the simplest culture; some cost as little as three for a cent; some are among the most costly indulgences of specialists; others are more popular than any other plants in the trade.
Probably there will never again be a feverish craze for tulips such as once attacked the phlegmatic Dutch; certainly Americans are not wont to weigh gold in the balance for a Semper Augustus or any bulb however choice. "La Tulipe Noire" is not much called for in our public libraries. But we grow tulips by the million, even if we don't mortgage our property to secure the rarest.
Not having to forage for food early in the spring before they can bloom -- their larders having been filled after blossoming the previous year -- many bulbs are prepared to rush into flower at the break-up of winter. Like friends in need, they come when most wanted. A flower may be insignificant in itself, but if it appear when trees are bare and winds are raw, when the earth is slushy and the muddy roads are fluid and bottomless, how much we prize it! The fragile little white snowdrop "with heart-shaped seal of green," nodding from its slender stem in the meadow, is not impressive, it is true; but because it is the very earliest flower cultivated -- only the hepatica in Nature's garden being contemporary -- it is dear to the hearts of the people. There is a so-called giant snowdrop (with petals nearly an inch long) which is more effective than its little sister of the snows, but it blooms no earlier than the crocus, and never will be so beloved as the first flower. Planted in colonies and left to care for themselves, snowdrops succeed best in partially shady places, being one of the few bulbs that will bloom under trees.
After the snowdrop comes the reign of blue and purple. In the new grass, Siberian squills, small flowers of an intense blue, like Meissen china, give one a thrill of pleasure the first day that there is a feeling of spring in the air. Glory-of-the-snow (Chionodoxa) makes spots of beauty on the earth where snowdrifts lately lay, when the first bluebird shows a glint of the heavenly colour, too, as he flies about the orchard looking for a nesting hole. Other early bulbs may be foregone, but purple, lavender, white and yellow crocuses, everyone who has spring flowers at all must have. At three dollars a thousand, who would not spangle his lawn with them and "paint the meadows with delight"? "Bulbs have a mission in life," says Wilhelm Miller. "They seem to have been divinely appointed to entertain us from the moment when winter becomes too tedious for words until the trees leaf out and spring strikes high C."
Where shall the small early bulbs be planted? Flowers that must withstand buffeting spring winds do not erect themselves on tall stems only to be snapped off, but hug the earth. They appreciate shelter. Too inconspicuous and ineffective to be planted singly or even by dozens, but happily cheap enough to be used by the hundred or even by the thousand on large estates, snowdrops, scillas, crocuses, grape hyacinths, and the lovely little star of Bethlehem, a late bloomer, perhaps never look so well as when naturalised in the grass. They seem to require the green background. Seen against bare earth in the flower border they lose half their charm. Their narrow, pointed leaves, shaped like knife blades to cut the wind as it whistles harmlessly by, can scarcely be told from the surrounding grass. Later in the summer, after the bulbs have stored up potential energy and beauty for another year and prepared for a long rest, the leaves dry up and disappear. But woe betide the bulbs if a mowing-machine cuts off the leaves while they are still working! Whoever would see his lawn gay with crocuses in March must defer cutting it for a month. Even so, crocuses die out after a few, years when planted among grass, whereas they multiply in a garden. On the other hand, the star of Bethlehem might run out the grass from a lawn and should never be planted in one. It spreads prodigiously. A gently sloping, half-shaded bank or a patch of meadow will be covered with the thick mat of its white-ribbed green leaves and myriads of green-ribbed white stars. While we may scarcely hope to have such sheets of the lovely, misty, lavender-blue wood hyacinths (Scilla festalis or nutans) as Nature spreads in wild places throughout Europe, the bulbs are cheap enough to be tested in everybody's moist open woods and meadows. More intense effects of blue, lavender, and purple may be had from colonies of grape hyacinths, squills, chionodoxa, quamash, and crocuses. The grape hyacinth, known as "Heavenly Blue," makes patches of charming colour on a shady bank near a stream. In October, when bulbs come from the dealer -- and they deteriorate if left long out of the ground -- stand in the centre of the bit of land where you would naturalise them, toss them from the bag in all directions, some near, some far, and plant them where they fall. Regularity, rows, completely spoil the effect. The smallest bulbs may lie only an inch or two inches apart. A strong tin apple corer will cut out holes to drop them in or a dibber, made from an old spade handle whittled to a point, is often used. This, however, packs the surrounding earth hard, and each hole should be filled with good soil. A spud is convenient for the smallest bulbs only. For large ones a trowel is necessary unless one be the happy possessor of an English bulb-planting tool. Some gardeners turn back a bit of sod on the corner of their spade, drop the bulb in the opening and replace the sod, leaving no trace of their operations behind them until the flowers push their way through in spring.
How bare would the rock garden be without the cheerful spring bulbs! Whoever has one will fill its gray crevices with their brightness and secure a long succession of bloom by placing some in sheltered sunny places, under the lee of a sombre stone that acts also as a foil for their gaiety, some on cold northern slopes. Or, some of the earliest flowering bulbs may be planted between rows of tulips and hyacinths in a formal bed, for they have acted their little part and modestly withdrawn from the stage by the time those prime donne appear. Clumps of pansies and hardy violets, set out at intervals of two feet among the daffodils and tulips in the foreground of the perennial border in March, do not harm the bulbs, but soon spread and carpet the bare earth about them. Wherever there is room for a weed to grow we may hope to have a better plant.
CHEERFUL YELLOW CROCUSES GLITTERING ON A LAWN IN EARLY SPRING.
It was William Wordsworth, exponent of the simple life, who first put the idea of growing daffodils by the multitude into our innocent heads:
How can we content ourselves with less, having this inspiring picture ever in mind? Both the yellow, long trumpeted daffodil and the fragrant white narcissus quickly colonise from comparatively small beginnings. A thousand poet's narcissus may be bought for five dollars or even less. Does the masculine amateur think it worth while to sacrifice a box of cigars for their possession, if need be, or the feminine gardener to trim over her last year's hat and spend the price of a new one on permanent joy? There are many ways of reconciling delightful extravagances to one's conscience. Every gardener worthy the name has tried a few and thereby earned the right to be charitable in his judgment. Mohammed said: "He that hath two cakes of bread, let him sell one of them -- for bread is only food for the body, but the narcissus is food for the soul." Surely we cannot do less than the heathen? But if, after we have sold our bread, we have not enough coin in our purse to buy a quantity of daffodils at the regular rates, what then? Approach a florist who forces them under glass on a large scale for cut flowers only. He needs fresh bulbs for forcing, but the old bulbs that he is glad to sell you at a bargain, if put into the ground as early as it can be worked in spring, recover their strength and bloom gloriously the following year and probably ever after. There is a field in New Jersey where the daffodils that once surrounded an old garden have been multiplying without anybody's care for over a hundred years.
