20 05 2018

Love-in-a-Mist (Nigella damascena)

Nikon D850, Nikkor 105mm micro, 1/80, f/14, ISO 125

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

WEB Love-in-a-mist 1

East Indian lotus

8 07 2012

From the Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens visitors center:
Clustered in a pool near the visitor center is the pink-tinged East Indian lotus, descended from ancient plants whose seeds were recovered in 1951 from a dry Manchurian lakebed. Induced into germination by the National Park Service, the seeds are believed to be one of the oldest viable seeds ever found. A recent estimate places their age at 640 to 960 years. Unlike water lilies, the lotus (genus Nelumbo) has waxy leaves that rise above the water and shed rain. Its showy flowers drop petals to reveal seedpods that look like shower heads. Its seeds ripen above water.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Intriguing at every stage: Love-in-a-mist

13 05 2012

From that feathery foliage at the onset to those otherworldly blooms to the past-its-prime pods (as seen here), Love-in-a-mist is eye candy in every stage of its life.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Blooming in my garden: Sister violet ‘Freckles’

25 04 2012

The rare and unusual Sister violet (Viola sororia) ‘Freckles’, with heart-shaped evergreen leaves and tiny snow white blooms speckled with deep purple spots, is similar to a wild violet. This hardy perennial likes well-drained soil in full to part sun (mine is in shade for a good part of the day). It’s a great plant for naturalistic shade gardens and it spreads by seed and underground rhizomes. I planted my first bunch a few years ago in an egg shaped wire sculpture perched atop a big urn. This year the plant has escaped from its cage and began spreading on the ground. It returns every year, without fail—a tiny, unassuming, quiet little flower, flying under the radar.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.


19 05 2011

Love-in-a-Mist (Nigella damascena) is a beautiful Victorian garden annual blooming in soft shades of blue, pink, white, and lavender. Because its fern-like leaves look similar to fennel, it has also been called fennel flower. This annual herbaceous plant is in the buttercup family (Ranunculaceae), readily self-seeds, and is common in old-fashioned cottage gardens. It grows in full sun to partial shade and blooms from late spring through fall. Nigella is short-lived, so for continuous bloom, repeat sowing every four weeks. You can cut and deadhead this plant to keep it flowering longer.

Photographed at Green Spring Gardens in Alexandria, Virginia

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Blooming in my garden: Iceland Poppy ‘Champagne Bubbles’

12 05 2011

The Iceland Poppy (Papaver nudicaule), a hardy but short-lived perennial, is native to subpolar regions of North America and northern Europe. This cultivar is ‘Champagne Bubbles’ and the flowers bloom in orange, pink, scarlet, apricot, yellow or creamy white. They prefer full sun but are not hardy in hot weather. The wild Iceland Poppy species bloom in white or yellow.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.