Thursday, August 20, 2020

Some of the plants in the boulevard, the driveway and the inner front garden rooms, in June

The crocosmia buds on June 19th.  These are some rather aggressive bulbs.  They are attractive to humming birds and easy maintenance so I have clumps of them everywhere in my garden
This little geranium or it might be called an erodium grows next to the stone path with the golden oregano on the other side.  In fact it is being overgrown by the oregano.
I have campanulas of various kinds around the garden.  This one grows in a fairly shaded area in the magnolia tree bed, next to the cedar hedge.
I have a few of these Sedum, autumn joy, around the garden, also.  This one grows in the same area as the above campanula.  They both like more sun than they are getting, but they survive.  They bloom at different times and so provide some color in this garden room for a longer period of time.
This is the cleaned up clump of black bamboo.  When I took out the dried canes it makes the black canes more visible.  I like the look of the clump thinned out.  I will be doing more of this when I get the time.  The black canes look good with the build up of the leaves that turn white.
This is the rectangle bed on the west side of the boulevard garden room.  The lovely big white veronica grows too close to the cedar hedge, with the little erodium beneath its feet.  It is being crowed by the crosmias on the other side of it.  So, I need to get in there and dig out some of the crocosmias.
This is the, approximately 6 feet by 25 foot strip that runs across the front of the boulevard garden.  The French lavender is the star of the show for 2 or 3 months.  I have cut it back now and hope it produces more bloom in the next little while.  There are various other perennials in this area: lupines, foxgloves, achillea, irises, the blue grasses, pinks, all underplanted with thyme.The daisies keep coming back and so I have daisy boquets in May or June, until I get them all pulled out.  There is another strip in front of this one that is about 10 feet deep by the length of the boulevard from our driveway across to the neighbors driveway.  It is about 35 feet long, making the bottom 'green frame' around my front garden.
The blue grass, the pinks and the tall bearded irises.  To the right side of the photo there is a tall bridal veil spirea shrub that I keep pruned to a globe shape.
To the right of the Spirea shrub is another rectangular bed.  The front strip is quite nice with the lychnis, some more pinks, the self seeding verbena bodinaires, and the plum tree to the right (out of the picture).  Behind these plants the little rectangle became over grown with blue bells.  I put leaves on them in the autumn to try and control them.  I have transplanted some orange daylillies  in there.  They are in quite a lot of shade.  The orange colors brighten up the corner.  I need to clean cut back a tree that has been there since the beginning of the time the house was built.  It has got away from me over the last couple of years and needs to be taken down to ground level again.  
The virginia creeper goes up the telephone pole in the 5 foot deep strip between the neighbors driveway and our driveway.  It turns marvelous colors in the autumn.  It has st. john's worte planted beneath it.  I have some fairly aggresive plants growing in the driveway strip. 
The torch lily:  Gardeners should be diligent with watering during hot and dry spells. Provide a 2- to 3-inch (5-7.6 cm.) layer of mulch to help with water retention and for protection during cold winters. Cut foliage off at the base of the plant in late fall and remove spent flower spike to encourage more blooms

Kniphofia, also called tritoma, red hot poker, torch lily, knofflers or poker plant. 

The striking red hot poker plant (Kniphofia uvaria) is in the Liliaceae family and is also known as poker plant and torch lily. This plant thrives in USDA zones 5 through 9 and is an upright evergreen perennial with a clumping habit. Over 70 known species exist of this South African native plant.

As you can see I am not taking very good care of this plant.  I did not realize that it should be cut back to ground level in the Fall.  Nevertheless, this torch lily is a fairly tough plant.  It grows in front of the mountain ash tree, with a tall rose, volunteer oregon grape, nasty black berries and bind weed for competition.  

a close up of the torch lily blossoms.
 This is the Yucca, next to the Virginia creeper, with the st. John's warte and an Autumn Joy sedum.  The sedum and the Yucca are forming buds.

Yucca is a genus of perennial shrubs and trees in the family Asparagaceae, subfamily Agavoideae. Its 40–50 species are notable for their rosettes of evergreen, tough, sword-shaped leaves and large terminal panicles of white or whitish flowers. 

