School is almost out for the summer here in New England. Thankfully, our kids only have two snow make-up days so they are getting out next Monday. With four kids and two working parents, planning out their summer activities can require the skills of a major event planner. A major part of our kids’ summer will be spent at theater camp. Boothbay has a wonderful arts program and they have really loved getting involved with theatrical productions. Their favorite show on Netflix is the London performance of Phantom of the Opera. The girls now walk around the house singing “Masquerade!”
In the spirit of our theatrical children, I would like to introduce this week’s plant with a short screenplay.
Husband and wife walking through garden: “What is this beautiful plant? I have never seen anything quite like it.”
Plant: “Yo, yo, baby.” (in Bronx accent)
Wife: “Excuse me?”
Plant: “Yo, yo, baby. My name is yo yo.”
Husband: “What kind of name is that?”
Wife: “Yeah, what kind of name is that?”
Plant: “Do I look like snow in summer to you?”
Wife: “Not really. But you do have nice, white flowers. And silver foliage.”
Plant: “The person who found me called me Yo Yo. That is my cultivated name. I am better behaved than some of my relatives. And besides, do I sound like a snow in summer kind of plant to you?”
Husband: “Not really. Who are your relatives?”
Plant: “Carnations. Cheddar pinks. Nice family but real pushovers. People practically walk all over them. I wanted to present a stronger image for my family. Deer and rabbits do not eat me. Once I am settled, I can handle full sun and well drained soil.”
Wife: “Where do you like to grow? Can you take the cold?”
Plant: “Boy, do I like the cold. I am one tough hombre, yo. Your hardiness zone maps have me down from 3 to 7.”
Husband: “Can you grow down south?”
Ok, obviously I should not quit my day job and become a playwright. Snow in summer or Cerastium tomentosum ‘Yo Yo’ may never become the leading man in your garden, but it will make a nice edger for a sunny pathway or even amongst a stone wall. We planted several plants last year in the Rose and Perennial Garden at Coastal Maine Botanical Garden. After one of worst winter in years, all of the plants came right back to life as soon as the snow melted. Now, in early June, the patches of grey foliage are covered with white flowers. Each plant is covering a 30″ space and looks to be a spreading perennial of a moderate rate. From what I read about the straight species, it appears to be a rapid spreader while ‘Yo Yo’ is slower with deeper grey foliage.
Have you grown snow in summer or its improved cousin, ‘Yo Yo?’
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