The Perennial Plant Association is in town, Columbus, that is. And a huge group they are, from all around the country. I had the good fortune of being a point person in the Heritage Gardens at the Gov’s Residence. We had 5 tour buses full of the most knowledgeable plant people in the U.S. Fortunately, we had Hope Taft, Dewey Hollister, Guy Denny, Rick Stanforth, Rick Gardener, and Jennifer Windus on hand to answer questions, and this group questioned everything. “ Is that Asclepias incarnata; it looks peculiar..?” Although the weather was interesting- 90 degrees and 95% humidity- it was still fantastic to meet and greet so many fellow gardeners.The heritage garden is all about show casing Ohio Native plants, it is where the rubber meets the road, or rather the Silphium terebinthinaceum meets campsis radicans. Or in English, the Prairie Dock meets the Trumpet Creeper, as seen in the photo above the native prairie plants reach toward the Trumpet vine on the Gov’s pergola. And a beautiful sight it is!
We also took a break mid-day to run down to the OSU campus and extend greetings to Dr. Steven Still on the dedication of the garden named for him, just outside of the Hort. Building. Many other luminaries were on hand for that event, but this is a “plant” blog, not a “name dropping” blog- so I will resist. Many Master Gardeners will recognize Dr. Still as a respected OSU Prof. and for his definitive work, Manuel of Herbaceous Ornamental Plants.It was also gratifying to see native plants in place throughout the Chadwick Gardens at OSU. Purple Coneflower, and other prairie plants were regular features. Remember these Ohio Native when planning your next garden, just be sure to give the tall one some surrounding support plants, to keep them from “flopping” under their own height and weight. After all, they are used to having a little help from their friends: the tall prairie grasses, Big Bluestem and Indian Grass.