I can't let May go by without posting about my favourite plant of the month - bergenia! This is one tough, beautiful plant. It was one of the few perennials left growing in the neglected, overgrown garden I inherited when I moved into my current house - and that says a lot! Also, it
- grows in sun or shade (although it wouldn't appreciate a baking hot spot),
- is a low maintenance ground cover (I've never had to weed my bergenia patch),
- greens up early in spring and turns reddish in fall,
- has large, fleshy, paddle-shaped leaves that provide textural contrast with almost any other plant (try it with ornamental grasses!),
- and of course, has showy blooms in May.
P.S. I have one friend who thinks the flowers are incredibly gaudy (hello Michael, are you reading this?) Personally, that's what I appreciate at this time of year! But I told him to keep the plant for the texture, and cut the flowers for bouquets for his wife since the flowers do well in vases, too!