I dragged my feet collecting photos for Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day this month because I felt there wasn't much out there in the garden. In coastal Southern California, our nighttime temperatures have dipped into the mid-40sF but we don't get frosts so, while floral production slows, it doesn't grind to a halt. A closer look at my garden turned up plenty of the usual winter suspects.
Note: All my photos were taken prior to Tuesday's rainstorm, which delivered just over three quarters of an inch of rain. The storm was appreciated, although not a drought-buster. Unfortunately, the long-term forecasts for the rainy season in Southern California are not particularly promising.
|Leucadendron 'Wilson's Wonder' is "blooming" a little early this year, or at least this shrub is. The other was recently sheared like a hedge by "helpful" gardeners when I wasn't looking.|
|What I'm referring to as Leucadendron "flowers" are actually colorful bracts. Clockwise from the upper left are Leucadendron 'Blush', L. 'Summer Red', and a mix of L. 'Safari Sunset' and another L. 'Blush'.|
|The ever-blooming Grevillea 'Peaches and Cream' (upper right) and G. 'Superb' (bottom row) are joined this month by G. alpina x rosmarinifolia (upper left)|
|Bauhinia x blakeana (aka Hong Kong orchid tree) blooms heaviest in cooler weather|
|While the flowers of the lower-growing Camellia sasanqua were mostly demolished by last week's light rainfall, this taller shrub is still looking good. I don't have cultivar names for either.|
|Correa pulchella 'Pink Eyre' has been in bloom for months now and is still covered in blooms, which are hard to photograph except in closeup|
|Felicia aethiopica is also difficult to photograph, as many blue-flowered plants seem to be|
|The ever-blooming Gomphrena 'Itsy Bitsy' rebounded from the pruning I gave it a couple of months ago and is once again a tangle of blooms|
|I really should give this Ocimum 'African Blue Basil' a hard pruning but I'm afraid the bees might not forgive me|
|The ivy geraniums (Pelargonium peltatum) also flourish in response to cooler temperatures|
|Pennisetum advena 'Rubrum' still has lots of feathery plumes|
Some of the traditional cool-season bloomers are just now making an appearance.
|Aloes already in bloom include, clockwise from the upper left: tiny Aloe albiflora in a pot, A. 'Rooikappie', A. 'Safari Sunset', and hybrid A. vanbalenii x ferox|
|Like Pelargonium, Osteospermum responds well to the cooler temperatures of the fall and winter seasons. Clockwise from the upper left: Osteospermum 'Berry White', noID self-seeded variety, O. 'Double Moonglow', O. 'Violet Ice', and self-seeded O. '4D Silver'.|
|Tagetes lemmonii (aka Mexican marigold) is off to a slower than usual start as the gardeners also treated this plant as hedge material and cut off all its flower buds a month ago|
I replanted various areas of my garden this fall and new flowers are filling in here and there.
|Top row: Argyranthemum frutescens 'White Butterfly' and 'Yellow Butterfly (aka Marguerite daisies)|
Middle row: Lobelia erinus 'Riviera Blue', planted en masse
Bottom row: Phylica pubescens, Phlomis fruticosa, and hybrid Salvia 'White Flame'
|Pansies don't handle our unpredictable heatwaves well but I can never resist planting a few small Violas|
Most months, I uncover a surprise or two. This month I've had several worth sharing.
|A single Eustoma grandiflorum (aka lisianthus) blooming late (or early?!)|
|I planted 3 tiny bulbs of Lachenalia viridiflora in a pot in October and all produced these fantastic turquoise flowers. Hopefully, the plants will bulk up in future years.|
|My Salvia discolor was torn out by mistake when I dug out my rampant asters. I luckily found a replacement in November, which is already producing its wonderful nearly black flowers (also hard to photograph). I saw a hummingbird drinking its nectar earlier this week.|
|Other surprises include: Haemanthus albiflos, Hemerocallis 'Spanish Harlem', and Metrosideros collina 'Springfire'|
I'll conclude as I usually do with collages composed of the best of the rest, organized by color.
|Top row: Angelonia 'Archangel Blue-bicolor', noID Ceanothus, and trailing Lantana|
Middle row: Lavandula multifida, noID Phalaenopsis, and Rosmarinus 'Gold Dust'
Bottom row: Scabiosa columbaria, Teucrium fruticans, and Vitex trifolia 'Purpurea'
|Clockwise from upper left: Angelonia 'Archangel White', Correa 'Ivory Bells', Westringia fruticosa 'Morning Light', and blueberry flowers (Vaccinium x 'Sunshine Blue')|
|Top row: Centranthus ruber, Coleonema pulchellum 'Sunset Gold', and Cuphea 'Starfire Pink'|
Middle row: Digitalis 'Pink Panther', Leptospermum scoparium 'Pink Pearl', and Phalaenopsis 'Balden's Kaleidoscope'
Bottom row: Cyclamen 'Djix' and Gazania 'White Flame'
|Top row: Antirrhimum majus, Campsis radicans, and Cuphea 'Vermillionaire'|
Middle row: Dermatobotrys saundersii, Xerochrysum bracteatum, and Gaillardia 'Arizona Sun'
Bottom row: noID Grindelia, Oncostele 'Wildcat', and Zinnia 'Profusion Yellow'
For more Bloom Day posts from the US and around the world, check in with our host, Carol at May Dreams Gardens.
