Nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus)

Coreopsis 'Sunray'
Coreopsis (C. grandiflora 'Sunray')

Daylilly 'Stella de Oro'
Daylilly (Hemerocallis 'Stella de Oro')

Euphorbia 'Blue Haze'
Euphorbia 'Blue Haze'

As some may be aware, I undertook a fairly extensive makeover of much of the yard last year.  In front, I ripped out more than 100 feet of Escallonia hedges and replaced them with perennial beds, ornamental grasses and shrubs.  This year, the perennials are starting to come into their own.  The splashes of yellow from Daylillies and Coreopsis are turning out especially nice. 

Every year I plant  annuals in containers on the basement patio.  It has been a challenge to find attractive plants that are not also craved by the local slugs, snails and rabbits.  This year I decided to save some money and just stick some nasturtium seeds in the pots.  The humble little flower has been the perfect solution; a lush, colorful display with no appeal for mollusc or rodent.  This demonstrates the simplest solutions are often the best choices.

Another problem was a bare spot between a big Douglas' Fir and a flagstone path.  It is dry and sandy and in the sun it gets hot.  I decided to try Euphorbia and it seems to be thriving.  The yellow parts are actually modified leaves surrounding an indistinct flower.  Remember, the Euphorbia family includes the Christmas Poinsettia in which the red "petals" are also just modified leaves.

The following photos show the same plants in context.  The Coreopsis and Daylillies are joined by Lavender, Russian Sage, Verbena, Gaura, Sea Holly and Rose Campion.