Three distinct types of narcissus, each class with seemingly innumerable representatives, bewilder the novice who would make a choice. First there are the hardy yellow daffodils, both the single long trumpeted ones and the double forms with many yellow petticoats overlapping; second, the white or yellow flowered, fragrant type to which the poet's narcissus and the sweet-scented campernelle jonquil belong; and third, the Tazetta type, with many flowers on a stem, most commonly represented by the Chinese sacred "lily" grown by many Celestials in bowls filled with pebbles and water in their laundry windows. The class last named has not afforded hardy bulbs for the garden until recently. Now, both white and yellow flowered ones -- true polyanthus narcissus -- may be safely grown in the open ground so far North as Boston. The name narcissus, though the botanical title of the whole family, is popularly applied only to the small-cupped species; and the name daffodil, in popular parlance, has come to include all the members of the family with long or medium trumpets.
Naturalised, scattered colonies of these incomparable flowers beside little lakes, in meadows, along woodland borders, old stone walls and entrance drives would seem to be the ideal way of planting them, but in no situation, perhaps, could they be less than lovely. When left alone they will protect themselves against encroachment, even of quack grass, and steadily increase in quantity, sometimes even in quality, of bloom. Do not lift and divide the bulbs until the flowers show by deterioration that they are overcrowded. Planted in a shrubbery border where a flowing ribbon of daffodils at its edge is a cheerful sight indeed on an April morning, the bulbs need a top dressing of fertiliser now and then to replace nourishment stolen by the shrubs. Daffodils enliven the perennial borders, too, where, however, their presence is apt to be forgotten after their leaves die off, and injury may be done the bulbs if a fork be used among the plants. Moreover, they leave bare patches after them. Some gardeners sow sweet alyssum, mignonette or some other low-growing annual over them to carpet their area with flowers during the summer and autumn. A wreath of poet's narcissus around a fountain, where they peeped over the coping as if to see their exquisite reflection in the mirror-like pool, has reconciled the most skeptical unbeliever to their use in a formal garden. Why, our grandmothers' gardens were always filled with them! There were tufts of gay daffodils in the corners of the parterres, and lines of them drawn up, as if in battle array, behind the boxwood breastworks. Since ever they were known they have been beloved. Shakespeare delighted in them. There are rabid collectors in England to-day who give two thousand dollars or more for the exclusive ownership of a new choice variety represented by perhaps a half-dozen bulbs.
The hardy narcissus and daffodils will grow wherever grass will. Some will be planted in out-of-the way corners in early and late situations for. a succession of bloom to cut for house decoration. If skilfully selected and situated, daffodils may have their season extended over three months. Any good garden soil pleases them well, but they have a preference for deep, air-penetrated earth made cool with humus -- never with manure -- over a pervious subsoil where dampness will not remain to rot their roots, and where they have partial shade. If there be as much of a tree below ground as above it, so there is as much of a plant that we never see as there is to delight the eye, and we must not forget the fact in October when we drop bulbs into their permanent home. In average soil, a bulb will be buried to a depth equal to its circumference, which would bring a poet's narcissus or a trumpeted daffodil about four inches below the surface. See that the soil is good to at least twice that depth below the bulb. In light, sandy soils six inches would be a safer depth to bury it. It is wise to plant bulbs deeply in any case, especially in cold climates or exposed situations. Their flowers come later than those of the shallow-bedded ones, it is true, but they are usually larger and of a stouter substance.
Dumpy, double Hobokenese hyacinths are as often made into floral patchwork, perhaps, as the long-suffering tulips: They are the stiffest of the bulbous flowers, but they come in some exquisitely delicate tints, and the single ones especially are undeniably lovely. In the garden their fragrance is delicious; in the house their heavy sweetness cloys. Within a spaced garden, formal hyacinth beds of one or at most two pure, harmonious colours are effective, but to cut up a lawn into geometric patterns laid on in gaudy colours is a misuse of bulb beauty that displays total ignorance of the laws of garden composition. For high-grade bedding, hyacinth bulbs can be used only once, which makes them costly. In any case they should be lifted after they have ripened and be stored until autumn in a cool cellar.
EMPEROR DAFFODILS ALONG AN ENTRANCE DRIVE WHERE THE POET'S
NARCISSUS WILL SPEEDILY FOLLOW AND REPLACE THEM. BULBS DISCARDED
FROM A HOTHOUSE WERE USED.
In some of our public parks, planted by politicians to please the ignorant masses, one sees tulip beds that are amazing -- with sharply contrasted zones of colour laid on in patterns that are about as decorative on a lawn as patches of gay oilcloth. Similar beds, intensified by chromo lithography, appear in the catalogues and serve as models, alas! for gardeners throughout the length and breadth of the land. Let it be remembered that it was the gentle Linnaeus who dubbed double flowers "vegetable monsters." Among true tulip lovers the double forms, laboriously obtained by the hybridiser, find little favour. They have no authority from Nature for their abnormalities, whereas every line of the single, long-stemmed, pointed-petalled kinds is full of exquisite grace. They are the natural forms restored, perfected. Only single tulips can ever be fittingly naturalised tulips whose clear colour, pointed petals, and dark spot at their base indicate nearness to the beautiful wild type. Gesnerianas may be had for fifteen dollars a thousand. The effect of that number of majors, of brilliant, rich red blotched with black at the bottom of their cup, is simply superb and, when naturalised among the lush May grass, cannot be rivalled even by the gorgeous Oriental poppies which sulk under such treatment. For naturalising in open woods and half-shaded places, try T. sylvestris, a pale yellow, pointed-petalled flower.
Early flowering tulips commend themselves not only because they come at the most ecstatic season of the year, and set the garden ablaze with rich colour when fires are still comfortable indoors, but because they have finished their show when it is time to transplant annuals from the hotbeds to the garden. The bulbs may be lifted and replanted in an out-of-the-way corner to mature when their place in the beds is wanted for summer bloomers like asters and heliotrope. As has been pointed out, the bedding system means constant work, which spells expense. It implies skilled gardeners if a pyrotechnic display of flowers is to be kept up in the same beds of a large garden from frost to frost. Many gardeners, however, use companion crops of early tulips and some pretty shallow-rooted annual or perennial like forget-me-not in alternate rows. Masses of little turquoise-blue flowers overspread the withering tulips while the bulbs are ripening undisturbed below.
It was a happy day for gardeners when, in 1559, the showy late tulip was brought from Persia to Constantinople, from whence it was introduced throughout Europe. Innumerable beautiful varieties have arisen from the original form. Tulip seed produces only self-coloured flowers; but after seven to ten years of cultivation or, rarely, even longer, a wonderful change comes over them. Suddenly they assume entirely new colours which may be solid, or striped, or flamed, or feathered. Now the tulips are said to be rectified. For the most part they are as variegated as Harlequin. The pencillings of a flamed tulip extend from the margin of the petal to its base; in a feathered tulip the markings do not extend so far. However much we may admire the delicate shadings and traceries of an individual flower -- and each rectified one is a special study-the self-coloured ones are more effective for massing. Large May tulips are better for hardy borders than the small early ones, not only because they are more effective, but because they may be left undisturbed in the ground for four or five years without deteriorating. And they furnish better cut flowers, for their stems are long and strong.
When arranging the stiff, upright tulips, daffodils, irises, gladioli, and other flowers for that matter, let us learn of the Japanese to simulate their natural attitude. Secure a flat ribbon of lead less than two inches wide from the plumber, cut it into ten inch lengths, lay one on its edge in the bottom of a bowl and pinch the pliable lead around the stems of the flowers with a few leaves about them. Or, pebbles may be used to hold them upright. They appear to be growing in water. Invisible glass discs, perforated to hold flower stems, can be bought to place in the bottom of silver, glass or china dishes for the centre of the dining-table.
