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6.200 feet and look at the flowers.

Mountain gardening has its challenges difficult soils and harsh winters not the least of them. But that makes the successes even more rewarding. Eleanor NobleSwanson's garden, at an elevation of about 6,200 feet in Truckee, California, is a colorful success story. She began planting the gently sloping 1-acre hillside behind her house more than 20 years ago. Since then, she's removed enough rocks for three walls, added tons of homemade compost to the soil, faithfully mulched each winter, and experimented with almost any plant she could get her hands on. The result is nonstop flower color from spring to fall. In the center of the garden, edged by flower beds that taper off into the surrounding woodland, is a thick, meadowlike lawn -but it isn't grass. Instead, ground ivy (Glechoma hederacea) was planted from transplants, then overseeded with white clover (Trifolium repens). The result is a lush carpet that needs less care than a regular lawn, although it does get regular watering and mowing. Filling in the gap beneath the lawn's upper border and the house's raised deck is common hop (Humulus lupulus), an incredibly fast-growing vine that twines up wires run from the ground to the deck. Plants die to the ground each winter but climb back to the top of the deck by midsummer. One mail-order source with several hop varieties is Nichols Garden Nursery, 1190 N. Pacific Highway, Albany, Ore. 97231 (free catalog). Any high-elevation gardener planting this month can learn from the hardy plants used in the Noble-Swanson garden. What follows is a general list, in order of usual bloom sequence; there is overlap between seasons, and some years timing changes because of weather. September is a good time to plant; above 8,000 feet, wait until spring. Spring (May to mid-June). Crocus, crabapple, daffodils, tulips, ajuga, Austrian copper rose, St. Brigid' anemone (A. coronaria), bleeding heart, candytuft, columbines, Oriental poppy, basket-of-gold, coral bells, sweet William, lupines, English primrose, and miniature roses. Summer (mid-June through July). Iris, delphiniums, daylilies, hybrid lilies, coreopsis, Shasta daisy, gaillardia, foxgloves, hardy geraniums, roses, bee balm, and yarrow. Late summer to fall (August through September). Campanulas, roses, gloriosa daisies, bugbane, summer phlox, purple coneflower, hollyhocks, Michaelmas daisies, Japanese anemone, and chrysanthemums. 1-1
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Date:Sep 1, 1990
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