Thursday, May 30, 2019

June swoon

Hard to believe it's almost June but then again here in the Bay Area a bit cooler weather and more than our share of rain this year pales compared to the dire situation in the midwest. Our gardens march along, finding their own rhythm. That's one thing I appreciate about gardening - that bit of wildness that our gardens will follow their own timetable, weather and available moisture figuring in to some unknowable timetable that keeps shifting.
This is still bulb season for me, though of course the spring bulb season is done. Gone are the tulips and daffodils and crocus and freesias. Now it's lilies, gladiolas, dahlias and begonias, among other things. As many of you know, I'm a big fan of lilies and have two dozen different varieties in my garden. That show is just starting. I like lilies not just because they're colorful and showy but because they're usually very reliable, coming back each year.
Here are the photos from this week's activities. Enjoy!

Corydalis Blue Line. These flowers always remind me of little seahorses. Love that color too. I haven't always had luck with getting Corydalis to rebloom so am happy to see this one do so.

Brodiaea 'Rudy.' This CA native bulb offers up flowers in a spectrum of purples (and white too). It may be hard to gauge from this photo but Rudy has some of the largest flowers in the genus. 

One of the earlier lilies in my garden, this oriental type Black Eye is one of my favorites. The burgundy center is so dark it's almost black. Like many orientals, it's prolific. 

This gorgeous Pelargonium 'Claire' comes courtesy of a friend and I love its dark beauty. It may not be apparent from the photo but the upper two petals are a dark burgundy, with the lower three petals a rich red.

"He's baaaack." That would be my Dicentra scandens, with the nodding bleeding heart flowers.

Papaver atlanticum Flore Pleno. This species poppy is a deciduous perennial and one tough, adaptable plant. Rain or shine, sun or shade, it soldiers on. This variety offers up semi-double petals, adding another dimension to the crinkled taffeta-like petals.

Nigellas are famous for self-seeding and I'm happy to report that this N. Persian Jewels variety has done that in its sunny front yard bed. Much darker (and more purple) than the regular Mrs. Jekyl!

Salvia chamaedroides Marine Blue. One of my favorite sages, largely due to its pretty two-lipped flowers.

Phacelia viscida. This year's specimen is doing better than last year, I think in part because I'm giving it drier conditions. A CA native you sometimes find in Briones park, it offers up those fantastic gentian blue flowers. 

This new Holy Smokes calibrachoa is a real beauty! I've paired it with a Mina lobata vine. The combo should provide lots of color all summer.

When I removed a sprawling honeysuckle bush near the front steps, it opened up this little alcove, a perfect place for a potted plant. I chose a Rhodocoma capensis, a type of restio. Looks good there!

One of the few Campanulas to reliably self-seed (and send out underground rhizomes), this C. punctata offers up pinkish-purple nodding bell-shaped flowers. Tough as nails and drought tolerant, it acts as a kind of ground cover for me in a house wall bed.

It took 4 years for my Tillandsia tectorum to bloom and then ... just these tiny white flowers. Pooh! But the red bracts are attractive and the silvery foliage is terrific.

Although a dark photo, here's a shot of my Arisaema triphyllum. One of the easier Jack-in-the-Pulpits to grow, it has a chocolate inside to the spathe, with the typical veining.

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