Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Red Coral Bells

Well, the lilacs are officially done, plus it's been chilly and the seeds are slow to grow any further, but my red coral bells are blooming and (much to my surprise) I really like them.  A lot.

I guess I should like them, since I'm the one who ordered and planted them, but to be completely honest, I picked them because they tolerate partial shade, are reputed to attract butterflies, and looked a little wild.  There are some plants that I'd been wishing for long before we had a place to grow them, but these just weren't one of them.

But now that they're here, I'm really, really enjoying them.  They have an ethereal look to them, kind of fairy-like and graceful.  Rose has been building "fairy homes" out of rocks and sticks in the backyard and I think these look like the fairies made them while they were waiting for their new homes.

I also like the way the coral bells complement the bleeding heart, their low leaves and tall vertical blooms make a good pair to the bleeding heart's higher and lighter foliage and almost horizontal bloom stems.  Who knew?

Plus, I am again delighted that they sent me the wrong color bleeding heart--I think the pinky-red one I ordered wouldn't look nearly as pretty with these as the white one does.

And, for about the millionth time, I'd like to take credit for my excellent planning, prediction, and decision making skills, but (as usual), in reality it's just another lucky mix of blessing and blind luck (story of my life!).

One funny thing, Rose is far less impressed with these in the garden than I am!  She thinks the red looks plenty bad with the purple violas--I can see her point, but I actually enjoy the "pop" of it--maybe she'll be happier when the poker-primrose blooms and adds a bit of pinky-red to the mix?


  1. All my BEST plant combinations were accidental it seems. I put coral bells in the shade garden for the same reason as yours ... because they do well there. But the leaves of mine are too dark to show up against the type of mulch I use. I like yours much better.

  2. Thanks, Pam--Rose and I both tend to want to figure out exactly how things will work and what will happen before we make a single move, so clearly this coral bell and gardening in general are teaching us some very useful lessons :-)