Last summer I recounted the story of Frank's Poppies and how they came to brighten our garden, where they have made it an even brighter --and pinker-- place than it used to be. It's a pity that their bloom time is short ... two weeks or less, (especially if you have some pounding rains while they're open). But while they're blooming en masse they're truly spectacular.
Here's a fun single bloom close up with the sedum and boulders by the steps leading to the house. In the background you can also see one of the Prairie Mallows sneaking into the shot ... not bad for a recovering anti-pink curmudgeon, eh? This particular poppy and all of those around it in the upper bed (this was growing from the base of the rocks) are now gone. I needed that space for 2 Meadow Sages, a couple of Silver Mounds and some zinnias! They were done anyway, and by not letting the pods mature and drop seed, this will help thin out the outrageous numbers of them who come up every year. Such is the life for an annual poppy ...
I like this last shot best for the purely natural framing the flowers themselves provide. Both the poppy and the Zebrina Mallow came up at the base of the boulders just off the sidewalk where there are numerous other Mallows, Calendulas and sedums. I really like how the Sedum will thrive in a small space between the rocks and be perfectly content, and to be honest, it's a plant I've really started to encourage the past few years. Go ahead, I say: try being a profligate punk in this garden! I wouldn't mind at all. It's pretty even when it's done blooming and it also helps keep weeds down once it takes over a spot. Unlike the other one we have, Sedum sarmentosum, it doesn't get all leggy and ratty looking in the hotter months, and best of all, cleans up after itself in the fall.
A pity that these lovely poppies are now done for the year, and the rest will be pulled very soon ... but they're such a great bridge from the late Bee Balm to prime Coneflower and Mallow blooming time ... the hibiscus seem to be a bit behind this year, but I'm betting they'll start sometime later this month ... ah, hibiscus days are ahead ... best part of the summer for me! (Well, that and the first ripe tomatoes.)