Friday, June 26, 2009

Veronicastrum virginicum in the Fern Valley Meadow

If you're tempted to grow Lysimachia clethroides, Gooseneck, don't. Though attractive, it's just too pushy, gobbling up garden space, crowding out less vigorous neighbors, and eventually moving out into the world. Though the tips of the inflorescences don't bend down so far as Gooseneck, Veronicastrum has quite a graceful form. It gets quite large and though I have always thought of it as a plant of wettish meadows and average perennial borders, it can apparently tolerate somewhat drier situations.

I bought a selection, the cultivar 'Fascination' from Lazy S'S Farm Nursery earlier this year and Pete Sheuchenko mentioned that his stock plant survived unattended (read unwatered) in a sunny dry site. I suspect a lot of what we think of as moisture loving plants would be more accurately described as plants that compete better with more water and so are no likely to be found naturally in dry areas. When we defend their spaces for them they survive happily in soil of average moisture content.

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