Whoever is doing the plantings for this neighborhood traffic circle has their act together. These eremurus (foxtail lilies) are surrounded by fledgling grasses and other perennials. As the season progresses, bright rudbeckia will combine with the grasses.
I had long seen eremurus plantings in suburban yards on my way home from work, but was blown away by them as displayed in this circle. “Gotta get me some of those,” I thought. Well, not so fast. This, below, is about as good as it gets for me, at least this season.
Because after the freakish wonder of receiving—and planting—these bizarre and EXPENSIVE roots, my eremurus were never again to be seen. Oh, sure, a few daylily-type strands of foliage straggled up, and promptly wilted away again.
It’s one thing to be carried away by catalog pictures, but I actually witnessed these, growing in domestic captivity—in the middle of a traffic circle for Pete’s sake. Surely, I said to myself, after telling myself not to call myself Shirley, it can’t be beyond possibility for me to grow such a plant. Apparently it is beyond such a realm. These are the daily disappointments of the ever-hopeful gardener.
Oriental lilies with blooms the size of bowling balls? Possible. Species tulips with twisted, quill-shaped petals? Possible. Shade-producing six-feet-tall elephant ear? Getting there.
But certain plants are not meant for me, and I guess eremurus is one of them. I’m sure all of you have your own lists of unobtainable plants—and I’m equally sure you keep trying!