I visited the State Botanical Garden in Athens in early June, on a hellaciously hot day perfect for viewing the full sun plantings. And when I stepped into shade, the cool verdant plants there took the edge off the heat stress.
Following are pictures and notes from my visit.
Gloriosa Climbing Lily
Athens is the home of my alma mater, the University of Georgia. I don’t get back to Athens nearly enough. In fact, I visited last in February 2022, before the world shut down and “due to COVID” became a tragic catchphrase.
This garden visit was just a pop-in. I toured the trial gardens on the UGA campus earlier in the day and had an hour gap before my daughter and I met for a late lunch. I’m grateful I got to check in on the garden in early summer. Like they say, there’s always something blooming in the garden.
Stokesia (Stokes’ Aster)
The blue Stokes’ aster is a favorite perennial that appears in my full sun flower bed at home. The yellow stokesia nearby in the state garden offers contrast to the blue and accents the soothing color palette.
These lilies, along with the climbing flame lily (at top), really stood out in the garden. Note to self: plant more lilies. Note how daylilies play nicely with rudbeckia, below.
Full Sun Perennials
The State Botanical Garden emphasizes pollinator plants. The Brown eyed Susan and yarrow both attract bees and butterflies to the garden.
Now, for the part sun/shade part of the garden ~ it was a good day for hydrangeas.
The conservatory features lovely orchids, but these plants caught my eye ~ the angel’s trumpet (brugmansia) towering overhead, and clerodendrum, the tropical bleeding heart.
Next time you’re in Athens, make plans to visit the garden, for an hour or a day. There’s lots more to see, including a Children’s Garden. Admission and parking are free.