Darwins, many of them with stems two feet tall, are an aristocratic race of late tulips, mostly self-coloured and with a "tender bloom like cold gravy" overspreading and gently subduing them. They, too, may be left undisturbed for years. Bizarres have variegated colours, the markings generally brown or red on a yellow ground. Bybloemen tulips have violet or rose marking on a white ground. Parrots are wonderfully marked and fringed late tulips, with more or less green among their yellow or red streaks, and so large that the weak stems cannot hold the flowers erect. This is their lamentable defect. But they are curious and gorgeous. Never buy bargain lots of mixed tulips. Fewer named bulbs of a high grade give far more pleasure and satisfaction.
In every old-fashioned garden one used to see the fritillary or crown imperial erect its tall stem, bearing near the top a graceful umbel of red, yellow, or orange bell-shaped flowers with a tuft of foliage above them. Quaint old Gerarde praised its "stately beautifulness" and accorded it "the first place in the garden of delight." Why do we see it now so rarely? It thrives in any good light soil and need not be disturbed for years. It is quite hardy; it is cheap; it blooms early, coming before the hyacinths in April and dying down in summer; its petals drip nectar; it wears an air of distinction; what virtue, except fragrance, doth it lack? Let us neglect it no longer! The perennial border especially needs so richly coloured and decorative a flower that blooms early.
A joyful garden might almost be made from lilies alone. Bulb beauty would seem to reach its culmination in them. Only the rarest kinds are costly, and large, heavy bulbs of, perhaps, the loveliest of them all -- the hardy, easily grown white Madonna lily (L. candidum) -- may be had for less than nine dollars a hundred to plant in parallel rows along a formal path or through the aisle of a pergola or pleached arbour. Formal treatment best suits this stately lily. It makes a delightful companion crop for light-blue larkspurs. Its pure white trumpets, shorter than the Easter lily's in the hot-house, fill the evening air with fragrance and lend a heavenly beauty to the garden by moonlight to refresh the weary eyes of the commuter. Let us more often think of him in planting our gardens! The superb gold-banded lily of Japan (L. auratum) seems really too good to be true. Each tall, stout stem hung with lilies of huge size, whose ivory petals have a golden stripe through the centre, is surprising; and where dozens rear their heads from among the rhododendrons the effect demands strong superlatives to express its splendour. Many other lilies may be grown among rhododendrons, and laurel and azaleas, too, for the conditions suit them perfectly -- light, rich, peaty, moist, but well-drained soil in partial shade. Unhappily the gold-banded lily bulbs are sometimes attacked by a fungus disease either when we receive them from Japan, or shortly after. Dip them in a weak solution of formaldehyde such as would be prepared for seed potatoes, and sift powdered Bordeaux on the soil above their crowns. But the most frequent cause of failure with imported lilies is that they come from Japan too late to become established before killing frost. Many bulbs do not reach us until December. If kept long out of the ground, they deteriorate or die. Late comers should be packed in sand and stored in a cold cellar until they can be safely planted out in spring. Never buy gold-banded or speciosum lilies that have been weakened by long exposure in a seedsman's shop. Indeed, no time should be lost in getting any bulbs into the ground after they leave the grower.
ONE OF THE LOVELIEST AND EASIEST WAYS TO BEAUTIFY A HALF-SHADY KNOLL OR A BIT
OF OPEN WOODLAND IS TO PLANT THE STAR-OF-BETHLEHEM. IT GROWS IN GRASSY TUFTS
ABOUT SIX INCHES HIGH, WITH NUMEROUS WHITE, STAR-LIKE FLOWERS IN LOOSE
CLUSTERS. THE BULBS COST ABOUT SIX DOLLARS A THOUSAND, OR YOU MAY FIND THEM
RUNNING WILD FROM AN OLD GARDEN.
Beginning with the trout lily -- the little yellow, speckled bell that nods in the wild garden and bears the misleading popular name of dog-tooth "violet" -- with Jack-in-the-pulpit and the trilliums, white, pink and claret, a lovely pageant of native bulbs has already passed before our eyes are dazzled by the midsummer splendour of the glowing red wood lily and the tall stems of superbum, hung with perhaps a score of brilliant orange-red turk's caps that brighten the marshes. Nature never fails to give the flowers in her garden the setting that best displays their charms. So must we learn of her.
Lilies-of-the-valley, beloved by everyone, will carpet warm sunny and cold northern spots for early and late bloom -- their season can thus be prolonged seven weeks in the open; fragrant lemon-yellow day lilies will perfume the old-fashioned garden two months before the white day lily, with big heart-shaped leaves, another old-time favourite, opens its pure chalices to woo with their fragrance the night-flying moths; pink and white speciosum lilies will rise among the royal ferns in a half-shaded place; and, if plants that cannot be killed are wanted, the novice will surely have tawny-orange day lilies. Whoever owns any will gladly give away a barrelful of roots. With no cultivation whatever they thrive prodigiously and will readily choke to death every choice thing near them in a garden. But planted along an old stone wall, or naturalised along the edge of a copse in a meadow, the lilies, that are almost as richly coloured as the butterfly milkweed, rise on slender stems above the grasses with splendidly decorative effect.
After the pansies and early tulips have finished blooming, and lovely masses of colour are wanted to fill their beds throughout the summer, no plants can equal the tuberous begonias, which, like azaleas, reflect all the tints of sunset. Exquisite large waxy flowers appear in unwearied succession for months above the clean broad leaves. Start the tubers in shallow boxes of leaf-mould or cocoanut fibre in the hotbed in spring and set them out in rich, moist, cool soil where they are shaded from noonday sun. Not a breath of frost can they endure. Their tubers should be the first lifted.
What shall be done with cannas? They give bold, brilliant colour effects which are at once their glory and the despair of anyone who tries to reconcile the tropical-looking plants to the vegetation in a northern garden. Certainly they shall not be placed in a circular bed, with or without "elephants' ears" that so frequently accompany them, in the centre of a lawn where they form an island, a spot of colour, entirely unrelated to all other planting. Shall they intrude among the perennials? The effect of their big, broad leaves there is quite as bad. For a quick-growing screen they are admirable, but only if it be a necessary detail in a good planting plan; or for an isolated corner where tropical effects with bamboo, eulalias, and other tall, decorative grasses are wanted. Their rich bronze green or brownish maroon leaves are as valuable as their gorgeous flowers, haunted by hummingbirds that feast in the deep nectar-filled tubes.
Gladioli bloom opportunely when the garden needs lighting up. Their spikes of brightness especially help the perennial border which is wont to look weary at midsummer, before its autumnal revivification begins. Large-flowered new strains are a revelation to one who knows only the old sorts. Since they may be had in a great variety of colours, they need never clash with any permanent plants. Like cannas, elephants' ears, poker plants, tuberous begonias and dahlias, they must be lifted in autumn and stored in a cellar, but let no one forego growing them on that account. They are worth the little trouble they cost if only for cut flowers which last over a week in water -- a cheerful fact for the busy housewife.
