Thursday, September 1

Crawling around on the ground with my camera ...

Ajuga from the Ground
Originally uploaded by MontanaRaven.
A few days ago I spent some time either lying on the ground looking through the viewfinder, or just setting my camera on the ground and shooting randomly. I know ... I know this isn't what a professional photographer would do ... but then, I'm not a pro with my digital camera. So I get to do anything I want with it. Here's one of the resulting photos, Ajuga in our shade garden... I imagine this is what the Purple Brocade Ajuga groundcover (which is in reality only about 1/2 inch high) would look like to an ant or other insect.

Information on many Ajuga cultivars, commonly know as "Bugleweed" is easy to find on the internet or in perennial/groundcover books. There are the usual Ajugas, and recently several cultivars have been developed with more colorful foliage, longer bloom times, or smaller leaves. One of my favorite Ajugas, for pathways, around stepping stones and other places you might walk, is the miniature Chocolate Chip Ajuga. The leaves of Chocolate Chip are truly tiny -- a combination of chocolate brown, dark bronze and green with tiny spikes of dark blue/purple flowers in late spring, early summer. The foliage and flower colors are perfect with shade-tolerant gold and chartreuse plants and other plants with blue parts. I'm thinking of the gold Hakone grass, sedges, blue fescue and other grasses; cushion spurge; Polemonium, Brunnera (forget-me-nots) and Hosta. Use Ajuga to fill in around stepping stones or in semi-shaded rock gardens. Try planting any of the ajugas under tree canopies or where you have spring or summer bulbs. They like some shade and moist, rich soil, but will also grow in less-than-ideal conditions.


Kelvin said...

Kia Ora from a krazy blogger down under in New Zealand. You have a really great blog/great photos,etc.Can I mention your blog on one of my blogs???

RavenGrrl said...

That would be great, Kelvin. Kia Ora from a fellow-blogger in Montana, USA. Which blog would that be you are lmentioning mine on?