Sunday, July 15, 2018

Bloom Day - July 2018

After obsessing about the damage done by the nuclear heatwave we experienced on July 6th, I nearly lost track of Bloom Day.  Like many of my summer Bloom Day posts, my meanderings through the garden felt a lot like a scavenger hunt.  Despite the 110F (43C) temperature that scorched the garden and killed some plants outright a week ago, there are still flowers.  There are just far fewer of them.  The Dahlias and Zinnias that stole the show in my July 2017 post are only just getting started this July 15th and many of the other plants I featured in last year's post are either no-shows or they've been incinerated by the heatwave.

The nicest bed is one which is partially shaded in the afternoon and is also protected from the wind by its proximity to the house and a tall shrub on the west side.

The photo on the upper left shows the bed in question.  Clockwise from the top right, the bed contains: Ageratum houstonianum 'Blue Horizon', Gaillardia 'Fanfare Citronella', variegated Lantana 'Samantha', a noID Anigozanthos, and Leucadendron 'Pisa'.  There are blue Eustoma grandiflorum (Lisianthus) in there too, mostly plants that over-wintered from last year, but none are blooming yet.


Some flowering plants laughed at the heatwave, figuratively speaking.

Abelia x grandiflora 'Edward Goucher' is blooming right on schedule, although it undoubtedly benefited from the shade of 2 large trees overhead

Achillea 'Moonshine's' first flush of blooms are fading but that has nothing to do with the heat.  With deadheading, they'll continue to produce new, albeit smaller, blooms for awhile yet.

Grevilleas 'Ned Kelly' (left) and 'Superb' (right) literally never stop blooming

Succulent Oscularia deltoides is in its glory at this time of year

I noticed flowers on Leonotis leonurus for the first time this season as the heat abated.  Could this have been prompted by the temperature spike?

Romneya coulteri (Matilija Poppy) didn't appear to even register summer's shift into high gear


Other plants were affected by the heat but still have blooms.

The appearance of the Agapanthus flowers certainly wasn't improved by the high temperatures and dry wind conditions but at least they didn't burn

All the Gaillardia 'Arizona Sun' blooms dropped their petals but, as soon as they were deadheaded, new blooms appeared.  However, the foliage has been scorched.


Still other plants are just getting into their summer stride.

I was late in getting all my Dahlia tubers planted this year.  'Otto's Thrill', purchased in a pot with buds, is the only plant I currently have in bloom but others are showing buds at last.

I thought my Eustoma grandiflorum (Lisianthus) were slow to get going this year but, looking back at last year's July post, it seems they're right on schedule; however, the recent heat did scorch some plants, which may affect future blooms

Leptospermum 'Copper Glow' appears to be blooming later but even better than it did last year


The daylilies fizzled out a little early but a few varieties produced flowers even during the heatwave.

Hemerocallis 'Sammy Russell' (top), a dormant variety that came with the garden, is showing off its last blooms.  The same is true of 'Apollodorus' (bottom left), which is new to my garden this year, and 'Persian Market' (lower right), one of my old favorites.


The rest of the flowers in the garden are scant but I'll share them in the form of color collages as I usually do.

Clockwise from the upper left: Catananche caerulea, Duranta erecta 'Sapphire Showers', noID Lavandula, Trichostema 'Midnight Magic', Osteospermum 'Violet Ice', Polygala fruticosa 'Petite Butterfly', and, in the center, Melaleuca thymifolia

Clockwise from the upper left: Gaura lindheimeri (shown with Myrtus communis 'Compacta'), Leucanthemum x superbum, Scaevola 'Surdiva White', noID Osteospermum, and Pandorea jasminoides 'Alba'

Clockwise from the upper left: Calendula 'Zeolights' grown from seed, Crassula pubescens ssp radicans, Euryops 'Sonnenschein', Hunnemannia fumariifolia (Mexican Tulip Poppy, a plant that keeps on giving), and Santolina virens 'Lemon Fizz'

Clockwise from the upper left: Cuphea 'Starfire Pink', Gomphrena decumbens 'Itsy Bitsy', Lobelia laxiflora, Lotus jacobaeus, Pelargonium peltatum, Pentas lanceolata 'Nova', Zinnia elegans 'Queen Red Lime', and, in the center, a noID rose.  The latter opened and promptly withered yesterday morning.


That's it for my Bloom Day round-up.  For more Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day posts, visit our host, Carol at May Dreams Gardens.


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

26 comments:

  1. Lots of flowers Kris! From the looks of things I never would have guessed your garden had to deal with the ugly heat. My Leonotis leonurus is shooting up, like it's fixing to bloom. I can't wait! It's an annual around here, unless we have a super mild winter. I'm glad I found a couple of plants this spring.

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    1. Leonotis is a cool flower, Loree. Just about every week I pass by a townhouse garden with a front garden full of vigorous blooms - I swear they've been blooming for at least 2 months already. I'd begun to wonder where mine were when they finally made an appearance. They're still not nearly as robust as those in the townhouse garden, though. If I ever see anyone outside, I'm going to stop and ask the secret.

