September at the Botanical Garden
September is very much a transitional month; not just for us, but for our plant friends as well. This month at the garden watch summer slowly fade to fall with a variety of flowers (and fruits!) that are sure to delight and inspire. Japanese anemone (Anemone x hybrida) cultivars ‘Honorine Jobert’, ‘September Charm’, ‘Splendens’, ‘Robustissima’, and ‘Whirlwind’ add whimsical pink and white blooms to the Campsey-Stauffer Gateway Garden, Hershey Children’s Garden, Evans Restorative Garden, Western Reserve Herb Society’s Terrace Garden, and in the Hidden Garden between the Rose Garden and the Terrace.
While grasses may not come to mind when thinking about flowering plants, they too are capable of showy blooms and successive seed heads that add wonderful texture and soften the landscape. As you meander through the Topiary Garden the fountain grass (Pennisetum alopecuroides), flame grass (Miscanthus ‘Purpurascens’), and frost grass (Spodiopogon sibiricus) add welcomed contrast to the conifers. Find fountain grass and flame grass in the Children’s and Gateway gardens as well. Asters and goldenrods are blooming in the Hershey Children’s Garden, Inspiration Butterfly Garden, C.K. Patrick Perennial Border and Woodland Garden. And be sure to not overlook the hardy cyclamen (Cyclamen hederifolium) in the Japanese garden. At nearly half a foot tall, you may have to crouch down to fully appreciate this cute fragrant autumn blooming cyclamen.
There will be no question as to why beautyberry (Callicarpa dichotoma and cultivars ‘Issai’ and ‘Early Amethyst’) is named as such as you explore the children’s garden, Gateway Garden, the Herb Trials and Cuttings Garden and C.K. Patrick Perennial Border Garden. This shrub blooms earlier in the summer but gives way to gorgeously showy fruits in late September and through October. Cultivar ‘Early Amethyst’ begins to ripen earlier, in the beginning of the month, so watch for it in Gateway garden flanking the entrance to the parking garage.