Dahlias may be introduced at the back of the perennial border, for they grow tall, require stakes, and do not produce their finest flowers until early autumn, and so ought not to be given a conspicuous foreground position anywhere on the grounds. But they require deep rich soil, being gross feeders, and will not bear crowding or pilfering from surrounding plants. The single kinds have the most graceful flowers that are splendidly decorative in the garden and that arrange well in vases from which the top-heavy, less lovely double kinds are forever falling out. Wonderful cactus dahlias can be grown by the merest novice who, if he have no other spot, will plant their tubers along the fence of his vegetable garden and deny himself a row of cabbages. He must be warned, however, that not all the superb dahlias seen at the exhibitions, where he learns of the widespread dahlia craze, have garden value because of the weakness of their stems. All the strength of some of them seems to have been forced into the flowers which hide their handsome heads in a mass of leaves. Only the single-flowered kinds grow on tall slender stems, high above their foliage.
Among yuccas or ornamental grasses the flaming torches of the red-hot poker plant flare most effectively. Isolate such a blaze of colour if you would get the full value of its glory. Yellow, orange, scarlet and coral flame flowers or torch flowers glow with lambent fire in late summer and early autumn as if they would set the fast-fading garden ablaze.
One of the joyful possibilities in owning a pond or stream is the ability to grow to perfection a variety of beautiful grasses and sedges about its edge. The hardy bamboos, eulalia, reeds, erianthus, and phalaris, taken from the flower garden, where they invariably look out of place, and naturalised on the banks with the choicer native grasses; reeds and sedges for congenial company, not only hold their own, but their increased vigour is encouraging. The feathery plumes of the Japanese eulalia especially become a fresh revelation of grace. Wild rice, which should be sown as soon as it ripens, will attract many birds to feast -- bobolinks, red-winged blackbirds and wild ducks among the throng. We are only beginning to realize the delightful uses of the hardy bamboos in the background of the perennial border, in the water garden, and for those tropical effects with pampas grasses and other exotics without which no "head gardener for a first class gentleman" seems to be truly happy. Too long have we regarded all the bamboo race as impossible denizens of warmer climes. But there are at least a half-dozen hardy ones, among them the little pygmy bamboo, for carpeting rock gardens and wild places, and a broad-leaved, decorative bamboo (Bambusa Metake), the best of all, which grows higher than a man's head. Whoever wishes to achieve the effect of a gigantic ribbon grass will grow Fortune's bamboo along with the "gardener's garters," a variegated phalaris, and the striped or barred eulalias from Japan, but one must almost wish he wouldn't! Freakish foliage is so difficult to manage in the making of garden pictures that few, indeed, ever use it aright. For lightening too-heavy masses of dark foliage, or for running up the colour scale to a high accenting note, however, it has too great value to the artistic gardener to be ignored.
DOUBLE BORDER OF GERMAN IRISES ALONG A GRASSY PATH. THE BARE EARTH ON
EITHER SIDE IS AN ARTISTIC DEFECT WHICH COULD BE EASILY OVERCOME EITHER BY ALLOWING
THE IRISES TO GROW OUT TO MEET THE GRASS OR BY USING ALYSSUM, PINKS OR
OTHER LOW-GROWING EDGING PLANTS.
After the flowering grasses and sedges have been cut for winter decoration indoors, the astonishing autumn crocuses (Colchicum) bloom by Thanksgiving, as if the year, before dying, had entered upon a second childhood.
THE SELECT AMONG BULBOUS AND TUBEROUS PLANTS
The flowering period given is that of New York and allowances must be made north or south.
ACONITE, WINTER (Eranthis hyemalis). Yellow; March; 6 inches. Flowers before the leaves, one bloom to a stern. Quite hardy. Give half shade in border. Earliest bright yellow flower.
ANEMONE (Various species of Anemone). See ANEMONE, WINDFLOWER, etc.)
BACHELOR'S BUTTON (Ranunculus Asiaticus, Centaurea and other flowers.)
BEGONIA (Begonia tuberosa). Red, pink, white, yellow and mixed. All summer; 6 to 8 inches. Invaluable for summer bedding in shaded places. Flowers sometimes 6 inches across. The different strains vary greatly in form and colour. Peaty soil preferred. Lift tubers in fall and keep free from frost, planting in May, June.
BLEEDING HEART (Dielytra spectabilis). Pink; May, June; 2 feet. (See HERBACEOUS PLANTS.)
BLOODROOT (Sanguinaria Canadensis). White, tinged pink. April; 8 inches high. Appearing first before the leaves. Whole plant densely covered with white powder. Transplant late summer or spring. Valuable for rockery.
BUTTERFLY WEED (Asclepias tuberosa). Orange, rarely yellow. June, September. (See NATIVE PLANTS.)
CANNA (Canna Indica hybrids). Red, pinkish, pale yellow, and nearly white. July; 2 to 6 feet. August till frost. Flowers in branching spikes, above large sheathing leaves. The most tropical looking bedding plant for both foliage and flower. Roots tender and must be wintered in cellar. Give water in abundance; at home on pond edges. Modern varieties have flowers nearly as big as a man's palm.
CROCUS, AUTUMN (Colchicum autumnale). Purple, pink, white. Individual flower 4 inches across. September; 3 to 4 inches high. Plant in August. Divide in July, and do not disturb until crowded. --- (C. Parkinsoni.) Veins outlined in purple, giving checker-like effect. ---, CLOTH-OF-GOLD (Crocus Susianus). Yellow.
SCOTCH (C. biflorus). White striped lilac. ---, IMPERATI (C. Imperati). Purplish blue. ---, DUTCH (C. Maesiacus). ---, COMMON (C. vernus). Varieties, white, lilac, purple; All 3 to 5 inches. The largest individual flowers and most effective of the dwarf spring bulbs. Of equally easy culture. Perfectly hardy. If planted in lawn, foliage must be allowed to mature before grass is cut. March. Best named varieties of the common crocus are Snow Queen, Queen of Purples, and Bleu Celeste.
CROWN IMPERIAL (Fritillaria imperialis). Brownish red. April. (See OLD-FASHIONED FLOWERS.)
DAFFODIL. See NARCISSUS.
DAHLIA (Dahlia variabilis). All colours but blue and true scarlet; August, October; 2 to 6 feet. Easily raised from seed, flowering first year. Tops cut by first frost. Most important tuberous rooted plant and most effective of all the tall growing kinds for late flowers. Has most brilliant flowers and a greater variety of them, combined with greater diversity and form, than any other one group of plants. All the varieties in cultivation are forms of the one species. Plant the tubers in any good garden soil after danger of frost is past and give cultivation same as potatoes. Lift roots in November after tops have been cut off by first frost and store in sand or ashes in frost-proof cellar. It is best to divide old roots when replanting. Dahlias are classified according to the form and colour, as follows: Show, regularly quilled rays, self-coloured or lighter at the base. Fancy, regularly quilled rays darker at the base. Cactus, petals variously twisted and revolute, all colours. Decorative, a modern intermediate root with broad and flat petals, both generally useful for cutting. Single, daisy-like flowers with conspicuous disc and an outer rim and row of florets. Peony-flowered, most modern, irregularly formed sort of semi-double decorative type, Very large. The Pompon group includes miniatures of the Show and Fancy and Single types. New Century, very large single flowers with rich colourings. Collerette, single or semi-double, with broad outer ray of florets and a row of tubular inner florets surrounding the disc. Not much esteemed. Examples in each case are: Frank Smith, maroon tipped white, fancy, Stanley, golden yellow, show. Katherine Duer, iridescent scarlet, decorative. William Agnew, carmine-red, decorative. Aegir, cardinal-red, much twisted, cactus. Mary Service, apricot shaded orange, cactus. Strahlen Krone, deep cardinal-red, cactus. Perle de la Tete d'Or, white, cactus. Twentieth Century and its varieties in various colours are best among the singles. Of the Pompons, Darkness, tipped velvety maroon; Snowclad, the finest white; Little Bessy, creamy white, quilled, are typical.