Yucca glauca is native to central North America: occurring from the Canadian Prairies of Alberta and Saskatchewan in Canada; south through the Great Plains to Texas and New Mexico in the United States.

This finishes the posting for my garden in June.  I have been away for 3 weeks, so I do not know if there will be a July in the garden posted, as I have a lot of catching up to do in the garden.

Blogger has been making some changes.  I guess any further photos will need to be much smaller to fit in the space provided.  It always annoys me why they have to fix things that aren't broken.  😞

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Some of the Plants growing in the Inner Garden Room in June

 one of the rocks with some character between the Cotula and a Saxifragia.
Saxifragia -  Paniculata ‘aizoon’  white encrusted full sun  X irvingii – 2” x $”  jenkinsae, 
well  drained  alkaline soil.
 Cotula hispida – blue green foliage, yellow ball blooms gravelly soil good drainage
       
Gentiana septemfida var. lagodechina  is a low-growing perennial to 10cm (4 in) tall, with trailing stems clad in paired ovate leaves and ending in 1 - 3 mid-blue, trumpet-shaped flowers 4cm (1.5 in.) long in late summer.  Grow in moist but well-drained, humus-rich soil.  Suitable for the front of borders. Performs best in sunny conditions. 
This gentian may not survive its move from the back little rockery.  It looks ok here but since its move it has not been recovering from the transplant.  Its very floppy and did not bloom last year, so I am not too bent about losing it.  There are nicer gentians. 
SEMPERVIVUM
This little red hens and chickens has had more chicken scratch added for drainage. (whitish color -  a no no in proper rock gardens, but it looks good with the red).
 Another good lava rock from the Clear Water area of B.C.   Not sure where I will place this rock just yet.  
The plants in the above photos are part of the Rockery/Alpines Room in the front garden.
The following photos are plants from the Inner Garden Room.
 CEANOTHUS
California lilacs
Ceanothus is a genus of about 50–60 species of nitrogen-fixing shrubs and small trees in the buckthorn family. Common names for members of this genus are buckbrush, California lilac, soap bush, or just ceanothus. 
with some of the Kinnikinnick, Sedum, tall bearded Iris and the leaves of the smoke bush
 A close up of the Ceanothus flowers.  The bees love this plant when its in bloom.  The Davey Tree guys did a hard prune on this shrub in the late winter this year.  It is looking very healthy with far more blossoms now.
 Leaves of the smoke bush that is under planted with the silver/red sedum.  
 the stone path that leads to the sun dial circle.  We see the Kinnikinnick,  Ceanothus and tall bearded iris on one side and the Sedum and some of the smoke bush leaves on the other side.
COTINUS Coggygria
Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’
is a large, upright shrub becoming spreading with age. In spring, the foliage emerges a rich maroon-red, darkening to a velvety purple as the summer progresses. Insignificant flowers mature into dusty wine-red feathery plumes, earning it the name Smokebush. The rich reddish-purple fall color completes the appeal of this fascinating colored shrub. An excellent choice for sunny locations needing year-round interest!
Mature Height: 10-15 feetMature Spread: 10-15 feet Form: Shrub, upright, spreading with age
Light Requirements: Full Sun Site Requirements: Tolerant of many sites except those with poor drainage Flower: Insignificant, yellow Bloom Period: June Foliage: Maroon to Purple Fall Color: Reddish Purple Fruit Notes: Reticulate drupe, wine-red, billowy
The sun dial circle has polygala and some short daisies (have to look up the name of the daisies) They have quite large flowers and seem to be tolerant of the clay soil.  The other plant is  excellent. 
POLYGALA chamaebuxus ‘purpurea’ (grandiflora) evergreen, pink, tiny, flowers -  Purple with yellow tips  (lovely)  Mine has purple and yellow flowers, evergreen foliage.
One edge of this little 3 foot diameter circle needs another plant to fill in the bare area. I am thinking of getting an ice plant (delespernum)   to grow here.
 This is a much neglected corner of the garden.  It is doing very well.  Maybe neglect is the practice needed in my garden.  The shrub in the "hedge" next to the Ceanothus is a star magnolia.  I removed some weedy little shrub from beneath it this spring and  gave it a bit of leaf mold.  It is doing wonderfully well, now.  It bloomed earlier in the year.  It grows next to the cedars along the property line, in front of the Boulevard Garden Rooms.  Also in this corner there is Campanula. - the blue one we see and now further along in front of the cedars there is a another white one in bloom.  The (red) valerine is spreading out a bit.  And the strange white bloom is the Gas plant.  
 Close up of the Gas Plant blossom
 The leaves of the Gas Plant.
GAS PLANT DICTAMNUS Albus 
Growing gas plants (Dictamnus albus) reach a height of about 4 feet tall with quite woody stems at the base. In the early summer, June and July, Dictamnus gas plant blooms with long, spikes of white flowers set off by glossy green leaves. Once the flowers have  faded, spectacular seedpods remain that are commonly used in dried floral arrangements.
Read more at Gardening Know How: Dictamnus Gas Plant Information – Tips For Growing Gas Plants https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/flowers/gas-plants/growing-gas-plants.htm
 Once gas plant has been established, it should not be moved or any attempt made to divide it.  At maturation after several years, the growing gas plant will appear as a clump with stunning stands of flowers poking from amongst its foliage. When it comes to gas plant garden care, the growing gas plants prefer consistent irrigation, but can withstand periods of drought  once they are established. Slightly alkaline soil is preferable for more vibrant and vigorous  plants as well as areas of cool evening temperatures.
This herbaceous perennial may also be listed as dittany or fraxinella, members of the Rutaceae family. Some patience is necessary when growing gas plants as they take several years to mature. The strongly citrus-scented flowers and foliage may cause an allergic skin reaction in some people and seems to be repellent to deer. Gas plant is a non-aggressive and non-invasive specimen. Gas  plants can be found in several different varieties such as: ‘Purpureus’ with its mauve-purple blooms and deep purple veins ‘Caucasicus,’ which is a taller varietal at up to 4 feet tall ‘Rubra,’ which blooms with lovely rose pink flowers
 Mine is white and grows in front of the cedar hedge by the sun dial circle.  There is a hebe, some valerine, and campanula all in this same area by the star magnolia shrub.  Its amazing that it survives at all.  It hardly ever gets watered in our dry summers.  
I am hoping to find a purple one to plant in the little rockery renovation where I might have room for it next to the cedars and the Kinnikinnick, in the autumn.
The sun dial circle borders on the 7 foot thyme circle.  The bench sits in its nook in the cedar hedge and has become a nice private spot to enjoy the garden.  The bamboo is next to the thyme circle.  It is a constant chore to pick the dried bamboo leaves off the thyme.  I will need to get a couple more thyme plants for the bare side of the circle, and give them more compost and sand, in the Autumn when the rains start.  




