Wednesday, May 15, 2013

May Bloom Day

With most of my attention given to other concerns this month, I haven't had much time to take pictures of the garden, much less work in it.  Picture-taking has also been hindered by a few days of soaring temperatures and low humidity, which turned once plump, healthy blooms into ragged versions of themselves.  Nonetheless, I'll present the best of what I've got.

There's a lot in bloom in the backyard border.  I need to add some foliage plants to improve the color flow.

Alstroemeria (no ID on variety) and Erigeron karvinskianus (aka Santa Barbara Daisy)

Digitalis purpurea 'Foxy'

Erysimum linifolium 'Variegatum' backed by Hebe speciosa 'Varigata'

Hebe 'Patty's Purple' fronted by Geranium 'Tiny Monster'

California native Penstemon heterophyllus 'Margarita Bop' and daisies

Bearded Iris are blooming in the back border and elsewhere.  The first 2 photos below show Iris I inherited with the property.  Those in the next photos were added within the last year.

Butterscotch-colored Iris (no ID)

Lavender/purple Iris (no ID)
Iris germanica 'Hautles Voiles'

Iris germanica 'Ravenous'

Adding this unnamed Iris is a bit of a Bloom Day cheat as it shriveled in the heat prior to the middle of the month

Oenothera and Cistus are the highlights of the dry garden right now.

Oenothera speciosa (aka Pink Evening Primrose) with Phormium tenax 'Apricot Queen'

Cistus 'Sunset' and Oenothera speciosa

Genista canariensis, Phormium tenax 'Yellow Wave' and Oenothera speciosa

Hemerocallis 'Russian Rhapsody'

Since the removal of the Eucalyptus tree that once dominated the right side of the property, the side yard gets more sun.  The wind that sweeps through the area in the afternoon is also having a greater impact than it did when the area was somewhat protected by the 60 foot tree.  I've pulled out ferns, primrose and other shade-loving plants but I may have to move others, like the Acanthus mollis and the Arthropodium cirratum as well - I'll see how they do when summer arrives and our temperatures sit in the upper ranges for prolonged periods.

Acanthis mollis and Arthropodium cirratum (aka Renga Lily)

Anagallis monellii 'Blue Pimpernel'

Argyranthemum 'Elsa White'

Salvia 'Mystic Spires' and Layia platyglossa 'Tidy Tips'

Nigella damascena 'African Bride' looks better in the photo than in the garden itself

The front border is in its glory right now.

Pink Meidiland roses and Cuphea x ignea 'Starfire Pink' dominate this border along the front walkway

The border on the left side of the front walkway duplicates most of the plants in the border on the right side

This new Pelargonium was missing a label but I'm guessing it's 'Katie'

Gaura lindheimeri 'Snow Fountain' is just coming into bloom

Scabiosa hybrid 'Giant Blue'

Scabiosa caucasia 'Fama Blue'

Rudbeckia 'Cherry Brandy' has has bloomed off and on since last summer
Climbing 'Joseph's coat' rose

Please go to May Dreams Gardens for links to pictures of blooms in other gardens.  Thanks once again, Carol, for hosting this monthly event.


  1. Wow...that's a lot of flowers! And unlike my garden (where it's all random and not cohesive) your flows...

    1. Well, I'm afraid it only looks as though it flows - I haven't shown you the rough transitions. I'm definitely planning some moves during the fall planting season.

  2. Wow, so many goodies! I love that Rudbeckia.

    1. I can't get over how steadily that Rudbeckia blooms. thanks for visiting, Heather.

  3. I always admire how well roses grow in warmer, drier areas of the country. Iris seems to be the unifying plant for May bloom day. Usually there is at least one. A few years ago I grew Rudbekia 'Cherry Brandy'. We treat them as annuals and consider it a bonus if they come back. Mine didn't but they are worth growing again. Happy GBBD!

    1. The shrub roses and the 'Joseph's Coat' climbing up the stone chimney do well but I'm afraid the inherited hybrid teas struggle far more. I hadn't tried Rudbeckia prior to last year - our old garden was far too shady - but it definitely does well here.

  4. Love the Nigella...and I totally enjoy your Oenothera...but I'm too chicken to plant it in my garden!

    1. There's certainly good reason to be apprehensive about the Oenothera - it spreads without invitation. So far, I've kept it restrained to the driest areas of my garden where other ground covers are hard to establish but I'm keeping an eye out for creep into other areas of the garden. Thanks for visiting.

  5. Wow Kris- such gorgeous blooms- I needed that! love, love Paula

    1. Maybe you can spend some time here the next time you're down this way, Paula. Perhaps we can find something that will work in your garden I can send back with you as a cutting or division. In the meantime, I hope you're getting some much-deserved rest.