Thursday, June 15, 2017

Bloom Day - June 2017

While much of what was blooming last month is still blooming this month, the garden has firmly shifted into its summer mode.  We were lucky to enjoy the effects of a generous marine layer through most of May and on into June but that seems to be over.  Temperatures have risen this week but I took advantage of the cloudy skies beforehand to take loads of photos before the heat arrived.  By way of both an apology and an explanation for yet another photo-heavy Bloom Day post, I also used this event as an opportunity to test out the capabilities of the new camera I received as a recent birthday present from my husband.

This month Agapanthus and Shasta daisies are taking command of the garden.

I inherited dozens of clumps of no-name Agapanthus with the garden.  This dark blue variety sits below the mimosa tree.

These clumps of a lighter blue variety sit in the same border.  There are also white Agapanthus here and there, as well as dwarf varieties.

Shasta daisies, Leucanthemum x superbum, add sparkle throughout the garden.  This noID ruffled variety is my favorite but I have some shorter varieties with single petals too.

In sheer numbers, Agapanthus and Leucanthemum flowers dominate in both the back and front gardens but the yellow yarrow is still an attention-grabber in the back garden.

Achillea 'Moonshine', shown here with a couple of spikes for Salvia 'Mystic Spires' among the blooms

 Leonotis leonurus (aka lion's tail) is also demanding attention.

The plant in the background came with the garden and struggled throughout our drought.  I cut it back hard during the winter and it roared back to life following our heavier-than-usual winter rain.  The plant in the foreground was added in the fall.

The strong yellow and orange hues of the Achillea and Leonotis are echoed in other plants.

Anigozanthos 'Yellow Gem'

Crassula pubescens subsp. radicans with yellow flowers on foliage developing its red summer color

Gaillardia 'Arizona Sun', shown with Euphorbia 'Ascot Rainbow' (left) and Gaillardia aristata 'Gallo Peach' (right)

Santolina virens

The white color of the Shasta daisies is picked up by the smaller daisy flowers of Tanacetum niveum scattered about.

Tanacetum niveum surrounded by thyme, a golden ornamental oregano, Gazanias, and Eustoma grandiflorum, which seem stubbornly reluctant to bloom

With a few exceptions, flower color is generally softer in the front garden, which is also peppered with Agapanthus, Leucanthemum and Tanacetum.

Oscularia deltoides

Abelia x grandiflora 'Edward Goucher'

Centaurea 'Silver Feathers'

Rosa 'Pink Meidiland', shown here with Cuphea ignea 'Starfire Pink'

Magnolia grandiflora

Gaura lindheimeri

Leptospermum 'Copper Glow', producing a larger number of dime-sized flowers than it's ever had before

The strongest color in the front garden has been provided by Hemerocallis 'Spanish Harlem', which began blooming just a day or two after May's Bloom Day post.  The flush is nearly over.

None of the 5 clumps of 'Spanish Harlem' produced more than 2 flowers in any one day

The back slope is almost devoid of any color other than green right now.  The Matilija poppies are the most notable exception.

These poppies, Romneya coulteri, move on their tall stems with the slightest breeze, making them very difficult to photograph

Scattered about, the floral workhorses of my garden, Gazanias, Grevilleas and Osteospermums, continue to produce a nearly endless supply of flowers.

These are just a few examples of the range of Gazania hybrids currently in bloom.  The beautiful pink and white flower on the left and the near-white one to its right are both volunteers.

Clockwise from the left are Grevillea 'Ned Kelly', G. 'Superb', G. alpina x rosmarinifolia, and G. 'Peaches & Cream'

Clockwise from the left are Osteospermum '4D Silver', O. '4D Purple', O. 'Berry White' (or its progeny), and O. 'Sweet Summertime Kardinal'

Am I done?  Well, no.  There are also blooms of many varieties present in smaller quantities as shown in these collages:

Top row: Aquilegia 'Spring Magic', Catananche caerulea, and Erigeron glaucus 'Wayne Roderick'
Middle row: Globularia x indubia, Nierembergia linarifolia, and Plectranthus neochilus
Bottom row: Polygala myrtifolia 'Mariposa', Symphyotrichum chilensis, and Wahlenbergia 'Blue Cloud'

Clockwise from the upper left: Arthropodium cirratum, Alstroemeria 'Claire', Digitalis purpurea 'Alba', Lagurus ovatus, Pandorea jasminoides, and Pennisetum orientale

Clockwise from the left: Tagetes lemmonii, Cotula 'Tiffendell Gold', Hemerocallis 'Double Impact', Jacobaea maritima, and Lonicera japonica

Top row: Bignonia capreolata, Bulbine 'Hallmark', and Cotyledon orbiculata
Middle row: Cuphea 'Vermillionaire', Lantana camara 'Irene', and Lobelia laxiflora
Bottom row: Pelargonium 'Tweedle Dee', Russelia 'Flamingo Park', and Rosa 'Joseph's Coat'
Clockwise from the upper left: Lotus berthelotii 'Amazon Sunset', Arctotis 'Pink Sugar', Gomphrena 'Itsy Bitsy', Pelargonium peltatum, Rosa 'Ebb Tide', Rudbeckia 'Cherry Brandy', Salvia lanceolata,  and Viola 'Pandora's Box'

Finally, barring another horrific heatwave of the type that struck on the first official day of summer last year, here's a peek at what's coming up in July:

Clockwise from the left: Albizia julibrissin, Alstroemeria 'Indian Summer', Hemerocallis 'Sammy Russell', Thymus serphyllum, and Zinnia 'Whirligig'

That's my round-up for the month of June.  Thank you for hanging on through the end.  For more June Bloom Day posts, visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens.