All material © 2012-2021 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party
Think I might be looking for new gardeners. They do seem to be a bit prune happy. Luckily there are still lots of blooms happening. Glad to hear you got some rain. Every little bit helps.ReplyDelete
We have no grass to mow so our "mow and blow" gardeners focus on hedge trimming, Elaine; however, they seem to have expanded their definition of what constitutes a "hedge." Squaring off the top and sides of the Tagetes was a bridge too far :(Delete
You have *SO MUCH* in bloom! It's wonderful seeing all these flowers.
Your comment about your African blue basil made me laugh. I know EXACTLY what you mean. I've been wanting to give ours a severe haircut FOR YEARS but never dared to because it's always in bloom and always visited by bees. But this year I have to because it's way too big. It's a GREAT plant!
The African blue basil gets woody when it's allowed to get that big too, which usually results in my replacing it. Of course, that starts the whole cycle over again...Delete
I couldn't stop staring at the picture of the second Leucadendron 'Blush'. It's literally glowing - absolutely stunning! Of course, there are so many other beautiful plants in your garden... Thanks for sharing!ReplyDelete
Yes, I agree about that shot of Leucadendron 'Blush'. It's looking great in that particular spot. 'Safari Sunset' usually gets the most attention but that was 'Blush's' moment ;)Delete
Happy Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!
Old postcards are fun--and you found a particularly charming one. Thanks for giving us a look at it.ReplyDelete
Weird, comment made on a different blog's post???!!?!Delete
Having continuing commenting problems. Maybe I need to shut up.
I think I know exactly which blog and which post you were commenting on. Weird that your comment got bounced over to mine!Delete
The browser I use seems to have a smaller cache or some change to the cache such that it fills up and then comments stop working for me. That comment must have just filled the cache. Clearing the cache seems to fix the issue.Delete
More than I ever wanted to know about browser caches.
I was going to say your bloom day posts are like bouquets on the screen.
As I know zip about any browser cache I have, I'd have been perpetually perplexed! I'm glad you figured it out!Delete
I love perusing your bloom day posts, Kris. Esp. now when there is absolutely nothing in my own garden. It gets me through these dark days/nights.ReplyDelete
I think the bees must be grateful for the basil blooms...one of their favorites. I almost bought a cyclamen similar to yours ('Djix' ) the other day, but being the last one, wasn't the best looking specimen, so I passed. I was tempted for a brief moment however!
I bet the garden will respond to the 3/4" of rain. Next few weeks might see an uptick!
I hope you're right about the "uptick," Eliza! Walking through it today, I was happy just that everything looked clean and practically glowed :)Delete
For "not very much" you sure have a lot of beautiful blooms. Thanks for sharing them.ReplyDelete
Other than the lack of rain (and the traffic), California has its advantages, Dorothy.Delete
If this is your dearth in garden I wish to have this dearth of blooms for my hot summer Garden. I wish to grow Grevillas and leucadendrones in my Garden .ReplyDelete
Ha! Thanks Arun! Everything is relative when it comes to flowers ;)Delete
So many blooms!ReplyDelete
Is it crazy that I like Correa 'Pink Eyre' buds better than the blooms themselves? That unusual green-pink combo and perfect shape (would make great earrings)... Salvia discolor is superb, I'm glad you planted it again.
I've also thought that 'Pink Eyre' buds would make great earrings. As to the Salvia discolor, my only regret (beyond digging it up in the first place) is that I didn't buy one or two more when I found it again.Delete
Ah, your Leucadendron and Grevillea "bloom" assortment is always a favorite. I think you managed a fabulous Salvia discolor photo!ReplyDelete
That Salvia photo took me a few tries, Loree!Delete
Kris-your gardens look beautiful in every season and I so enjoy every visit. Your Grevillea is exceptionally amazing! I am happy for you that you got some rain and I’m sure the plants are too!ReplyDelete
We got a good soak, Lee, although the rain total here was lower than in downtown Los Angeles and the inland valleys. Hopefully, that was the first storm of many we'll receive this winter, all nicely spaced ;)Delete
Ooh, I think I'm jealous over that Lachenalia! ;-) What a fabulous color!ReplyDelete
I ordered those Lachenalia viridiflora bulbs from a specialty/rare bulbs seller after admiring them elsewhere (online). This year I was just pleased to see them sprout and bloom. In following years, I hope the plants beef up and produce more flowers.Delete
I think I have lost my potted ones, must find replacements. Nothing quite like that colour!Delete
Glad to hear you have had a little much needed rain.
I thought I could control the water better if the turquoise Lachenalia were planted in a pot but I'm wondering if they'd be better in the ground. I planted other varieties in the ground so I'll see how those do.Delete
You always have such wonderful blooms. Then, you don't get a break from gardening with year-round nice weather!ReplyDelete
Well, it's below 60F here, Lisa, which we consider cold but I expect you'd feel was balmy! I was getting a couple of recent purchases in the ground before breakfast this morning and will soon be back out there to plant a flat of thyme and sow seeds in advance of rain so, yes, there's no rest during our year-round season ;)Delete