New English Garden Bee Plants – “Essence Purple” and “Silver Mist” English Lavender

"Essence Purple" English Lavender

“Essence Purple” English Lavender

"Silver Mist" English Lavender

“Silver Mist” English Lavender

One of my favorite online plant purveyors, Wayside Gardens, has 61 new perennial cultivars this year, many of them bee favorites.

There are few, if any, flowers bees and other pollinators love better than English Lavender.  Wayside Gardens is offering two new English Lavenders this year, “Essence Purple” and “Silver Mist”.

An English Lavender extraordinaire, ‘Essence Purple’ is the variety for those of us who can never have too much Lavender in garden and home. Bushier, better branched, and perhaps even more fragrant than others, it is simply heavenly in color, form, and scent. Find new places to tuck this magnificent plant in your sunny garden and patio this season!

One of the most beautiful of English Lavenders, ‘Silver Mist’ sets nearly white foliage with a soft, fuzzy aura that looks like clouds in the garden. The flowers are pure sky-blue and continue over an especially long season. Compact, well-branched, and marvelously fragrant in bloom and leaf, it’s a must-have for the sunny garden and fine containers.

Both Lavenders are evergreen in mild areas and deer-resistant.

An herb, Lavender is useful for everything from potpourri to Everlastings to air freshener. Cut branches to tuck into your linen closet, use the flowers to perfume tea and sweets, and admire the pollinators that are drawn to these plants all season long. Every garden needs at least one stand of Lavender!

Italian Week – Rosa Variegata Di Bologna

The traditional symbolic flower of Italy is the rose, and one of the most beautiful Italian roses is the Rosa Variegata di Bologna. It is a Bourbon rose, originally bred in Italy by Bonfiglioli & Son in 1909.

The variegated blooms are lovely with their peppermint-like shades of white and pale pink-purple stripes.

rosa variegata di bologna

The repeat blooming flowers are double and appear in clusters. They are exceptionally fragrant, even for a Bourbon rose.

The foilage is plentiful and very attractive. Since the plant is tall and has arching canes, it’s best grown and trained as a climber, a great small climber actually. It can easily be trained on an open wrought iron fence like in the picture below.

This rose probably won’t give you a good flower show the first season, so don’t be alarmed if you have little or no flowering the first year.

It will make up for it later. Most of the old roses that climb don’t produce a lot of flowers the first season. They need time to grow flowering canes and flower mostly from old wood from previous year, so do not prune for a while, or you won’t have any flowers at all.