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|
|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|
|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.|
|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: 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