Sunday, January 15, 2017

Bloom Day - January 2017

Although the last couple of days have been sunny and warm, it's been raining cats and dogs here off and on since December (hurrah!).  Drought conditions in much of Southern California have been down-graded from "exceptional" to "extreme," which believe it or not is tremendous progress.  If forecasts of rain into February and March prove accurate, our situation could improve still further.  In any case, we have every reason to look forward to the prospect of a wonderful spring.

At present, my January garden looks similar to my December garden, with a few notable exceptions.

Leucadendron 'Wilson's Wonder' is now in its full winter glory

Arctotis 'Pink Sugar' is off to an early start

Despite turning most of its flowers to face the garage wall, Camellia x williamsii 'Taylor's Perfection' is proving itself worthy of its name

All 3 Grevillea rosmarianifolia 'Scarlet Sprite' bear tiny rosy red blooms


Many of the boldest bloomers from December are still going strong.

Bauhinia x blakeana bounces back quickly after each rainstorm

Nothing bothers Gomphrena decumbens 'Itsy Bitsy', which continues to produce a plethora of tiny purple flowers

Grevillea 'Superb' never takes a break

I don't give Grevillea lanigera 'Mount Tamboritha' the attention it deserves.  This low-growing ground cover is also in bloom year-round.

Leptospermum scoparium 'Pink Pearl' blooms its heart out throughout our cool season


A couple of support players with long bloom periods are putting on particularly strong showings this month.

Argyranthemum frutescens is at its best in cooler weather

The Osteospermums, like their African daisy cousins in the Arctotis genus, also come on strong when the weather cools.  On the left is O. 'Violet Ice', another in the 4D series.  On the right, are O. '4D Silver'  and what I think is a mutant offspring of O. '3D Berry White'


There are other blooms worthy of honorable mentions, shown here in collages organized by color.

Blue and purple blooms, clockwise from the left: Rosmarinus 'Gold Dust', Lavandula multifida, noID Pericallis (reblooming for a second year), and Polygala myrtifolia 'Mariposa'

Pink and red blooms, clockwise from the left: Aechmea fasciata, Arctotis 'Opera Rose', Coleonema pulchellum 'Sunset Gold', Cuphea 'Starfire Pink', noID Dianthus, Mimulus 'Jelly Bean Red', and Ribes viburnifolium

Orange, yellow and white blooms, top row: Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi, Gazania 'Yellow Flame', and Grevillea 'Peaches & Cream'
Middle row: noID Narcissus, Papaver nudicaule, and Pennisetum advena 'Rubrum'
Bottom row: Phylica pubescens, Rhodanthemum hosmarianense, and Tagetes lemmonii


Next month's coming attractions are anxious to take the stage.

From left to right: the first blooms of Calliandra haematocephala; buds of Grevillea lavandulacea 'Penola'; and early risers among the Zantedeschia aethiopica


I recognize how lucky I am to enjoy so many blooms in the middle of winter, especially when so many areas are blanketed in snow or plagued by ice.  I hope that the warm breath of spring reaches those of you dealing with real winters soon.

For more January bloom stories, visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens, our Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day host.


All material © 2012-2017 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party


31 comments:

  1. Beautiful flowers!
    I am so glad you are getting rain
    Happy Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!

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    1. We're pretty happy about the rain, Lea! I hope it continues for awhile yet.

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  2. This is one of the reasons I love garden blogging. It allows those of us currently trapped in snow and ice to enjoy a beautiful garden full of flowers. Temperatures here are supposed to warm significantly this week, possibly up to 50F (almost spring-like by our standards) but we'll be getting torrential rain along with the warmer temperatures. Combined with the snow melting up to 3000', we could have some flooding issues. I'm glad you're getting rain, though. You really need it.

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    1. I hope you avoid flooding, Evan. I've worried about mudslides and downed trees here but, although steady (at least by our standards), the rain's been light enough here thus far to save us any of the catastrophes that have plagued areas further north.

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  3. Your southern California gardens are beautiful and remind me of late summer here. It is so good that you are finally getting the rain you need. I 'd bet your plants are happy too!

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    1. So far, everything seems to be responding well to this year's much heavier winter rains. I've actually had concerns that some of the succulents may get too much rain but for now I'm deciding just to enjoy it.

