Entries in 'Red Dragon' persicaria (2)


'Red Dragon' Persicaria Creates Interest in the Garden

I loved Persicaria microcephala 'Red Dragon' the first time I saw it, but I wasn't sure if it would like me. My climate can be difficult. Happily, it has been growing in my garden for over two years now, and I am so pleased with it that I recently purchased another one. It was an end of the season bargain, overgrowing its pot and begging to be planted. I am fortunate that my mild climate allows me to plant in fall and winter, and I often take advantage of reduced prices this time of year. 

'Red Dragon' is commonly called fleeceflower. It is a gorgeous, mounding perennial with outstanding foliage, growing to about 2-3 feet tall and wide. This 'Red Dragon' persicaria has been growing successfully near my arbor garden for several years.It has 3 to 4 inch bluish-green, arrow-shaped leaves with silver and plum chevron markings, and it has striking maroon stems. If that is not enough to win your heart, it also produces airy sprays of tiny white flowers from midsummer through fall that attract butterflies and other pollinators.This 'Red Dragon' is newly purchased. It is a bit scrawny but should fill in nicely by next year.

This is an easy-care plant with few problems; it is deer and rabbit resistant and will tolerate urban pollution. It grows in full sun to partial shade in most any soil in USDA hardiness zones 5 - 9. It appreciates afternoon shade in warmer climates. It grows best in average to moist soil, and will grow well even in bog gardens. It will also do well in a container. I planted my new 'Red Dragon' in the woodland garden:My newly planted 'Red Dragon' is seen in the foreground in this photo of a side path in the woodland garden.

'Red Dragon' is an interesting plant, but not a lot of people are familiar with it. Visitors often stop to examine it and ask me what it is. It will go dormant when frosty air arrives, but I can eagerly look forward to seeing it return in the spring.


Arbor Garden, 2016

The Arbor Garden, originally called the Lady Garden, is eight years old. It has taken that long for me to develop a clear vision of what I want. While it has not yet become the enclosed garden room I dream about, the plants along the periphery are growing; and it is easier to see what it will become. The Arbor Garden has always been one of my favorite places to sit and enjoy wildlife, but with rough edges and a large sloping layout, it has never been particularly photogenic. Here are some recent shots taken in and around the space, and at the end of the post I'll show you some views taken when the area was first being developed, so you can see some of the changes.

Overview of the Arbor Garden taken from the patio:

Steps leading from the patio to the Arbor Garden:

Some plantings beside the steps:

A close-up of 'Red Dragon' Persicaria, seen on the right in the above image:

Chinese Snowball Viburnum and Philadelphus, AKA Mock Orange and English Dogwood, next to the Arbor Garden:

Here is a view of the Mock Orange taken from within the Arbor Garden:

Hellebores grow around the Mock Orange. They have been blooming for months and have mostly faded to greenish-white, but they are still beautiful. Their lovely foliage is evergreen and will give the ground a green covering when the flowers are gone:

Here is the entrance to the Arbor Garden:

One of the first things I added to the Arbor Garden was this large urn. I put a fern in it every year:

This is a current view of the sitting area and the arbor swing:

Here is a closer view of the small sitting area near the arbor swing - don't miss the chandelier!

The plant in the green pot is 'Banana Boat' Creeping Broad-leaved Sedge:

I have a couple of small green chairs on the landing, which is a step down from the arbor swing. This chair holds a pot of plants, which have not grown enough yet to really show up. I also have planted some woodland phlox and some dwarf mondo grass between the pavers here::

Moss is spreading to cover the ground around the large urn in the middle of the Arbor Garden. A number of 'stepable' ground covers are intermingling with the moss and each other. Hopefully, in another year one will not see any bare earth. These are some of the ground covers, as well as some other plants that are planted in pots in the Arbor Garden:Clockwise from top: Maidenhair fern, Leopard Plant and Variegated Carex grow together in a large red pot; Creeping Jenny ((Lysimachia nummularia 'Aurea') and purple clover blend together; Creeping Jenny and Oxalis; 'Ogon' Japanese Sedum and Ajuga; Impatiens and Dusty Miller are easy annuals growing in pots.

Finally, here are a few views taken years ago when the Arbor Garden was much younger. The top image was taken in May, 2008, very soon after the arbor swing was completed. Some stonework was done, and the urn was in place. The views below the top image were all taken in 2010:

 You may also enjoy reading some previous posts about the Arbor (Lady) Garden:

The Lady and the Arbor Garden

Rocking Along in the Lady Garden

I See You, Owl!