Friday, February 22, 2019

A Quick Spin through the South Coast Botanic Garden

Monday brought me back to the South Coast Botanic Garden for a meeting.  It remains cold here by our standards, with most daytime highs hovering in the 50sF.  I've spent less time outside than usual so I took advantage of the sunny (but still cold!) morning to take a quick spin of the garden.  The staff and volunteers have spent the last month pruning plants so the garden was relatively subdued but I still found some things to share with you.

I couldn't pass up a shot of these cactus backlit by the sun in the Desert Garden.  I'm not good at identifying cactus but I think the plants in the center are silver torch cactus (Cleistocactus); the plant in the background on the left is Euphorbia ammak; and the plant just barely visible on the right may have been a ponytail palm (Beaucarnea).

Across the road is a huge bottle brush tree (Callistemon) underplanted with succulents

I admire the silvery ground cover called snow in summer (Cerastium tomentosum) in the center foreground here and have tried planting it in my own garden but mine hasn't come anywhere close to forming a blanket like this.  The bright spots of orange-red color in the distance are Crocosmia.

The area around the Living Wall was cordoned off for unspecified work.  It looks as though it's still holding up well.


Those are the only wide shots I took during this visit but, flitting about like a bee, I took a closer look at a variety of flowering plants - and a couple of foliage plants too.  I didn't take time looking for plant tags so any plant names shown here are my best guess.

In the Volunteer Garden, clockwise from the upper left, I found: Crocosmia, borage (Borago officinalis), Calendula, bird of paradise (Strelitzia), a bearded Iris, and Narcissus

In the Mediterranean garden, I found: sea squill (Urginea maritima), California buckwheat (Eriogonum fasciculatum), California poppy (Eschscholzia californica), Salvia clevelandii, and Verbena lilacina.   I love the sea squill even when it isn't blooming but I've yet to find bulbs to try in my own garden.  I've put myself on a bulb grower's wishlist so maybe eventually I'll get lucky.

Other plants sighted along my route included: Acacia (perhaps A. cultriformis), noID Magnolia, noID Dudleya, Euryops chrysanthemoides, wild lupine (Lupinus nanus), noID rose and, in the middle, a beautiful mass of Monstera deliciosa


As to my own garden, I'm continuing to prune ornamental grasses and overgrown plants.  I haven't done much in the way of installing new plants even though I have holes here and there.  That's about to change, however.

A late afternoon delivery!  


Best wishes for a great weekend!


All material © 2012-2019 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

24 comments:

  1. Teasing us with that Annie's order, eh? SCBG looks good!

    Have a great weekend, Kris.

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    1. I'll be working at getting Annoe's plants - and a few I picked up at my local garden center - in the ground this weekend. It looks like we're in for warmer temperatures next week, which will be a nice change, although I do hope the rain will come back in in a couple of weeks.

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  2. A box from Annie's on the doorstep is always a welcome sight.

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    1. It is! I've got a few other orders outstanding but those suppliers are less dependable about their schedule than Annie's.

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  3. Wonderful visit. Such an abundance of blooms and the seasons seem all mixed up together. More plants! The most exciting sort of delivery.

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    1. Our late winter and early spring is more compressed than yours it seems, although the colder-than-usual temperatures seem to have had a chilling effect this year. Pun intended ;)

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  4. Nothing better than the sight of cleistocactus in the morning. I bought a Sea Squill last year not understanding that it was a bulb which would go dormant mid-summer ... I was disappointed. Now of course it's coming back strong and I'm looking forward to a bloom this year.

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    1. The sea squill bulb foliage seems to have a good run, Hans, at least based on what I've seen of the specimens at the local botanic garden. I've mounted searches for the bulbs at periodic intervals without success. I actually did find one on Amazon recently but $55 for a single bulb struck me as outrageous so I'm biding my time.

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  5. This is a delicious dessert of a post, with the Annie's delivery as the proverbial cherry on top!

    The wide shot of the succulent mural is especially interesting; by itself, the central square of bedded-out ornamental cabbages might be weirdly old-fashioned, but it complements the mural perfectly.

    Everything's glowing, backlit or not. Aaaaaahh, spring!

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    1. I have to say, I'm not thrilled with the ornamental cabbage bed myself, Nell, but that bed gets changed out seasonally and, as it's positioned next to the vegetable garden area, it was a reasonable choice for what counts as winter here.

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  6. An exciting look at what's in bloom at SCBG - can't wait to see it in person. Such a thrill to see so much in bloom. Looks like it will be a great spring.
    New plants for your garden is such a treat - happy planting!

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    1. According to the TV weather forecasters, Eliza, our temperatures are expected to reach into the low 70s next week with no rain in sight, although my on-line local forecasts are still showing temperatures in the 60s (which I expect you'll consider toasty!) and a chance of rain next weekend. However, it doesn't look like it'll be much, if it shows up at all.

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  7. You are gonna have fun this weekend out in the garden.
    Your stroll through the Botanic Garden showed some nice things. I can't wait until I can stroll about and see some blooms.

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    1. I'm sure that winter is getting old in your part of the country, Lisa. With warmer temperatures and no rain, I was able to spend all day in the garden yesterday and I hope you're doing that soon too.

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  8. I am just discovering the world of Euphorbia, so I was especially interested in the very striking Euphorbia ammak. The entire garden is a delight - so very different from my own, and I appreciate you taking time to share it with us. I know the thrill you must feel at receiving your shipment of plants; I am awaiting a shipment of my own!

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    1. Euphorbia is a huge and varied genus but E. ammak is the tallest species I know of within it. There's one growing in the front garden of a house on my own street - it makes a striking statement, although I can't imagine fitting one into my own garden.

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  9. That silver carpet looks worth trying for. I tried Dymondia margaretae but it sadly needs more watering than I realised.

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    1. I didn't have much success with Dymondia either, Diana. I'm told it needs a LOT of water to get established but, once it's formed a tight rug, it's drought tolerant.

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  10. A walk through a green garden and the arrival of a box from Annie's - pretty much a perfect day in my book.

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  11. Ditto what the outlawgardener said! Especially from over here, in NJ, where we're still in the throes of winter! Thanks for the post; I love your blog. Steve B.

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  12. Thank you for this! I really must make a trip out there again soon--in February or early March to avoid the never-ending winter here. I love those Bottle-Brush Trees!

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    1. Having grown up surrounded by red bottle brush trees (I swear every other house had at least one in my childhood neighborhood), I've never fully appreciated them but, in this case, absence does make the heart grow fonder.

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