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Botanist's Lens: Wind Flowers, Toad Lilies, and Silver Grass

Updated: Oct 11, 2020

Fall flowers of whimsy, elegance and simplicity.

Toad Lily, Tricyrtis hirta 'Miyazaki' hybrid

Anemones 'wind flowers', Tricyrtis sp. 'Toad Lilies' and Miscanthus blooms are some neat fall blooms that can draw attention to a garden that is gearing up to go dormant.

Toad Lily, Tricyrtis formosana var.

Toad Lilies (Tricyrtis sp.)

Toad Lilies have more elegance and depth than a true Lily, and the common name doesn't do much justice. The speckled flowers add whimsy to a garden with an intricate formation of tepals and pollen that look even more intriguing than an Orchid flower.

This is one flower at London Town that I wait for all year long. The leaflets have an arching habit, with buds and flowers stealing the show. The best part: they can grow in part-full shade. Well suited for a woodland garden where mostly everything else is getting ready to go dormant.

Wind Flowers, Anemones sp.

Wind Flowers (Anemones sp.)

Anemones sp. 'wind flowers' are the essence of simplicity in a cottage garden. Simple flowers, tall and slender stalks dancing in the wind, soft white or baby pink petals, add elegance to a rather dormant looking garden.

Anemone hupehensis var. 'Wind flowers'

At London Town, you can enjoy them as you down the Holly Grove steps. A slope, cliff, a garden bed border, or a backdrop mass planting would be well suited design wise. They enjoy part sun and moist soils. Informal or cottage garden designs would easily be adaptable to this beauty, for the abundant dappled flower stalks shouldn't be staked, they appear to dance with the wind, hence the common name 'wind flowers'.

Silver Grass, Miscanthus variegatus

Silver Grass (Miscanthus variegatus)

Miscanthus variegatus 'silver grass' is a stunning and artistic addition to an ornamental garden. Miscanthus biggest misfortune is that some species can become invasive. But when choosing Miscanthus ornamental species, look for the sterile species. More information here:

Close up of Silver Grass

Mums and Asters add their own charm to fall. But there are ample late blooming perennials that can draw attention away from the falling Oak and Maple leaves. Try any of the Toad Lilies and Anemone species and be specific when you choose Miscanthus for species and location.


Plant Clearance Sale

Through October 16 Thank You to everyone who participated in our Fall Plant Sale. Your purchases raised over $7500 towards the maintenance and care of the gardens. We are incredibly grateful for your generosity and can't wait to see photos of your plants blooming!

We still have a limited supply of select plants left from our fall plant sale. Our clearance sale is online only and being offered through till October 16th.  No additional discounts are being offered, as these plants have already been marked down to clearance prices. All proceeds go to support the gardens. Thank you for supporting a local 501c3 nonprofit (tax ID: 52-1396159) Added to the clearance sale are select bags of bulbs. Most of these bulbs are well suited to naturalize in woodland gardens and would do well even in filtered sun locations. Alternatively, they could be planted in containers. 

Select pick-up times available:

  • Wednesday, October 7, 10am - 12pm Noon

  • Saturday, October 10, 10am - 12pm Noon

  • Wednesday, October 14, 10am - 12pm Noon

  • Saturday, October 17, 10am - 12pm Noon

Questions? Contact for help.  Wild Crocus (pictured above), double colored Grape-Hyacinth and wild Daffodil bulbs are available in the clearance sale

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