Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Spirals of green!

So many new plants and bursts of flower... here's some highlights. At last I found a spiral aloe (Aloe polyphylla)! The presence of spiral patterns in plants and the whole Fibonacci thing is pretty interesting - I suggest reading up on it - I was fascinated. This plant is still small so it hasn't started a whole lot of spiralling yet, but if you look closely you can see it! I've also welcomed a white bleeding heart (Dicentra spectabilis) and a new Japanese maple into my green realm. The maple is one called "Shin deshojo" and displays brilliantly crimson new Spring growth (see accompanying picture of red leaves). I selected this one for its beauty of form and leaf-springing-ness. I been looking at a lot of Japanese maples lately and I have to say that Spring is as colorful as Fall for these little trees! In other garden excitement - the Cynoglossum grande I planted last year has sprung up! After it went into dormancy I was a bit worried - it was planted way too late in May - but it has recovered and is pictured here! This is a nice part shade growing wildflower I remember seeing growing under oaks in the hills. My other wildflowers are in flower - tidy-tips, cream-cups, and super-silky petalled orange California poppies! And pictured here is my awaited combination of yellow/white flowered and red hummingbird sage.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Boronia and Vanilla

Once again the bursting excitement of Spring has kept me from posting! Lots of green-ness coming forth from bare branches and petals cascading themselves all about. The Layia platyglossa and the L. glandulosa will both soon be adding their blooms to the chorus of floral exuberance that is gradually spreading over my garden. But I thought I'd share three of my recent acquistions in this post - Acer palmatum "Sango-kaku", Boronia megastigma "Hot Chocolate", and Vanilla planifolia. These exotic indulgences are in the accompanying pictures. The maple is just starting to leaf out and the fragrance of this Boronia emanates from bell-shaped little flowers which are red-brown on the outside and yellow on the inside! The Vanilla looks great right now, but I'm bit concerned since I've seen two previous Vanillae perish slowly over the space of a year. It seems that they need warm temperatures, high humidity, and air circulation - which I'm going to endeavor to give this orchid. But if anyone reading has any information or advice on growing this tropical little twiner, let me know!