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


  1. Stunning! Hard to pick favs, but I'd say the leonotis/grass, the crassula and agaves (which idea I'm going to steal), and the gaillardias/yuccas. That lotus as a ground cover is amazing. And great work with the new camera.

    1. I've been very pleased with how well the Lotus has performed as a ground cover. I'd previously only used it as a trailing plant in pots and I thought the flowers might get lost in the foliage on the ground. It also seems to deter the raccoons from digging in what used to be one of their favorite foraging zones, which is a major bonus!

  2. Like Denise I was drawn to the Crassula and Agave combo (no surprise there I suppose). It's been awhile since I've planted Lotus berthelotii (it's an annual here), but you've got me thinking maybe I should again. So many fantastic flowers Kris!

    1. The Lotus is usually sold as an annual here too but that's probably because it can get a little ratty-looking over time. If you decide to try it again, Loree, I suggest that you look for the 'Amazon Sunset' cultivar - it seems much more vigorous than the gold form.

  3. Hi Kris, I love the blue and white that the agapanthus and Shasta Daisies are adding to your garden. I feel these two colors visually cool the garden down and that comes in handy when our summer temperatures will soar.
    It always amazes me how many different varieties of flowers are blooming in your garden at the same time.
    Warm regards,

    1. I agree about the need to visually cool down our hot summer gardens here, Christina. We've got a heatwave going now, although it's not horrible yet - mid-80sF here.

  4. What a sight for sore eyes! Your garden is chock full of flowers at this of year. I can only imagine how wonderful it must be to walk through your garden and enjoy them in person.

    Must-have plant for my want list: Santolina virens.

    I also need to get another Leonitis leonorus. We've had it in different spots over the years but it always got too big. With heavy pruning, I think I could keep it compact enough.

    1. The Leonotis seems to appreciate hard pruning, Gerhard. I was disappointed by the performance of the plant I inherited with the garden in prior years but the combination of hard pruning and the heavier-than-usual winter rains did the trick this year. I did lose one of the 2 new specimens I planted in the fall but it was in an area in which everything seems to die - I think I may have a soil problem there.

  5. Amazing variety and oh, so lovely!

  6. Your garden looks so lush and floriferous. The drought must not have hurt it much. Happy GBBD.

    1. The drought and related restrictions on irrigation prompted wholesale changes in what I grew, Lisa. All the lawn and other thirsty plants were slowly replaced with more drought-tolerant specimens. However, when the rain returned in earnest this past winter, it was a major boon even for those drought-tolerant plants - virtually all, including succulents, prefer to be watered with a degree of regularity it seems!

  7. Oh, the color on that 'Cherry Brandy' Rudbeckia is nice! I grew that early on in my garden, same with the fluffy Shasta daisies, but for some reason, I took them out over the years. They are such workhorses, I really should add them back into my mix again. You have soooo many flowers, you Flower Floozy!

    1. I admit it - I am a Flower Floozy! (Given the frequency with which I order plants from Annie's, she should send me a certificate of authenticity.) I had really great luck with 'Cherry Brandy' one year (before the drought hit its stride and water restrictions became an issue). I planted plugs back in the fall and, thus far, I'm still only getting blooms one here and one there but the plants aren't dead - they just need some encouragement (and more water!) I think.

  8. Your variety and number of blooms always blows me away! No wonder your Monday vases are always so interesting. I love how you use large succulents, like agave, as structural punctuation among your flowers.

    1. Succulents take over more and more of my garden every year it seems, Peter.

  9. I'm so glad you left a comment on my blog, which lead me to visit you. Your garden is just popping with color and texture and is gorgeous! I have a few of the same blooms and giggled when I saw your color guard Yucca planted with Gaillardia because I have that same plant combo. I'm looking forward to following you and learning more about your garden. Happy Bloom Day!

    1. The Yucca is 'Bright Star' but very similar to 'Color Guard', Karin. That combination seems to be very popular with both garden visitors and blog commentators. I'm scheduled to attend the DC Fling so hopefully I'll meet you in person there!

  10. I love your agapanthus!! I have some here in Virginia, but I struggle to get it to bloom. I'm thinking of putting it in a pot to see if I have better luck. I also love the lion's tale picture. It's fabulous with the grass.

    1. Sadly, Leanne, Agapanthus gets little respect here, where it's such a reliable bloomer that it's planted everywhere.

  11. You're getting some really great photos from the new camera! I love the shot of the Lotus berthelotii 'Amazon Sunset'. Your Romneya photos have me wishing I had taken better care of the small one I rescued from a freebie/discard pile at a nursery. Sadly I didn't take good enough care of it and lost it.

    1. The new camera has been fun even if I've been pretty casual thus far about moving my learning curve along. The Romneya did little more than add some foliage in its first year here but it responded well to its fall haircut and I expect our winter rains gave it a major boost - it's taller than I am now by a good foot.


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