DOG'S TOOTH VIOLET (Erythronium Americanum). Yellow. April, May; 10 inches. (See NATIVE PLANTS.)
DUTCHMAN'S BREECHES (Dicentra cucullaria). Greenish white, tinged rose; 8 inches. (See NATIVE PLANTS.)
ELEPHANT'S EAR (Caladium esculentum). Massive foliage heart-shaped, 2 1/2 feet long. Corm is not hardy, but winters indoors if kept dry. Most massive subtropical foliage plant for Summer bedding. Any soil.
FLAME FLOWER. SEE RED-HOT POKER.
GLADIOLUS (G. Gandavensis and other hybrids, as Childsii, Lemoinei, Nanceianus, Groff, etc.). Pink, red, white, yellow and mixtures. July, September; 3 feet. In one-sided spikes. Extremely varied. Most showy summer bulbs. Lift after frost and store dry.
GLORY-OF-THE-SNOW (Chionodoxa Luciliae). Sky-blue. March; 6 to 9 inches. White eye. (C. Sardensis). Dark blue. (C. Luciliae, var. grandiflora). Larger and later. Largest blue flowers of early spring. Give sun.
GROUND NUT (Apios tuberosa). Chocolate brown. July, August; 4 to 8 feet. Climbing. Flowers in dense short racemes. Any light soil in sun. Becomes a weed in rockeries.
GUINEA HEN FLOWER. See LILY, CHECKERED.
HYACINTH, BEDDING (Hyacinthus orientalis). Blue, red, white, primrose, single and double in various shades. Buy new bulbs each year for best results. Plant in solid colours. 12 to 18 inches. After flowering lift in May. Offsets will take three or four years to develop. Dense spikes of bloom, giving stiff formal effect. Most fragrant of the spring bulbs. Many named varieties. Among the best are: Fabiola, single pink; Gertrude, single, dark rose; La Grandesse, single, white; Grandeur a Merveille, pale, blush-white, single; La Peyrouse, single, light blue; King of the Blues, single, dark blue; King of the Yellows, single, yellow. Of the doubles: Lord Wellington, red; Prince of Waterloo, white; Charles Dickens, blue. Roman Hyacinths are miniatures of the foregoing and sold merely by colour. ---, CAPE (Galtonia candicans). August; 3 to S feet. Bell-shaped flowers I inch long. In loose spike. Give slight protection in light rich soil in sun or half shade. Fragrant. ---, GRAPE (Muscari botryoides). April; 4 to 6 inches. Blue, white. Small bell-like flowers in dense spike 1 1/2 inches long. Best variety, Heavenly Blue. Much larger. ---, WOOD (Scilla festalis). Blue, white. Rarely pink. May; 1 foot. Looser and fewer flowered than the bedding hyacinth, but otherwise much like it. Naturalise in woodlands.
IRIS (Various). See HERBACEOUS PLANTS.
IXIA (Various Species and Hybrids). White, yellow, purple, ruby, blue, green, in lax panicles. Usually with black eye. Similar to sparaxis. Numerous named varieties. Give protection over winter, uncovering in April. Plant November. Lift in July, and dry off. The greatest range of colour of any bulb.
JACK-IN-THE-PULPIT. See NATIVE PLANTS.
JONQUIL (Narcissus Jonquilla). Rich yellow. Very fragrant. Leaves round, rush-like. One flowered. May. Often confused with N. odorus, which has larger waved crown.
THE GUINEA HEN FLOWER, ALTHOUGH ONCE COMMONLY GROWN IN GARDENS,
IS BETTER ADAPTED TO FREE, NATURALISTIC TREATMENT IN MEADOWS AND HALF-WILD PLACES.
AFRICAN BLUE (Agapanthus umbellatus). Blue, in umbels on long stalks. June; 2 to 3 feet. Resembling Clivia in all but colour. Nearly tender piazza plant. Dormant in winter; take into cellar. Water abundantly when flowering. Best in large tub. Apt to break pots.
AUTUMN PINK (Lilium speciosum). Pink, red, white. August; 2 to 3 feet. For permanent planting. Best in warm, sheltered shrubbery or beds. The favourite, L. rubrum, is a form of this. Flowers 6 inches across. Flatly expanded. Perfectly hardy.
BELLADONNA (Amaryllis Belladonna). Deep chalice form. Rose colour, varying to white and red; 2 to 4 feet. May. Tender, needing protection in winter, not easy to manage.
BLACKBERRY (Belemcanda Chinensis). Orange, spotted red. June; 2 to 3 feet. (See OLD-FASHIONED FLOWERS.)
CANADA (Lilium Canadense). Chalice formed, 3 to 4 inches long. Yellow to yellowish red. July. Moist clay or sandy soil.
CHECKERED, GUINEA HEN FLOWER, SNAKE'S HEAD (Fritillaria Meleagris). May. (See OLD-FASHIONED FLOWERS, FRITILLARY.) Likes cool, alluvial meadow land and shelter.
CORAL (Lilium tenuifolium). Scarlet, turban-like flower; inch across; 12 to 18 inches high; with slender foliage. Grow from seed.
DAY (Funkia and Hemerocallis). See OLD-FASHIONED FLOWERS. (Tigridia pavonia). Bright scarlet, to yellow, crimson, and white; 4 to 6 inches across. Flowers last one day, but are produced for two or three months. Plant in early spring, lifting the bulbs after frost and storing in dry cellar. Foliage ribbed, narrow. ---, DWARF ORANGE (Hemerocallis Dumortieri). Orange. June; 1 foot. Purer colour, earlier and more refined than the common orange day lily which is excellent for naturalising. Hardy in extreme North. Plant spring or fall.
GIANT INDIAN (Eremurus robustus). Light pinkish lilac. May, June; 8 feet. Individual flowers one inch across, in dense long spike. Very distinct. Large roots must not be moved. Mulch over winter. Several other species, differing but slightly.
GOLD BANDED (Lilium auratum). The most showy and largest flowered of the real lilies. Often a foot across. August; 4 feet. Pale yellow with golden centre band and crimson spots. Hardy, but appears to fail after a few years. Plant fall and spring.
HENRY'S (Lilium Henryi). July, 4 to 6 feet. Resembles L. speciosum, but is entirely cinnabar yellow. Very hardy and increases rapidly. Strong flower.
JACOBAEAN (Sprekelia formosissima). Red. 1 to 2 feet high. A solitary flower 6 inches long. Grown like an amaryllis, which it resembles. Half hardy.