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  2. Considering what it's been through the garden is looking amazing Kris! I fell in love with Leonotis leonurus having seen it in a garden at the Chelsea Flower Show. And even saw it for sale at Trelissick, the garden we visited earlier this week. To their credit they did mark it up as tender but I was still tempted. They had kangaroo paws too. I'm in the process of negotiating for a larger greenhouse, can you tell?

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    1. You and Loree face a similar problem with winter cold when it comes to growing Leonotis, Jessica. Be sure to get yourself a really tall greenhouse!

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  3. Still a delightful cavalcade of blooms! It may have seemed like a scavenger hunt for you, but it's a feast for me. Does your Cupid's Dart stand up tall and straight? Mine grow very long and floppy even in full hot western sun. I love how profusely they bloom but their floppiness annoys me.

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    1. My Cupid's Dart doesn't droop, Alison. Could wind be an issue in your case?

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  4. My goodness, you have oodles in bloom. Looks great!

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    1. The difference between the garden pre- and post-heatwave was dramatic, Lisa, but I was nonetheless surprised at how much was still there when I checked all the nooks and crannies of my garden. I tend to focus on the ugly discoveries after negative weather events - a personality flaw!

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  5. You have so many lovely blooms in your garden despite the heat and the succulents seem to be thriving. The collages are beautifully presented too! Happy Bloom Day!

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    1. Thanks Lee! Even some of the succulents burned during the heatwave. A few will have permanent scars but most will survive.

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  6. Well, I have to say it must have made you feel a bit better to see what actually survived for their Bloomday close-up Kris. I really like the Gaillardia 'Fanfare Citronella'. I am Gaillardia-less at the present , but I miss them -though deadheading the damn things is no fun. I'm fond of seedheads in general but Gaillardia seedheads leave me cold.

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    1. It did make me feel better that I found more flowers than I expected, Kathy. I'd considered skipping Bloom Day altogether this month because, with a few exceptions, all I could see was the ugly dead and burned stuff. There's still a lot of that (my poor 'Cousin Itts'!) but it's also remarkable that so much survived. As to the 'Fanfare Citronella', yes, they require an annoying amount of deadheading AND their stems make them poor candidates for cut flowers.

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  7. Bountiful collages Kris, despite the oven-like conditions. I recently discovered Gaillardia ‘Fanfare’ and think it’s outstanding. Those two Grevilleas are amazing in their resilience.

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    1. Those Grevilleas, especially 'Superb' which is significantly larger than 'Ned Kelly', can be depended on no matter what the weather it seems, Jane.

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  8. I still can't get over 110 degrees... I still think your garden looks beyond amazing. So much resilient beauty! Hope you get some relief soon. We have inherited your heat wave up here, I think. If so, it has abated some, but we are expected to hit over 100 today. I'm hunkering down inside, hoping it will all go away soon. :( Can't wait for autumn! - Anna K

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    1. The 110F degrees was a real shock here, especially as the thermometer was stuck at that number for hours, Anna. And I grew up in one of Southern California's inland valleys, which were hot to begin with but even that didn't prepare me for a heat event like this. The temperatures have consistently risen, a fact that makes me furious with the climate change deniers and those who think the earth will somehow just "adapt." And that inland valley I grew up in - the temperature there was 117F on 7/6!

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  9. Despite the heat wave, you still have so much beauty in your garden. A credit to your good planning!

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    1. Thanks Eliza! Gloomy Gus that I can be, I considered the losses a slap in the face to my efforts to create a drought resistant garden. Forcing myself to look at the positives rather than focusing on the deaths and destruction is a healthy exercise for me ;)

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  10. Your garden still looks fantastic. I love the way you do color collages on bloom day. One of these days I'll have to learn how to do that. I've seen the "make a collage" button on the page but have never played with it. So many gorgeous blooms even after the nuclear heatwave.

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    1. I played with Google's collage tool at one point but didn't find it intuitive, Peter. I used PicMonkey's collage tool until they started charging for it. I'm currently using Be Funky's tool. It's a fast way to consolidate photos.

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  11. 110 degrees! I will not complain about my 94 degrees with 1,000% humidity...NOT! I will continue to complain. It is amazing anything survived and still looks great.

    Jeannie@GetMeToTheCountry

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    1. Humidity does make everything worse! We used to say that Southern California's heat was a "dry heat" but lately we're getting a lot of monsoonal moisture, making us even more uncomfortable.

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  12. You can't even tell your garden is dealing with that much heat. I hope the temperatures become more manageable soon. 'Persian Market' is a great daylily that I have in my garden too. Love how you use the collages to organize all your picture. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. I've already begun strategizing on what to do to make the hardest hit areas of my garden more resilient before summer arrives in 2019, Rebecca. Lessons learned are valuable, no matter how painful.

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  13. I hope weather is much more cooler now....our summers also touch 45 degree celsius every year...Very pretty blooms loved that succulent oscularia blooms never seen that before.
    Have a great week ahead.

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    1. Our morning marine layer returned this week, which is helping to bring temperatures down. Summer here is long, though, and I don't expect we'll avoid more heat spells.

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