Sunday, June 16, 2013

Foliage Follow-up for June

In keeping with the approach I took with my Bloom Day post this month, I thought I'd show some of my foliage choices in their planting context rather than sticking with individual plant close-ups as I've generally done in the past.

Aeonium with Ceanothus (no ID on either)

The Aeonium was given to me by a friend after we moved into our current house 2+ years ago.  I just stick it in the ground and it takes off.  It reproduces in a blink, which has allowed me to spread it around.  I think it looks particularly good here in partial shade combined with a Ceanothus hedge I inherited with the property.

Albizia julibrissin (Mimosa), newly leafed out in the back garden

I have a love/hate relationship with this Mimosa tree (Albizia julibrissin).  It has a beautiful shape.  It provides partial shade to the patio in the summer.  In leaf, it's graceful.  The flowers, which will be along in a month or so, are lovely - for a nanosecond.  Almost as soon as it flowers, it starts dropping unattractive clumps of dried flowers and leaves, followed by an endless supply of seedpods.  Tiny Albizia seedlings sprout all over the garden - I expect I'd have a forest of Albizia if I wasn't vigilant about pulling them out.  As perspective, here's a picture of the same tree just 5 weeks ago, when it was covered only in dry seedpods:

Elsewhere in the garden, most of the plants are better about behaving themselves:

Artemisia 'Powis Castle' and an artichoke create a place for the eye to rest in my dry garden

A coleus (Solenostemon scuttellaroides 'Mocha Mint') mixes comfortably with Campanula, not yet in bloom, along a pathway

An Eucomis, grown from a bulb and not yet in flower, adds height to a pot with mixed ferns and a pink Calibrachoa

The same ferns in a matching pot on the other side of the front door, grow with an Irisine (no record of variety) and a yellow Calibrachoa

Loropetalum chinense almost overrun by Helichrysum petiolare - I'll have to reduce the number of Helichrysum in this bed to give the Loropetalum proper growing space

Pseuderanthemum 'Texas Tristar' with Dryopteris erythrosora (aka Autumn Fern) outside the living room window

Pot of succulents put together as a birthday present for a good friend

For good measure, here are some additional photos of foliage that's looking particularly good in my garden right now:

Abelia x grandiflora 'Hopley's', still small but holding its own after 1 year in my dry garden

Abelia x grandiflora 'Kaleidoscope' in its 2nd year in my back border

A mature Agave attenuata, inherited with the property, has presence in my side yard

Ajuga 'Mahogany', a low-growing groundcover, is spreading well along the edges of my front border

Pennisetum setaceum 'Rubrum' (I think), returning after a winter buzz cut

And can anyone tell me what this is?  It planted itself along a wall in the lower front portion of my garden.  I like the foliage but it looks as though it may take over that entire section.

Mystery shrub

As always, my thanks to Pam at Digging for hosting Foliage Follow-up.  Check out Pam's site for foliage photos posted by other gardeners.


  1. You've got some lovely foliage there! Having just put a mimosa tree in the ground seeing pictures of yours (and reading about it's negatives) has caused me pause. I wonder how many hours we spend "cleaning up" our gardens? So many...

    1. As I recall, Loree, the Mimosa you planted is a different variety. Hopefully, that difference and the difference in our climates will keep yours under control! It's hard for me to imagine our garden without the tree but it's still a bloody pain in the neck...

  2. I remember when Mimosa was " trending" in the late 60's. short lives however. Itust be interesting to garden in cal.

    1. I've heard that the Mimosa is short-lived. I have no idea how long this tree has been here but it's size and spread suggests it has been awhile. I guess an early demise would provide a new opportunity...

  3. You have a wonderful garden there. Very good photos, gives a good sense of your space. Awesome ocean view as well. All your plants look happy and thriving.

    Mystery shrub I hope that is not Schinus terebinthifolius, Brazilian pepper, a thuggish re-seeder that can put your Albizzia to shame.

    1. Oh no! I had a bad feeling about this plant (which has also seeded in a nearby pot). After checking the web this evening, I suspect it is indeed a Brazilian Pepper, although I haven't seen any berries yet. I have no idea where the seed came from - a visiting bird, I guess. I expect I'll be spending time next week taking it out...Thanks for the ID, Hoover Boo.

  4. Lovely garden, Kris! And that succulent pot is just perfect--the pot, everything. What a lucky person, that friend who will be receiving it!

  5. Your friend is lucky to be gifted that pretty succulent pot. I enjoyed seeing what foliage is looking especially good this month in your garden, Kris.