Mucky, soggy, squishy when it rains: All of these describe the ideal conditions for the plants we talk about on this episode. Not everyone has a pond edge to deal with, but many of us have a spot that stays wet after a rainfall, or just never seems to properly drain. This can mean instant death for many plants that prefer well-drained soils, but not for these perennials and trees that soak up that moisture with gusto. Steve even discusses a plant that most think of as a full-sun plant that prefers well-drained soil but turns out, it thrives in wetter areas. Not everyone has a soggy spot, but almost everyone has a downspout—and now you’ll know the perfect plant to put under it!
Expert testimony: Kelly Norris director of horticulture and education at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden in Iowa.
Weeping bald cypress
Bald Cypress ‘Pendens’. Photo: Danielle Sherry
Bald cypress knees
Bald Cypress knees. Photo: Danielle Sherry
Giant rhubarb (with friend of Fine Gardening Cherry Ong for scale)
Gunnera. Photo: Danielle Sherry
‘Moerheim Beauty’ sneezeweed
Helenium autumnale ‘Moerheim Beauty’. Photo: Michelle Gervais
Podophyllum. Photo: Steve Aitken
‘Baby Tut’ umbrella plant
Baby Tut cyperus. Photo: Danielle Sherry.
Weeping bald cypress (Taxodium distichum ‘Pendens’, Zones 4-9)
‘Little Cajun’ copper iris (Iris fulva ‘Little Cajun’, Zones 6-9)
Giant rhubarb (Gunnera manicata, Zones 7-10)
‘Baby Tut’ umbrella plant (Cyperus involucratus ‘Baby Tut’, Zones 8-11)
Pitcher plant (Sarracenia spp. and cvs., Zones 3-9)
‘Britt Marie Crawford’ ligularia (Ligularia ‘Britt Marie Crawford’, Zones 4-8)
May-apple (Podophyllum spp. and cvs., Zones 3-8)
‘Moerheim Beauty’ sneezeweed (Helenium autumnale ‘Moerheim Beauty’, Zones 3-8)
By Danielle Sherry September 29, 2019