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  4. Lovely Kris! So much color, and soil! I haven't seen soil for almost a week. As Evan mentioned they're predicting highs next week that should make all this white stuff go away...maybe too fast. I'm glad we don't live near a river or stream.

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    1. Mother Nature can be brutal. I hope you have a gentle warm-up that gives your plants an opportunity to adjust and allows the snow melt to seep into the soil. I also hope you've seen the end of the snow and ice storms.

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  5. Hi Kris, I am happy that your drought is lessening, and you truly are blessed with so much color in your January garden! 'Taylor's Perfection' is growing next to a path in my woodland garden. It is still a small shrub but is covered with buds. I am looking forward to the beautiful flowers. My dream is that someday when it grows up I will walk under its arching branches dripping with blooms.

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    1. 'Taylor's Perfection' was possibly the first plant I added to this garden after we moved in, Deb. That was before there was any mention of drought here. Under current conditions, I wouldn't think of planting another Camellia but I'm glad to have this one. I hope you enjoy yours just as I do mine.

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  6. Your flowers are a feast for the eyes. I can't decide of it looks like spring or summer. I'm hoping to be able to see a few California blooms myself over the next two weeks as we head out to California. Please keep the rain away as we will be camping.

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    1. We're expecting rain the middle of this week but the long-range forecast forn SoCal at present looks clear from January 21st through February 5th, Jenny. I can't speak for Central and Northern California - they've been a lot wetter.

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  7. Your 'Wilsons Wonder' continues to make me green with envy. What a spectacular plant!

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    1. 'Wilson's Wonder' wins top-down in the Leucadendron category from my point of view. My second plant is rapidly gaining size too.

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  8. So that's what Grevillea is suppose to look like!! You have a very colorful displace for January. I'm glad you are getting rain and hope you get more to ease the drought..but with gentle accumulation.

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    1. I've discovered that Grevillea in general do well here, Jenni, but 'Superb' is a cut above the rest in my book - or perhaps that particular spot is just a Grevillea's version of heaven.

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  9. Oh my. How lovely to catch up with you and see everything looking so lush!

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    1. The rain helped! I'm glad to see you back, Jessica.

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  10. What a tonic to the spirits to see all the colourful flowers in your garden Kris, Bauhinia x blakeana is spectacular.

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    1. The Bauhinia is having a banner season, Christina. Heavy rain knocks the mature blooms to the ground but there seem to be a nearly endless supply of buds waiting to burst into bloom after every rainstorm.

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  11. So many blooms! So much colour! Wonderful, thank you for a colour boost on a cold miserable day. I have a grevillea in the greenhouse but it is looking a bit sorry for itself. Not like yours happily disportimg itself in the sunshine. Glad to hear you have had some rain.

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    1. Looking back on last year's Bloom Day post, I find that most of the same plants are blooming on schedule again this year but I think the rain has contributed to the sheer volume of blooms each of those plants has produced.

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  12. Glorious blooms for a winter day! I saw you were getting rain which is also a good development. We've had a rare deep freeze so no blooms here for a while.

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    1. I'm sorry to hear that, like the Pacific Northwest, you've also been taken by a deep freeze, Shirley. I hope February brings warmer weather.

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  13. Everything looks like it is responding happily to the rain. I'm so glad your drought has been downgraded! Such beautiful blooms. The colors on that Arctotis really thrill me!

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    1. More rain is on its way! I'm hoping that we get downgraded another tier on the drought-o-meter before the winter rainy season is over.

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  14. No wonder you love the Grevilleas - they are beautiful! I'm disappointed the Osteospermums take themselves off during summer here; I could sooo use them if they were perennial. Love what the rain is doing for your plants :)

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    1. I'm sorry to hear that the Osteospermums can't handle the heat out your way, Amy. Bloom production usually shuts down here but the plants hang on and rebloom when cooler temperatures return. The older, trailing Osteospermums reseed freely and seem generally more vigorous than the hybrids - maybe it would be worthwhile to try one of those.

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  15. How wonderful to get the rain you need!

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    1. We're not counting Southern California's drought over yet, Diana, but the change just in this winter's rain total is promising. In contrast, Northern California is already viewed as drought-free.

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  16. I find your choice of flowers interesting. It’s as they all share the same color scheme. It’s amazing that there can be such beautiful blooms even in the winter months. The rain no doubt helps with the process of moving those blooms along into the fully blossomed territory we see in your photos. My wife would love them!

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