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Yarrow: Here today…

12 Jul

Sometimes, gardening is not about what you put in to the earth, but what you take out. I move plants around if I think they would look better (or grow better) elsewhere.  And sometimes, only a few times in my gardening life, I have had to give up on a plant and tear it out completely because it won’t work anywhere. I hate to do it. But not quite as much as I would hate not doing it.

I wrote about Yarrow before, most notably in Lessons Learned from 2011. Yarrow has many good qualities. It blooms for a long time and when it is at its peak, it is glorious:

But Yarrow does not fade softly into the night. It attempts to hold on to its former glory as long as possible and then it collapses into a ungainly heap, with stalks splayed open:

  

This is the point at which I lop off all the spent blooms and cut the plant way back–simply because I cannot abide the messiness.  Is it possible to be a gardener who likes orderly chaos?

So I have come to a decision.  I have Yarrows in Garden 1 (G1) and Garden 3 (G3).  G1 is a very full flower bed, and the plants surrounding the Yarrow help hold  it up and then take over the space it vacates after I decapitate it. For that reason, Yarrow can stay in G1.  But in G3, the two Yarrow plants are on their own; no supporting cast can help them look better. So out they will go in a couple of months, to be replaced by something with a bit more backbone next year.