Penny’s Arbor House, aka Papa’s Treehouse (Ezra’s interpretation) is my refuge. It is where I go to sit and sip my morning cup of tea or something iced mid-afternoon to read a book or magazine, or to just BE.
When the idea for a prairie sprouted a few years ago during a conversation while sitting in the arbor, we envisioned a few grasses in this barren, sunny spot of pseudo-lawn. We imagined tall plants to catch our eyes, be welcoming to pollinators, birds, bees and other living things, and be easy to maintain. A few yuccas were already there, daisies that were divisions from Marilyn and a little plot of native ageratums.from Jane. They were established, but they needed some company.
The first to come was Oat Grass for Father’s Day, a Little Bluestem from a native plant sale, garden gifts, and a phone call from a friend wondering if my garden club still had a members’ plant sale in the fall. Cindy had some divisions to share. We ended up keeping her donations (I gave a monetary donation to the club instead of Cindy’s plants).
Not long after that, plants from a public garden that would be under construction needed homes. Did we want some?
Last year and this, Jan was dividing Pampas grass, Heavy Metal switchgrass, and other delights, which have quickly set down their roots in the depths of our prairie earth and are already rising to the heights of our boundless sky.
This it Tom and Thalictrum. At 6’4″, with a reach of 8′, Tom is quite tall. He is next to the plant, which is a member of the rue family. In full bloom, this variety exceeds 10′. It was one of our few purchases for this garden and was worth it for its stature and its display of wispy blooms, which lasted well over a month.
Our little prairie is now filled and flourishing with Joe Pye Weed, bear’s breeches, butterfly weed, brown-eyed Susan, and bee balm.
Further afield is a growing patch of grasses and a compass plant, which no prairie should be without.
I think I’ll have some iced tea and read a few chapters of “Little House on the Prairie”.