Crepe myrtle, canna, cleome and cone flowers make a lovely splash of summer colors in the raised bed in our back yard.
The bright yellow coneflowers in the foreground attract goldfinches when the flowers go to seed. The goldfinches are fun to watch when they perch on a flower and pick at the seeds. The flowers stalks bend and sway under their weight.
A dwarf crepe myrtle tree with its dark pink blooms that are almost a purple is almost hidden by canna lilies and cleome. It should get several feet taller over the next few years and be more visible. It was a volunteer seedling from an established tree in the front yard. it really struggled the first couple years after being transplanted, but seems to have finally adapted well to it new location.
The first couple years after planting canna lily bulbs in our front yard, they did well. Then they started to die off, so last year they were moved.
A few were left in the front yard, but moved to a different area and the rest were moved to the raised bed in the back yard.
Their red flowers are not big and showy like their leaves, but they add an intense color and interesting foliage to the flower bed.
Here they have done well so far. I think the key to success will be to dig them up every few years when they start to get crowded, and then replant them.
Another interesting feature of the cannas are their seed pods, seen in the picture below.
The light pink blooms are cleome that reseed themselves prolifically every year. This year, there were close to a couple hundred which were thinned down to a manageable number so they would not compete with the other plants.
Cleome is another flower that deserves a close up look. The long stamens start to escape from the flowers before the flowers open, making interesting loops.