Heuchera, hellstrip & Harry Potter

Harry Potter Garden has a few new additions this year.
This weekend was working on the Harry Potter Garden, the hellstrip and the heuchera (coral bell) bed. Also did plant shopping, planted up most of the baskets and boxes too.

The Harry Potter garden, where we find odd plants and give them the names of the plants found in the Harry Potter books, got cleaned up, mulched and a few house plants brought out to it (a pencil plant, ponytail palm, my birthday bromeliad (thanks Carol!)) and a few others. I've moved all my black mondo grass here from other parts of the garden and planted a few new additions. You'll have to stop by during a bus tour, bike tour, Open Gardens or Garden Walk Buffalo to see it.

The huechera bed had the copper fountain moved to the front and its old spot in the back of the bed now has a bloodgood Japanese maple tree. I used to have a royal purple smoke tree in this spot, but it died a couple years ago and I've missed having something tall, in a color, in this spot. Moving the fountain to the front of the bed will make it more prominent and noticeable. have to find a piece of tubing to get the pump hooked up to the fountain though. It seems to have gotten lost in the black hole that is my garage.

I was trying to level the window box
on the right when it fell. Oops. Now I have
to find help to get it back up there.
Work progresses on the hellstrip between sidewalk and road. I've bought a few more tall & wispy plants, salvias and Russian sage in particular, and a new grass I picked up from Marlene at the Master Gardener's plant sale. The grass should grow to be a mound of greeny-yellowishness in its mature years. I'm stopping the planting in the hellstrip now. I have a problem of planting too much too close, so I'm trying to be good. Next year it should come into its own. Next on the hellstrip will be some hardscaping – pavers or stone for the corner nearest the driveway where the garbage cans sit once a week that has never grown a blade of grass.

I have to beat this garden into submission. The National Garden Festival's Thursday and Friday Open Gardens start in a couple weeks. You can visit my garden on Thursdays from 2-6 pm from June 27 through August 2. To get the National Garden Festival Guide & Open Garden Directory, visit here.
Went to a container gardening class at Lockwood's Greenhouses last week. Above is what I made with a more thought-out approach to putting a container together. Usually I just put stuff together that I see and that I like. Apparently that's not the wisest way to create a successful container garden. Sun plants? Shade plants? Hanging? Sitting? Seen from four sides or one? Against a wall? So many questions need answering before you can start. Who knew? The hypertufa pot with hens & chicks I made last year and it sat out all winter. Works like it was supposed to!
Another view of the "buffet" by the grill. The grass you see is one I got at the Master Gardener's plant sale
two weeks ago. It's called "gray hair" so of course I had to have it. It may be the closest I ever get to having
a plant named after me. It only cost $5 - and that included the hand made hypertufa pot it's in!
The hellstrip will one day be heavenly. I wanna' put in pavers along the roadside
to allow people to exit their cars without having to step into the plants.
Some of the heucheras. I could photograph them all day long. I chose a bed for all heucheras because they come in such great and varied colors. Technically there's heucheras (coral bells) and heucherellas (hybrids with tiarellas (foamflowers)).
Another hypertufa pot I made with hens & chicks hangin' with the heuchera.
The bloodgood Japanese maple I found at Urban Roots Garden Center. Only $60!
Last one they had. I had a gift certificate (thanks Patti) and had always wanted one. Lucky me.
The heuchera fountain I made last year with hand-cut copper flashing and high school soldering skills
has held up well so far. It's hard to photograph though. It's in the bed of heuchera.
Close-up of some of the copper leaves on the fountain. Looks good among the heucheras.
I cut each copper leaf from a tracing of a real heuchera leaf.
Heucheras, like coleus, come in the ever-growing number of colors, shapes, textures, and sizes. Except they're perennials that you only have to buy once – and can even divide year after year. And there's no flower to deadhead! And they are colorful from early spring until they're covered with snow.
I can't get enough of these babies. I'll spare you the other three dozen photos I took of them.
Also worked on the rock garden bed - cleaning up and added one more type of stonecrop, seen in the foreground.
Here's an overall shot of the huechera bed. Channel of violets in the foreground.
The heuchera bed in context of the this part of the back yard. I should stain that old ugly brown/gray fence.
While I was in a fountain-setting-up-mood, I also set up the scupper fish head fountain on the garage.
It now empties into one of the large planters Garden Walk Buffalo gave me as a gift for having been president
for seven years. I love my new planters. Thank you Garden Walk board, committee and gardeners!
Hosta 'Mike Shadrack' – deeply-wrinkled face and pale around the edges, can be found potted.
And the same for the hosta named after him too! He has a place of honor in the heuchera bed.
New garden fairy? No, just casual attire and best seat in the house for the
Gay Pride Parade yesterday, which started in front of our house.
LOTS of men were coveting her stiletto chair. She turns 15 today!


  1. Dan Heims would be proud of you - only the second time I've seen a bed of Heuchera together like that - the other was in Dan's display garden at Terra Nova. I've got mine dotted about, really thinking that they need to play together instead after looking at your display. Your hard work shows - garden looks terrific.

    1. Barbara, I didn't realize I was in such great company with a heuchera garden! I got the idea after having visited the Chelsea Flower Show in London two years ago. I was dumbfounded by the display of heuchera there and loved the colors.

  2. Okay, you may have converted me (almost) from my coleus obsession to a heuchera obsession. They are very cool, I must admit.

    Speaking of cool - Margot in her stiletto chair, love it :-)

    1. Coleus are great, but unless you want the extra work & bother of taking cuttings and re-rooting them every Fall, your stuck buying the same plants year after year - the definition of insanity!

  3. I love heucheras and yours are a kaleidoscope of colors....that hell strip is looking a bit more heavenly...

    1. Thanks Donna. It'll all come together by the first tour of the season. I hope.

  4. Really looking good Jim. I will be by to see all that you have going on.

  5. "I love heucheras and yours are a kaleidoscope of colors."

    Great tour, indeed the colors are great!


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