JAPAN (Lilium elegans) July; 1 to 2 feet. Yellow, orange, red. Cup-shaped flower 5 to 6 inches across. Plant in full sunshine, 6 to 8 inches deep. The best of all the upright lilies.
MADONNA (Lilium candidum). White. May, June. Plant in August. (See OLD-FASHIONED FLOWERS.)
NEAPOLITAN (Allium Neapolitanum). White. July; 3 to 18 inches. Needs protection. The most ornamental of the onions. Not pungent. Flowers in a dense umbel, each about 1/2 inch across. Good for cutting.
POWELL'S CAPE (Crinum Powelli). Pink. September; 3 to 4 feet. Largest-flowered autumn-blooming bulb. Hardy at New York if well covered in winter. Plant 8 inches deep.
RED (Lilium Philadelphicum). Red-orange, dark spotted with brown-purple. June, July; 1 to 2 feet. Any well-drained soil, sun or shade. Flower cup-shaped, erect.
SCARLET MARTAGON (Lilium Chalcedonicum). 3 to 4 feet. Nodding bright red flowers, unspotted. Sometimes yellow. One of the prettiest of small flowered lilies. Should become quite popular.
TIGER (Lilium tigrinum). Pale brick-red, dark spotted; August; 2 to 5 feet. Individual flower 6 inches. Easiest to grow of all lilies. Somewhat stiff and coarse looking, but a favourite in old-time gardens.
TURK'S CAP (Lilium superbum). 4 to 8 feet. Orange and orange-yellow. This is the best lily for gardens, but a great feeder and wants good moist soil 2 to 4 feet deep. Flowers turban-like, 2 inches across; numerous.
LILY-OF-THE-VALLEY (Convallaria majalis). White. May, June; 6 to 8 inches. Under shade of trees and along rich, partially shaded borders. Flowers are nodding bells borne along a stalk. Fragrant.
MEXICAN CORAL DROPS (Bessera elegans). Vermillion and white; 1 to 2 feet. Late summer. Very effective summer flowering bulb, sometimes throwing 6 to 10 scapes with 20 pendulous flowers in an umbel, cup-shaped. Plant in spring and lift when ripe.
MILLA (Milla biflora). White, waxy; 6 to 18 inches high. Fragrant; 2 1/2 inches across. Plant in early spring. Lift September and October and store over winter. Flat star-like flower.
MONTBRETIA. See TRITONIA.
The poeticus, and polyanthus (Tazetta) narcissus, the jonquil, and the large trumpet daffodil are varieties of different species in the one botanical genus Narcissus. The family is divided into three big groups, called respectively, (a) Magni-coronati or large trumpet; (b) Medii-coronati or cup daffodil, (c) Parvi-coronati or saucer daffodil. The varieties of groups a and b are commonly known as daffodils, while those of group c are commonly known as narcissus, including of course the poet's and polyanthus groups. Group b, the Incomparabilis section, is composed essentially, and perhaps entirely, of hybrids between different species and varieties of groups a and c, and embraces every degree of difference between the two extremes. The large trumpet daffodils are varieties of N. Pseudo-Narcissus. The polyanthus narcissi (including the Paper White, Double Roman, etc.) are varieties of N. Tazetta. The Poet's Narcissus includes all the varieties of the species N. poeticus; the jonquil is a species known as N. Jonquilla, and differs from the recognised daffodils in having cluster flowers, and from the polyanthus narcissus in having rush-like leaves instead of flat; it is very fragrant and the flowers are of a very deep yellow colour. Selected varieties in each section or group follows:
ALL-YELLOW TRUMPETS. Early: Ard Righ, large, does best in partial shade; Early Bird, has been had in flower in the open April 12th; Golden Spur, free, good for cutting. Midseason: Emperor, fine flower of much substance: Maximus, shy bloomer but of superb colour. Late: Glory of Leiden, the biggest and most lasting flower.
ALL-WHITE WINGED, OR BICOLORS. Early: Victoria, very large and of lasting substance. Midseason: Empress, large and fine, rich yellow trumpet; Horsfieldi, earlier than Empress; very handsome but is becoming diseased. Late: Madame Plemp; a large, bold flower; Grandee, for succession, dwarf, but free flowering.
ALL-WHITE TRUMPETS. Early: Cernuus albicans; a very graceful "Swan's Neck"; Mrs. Thompson, strong, free flowering and large; Princess Ida, small, but curiously edged with yellow at the mouth. Midseason: William Goldring, with perianth over-hanging the trumpet. Late: Madame de Graaff, most beautiful and largest.
LESSER LONG-CROWNED DAFFODILS. Johnstoni, a good naturaliser, thin, graceful flowers yellow. Cyclamineus, little yellow cyclamen-like flowers three inches long. Bulbocodium, hop petticoat-shaped flowers of white or yellow. Pretty in pots, or in rock work. Humei, Hume's (Dog-eared daffodils), small trumpet, with overhanging perianth like dog's ears. The tridymus group, a series of few hardy cluster flowered daffodils.
INCOMPARABILIS VARIETIES. Early: Sir Watkin, large and handsome, very free, full yellow. Midseason: Autocrat, every flower as perfectly formed as if cut with a die; full yellow; Stella Superba, white perianth and yellow cup; handsome as cut flower. Late: Beauty, large, handsome, yellow star-like flowers, crown edged orange-red; Gloria. Mundi, large flower, cup heavily margined with red; the Barrii group, having trumpet edged with scarlet as: Conspicuus, large yellow flower, red edged crown; Flora Wilson, white perianth, yellow crown edged white; Sensation, white perianth, canary crown edged red. Especially suitable for naturalising and cutting are the varieties of the Leedsii group, all having white petals, etc.: Duchess of Westminster, large and beautiful; Katherine Spurrel, hooded, white perianth, cup canary yellow; Mary Magdalen De Graaff, broad, spreading, white perianth, cream crown, suffused terra cotta; Mrs. Langtry, pale creamy yellow, remarkably free flowering, and excellent for cutting.
SHORT-CROWNED OR SAUCER DAFFODILS. Midseason: Burbidgei Baroness Heath, yellow, orange-red cup; Crown Princess, cream-white, light yellow cup edged orange. Late: Sequin, glistening white, flat golden cup; Ornatus (midseason) and King Edward VII. are the two best varieties of fragrant, white poet's narcissus.
DOUBLE DAFFODILS. Most important is Telamonius plenus, popularly known as Van Sion. Others are: Cernuus plenus, double form of white Swan's Neck; Capax plenus, "Queen Ann's double daffodil"; Sulphur Phoenix, popularly known as "codlins and cream," rose-like flowers, interspersed petals of pale and golden yellow; Double Campernelle, grows 2 feet high, two to six flowers to stem, strong bulb throwing up two to six stems. Deep golden yellow, fragrant.
PEONY, EARLY (Paeonia officinalis). May, June; 3 feet. Crimson. Best planted in September. (See OLD-FASHIONED FLOWERS.)
QUAMASH (Camassia esculenta). Blue, purple, whitish. May; 2 feet. In loose spike. Flowers star-like, 10 to 40. Perfectly hardy. Bulb used as food by the Indians.
