Monday, August 13, 2012

Find the Sweet Spot, Feel the Crape Myrtle Bass

Post 48

Camera found, charger fixed, images offered.

Brain still slow at moment  in terms of writing about garden stuff, so bear with me.

This pic gets me. The orangy maple and the red crape myrtle look like they have entwined into a heart.

Crepe myrtles (Lagerstroemia) were entirely new to me when I moved down from New York, which is just a touch too cold for them. I have to admit, when they are allowed to get too sprawley I'm not sure I like them. It was seeing one in a friend's garden that turned me on to them.

A friend, Carrie Borgenicht has a lovely walled garden in South Philly and in the back, against the wall is a large lavender crepe myrtle. She has pruned it into a small multi-trunked tree, with the trunks forming long-stemmed curves up into foliage and bloom.Here is a picture of it on the left.

Inspired by the example of her garden, I put a crepe myrtle into my dream garden, and waited till I could find one I liked on sale.  End of season on sale, at the now expired Waterloo Gardens, I saw what I was looking for. I think my cultivar is Dynamite, the first true red to be hybridyzed (yes, sometimes I cannot resist.) Originally crape myrtles were only in soft colors. On the left you can see how I've trimmed up one of the trunks and made its charm focal with ornament.

At one point, around when I bought the myrtle, I actually thought I could limit myself to a red and white garden with maybe just a little pink thrown in (Hah)!  I am now glad for that happily failed idea--since it made me include strong color in the garden. 

Once red or orange is a presence in the garden,  things become  dynamic. It is too easy to do a pastel garden that fades out in bright sunshine. Philly is not tropical but it has intense, bright summers. For me intense colors seem right Or maybe I just like the challenge of putting together a lot of strong elements and  making them work.

There is part of me that thinks of the garden as music. Deep red, like the dark foliage in the  photo below, is the pulsing bass.

Plump white zings are the lead guitar

Pink and lavender are the middle instruments like rhythmn guitar and piano.

 Yellow, orange, peach and brown are the drums.

Blue is for moments of esctasy. 

Green is the whole range of aural frequencies

So, for me, one way to describe garden-making is to find a melody within, and then add outer harmony without letting it all go dull. Let it out, let it sing, make it real


Cliff said...

Nice shots. So many colors in your garden!

OMG! Waterloo Gardens closed their Devon store!

Maybe the Mayans were right about 2012!

I am in utter shock and disbelief.

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