Monday, July 20, 2020

The Front Garden in June

 The Gertrude Jekyll English David Austin rose grows under the front sweet gum tree.  The crocosmias to the left have buds.  Beneath these taller plants there is a decorative oregano, dianthus, armeria, and a gentian cruciata.  The fern leafed peony is just behind the gentian.
 There is a pink flowering armeria under the fallen rose petals.  ARMERIA maritima (Sea Thrift) is a compact, evergreen perennial boasting round clusters of pink to lavender (or sometimes white) flowers borne atop slender stalks.  I have one white one and several pink ones.I cannot seem to get these plants to last very long - They need well drained soil.
        https://www.gardenia.net/plant/armeria-maritima-sea-thrift
        
        This compact evergreen plant grows only 6 to 12 inches high and from a woody tap root. The slowly expanding mounded tuft is composed of numerous stiff, linear (needle-shaped), dark-green leaves that usually have hairs along their margins. This dense rosette gives the appearance of a low-growing ornamental grass. In richer soils the leaves tend to fall outwards leaving an open center. Since it is evergreen, it should not be cut back to the ground in fall like many other perennials as that will affect spring bloom.  In mid-spring small pink to lavender (or sometimes white) flowers are produced in globular clusters subtended by purplish, papery bracts on the ends of slender, unbranched, leafless stalks that extend well above the foliage. Each flower has five petals joined at the base with five stamens and five separate styles. Deadhead entire flower stems to promote additional sporadic flowering throughout the summer. They can be used as cut flowers. The flowers are followed by papery seed heads with a single seed in each capsule.Sea thrift grows best in full sun in lean, very well-drained soil. The plants are drought tolerant and do not tolerate moist soils. They frequently rot in the center, killing the entire plant, in heavy clay soils that are too fertile, or after a prolonged wet and cool fall. Because of this they have a reputation for being short-lived. However, given the proper environment these plants can live for many years and require little maintenance.

