IPale beardtongue (Penstemon pallidus) is the first of my four species of Penstemon to bloom. It likes sandy soil and dry sites. Hairy beardtongue (P. hirsutus) and trumpet beardtongue (P. tubaeflorus) are budding and will bloom soon. The last to bloom will be the tallest of the four, Foxglove Beardtongue (P. digitalis), which is still growing upwards.
Golden Alexanders (Zizia aurea) is a lovely wildflower and I would love to grow more of it. Alas, it seems to be irresistible to both deer and groundhogs and, in order to keep it at all, I have to cage it, which cramps its naturally blowsy style. I have had reasonable success masking some of the other groundhog magnets with highly aromatic neighbours, such as nodding prairie onion or anise-hyssop. Nothing but caging has worked for Golden Alexanders.
I have posted previously about the surfeit of chives in the rock garden. I have removed a lot, and deadhead the remainder strictly, but I do not want to get rid of all the chives. Who could resist its ability to flower even when dwarfed by growing in the tiniest chink in the rock?
Also blooming in the rock garden is a creeping shrub called three-toothed cinquefoil (Sibbaldiopsis tridentata) with small white flowers dotted over attractive shiny foliage, which will turn red in the fall.