Gazania rigens: This bright annual comes in a host of colors in full sun. The flowers close at night.
Melampodium paludosum (common name medallion flower): Abundant, small, yellow, daisylike flowers are low-growing throughout the summer.
Helianthus annuus (common name sunflower): The familiar yellow giant can grow to 10 feet and makes a striking backdrop, providing seeds for the birds. Some varieties come in orange and reddish hues.
East End gardens
The East End Main Street Garden Showcase, June 14-29, will focus on the fabulous talents of our urban gardeners in the East End of Charleston. Last year's event was a huge success with hundreds of visitors coming from as far away as Parkersburg and Ashland, Ky.
According to program director Ric Cavender, "We are putting the word out to East End gardeners who would like to have their gardens included in our annual event. Families, individuals, schools, businesses and churches are all encouraged to sign up. There is a registration fee of $5, but the first 30 addresses to sign up will receive a $10 gift certificate from a local East End business. Registration forms and payments are due at the East End Main Street office by May 16. Yard signs will be delivered to each location to identify "Showcase" gardens and a self-guided tour brochure will be printed and distributed through East End businesses.
There will be a "Meet the Gardeners Day" June 21. This is the first day of FestivALL and gardeners will be in their gardens that day to answer questions from visitors about what they've planted and why, how to care for certain plants, where they got them and, of course, to share gardening tips.
"Our goal is to promote the walkability of the East End and to admire and learn more about urban gardening. This is a great celebration of the community coming together to display their gardening achievements for residents and visitors alike. We plan for at least 30 gardens to sign up and to have even more visitors than last year come out to enjoy them," Cavender said.
I'll be visiting some of these gardens soon - and I'm sure you'll want to as well.
Sara Busse is a Charleston resident and master gardener. She may be contacted at sjbu...@gmail.com.