Friday, March 6, 2020

Road trip!

A friend and I made our Spring sojourn to our favorite garden centers in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties last Saturday.  I've posted on all of them before but there's always something new to see or admire so I'm sharing the highlights of those visits.

Our first stop was Seaside Gardens in Carpinteria.  We were greeted by the resident cat.

We woke him from his nap but he was very polite about it


I make it a habit to stroll through the demonstration gardens to see what's looking good before I make any decisions on plant purchases.

Rosa banksiae 'Alba' was in full bloom in the cottage garden

The California poppies were just getting started in the California native garden

The dry creek bed was bone dry

The Echiums were perhaps a week or two away from taking off

As usual, the succulent garden looked great

I didn't get a good shot here but the combination of Agave 'Blue Flame' and Euphorbia milii was wonderful

Osteospermums had taken over the Mediterranean garden

Fuchsia arborescens was in full bloom in the Central/South American garden


I made the rounds of the sale tables.

I made a bee line for the Grevillea table as I was on the look out for 'Moonlight'.  At long last, now that I was no longer looking for it, I also found reasonably priced Yucca 'Bright Stars' in among the succulents.

I was intrigued by this new-to-me Melaleuca incana but, at $120 for the pot and with no idea where I'd put it, I left it and Yucca 'Bright Star' behind


As usual, I spent most of my money at Seaside but, on this occasion, my purchases actually included one plant that had been on my shopping list, Grevillea 'Moonlight'.  I picked it up in a 1-gallon container and it'll probably be a year or more before it blooms but, after killing my first one, I'm hoping I've found the right spot for this one.

'Moonlight' gets taller than any of my other Grevilleas but I'm going to try to keep it pruned to an 8-foot height


After a lunch break, we stopped at Island View Nursery, which is perhaps a mile from Seaside.  When we were there in October, we discovered that they were under new ownership and expanding their greenhouses, purportedly with the intent of developing a significantly larger collection of bromeliads.  That was still a work in progress.  The plant inventory hadn't changed much.

My only photo from Island View


Our last stop this trip was Terra Sol in Goleta, not far from the UC Santa Barbara campus.  It's much smaller than Seaside but it always has a nice selection of healthy plants.  And, on this visit, I found another of the plants on my shopping list.

They have a nice selection of succulents but, this time I didn't buy any of those, although I did check out the pots.  The trailing jade plant (Kleinia petraea) in the pot on the upper left impressed me.  If only mine developed that rosy color.


My friend came home with two small succulents.  I came home with 18 plants.

This is my Seaside haul.  On the left are Justicia rizzinii, Grevillea 'Moonlight' and Eriophyllum lanatum 'Siskiyou'.  On the right are Begonia luxuriens (a gamble as it may struggle to survive even in my shade house), Plectranthus argentatus, and Fuchsia 'Autamnale'.

My lone purchase from Island View was another noID Rex Begonia

From Terra Sol, I took home, on the left, Stachys lavandulifolius and ornamental clover Trifolium repens 'Red Stripes' (2 plants) and, on the right, Gazania 'White Flame' (8 plants)


I consider that a productive trip, especially as I checked both Grevillea 'Moonlight' and Gazania 'White Flame' off my shopping list.  More remarkable still, I've already got all my purchases planted in the garden or their assigned pots in my shade house.  The prospects for rain that weekend aren't all that good, ranging from a 20% chance early Saturday morning to a 40% chance during the early morning hours on Sunday but the odds are better for Monday through Tuesday.  Hopefully, my new plants will benefit from a good soak - eventually.

Best wishes for a peaceful weekend.


All material © 2012-2020 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party




18 comments:

  1. So glad you found 'Moonlight'! Some interesting info about Aus. plants from Noel Kingsbury -- he says they greatly resent hard pruning and are more "reseeders" than "resprouters." Something to keep in mind if you're planning on pruning 'Moonlight' a lot. You can read his post here: https://www.noelkingsbury.com/noelsgarden-blog/2020/3/1/re-seeders-re-sprouters-and-whingeing-poms

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    1. Thanks for the link, Denise. I noticed that when Kingsbury refers to "hard pruning' he specifically referenced cutting plants to the ground, which I rarely do with any plant. That said, I've never taken big chunks out of any of my Grevilleas. The most extreme pruning I've done was recent and involved cutting a single top-heavy limb of 'Superb'. So far it seems okay. Seaside's label on 'Moonlight'recommended cutting up to 1/3rd of the plant after flowering to keep it more compact, which I'm inclined to try. My Correa respond well to tip pruning but perhaps my prior losses of Prostanthera can be attributed to aggressive pruning, something I'll keep in mind with my current specimens. I'd love to find evidence of re-seeding among my "Aussies" but thus far I've seen none of that!

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  2. Nice haul. Everything looks esp. healthy. I'm impressed that they are already in the ground. I hope you get that rain - happy weekend!

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    1. I'm surprised I got everything tucked away so promptly too, Eliza - that's a rare occurrence, especially with a haul this size. I even dug up, cleaned, divided and replanted some of my existing Gazanias. I was exhausted last night...

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  3. You got some fine plants. I hope they do well for you.

    NOAA just updated their forecast from "showers likely" to "heavy rain" for Mon/Tues. Hoooraaayy!!!!

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    1. I know! The forecast is getting really promising. The docent tour I was scheduled to lead on Tuesday has already been canceled based on the forecast (which is good as the 1st graders I had today ran me ragged and stretched my voice to its limits).

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  4. Oh what fun to finally get some new plants and especially some that were on your most wanted list. I can hardly wait for this time to arrive here. I have a bad case of the wants for the garden. I love begonias. This no name is pretty. I think I have seen it before. Have a great weekend. I hope you get rain soon.

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    1. I ran across a possible ID for the no-name Begonia on Logee's site, Lisa. If it's not Begonia rhizomatous 'Nautilus Lilac', it could be a cousin.

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    2. Glorious leaves! Now playing a starring role in your shade house?

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    3. Yes indeed! It's surprising just how many begonias I've accumulated there.

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  5. It’s always so satisfying to go to a nursery and find exactly the plant you were looking for. That Grevillea Moonlight looks well worth seeking out. Eighteen plants is certainly a good haul!
    I hope you receive some good rain.

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    1. 'Moonlight' is a looker, Jane. I think my prior specimen struggled with root competition from wicked asparagus ferns. The new spot should be much better, assuming it can hold up against wind.

      The current chance for rain on Tuesday afternoon is up to 93%!

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    2. I have my fingers crossed for you!

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    3. Thanks Jane! We need all the support we can get. We got a tiny bit of rain (0.06/inch) overnight but the forecasters are promising much, much more on Tuesday.

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  6. What fun, your friend needs to up her plant buying game though!

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    1. She believes that we're already past the "safe planting" period from a weather perspective. I take a more fluid outlook when it comes to that parameter.

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  7. New plants are the best! Fingers crossed for rain soon...

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