African Garden + things

Rainy Day Plants

During a 3.5" rain event, through the window on May 13, 2010
It's been raining a lot recently. Not just here in Chicagoland, but in Davis, California, at Leslie's place, in Idaho ( Gardens of the Wild, Wild West ), in Indiana at May Dreams Gardens, in Raleigh, where Helen Yoest gardens, in Oklahoma, where Dee has had tornadoes and hail, in Nashville, where Clay and Limestone nearly became flood and mud. Even Houston's gotten in on a bit of rain at My Corner of Katy and Nancy's Garden Spot.
When it's raining, or too wet to garden, I still have trouble staying in the house. I like to wander about the dripping garden, admiring the raindrops on the foliage. (I don't go out during thunderstorms.) When it stops dripping, but is still too wet to do much of anything, I go on a raindrop photo safari. It's almost as good as gardening.
I like raindrops better than dew drops. There's something about the ponderousness of the drops that creates garden magic. Not every plant is a good rainy day plant. The Lavender does nothing for me right now. But grassy things,

including the foliage of Allium sphaerocephalon, below,

hold the raindrops beautifully.
Rounder foliage also looks good with raindrops.

Cotinus 'Ancot' (Golden Spirit)


Sanguinaria canadensis (bloodroot)

Alchemilla mollis (lady's mantle), which is second only to Sedum,

here Sedum/Hylotelephium 'Matrona,' for raindrop holding quality.

Other good foliage plants include:




Aquilegia, and Peonies.

As the above photo shows, buds can also show off raindrops beautifully.

While rain makes a mush of the Peony flowers, it's stunning on the buds. Other good buds for rain include Maianthemum racemosum/Smilacina racemosa and Clematis.

There are blooms that looks lovely in the rain, such as Aquilegias

Thalictrum/Anemonella thalictroides:

and Trillium grandiflorum.

And let's not forget about seedheads.

Pulsatilla vulgaris

There can even be beauty in decay:

Tree Peony

Sing with me:

Raindrops keep falling on my head. But there's one thing I know, the blues they sent to meet me won't defeat me. It won't be long 'til happiness steps up to greet me. Raindrops keep falling on my head. But that doesn't mean my eyes will soon be turning red, crying's not for me, cause I'm never gonna stop the rain by complaining. Because I'm free. Nothing's worrying me.
What are your favorite rainy day plants?

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Rainy Day Plants + things