September 15, 2009

Caryopteris Companions

Caryopteris 'Longwood Blue' blooms in late summer and into fall. I planted four in the trial area of my deer resistant garden. I'm trying different companions to use with caryopteris.

Agastache, salvia, gaillardia and lantana require the same growing conditions in my zone 7 garden - drought tolerant, full sun, good drainage, deer and rabbit resistant. And certain varieties of these companions hold their blooms long enough to use with the caryopteris!

Caryopteris grows to about three feet high and can be planted two feet apart. It should be cut back to about twelve inches in early spring to promote blooms on the new growth.

The blue bloom color looks good with pink, yellow, dark blue, apricot, orange and white. So many choices!

The fourth caryopteris that I have planted is among other blues - with buddleia 'Adonis Blue', salvia 'Mystic Spires Blue', salvia 'Black & Blue' and caryopteris 'Snow Fairy'.

Therein lies my conundrum. When a plant works so well with so many other colors, I have a difficult time deciding on the companions. Fortunately, I have time to decide since I will wait until spring to move the plants out of the holding area and into a design.

Photos and words by Freda Cameron
Freelance travel writer. My current fiction writing projects include a completed manuscript and several works in progress.

By the way, my name is pronounced fred-ah, not freed-ah. Thank you.

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