Hazy Days of June


Today was another sunny day with a cool morning and a warm (85 degrees F) afternoon.  Our grounds staff kept busy throughout the day and our volunteers continue to be amazing.  With recent hot, windy weather, we have a renewed focus on watering although the threat of rain tomorrow looks promising.  Note the interesting hosta seen above…this hosta is named ‘Dr. Robert Yahr’ after the founder of RBG and was selected by Jeff Miller of Land of the Giants Hosta Farm in Milton, WI.  The thick blue leaves are enormous and cupped upwards.  The good news is that this hosta will be sold at the gardens in the future (date TBD) as a fundraiser and certainly a tribute to a great man.  We appreciate Jeff Miller’s donation and involvement with getting this hosta officially registered, propagated and ultimately made available in the future.

The grounds staff weathered the heat well today and worked like a well-oiled machine.  Larry H. was back in action and jumped right in to watering, shifting around our holding yard, planting, weeding and mulching.  Big John had work near the aquarium, lots of sprinkler action, fertilizing containers and myriad other tasks.  Cindy watered in two areas and had a heavy focus in the Hummingbird Haven theme of the Nancy Yahr Memorial Children’s Garden.  Janice was in to finish planting the Heirloom Garden.  Trevor and Nolan took care of all the push mowing and moved on to planting with Larry H.  Trevor then had significant watering while Nolan did his weedwhipping rounds.  I had plenty of odds and ends including some work to help promote our looming Home Garden Tour (HGT) on July 16th and our Horticultural Therapy symposium on July 27th.  Tickets ($10 in advance) for the HGT are on sale right now at RBG and at K&W Greenery (Janesville, WI).  The event is 9 am – 3 pm (rain or shine) and features eight gardens in the Janesville area.  See the RBG website for more information on the Horticultural Therapy symposium which has value for ALL gardeners!


‘Sun King’ Japanese spikenard (Aralia cordata) – perennial


another wildlife sighting at the gardens (above)


the hostas are looking great right now…Hosta ‘Percy’ in the foreground


‘Argentea’ variegated pagoda dogwood (Cornus alternifolia) – woody plant


‘Mother Lode’ juniper (Juniperus horizontalis) – woody shrub


‘Daisy May’ Shasta daisy (Leucanthemum x superbum) – perennial


pale purple coneflower (Echinacea pallida) – perennial


butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa) – perennial


Meteor Shower® verbena (Verbena bonariensis) – annual


‘Tani Mano Uki’ Japanese white pine (Pinus parviflora) – woody plant


our prairie is beginning to measure up…we’ll see how tall it is in September!



Our volunteers were very productive today.  We are losing the weeding battle but we have some tough warriors out there every day.  If you are reading this blog and can come help lend a hand weeding, come on down!  Above are Eva (left) and Kathy weeding in the Japanese garden today.  The ladies always do an excellent job. Kay was in to tidy up in the woodland glen garden (formerly the color rooms garden).  She has made an amazing amount of progress.  Magda was also in to tidy up her area.  Larry O. worked on cleaning and filling the sunken garden pond and watered the yard again (thanks Larry!).  Bill O. was in to mow and Maury ran more errands.  Mary H. and her daughter Kathy were also in for some planting.  We also saw Dave T. , Dave K., Maryam and many others today.


Magda (above)


Mary H. and Kathy (way back in the shade)


there was a little friction in the Giant Aquarium today…these two were a bit crabby (get it?)


‘Sapphire’ blue oat grass (Helictotrichon sempervirens) – perennial


poppy mallow (Callirhoe involucrata) – perennial


The All-America Selections display along the front slope is filling in nicely