I've always thought one of the of the disadvantages of a herbaceous perennial--or prairie--garden is the aftermath of heavy rain, especially late in the season. Grasses tend to be flattened and splayed in most ungraceful shapes, and the tall perennials lean precariously. Some will recover when the sun comes out, some won't.
This is the Garden at Federal Twist after several inches of overnight rain.
It looks better from a distance. Blurring gives it an impressionistic look. You can see an even blurrier video by clicking on the photo above (you'll also hear frogs, crickets, and the pop of lingering rain drops).
This mid-August deluge tells me fall is on the way. Increasing complexity of line (call it chaos if you will) marks the dropping away of excess growth, revealing the underlying skeletons of highly structural perennials, the start of structural failure among weaker plants, the "relaxed" forms of those that have passed their peak and are headed downhill.
Thomas Rainer of grounded design gave me a useful concept for understanding what's happening here. Speaking of my garden, he referred to its "nice balance between legibility and intricacy." Wish I'd thought of putting it so succinctly. It's certainly something I've worked to achieve, but Thomas "got it" and gave it back in a couple of clear, concise words ... proof, if we need it, that professional designers are called "professional" for a reason.
I think you can see that in the close-ups. Even after heavy rain, amid the complexity of the storm-tossed garden, the plants, their lines, forms, textures, colors remain legible.