RED-HOT POKER (Kniphofia Pfitzeri). Scarlet, orange. Early August to October; 3 to 4 feet. This is probably the most gorgeous of all the varieties. Foot-long cones of bright orange-scarlet tubular flowers, one hundred or more each, surmounting an erect stalk 4 to 5 feet. Hardy south of New Jersey, needs protection in Philadelphia, but must be lifted in the North. Give warm, well-drained place with dark background for the best effects. Other named varieties range from yellow to brick-red. One of the most startlingly effective plants. Leaves three feet long, narrow and grass-like. Often catalogued as Tritoma.
SNAKE'S HEAD. See LILY, CHECKERED.
SNOWDROP, COMMON (Galanthus nivalis). White. Earliest reliable spring flowers; 3 to 4 inches. For cold sheltered places as well as open. ---, GIANT (G. Elwesii). Var. Whittallii is best.
SNOW FLAKE (Leucojum vernum and aestivate). White; 1 foot. Like large snowdrops; vernum flowers in March; aestivale in April and May. Good border plants.
SQUILL, TWO-LEAVED (Scilla bifolia). Purplish blue. 4 to 6 inches. A week later than Siberian Squill but more reliable; Var. Taurica has 10 to 20 flowers ---, SIBERIAN (S. Sibirica), dark blue. Best true blue early bulb. March; 3 to 6 inches. For lawns, shrubberies. STAR OF BETHLEHEM (Ornithogalum umbellatum). White with green veins and black centre. May; 1 foot. Escaped from old garden. Flowers in loose panicles. Excellent for naturalising.
TRILLIUM See WOOD-LILY or WAKEROBIN in NATIVE PLANTS.
TRITONIA, MONTBRETIA (T. Pottsi). Yellow, tinged red. T. crocosmae-flora, orange-crimson; Lax spikes, star-like flowers. August, September; 1 to 2 feet. Hardy in well-drained but moist soil.
TRITONIA. See RED-HOT POKER (above).
TUBEROSE (Polyanthes tuberosa). White. Very fragrant, August, September; 2 ½ to 3 feet. In foot long spike carried on end of erect stalk. Arching grass-like foliage. Plant in warm soil in early summer. Double variety preferred.
TULIP, BEDDING (Tulipa suaveolens). Great range of colours except blue. April; 12 to 16 inches. Buy new bulbs annually for best flowers. Old ones may be lifted and planted in the border. These are the most gorgeous of the spring bulbs. Young tulips raised from seed are called "seedlings" until they have bloomed. When they first flower they are called "breeders." These flowers are invariably of one colour throughout, although the seed may have been saved from variegated blossoms. After some years the petals of these hitherto self flowers become striped, and they are then said to "break," or "rectify." If the stripings are clearly marked and of good pure colours, the flowers are spoken of as having a "good strain." A "rectified tulip" is synonymous with a tulip having a good strain. These rectified flowers are divided into three classes: bizarres, bybloemens, and roses. The "bizarre" tulip has a yellow ground with shades of orange, brown, scarlet and crimson. The "bybloemen" has a white ground, marked with black, brown, lilac, lavender, etc. The "rose" has a white ground, variegated with shades of crimson, pink, scarlet, cerise. The various classes of rectified tulips have the petals either feathered or flamed. A "feathered" tulip has a dark coloured edge, gradually becoming lighter toward the centre of the petal. A "flamed" flower has a beam of color running up the centre of the petal.
EARLY SINGLES IN SCARLET AND CRIMSON: BRUTUS, the earliest, very bright, with a very slight yellow feather on the edges; grows 8 inches high. Artus, brilliant dark scarlet, a few days later than Brutus. Grows 8 to 10 inches high. Belle Alliance, the best bright scarlet in the early flowering section. Grows about 10 inches high. The flower lasts well. Couleur Cardinal, rich, dark red, with a bright crimson edge, a little later than the foregoing varieties. An excellent tulip of rigid habit. Grows 10 to 12 inches high. Thomas Moore, rich orange-scarlet. Grows 12 to I5 inches high; sweet-scented. Keiserskroon, vivid red, with a broad deep yellow margin. Grows I5 inches high, lasts well. An excellent tulip in every respect.
PINK FLOWERED EARLY SINGLES: Rose Grisdelin, the dwarfest and best bright pink bedding tulip. Grows only 6 inches high. EARLY YELLOW SINGLES: Chrysolora, the best early yellow bedder. A large and beautiful flower. Grows 10 inches high. Canary Bird, clear yellow. Grows 10 inches high; very early. Pottebakker, pure yellow. Grows 12 inches high. A well-known large flower. Yellow Prince, rich golden yellow, large and sweet scented. Grows 12 inches high; very early. Mon Trésor grows 10 to 12 inches high, large flower.
MAY-FLOWERING OR COTTAGE TULIPS (T. Gesneriana type). popular for the average garden, coming into flower from one to two weeks later than the early varieties. As cut flowers they are superior, lasting a week or more in water. Free and graceful habit, I8 to 24 inches high, bearing flowers of brilliant colourings on long, strong stems. They can be used with great effect in both borders and beds, either in solid colours or in combinations. Among the best of this section are: Giant Gesneriana, dazzling crimson-scarlet, with metallic blue-black centre. Grows 2 feet high. The showiest, tallest, and largest flowered of all tulips. Golden Eagle, deep yellow, similar, except in colour, to Giant Gesneriana. Bouton d'Or, deep, rich golden yellow, with dark centre. A small flower, but very effective; considered by many to be the finest yellow tulip. Nigrette (the black tulip), jet-black in colour, resembling in form Bouton d'Or. Shandon Bells, when opening the flowers are a delicate primrose flushed with pink, changing as they age to rosy carmine. Maiden Blush, or Picotee, beautiful white flower, the edges changing to clear pink. Very dainty in effect, and long lasting. Florentina, a very small bulb that bears one or two large, handsome yellow flowers on each stalk.
WHITE SINGLE EARLY: Pottebakker White, the best early white bedding tulip. Grows 10 to 12 inches high. White Hawk, a beautiful large pure white. Grows 10 to 12 inches high. La Reine, white, slightly tinted pink; 10 to 12 inches high. Excellent form; lasts well. L'Immaculee, one of the dwarfest and earliest of pure white tulips Grows 6 inches high.
MIXED COLOURS: Tournesol, red, with narrow edge of yellow. Grows 8 inches high. Titian, red bordered yellow, similar to Tournesol, but with larger yellow margin. Mariage de ma Fille, crimson and white, flaked and finely striped. Grows 12 inches high. Late.
DOUBLE FLOWERING: Equal to most of the singles in brilliancy, but are more lasting. The later flowering varieties are very effective most in beds and borders. The following are the best: Couronne d'Or, the best double yellow bedding tulip. Grows 10 inches high. Yellow Rose, a beautiful yellow, growing same height as Couronne d'Or; later and more fragrant. Tournesol Yellow, shaded with orange. Grows 8 inches high. Rex Rubrorum, similar in height and colour to Imperator Rubrorum, but flowers earlier. The best double scarlet. La Candeur, the best pure white double tulip. Grows 8 inches high, and when planted in combination with Imperator Rubrorum is very effective. Rose Blanche, pure white. Grows 8 inches high. Excellent for bedding. Earlier than La Candeur. Salvator Rose, deep rosy pink. Grows 7 inches high. Early. Murillo, the best light pink; long lasting. Grows only 6 inches high.
