Jun 17, 2010

Spring by Hallmark

I'll do a post in the near future about how my yard was taken over by wildflowers. I never have been good at saying no to a wildflower volunteer. But for now, a picture show highlighting the showiest players, the Clarkias. These are Clarkia amoena (Farewell to Spring) and Clarkia unguiculata (Elegant Clarkia).  They got their start in my yard two years ago when I decided to buy a measly two of each from Annies Annuals, and I planted them in a tiny area where I had cleared just enough ivy to fit in a few 4-inch annuals. They didn't even do well, because 2008 turned out to be our driest spring on record. But they managed to fulfill their life cycle as Nature intended, and dropped enough seeds that the following year, when the ivy was all clear, I had a veritable Clarkia Forest.  Then the forest begat another forest this year.  They are a little over the top for a native garden--I think they are hybrids designed by the nursery to appear hopped up on steroids--so last year I felt like that was sort of cheating, and I actually tried to cut most of them down before they went to seed so as to keep their reproduction at bay and have a more "realistic" yard this year. I didn't succeed. And I'm glad too, because, well. Take a look. They strike me as worthy of a greeting card you'd send to your granny.  So for all the grannies out there:


  1. These are amazing flowers! I'm guessing they won't grow in zone 5.

  2. I don't know for sure what Clarkia amoena ordinarily looks like, but I'm pretty sure your Clarkia unguiculata isn't a pseudo-steroidal hybrid. I grew my first batch from seed this year (from Everwilde Farms) and they looked just like what your pictures show.

    What are the tiny white flowers mixed in with your Clarkias?