So here finally are the plant photos taken at my all-time favorite garden shop, Merrifield Garden Center at Fair Oaks, VA. I tried to post these from my iPad while I was in VA, but the formatting was misbehaving. (So far, I haven't discovered how to post directly to Typepad from the iPad; I have to use an intermediary blogging app, and it doesn't always cooperate.)
Anyway, just a few views of summer-turning-to-autumn from Northern Virginia:
Again, this is the seasonal perennials display bench, an ever-changing pathway of colorful temptations. Can't even begin count how many plants found their way home with me from here over the years.
As ever, bees found the rosy sedums (perhaps Autumn Joy? or something similar) irresistible. Blooming sedums = bee magnets.
And after feasting on the sedums, perhaps a bit of golden gazania for dessert.
Wish I could identify this plant. It had tall thin stems, with blooms about 5-6" in diameter. Absolutely glorious! It was growing in a big pot with other shorter plants at its feet. Merrifield makes up its own container gardens, and their plant combinations are always inspired.
Here, I was having a nostalgic bout of coleus envy. If there is one non-desert plant I wish I could grow in Phoenix, it's coleus. So many beautiful varieties are available now! They thrived in containers for me when we lived in VA. Our Phoenix garden centers do sell some, but so far I haven't found the right combination of sun/shade/water to make them happy here.
Merrifield Garden Center is an inspiring destination year-round. Outdoors in warmer weather, the plants and displays are spectacular. Indoors in cooler weather, the huge greenhouse is a tropical haven. And the home decorating shop is a pleasure in every season. Wish we had something comparable in Phoenix!