Leading Lady Monarda

Monarda Leading Lady Lilac, Cutest Bee Balm Ever

One of my new perennials this year is Leading Lady Monarda. Pale pink and lavender colors are not my usual choices, but I have this variety in Lilac, the series also includes Plum.

Monarda 'Leading Lady Lilac', it's the cutest little Bee Balm.
Monarda ‘Leading Lady Lilac’, it’s the cutest little Bee Balm.

It started flowering last week, which took me by surprise because it was still so short. But that’s as tall as it gets! It only reaches a height of 10-12″ with a spread of 22″, making it perfect for a front border planting. It’s supposed to be well-behaved in the garden, which I’m hoping means it won’t spread all over the place. This is my first time trying Monarda in the garden, so we will see how it goes.

Leading Lady Monarda is also supposed to flower again above the first flush of flowers, extending the bloom time from early summer through to mid-summer. Deer are not a problem in my garden, but it’s also listed as being deer resistant. Maybe that means it’s also resistant to dog. My retriever has a habit of chomping blue and lilac colored flowers when he spots them.

Clockwise from top left: Heuchera 'Caramel', Monarda 'Lilac Lollipop', Dogwood 'Silverleaf', Hosta 'Allegan Fog' Hibiscus 'Summerific Perfect Storm', Hosta 'London Fog' and Monarda 'Leading Lady Lilac'
Clockwise from top left: Heuchera ‘Caramel’, Perovskia ‘Denim ‘n Lace’, Monarda ‘Lilac Lollipop’, Dogwood ‘Silverleaf’, Hosta ‘Allegan Fog’ Hibiscus ‘Summerific Perfect Storm’, Hosta ‘London Fog’ and Monarda ‘Leading Lady Lilac’

For all I don’t normally enjoy pastel flowers, I am appreciating those little lilac colored flowers of the Leading Lady Monarda against the dark soil. Next year I may have to plant Dragon Wing Pink instead of Dragon Wing Red.

The Rest of the Garden

I spent a very long day in the gardens yesterday. It was hotter than – well you know – but I wanted to get everything planted. I widened most of the bed so I could pull some of the shrubs away from the fence, particularly my Japanese Maple. The poor ‘Denim ‘n Lace’ Perovskia may never do anything from the several times I’ve moved it already.

From the top left: Dogwood 'Prairie Fire', Veronica 'White Wands', Sedum 'Lemon Jade', Hosta 'Hanky Panky', Hibiscus 'Mars Madness', another 'Hanky Panky' and Japanese Forest Grass 'Aureola' in the center.
From the top left: Dogwood ‘Prairie Fire’, Veronica ‘White Wands’, Sedum ‘Lemon Jade’, Hosta ‘Hanky Panky’, Hibiscus ‘Mars Madness’, another ‘Hanky Panky’ and Japanese Forest Grass ‘Aureola’ in the center.

I pulled the hardy hibiscus on each side of the composters way out from the fence. Each has a dogwood behind for interest while the hibiscus put out their new growth every year. They are also each under planted with suitable Hosta varieties.

Endless Summer Hydrangea

I decided the fence garden had too many shrubs in it, so I moved the Hydrangea ‘Endless summer’ over in front of the shed. I also moved a lot of the predominantly blue Hosta to that bed. I’ve left a big gap for another Hydrangea for balance, but mostly the space is for Hosta ‘June’ which I will be getting from my mother next spring.

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Author: The Shade Gardener

Hi there! I'm Vanessa, the Shade Gardener. I live in a tiny little house in Ontario with my 2 grown boys, 2 dogs and a cat, where I do my best to grow plants in a heavily shaded yard and soil like cement. I am passionate about my family, my pets, MCM furniture and cheese. When I'm not in the garden I do a bit of crafting and sewing. Sometimes I build topiary animals from chicken wire for fun.