Right plant, right place

Well done. I have always admired this little piece of heaven in the foothills area of Boise. Actually in the Highlands, at the base. This week, it was completely popping perfect. I went to snap some photos and was lucky to find the garden owner toiling away in the front garden. We chatted, I snapped some pics.

This is a xeric garden done well. Not the bleached bones and cactus look. No gray gravelly garden. Tucked into a draw in the Highlands, the turf has been replaced with woolly and creeping thymes, and yards of uva-ursi arctostaphylus (Kinnickinnick), probably v. Massachusetts. It had the fattest red berries and the leaves were shiny and green. I don’t generally recommend using aspen in the valley, it is too hot here, they die out in 7-10 years and suffer from borers, but this stand is doing fairly well. In fact, the gardener reported that to be the case: a single trunk will die out every few years, but another one comes up. This colonizing gives the planting a handsome, natural look. To make it pop, liatris ‘Kobold’ is exclaiming all over the place: “Look at me!” Mountain ash is dangling gold berries in one corner and a handful of rudbeckia and pineleaf penstemon rounds out the scene.

An excellent example of the design motto: simplify and repeat.