“Specialising in a hobby of any kind greatly increases its interest, and in the culture of flowers it is desirable to devote oneself more especially to one or two groups of plants, though not to the exclusion of all others; for a garden devoted to one kind of flower only lacks interest during a great part of the year.” (In My Lady’s Garden by Mrs. Richmond, London: T Fisher Unwin, 1908)
Devote myself to one or two groups of plants? I may need to work on that a bit.
My current interest is around Clematis, Helleborus, and Dianthus. It was mostly Clematis and Helleborus but then I heard that a common name of Dianthus, carnations, is gilliflower, so I’m suddenly more interested in them, too.
I am also interested in zinnias, sunflowers, marigolds, sweet peas, and other annual flowers that are generally planted in and around my vegetable garden to add color and draw in butterflies, bees, and in the case of sunflowers, eventually birds.
When it is time to order bulbs for spring flowers, I tend to devote most of my time to Crocus, Iris reticulata, and Tulipa, the species kind. But I have also planted daffodils, hyacinths, and many other “minor bulbs”.
Of course, I also enjoy seeing in my garden anything in the Viola group, including wild violets, johnny-jump ups, pansies, and any other Viola sp. including Viola banskii which I am growing as a house plant.
Did I mention that amongst daylilies, Hemerocallis, I prefer the spider types? I hesitate to say I specialize in them. It is more like I focus in on the spider types so that I don’t get lost in the thousands of varieties of daylilies currently available. I have several in my garden and will add more as I find them.
I could go on, but it is clearly apparent that I seem to be specializing in that group of plants known as the angiosperms, though for interest, I also grow gymnosperms, ferns, and mosses.
Whew, I’m glad I’ve got my devotion to one or two groups of plants figured out. It makes plant shopping that much easier when one has focus.