I'm happy with our front garden again this year. It takes a lot of work still; weeding, deadheading, etc, but not much watering, which is nice. We water it about once a month during the summer. (The phlox under the birch tree close to the house are the exception. They get a weekly watering.)
That's Oenothera missouriensis (Missouri Evening Primrose) blooming right front. The Russian Olive tree (Elaeagnus angustifolia) on the right belongs to our neighbor. The three Sweet Gum trees (Liquidambar styraciflua) on the left are ours.
Closer to the house is a patch of foxtail lilies (Eremurus). Kim dug up the bulbs last fall and spread them around a bit. Also represented in this photo is Russian Sage, some gaura, a Mock Orange shrub against the house, a tall yarrow on the right, and in front of it is some garlic Kim planted. There are also two beds of tomato plants crammed in there. The large tree belongs to the neighbor.
Everyone falls in love with the foxtail lilies, as we have. If you plant them, try to plant something nearby to take over after their foliage gets ugly. But their blooms are worth it.
The bright orange/yellow is of course gaillardia along with some blue flax, penstemon and mullein.
Kim set the bird bath out front this year.
The bright red valerian looks great against the fence. More Russian sage here, a red hot poker, there's a lavender plant in there also.
I've forgotten what these little daisy-like flowers (weeds?) are called but they fill in well and look nice with the magenta colored Lychnis coronaria. The iris are taking their time coming back after Kim divided them. They usually really help to fill this space.
One of my favorites is the callirhoe involucrata (winecups). It spreads around but is never invasive and is a great ground cover.
I also really like this perennial foxglove. I believe it's digitalis goldcrest, but I lost the tag. It's short, but sweet.
Other plants stuffed in the front yard are miscanthus sinensis (porcupine grass), a globe willow (sadly on its way out), viburnum lantana 'Variegata' that the cats sleep under, ornamental oregano, sedum, a scotch broom shrub (gift from a friend long ago), the occasional stipa tenuissima (Mexican Feather grass), Karl Foerster grass, liatris punctata, baptisia australis, and a Desert Four O'Clock (Mirabilis multiflora) which I'll have to post pictures of later.
Needless to say, but I'll say it anyway, I love driving up our driveway during the summer months. There's always something new going on.