Shade-lover outgrows the shady corner

Our Variegated Solomon’s Seal patch that began from a plant that had barely one branch at the time is now immense and is even trying to crawl under the fence to nearby areas. In fact, I voluntarily offer anyone interested to come by and help themselves to a clump. The only condition I have for them is to do the digging. Tools and pots are always available.                   

Stealing the show since breaking dormancy at the onset of spring, the Solomon’s seal, Polygonatum odoratum ‘Variegatum’, growing at a shaded corner of our front yard, is indeed a delight to have. And, I have provided practically no care all these years, except maybe some slow-release fertilizer such as Plant-tone when signs of life become visible in early winter

Grown as a perennial with creeping rhizomes, hence the spreading habit, this member of the lily family doesn’t bear flamboyant flowers like most of its relatives; however, it makes up for it by flaunting graceful, arching branches. Furthermore, the leaves that are a delicate light-green in color are highlighted by creamy-yellow edges, giving the plants somewhat of a glow at dusk time.

Although not very showy, nonetheless intriguing, borne in late spring to early summer are white, bell-shaped and mildly fragrant flowers that hang singly or in pairs from the sides of the stems. So pretty and artistic are the branches – with or without flowers – that flower arrangers love to use them in their designs. In fact, the self-arranging branches of Solomon’s Seal find their way just about anywhere in our house until frost kills them.  Not only do they look lovely but are long-lasting in containers.
The leaves turn a soft yellow in fall before perishing in winter, only to come back when the weather breaks in spring, perhaps twice in number as before and still growing.                                                                                               

gitagardens @ gmail.com

Gita’s Tip of the Month: Potted plants kept under the eaves of the house often miss the rain. So, do check them for moisture even if rain has occurred.  

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