Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Wednesday Vignette: Nature's version of stained glass

Although we haven't been blasted by summer's heat yet in my area of coastal Southern California, some of my Leucadendrons are already sporting their summer colors.  When backlit, you can't help but notice them.  They always make be think of stained glass.  I captured a few photos to demonstrate their appeal for this week's Wednesday Vignette, the feature hosted by Anna of Flutter & Hum.

This is the older of my 2 'Wilson's Wonder' Leucadendrons.  I kept this plant in a large pot at my former house and brought it with me when we moved to our current location more than 7 years ago.  It was one of the first things I planted.  It's supposed to grow 6x8' but it consistently exceeds that height.  I cut it down by half in late winter and it's already made strides in regaining its former size.

I planted this 'Wilson's Wonder' on the opposite end of the front garden in late 2014.  Thus far, I've managed to keep it to about 4' tall.

This shot captures 3 more recent introductions in the back garden, 2 Leucadendron salignum 'Summer Red' book-ending a single L. 'Jester'.  'Jester' will eventually grow 4-5' tall.  'Summer Red' is supposed to top out at 3' tall.

This shot provides a closer look at 'Summer Red' (on the right).

Leucadendron 'Chief' and L. 'Safari Sunset' also look great backlit at this time of year but I didn't manage to photograph them at the right time.

For more Wednesday Vignettes, visit Anna at Flutter & Hum.


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

29 comments:

  1. Sigh. Those are beautiful shrubs.

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    1. I can't believe I gardened for so long without them.

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  2. What beautiful shrubs. They almost glow.

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    1. When they're backlit, they really do glow, Rebecca!

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  3. So pretty! My one successful leucadendron needs a trim, and I'm so scared that I'm going to kill it for some reason... I should use your plants as evidence that it will grow back just fine!

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    1. I was really afraid I'd cut that first 'Wilson's Wonder' way too hard this year and was sick at the thought I might have harmed it but it's proved its toughness!

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  4. Fabulous, I wish I could grow them.

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    1. They are fantastic plants, Chloris. And I'm sorry you can't grow them but console yourself with your peonies, and roses, and, and, and...

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  5. They look so colourful and healthy. I have only two, one of which has mysteriously decided to die back. Do you have a remedy for this, Kris? Should I just cut it right back and hope for the best? It’s been growing there (and I posted a photo of it a few Saturdays ago) happily for three years so there’s no apparent reason for this sudden demise.

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    1. It's probably worth a try cutting it back, Jane. Could it have been exposed to any fertilizer products? I lost 2 a few years ago, both fairly soon after planting, and my guess was that I either had a water problem or they were exposed to phosphorus in fertilizer.

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    2. I haven’t used any fertiliser on that garden, Kris, and in fact when we built the garden up we bought soil suitable for natives, so it’s a mystery to me. I’ll cut it back and keep my fingers crossed.

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  6. I always admire them whenever you show them. I'm with Alison.. sigh!

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    1. They're too big to install in a greenhouse I suppose, Jessica!

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  7. A gorgeous plant - some cultivars look like flames in the garden.

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    1. When they're backlit, they're magic, Eliza.

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    1. And they take heat and drought well too, Lisa!

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  9. Oh yes! Don't you just love that stained glass effect? I remember some canna lilies backlit like that at the Garden Bloggers' Fling. It was stunningly beautiful!

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    1. The visit to Tanglewild had me seriously thinking about growing Cannas, Beth, even though they're relatively thirsty plants. Your comparison is apt, however, and I think I'll "make do" with my far less thirsty Leucadendrons.

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  10. Leucadendron Is near the very top of my “wish I could grow it” list. Thank you for sharing your beautiful plants with us.

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    1. I'm surprised you can't grow some of these, Loree. Perhaps in a pot, protected from excessive winter rain and cold?

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    2. In theory we like winter rain, and there is even a snow protea (but that is probably not available)

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    3. Maybe Loree should become a plant explorer to expand the proteas available to the Pacific Northwest!

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  11. WOW! They look awesome! Love the color!

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    1. Thanks! They are indeed awesome plants.

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  12. Always enjoying seeing these in your arrangements. They really look great in the landscape too. Would love to give one a try--maybe that 'Summer Red' since it shouldn't get too tall. Have a good week Kris.

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    1. You can keep some varieties smaller by growing them in large pots too, Susie. One of my 'Wilson's Wonders' and 'Pisa', a silver-leafed variety, both spent a long time in pots before I eventually planted them out here.

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