Wednesday, October 24, 2007

ABC Wednesday ~ Variegated Garden Phlox

ABC Wednesday
Variegated Garden Phlox
Phlox paniculata 'Nora Leigh'
(floks) (pan-ick-yoo-LAY-tuh)

If you are here for Wordless Wednesday scroll down to the next post.

Wednesday again, I can hardly believe it! Of course I feel my timing is off since I have been waiting for it to get cold and instead we have been enjoying record temperatures and summer like warmth. I am not complaining, it is just weird. Wednesday is one of my favorite days now with ABC and Wordless, it is fun to have a lot of visitiors. I collected a few ‘L’ photographs yesterday after an initial panic of not thinking I had anything but luckily the Variegated Garden Phlox ‘Nora Leigh’ was blooming. I just planted it last week in the borders I have been renovating at the Estate. Now gardeners will recognize this plant as the one with the classic and beautiful flowers but some of the most disease prone foliage of any perennial. I swear if there is even a few molecules of Powdery Mildew in the neighborhood it will descend on the Garden Phlox and multiply at a rate that defies belief. I have added this Phlox and the white Phlox ‘David’ because they are the most disease resistant cultivars I know. ‘Nora Leigh’ usually blooms in the early summer but since these were cut back at the nursery at the right time they are giving a second wave of blooms. I would recommend this plant to brighten up the border with its green and creamy yellow foliage. The flowers are beautiful but the foliage is the real show with this plant. It seems to remain smaller than the other Garden Phlox and very slowly forms clumps. The seed does not come true, so division is the best way to propagate it.

This foliage is from the Nyssa tree at the Estate. It goes by the common names Sour Gum, Black Gum, Pepperidge Tree and Tupelo Tree and is a clear case for referring to plants by their scientific names. In this case that is Nyssa sylvatica (NY-suh sil-VAT-ee-kuh). It is a very underused landscape tree in my opinion. It has a beautiful pyramidal shape when young and great fall color. It is hard to transplant because it has a taproot so it can be difficult to buy. I bought this one in Pennsylvania and the nursery owner told me they can grow it there because of the hard pan soil. The taproot can’t penetrate the hard soil and that makes it possible to dig.

I remember that I wanted a fairly large specimen and he assured me this Nyssa was the best he had ever seen (therefore worth several hundred more dollars). I didn’t really believe him but bought it over the phone and sure enough he was right. I planted along the shore of one of the ponds and it has been beautiful ever since. It can grow in most soils but does love moist almost boggy ones the best. A bit of a garden oddball it leafs out late in the spring and sometimes gets its fall color in late August. It held on to some leaves a lot later this year and I was able to get this picture. Only about one-third of leaves remained or I would have taken a picture of the whole tree.

Here is a link that pretty much covers all the information about this tree:

Finally ‘N’ is for night and New Haven. This is a Metro-North Commuter Railroad diesel locomotive from the Danbury branch of the New Haven Line. The trains on the mainline are electric but some of the spurs still use diesels. I took this picture last winter when it was about 10 degrees F. outside. This engine is still in service and makes the trip to New York City’s Grand Central Terminal everyday.

Here is a scrollable box of some of the other blogs that are participating in ABC Wednesday. If you want to join let me know and I will add your link.


kml said...

Your night image of the train is excellent!

Jean M Fogle said...

Good morning! I hope you are getting the rain there today, finally some here in VA!
I have always loved Phlox and their fragrance makes them even more wonderful in my eyes.
I will have to try Nora, we have a terrible time with mildew here.

Mike said...

They're pretty flowers. Razor sharp image as ever. Lovely train shot too.

Deb said...

My favourite time every Wed...coming home from work, had dinner, surfing other ABC Wed blogs, drooling at beautiful photos... ahhhh [satisfied sigh]

Kate Isis said...

I love the leaf. Is that macro photography?

dot said...

I love trains and that's a beauty! Of course your flowers are too. A very nice "N" post!

Vanillalotus said...

I love the photo of the phlox. I just bought some phlox seed, I hope it doesn't get diseased.
That tree seems very interesting. There are a lot of great landscape trees that are underplayed. It's a good thing you were able to get one for you backyard so you could enjoy it's beauty.

Sandy Carlson said...

That is a very beautiful photo of the plox.

Thanks for the shot of the train on the New Haven line in Danbury. The coloring is gorgeous.

God bless.

Oswegan said...

You have wonderful composition in all of your photographs.

I am adding you to my ABC Wednesdays list.

Add me if you like.


RUTH said...

Lovely Phlox....I have one with similar flowers but it isn't variagated. Lovely colours in the Nyssa...not a tree I've heard of before.Happy ABC hunting :o)

WalksFarWoman said...

OOoohh, I love your flowers, and your knowledge. It's true about the climate, it seems to be warm everywhere - in Scotland we're renowned for our rainfall but not any more.

I watched a very interesting programme last night about aphids and how ladybirds were doing a half decent job to control them but they've found that spiders are doing it much better. Seemingly the ladybirds just knock them off whilst the spiders trap them and eat them. Ain't nature grand! :)

I love the word Phlox.

Mr. Mapper said...

really like that leaf!

Lynette said...

Such a great gathering of Ns--photos and facts. I especially like the Nora Leigh and the locomotive.

Please visit my N is for New when you get a minute.

mrsnesbitt said...

I too love seeing what everybody else has posted!


Digital Flower Pictures said...

Hi everyone and thanks for visiting and leaving a comment.

kate, I used my macro lens on it so I guess it is macro. I was about 4 or 5 inches from the leaf.

thanks and welcome. I have added you to the list.

hi sandy, thanks again. The Danbury line is cool although I have been driving over to Brewster or Katonah to get on the faster trains.

WFW, there is sooooo much going on in the garden on a macro level it is hard for me to fathom sometimes.

hi jean, try 'Nora' and 'David' they help with the mildew problem a little.

Christine said...

Each of those images is stunning. I'm particularly drawn to the macro leaf. The combination of the colors, and textures is amazing, and flawless composition.

BTW, I'm new to ABC Wednesday...this is only my second week. I'm working on an ABC Wednesday blogroll button and yours will of course be on it...if you'd like to add me, that would be great, too!

Digital Flower Pictures said...

Hi christine,

Welcome to ABC Wed. I have added you to the list for next week.