DARWIN (T. Gesneriana, etc., in garden hybrids). Breeder tulips, of vigorous growth, usually reaching more than two feet high. The many varieties cover a great range of self or solid coloured, finely formed flowers in the following shades: slate, heliotrope, mahogany, claret, cherry. They are especially desirable for the hardy border, and bloom late in May. Sold in mixtures. Naturalised in borders.
DUC VAN THOL (T. suaveolens). The varieties of this group form a distinct class of themselves. They come in scarlet, red and yellow, yellow, crimson, rose and white. They are grown because they are among the earliest to flower: the different colours come into bloom simultaneously, and the plants grow to the same height, 7 to 8 inches only. There are also double yellow and double scarlet forms. Sold by colour.
DRAGON OR PARROT (T. Gesneriana, var. dracontia). Late flowering; petals irregularly cut, and fringed in a variety of colours. They have a striking and showy effect in borders, where they propagate freely if left to come up year after year. Constantinople, red, striped orange, with black markings. Lutea, clear yellow, feathered with red and green; very large. Rubra Major, bright crimson, large flower, very rich in effect. Markgrave of Baden, yellow, framed with scarlet; very showy flower. Carmoise Brilliant, brilliant carmine.
GREIG'S (Tulipa Greigi). A vigorous growing tulip, attaining a height of 15 inches. The foliage is broad and green and heavily spotted with brown; flower goblet shaped, orange-scarlet, from 4. to 6 inches in diameter.
LATE (---,Varieties of Tulipa Gesneriana).
MARIPOSA (Calochortus luteus, venustus, Nuttalii, etc). Three large petals and three smaller ones. The Mariposas have upright flowers like tulips. The star tulips, C. albus and others, have drooping flowers. All require partial shade. Will stand cold but not alternating freezing and thawing. Plant in fall in light loam with light drainage material added.
WAKEROBIN. See WOOD-LILY, NATIVE PLANTS.
WAND FLOWERS (Sparaxis tricolor). Purplish, with yellow throat, variable, 1 foot. Few flowered lax spikes. August, September. Very graceful. Rarely seen. Treat like Tritonia.
WATSONIA (W. iridifolia). Pinkish. Resembling gladiolus. July, September; 3 to 4 feet. W. Ardernei, white, of the trade is W. iridifolia var. O'Brienii.
WOOD SORREL (Oxalis Acetosella). White, veined rosy. Summer; 8 inches. Flowers and leaves close at night. Rich, well-drained loam. A. Boweii, bright rose-red is much more showy.
YELLOW STAR-FLOWER (Sternbergia lutea). Yellow. September; 4 to 6 inches. Only yellow autumn blooming bulb worth growing. Plant four inches deep in stiff soil where sun strikes in summer. Give dry mulch over winter.
THE BEST ORNAMENTAL GRASSES
All the plants marked (*) are also recommended for planting in situations near to or surrounding the water garden.
*BAMBOO (Various species of Bambusa, Arundinaria and Phyllostachys, but generally called bamboos in the trade.) There are seven bamboos worth growing, and that are hardy in the North. They are among the most beautiful and dignified of the grasses. They require careful nursing and protection for the first few years. ---, BROAD-LEAVED (A. Japonica, or B. Metake). Best of all; largest and broadest leaved of the tall kinds; 6 to 10 feet. The large leaf sheaths almost cover the stem. ---, BLACK, (P. nigra). Stems become black in the second year; 10 to 20 feet high. This plant is the one from which bamboo furniture is made. Var. punctata has yellow stems with black spots. ---, GOLDEN STEMMED (P. aurea). 10 to 15 feet. ---, RIVIERE'S (P. viridi-glaucescens), 10 to 18 feet. Very hardy; the most commonly grown. Peculiar zig-zag habit of growth. SIMON'S (A. Simoni). Tallest; 10 to 20 feet in the North. Starts growth late in the season. Thin out the weaker shoots. Leaves an inch wide, 1 foot long, tapering to a fine point. ---, PIGMY (B. pigmaea). Valuable for rockery, but spreads rapidly and may become a nuisance in a border. ---, FORTUNE'S (A. Fortunei). The only hardy variegated kind, and an old favorite; 3 to 4 feet high. Foliage striped with white. Give deep, rich, well-drained situation, with plenty of moisture, with protection from prevailing winter winds. Mulch for the first few years.
*BLUE FESCUE (Festuca glauca). Deep, silvery blue, in tufts. Flourishes in moderate shade. 6 to 12 inches. Worth growing for its colour.
*CANARY GRASS, RIBBON GRASS (Phalaris arundinacea). With whitish drooping spike-like panicles. Leaves narrow. 5 to 6 feet. For wild effects, spreading very freely by underground shoots. The variegated form (var. variegata) is the common ribbon grass. Leaves longitudinally striped with white. Grow in a sunken drain tile to prevent spreading.
*EULALIA (Miscanthus Sinensis). The prettiest lawn specimen grass; 4 to 9 feet. Long, narrow leaves, drooping most gracefully. Old clumps may be 5 or 6 feet through. --- (var. variegatus). Longitudinally striped yellow. ---, ZEBRA GRASS (var. Zebrinus). Banded yellow, not quite hardy. ---, JAPANESE RUSH (var. gracillimus). Very narrow leaves; 1/2 inch. Exceedingly effective for small gardens.
*PAMPAS GRASS (Gynerium argentea). The most beautiful of the taller grasses. Foliage long, narrow, drooping; 8 to 10 feet. Not hardy in extreme North, but may be wintered with slight covering. Beautiful white silken plumes in the fall, but in some varieties varying to carmine, violet and purple. Give light, rich soil, with moderate moisture. Will flower in two years from seed.
*PENNISETUM (Pennisetum villosum). Best dwarf grass. Valuable for edging; 1 to 2 feet. Leaves long, narrow, drooping. Not hardy, but may be raised annually from seed sown February or March. Old plants may be dug and stored away from frost. Flowers in feathery, brownish spikes, 2 to 4 inches long. ---, (P. Ruppeli). More graceful, but slightly taller, with longer spikes.
*RAVENNA GRASS (Eriathus Ravennae). Ranks next to the great reed in beauty. 4 to 7 feet. For single specimens. Narrow leaves, gracefully arching. Plumes resemble pampas grass, but smaller. Prefers sunny situation, and is excellent for aquatic effects. Plumes first year from seed sown February or March.
*REED, GREAT (Arundo Donax). 8 to 15 feet. Somewhat resembling a glorified corn plant. Broad leaves. Light green. Makes a huge clump when established. Var. variegatus, with yellow variegations, 4 1/2 feet. Var. macrophylla, less hardy. Has glaucous blue foliage, very effective. These are the tallest and most stately of all the grasses.
RUSH, JAPANESE. See EULALIA.
*RIBBON GRASS. See CANARY GRASS.
*SPIKE GRASS (Uniola latifolia). A native grass, worth growing in the garden. Flowers in July. 2 to 4 feet. Spikelets large and thin, drooping when ripe, when it is most effective. Useful for winter bouquets.
ZEBRA GRASS. See EULALIA.