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I'm a woman entering "the third chapter" and fascinated by the journey.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Another new favorite

I have never been wild about monarda. The washed-out purple of the wild form is a perfectly good color mixed in with other things, and all monardas are good for pollinators. (There's a reason the plant is called "bee balm.") But the penchant for powdery mildew, need for water, and tendency to wander if happy has made the plant one on my "meh" list.

Until now. The summer before last, a gardening buddy gave me a start of "Jacob Cline," and this year it is perhaps the most glorious thing in the yard. Its bud is exquisite,

and while the flowers are in the process of opening, the plant hardly looks real.

Now that the blossoms are fully open, Jacob is attracting even more hummingbirds than lonicera sempervirens, the previous best hummingbird magnet. Even better, it pairs well with other flowers, like this echinacea "White Swan."

And its color may be the reddest red I've ever seen.

It's always good to make new friends.

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