Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Early Spring Blooms at South Coast Botanic Garden (Wednesday Vignette)

I've been spending more time of late at South Coast Botanic Garden.  As I'd missed the garden's cherry blossom festival last weekend, I took a quick spin around the garden earlier this week in hope of spotting some blooms.  Although some trees flowered earlier this year due to our very warm January, the cold spell that began in February has set others back.  As a result, some cherry trees are in bloom but they aren't all blooming en masse, at least not yet.

Here's the best example I found during my brief survey.  This one is located along the garden's perimeter.

Close up of the flowers on the same tree


But it's not just the cherry trees that are blooming.  Here's one of my favorites, looking especially good this year.

These are a hybrid apricot-flowered Handroanthus, H. chrysostricha x impetiginosus, formerly classified as part of the genus Tabebuia and commonly known as ipe trees.


And there are more.

The coral trees, Erythinia caffra, are in bloom.  The specimens in the garden are larger than any I've seen elsewhere.



The next tree isn't flowering but its fresh green foliage still sung of spring.

This looked like a Podocarpus to me but I didn't find a tag to verify this.  In looking up Podocarpus, I discovered that these plants too have been reclassified.  They're now officially Afrocarpus.


In addition to the flowering trees, there were other spring blooms.

Narcissus of various types could be seen here and there but these large-flowered daffodils sing of spring

I spotted Iceland poppies (Papaver nudicaule) in several locations

More Iceland poppies, planted with pansies and what I think was flowering kale, with Loropetalum in the background

This wide shot features a slice of the Volunteer Garden.  Pincushion flowers (Scabiosa) are in bloom in the foreground and Crocosmia can be spotted in the distance.


This brief tribute to spring is my Wednesday Vignette.  For more vignettes, visit Anna at Flutter & Hum.


All material © 2012-2018 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

20 comments:

  1. Spring in the land of perpetual summer is pretty spectacular. Love the flowering trees, especially the color of the ipe tree - wow!

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    1. That ipe is quite unusual - all the others I've seen here have either pink or yellow flowers. Apparently, it came to SCBG as the offspring of a hybrid discovered (or developed) at the LA Arboretum.

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  2. I can quite see why the ipê is a favourite. Lush colour. Sadly not for our climate. I'd buy one instantly if ...

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    1. The trees, native to an area spanning from Mexico to Argentina, seem to be very happy here in coastal Southern California, Ian. I'd be tempted to plant one in my garden too but, as some reach 40 feet tall, I'd run the risk of irritating my neighbors and risking a complaint under our community's "view conservation" ordinance.

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    2. Kris, the Ipe tree (in Argentina we call it Lapacho) is very common in the warm provinces and very popular in parks and streets (There are lots of them in my neighborhood). It is considered the alternative to cherry blossoms that don't fare well here. I've seen them with pink, yellow, peach and white flowers. In areas with heavy rain the pink an white varieties can reach 98 ft in height.

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    3. 98 feet! Well, I'd be in BIG trouble with the neighbors if I planted that! They are pretty trees, though.

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  3. The Handroanthus is very striking! It reminds me of the red maple blooming outside my window except the Handroanthus flowers are larger and more numerous.

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    1. I should have tried to get a photo of the flowers. They're trumpet-shaped.

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    2. They look like the flowers of its cousin jacarada.. and they are equally messy!

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    3. The botanic garden grows the Handroanthus/Tabebuia/ipe/Lapacho mostly in lawn areas, which makes the mess less annoying. If the flowers are as sticky as those of the Jacaranda, I expect they make terrible street-side trees.

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  4. I find it so funny that Iceland poppies grow in California!!! Seriously though, you have such interesting trees down there. One of these days, I will have to take a road trip to admire all those fun plants.

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    1. Come on down, Anna! I'm sure your kids would enjoy a trip to Disneyland - you could send your husband off to supervise them and visit gardens! ;)

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  5. Wow, seeing spring-flowering trees and newly leafed out shrubs is a wonderful balm as I sit out yet another snowstorm. It is March and we get good ones at this time of year. Thanks for the uplifting post, Kris!

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    1. I hope this is the last nor'easter of the year for you, Eliza!

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  6. Crocosmia is in bloom *now*? I'll never "get" southern California's seasons.

    Had no idea ipe was such a showy bloomer; wow. Surely more places that can grow it will do so in coming years.

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    1. As I recall, I saw Crocosmia blooming back in January at the botanic garden, at least I'm pretty sure that's what it is, Nell. I was surprised when I first saw it. I don't grow it in my own garden but perhaps that should change.

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  7. Thanks for the tour; amazing flowering trees!

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    1. I'm glad you enjoyed them, Christina!

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  8. Many many pink Handroanthus planted in the city of Tustin as street trees--they have been putting on a show the past couple of weeks.

    Shocked by the size of that Loropetalum!

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    1. That Loropetalum's size shocked me too, HB. My guess is that it's been planted there for decades.

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