 A close up of the Gertrude Jekyll rose.  Nicely fragrant.
 The stepping stones that lead up to the back of the little rockery, in the front garden.  After the fern leafted peony and gentian, we see the globalaria and the lithodara Grace Ward.  The bergenia and the mountain avens (dryas) surround the West Coast planter.  The planter has a primula auricola (I think) in it at the moment.  Behind the bergenias there are Japanese primulas.  To the right of the primulas there is a very nice hebe.  Along the little gold wall, at the back there is some wulfeni, and aubretia. Then there is the newly renovated part of this little rockery along the little gold rock wall.  Presently there are 3 saxifragias and a lewisia in this part of the renovation.  I am waiting for cooler weather in the Fall to move the saxifragias and their tufa rocks, out of the pots I have on the deck.  
 This is the gentian newly transplanted from the back little rockery.  The name on the gentian was 'depresso'.  Its the wrong name. GENTIANA Cruciata is the correct name.
Common Name: cross gentian  Height: 0.75 to 1.00 feet Spread: 1.00 to 1.75 feet
Bloom Time: August to September Bloom Description: Blue Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium Maintenance: Low  Flower: Showy, Good Cut  Attracts: Hummingbirds, Butterflies
Tolerate: Rabbit, Deer, Drought, Clay Soil 
Best grown in moist, well-draining soils in full sun to part shade. Easier to grow for the average gardener compared to other species of Gentian. Tolerant of drought and many soil types include clay. Plants do not tolerate root disturbance, and transplanting should be avoided once established. The best time to divide large clumps is in early spring just as new growth begins.
Noteworthy Characteristics
Gentiana cruciata, commonly called cross gentian, is a herbaceous perennial native to forest edges, rocky pastures, grasslands, and dry meadows in Europe and western Asia. This plant slowly forms a clump about 8-12" tall and 12-18" wide. The lanceolate leaves (1-3" long) are bright green, glossy, and oppositely attached to the upright stems. The truly blue, trumpet-shaped flowers emerge in a cluster tucked into the leaf axils on the upper part of the stems from late summer into fall. Attractive to hummingbirds, butterflies, and other pollinators
The specific epithet cruciata means "crossed" and refers to the shape of the leaves as viewed from above.
'Blue Cross' has a generally more compact and bushy habit compared to the species, and reaches 8-10" tall. The unopened flower buds are creamy white and intensify in color to a deep blue as they mature and open, creating a bicolor effect.
Problems
No major pest or disease problems reported. Deer and rabbit resistant.
Garden Uses
A beautiful accent plant for the front of a mixed border. Also suitable for rock gardens, woodland gardens, and container plantings. Makes an excellent cut flower.

This is the right one:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gentiana_cruciata#:~:text=The%20flowers%20are%20violet%2Dblue,The%20fruit%20is%20a%20capsule.   See the images 
Gentiana cruciata, the star gentian or cross gentian, is a herbaceous perennial flowering plant in the Gentianaceae family.
Close-up on a flower of Gentiana cruciata
Gentiana cruciata is a hemicryptophyte scapose plant of small size, reaching on average 20–40 centimetres (7.9–15.7 in) in height.[3] It has erect stems, the leaves are large, ovate-lanceolate, semiamplexicaul, about 3–8 centimetres (1.2–3.1 in) long. The flowers are violet-blue trumpets with 4 petals, clustered in the axils of upper leaves.[3] The flowering period extends from June to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite and pollinated by insects (entomogamy). The fruit is a capsule. The seeds are dispersed by gravity alone (barochory).
Habitat
This plant prefers dry calcareous soil in forest edges, bushy slopes, pastures, grasslands and dry meadows, at an altitude of 200–1,600 metres (660–5,250 ft) above sea level.
Host for Phengaris rebeli
Phengaris rebeli is an endangered butterfly which feeds upon G. cruciata. Female P. rebeli lay their eggs on the upper side of G. cruciata leaves and three to four weeks later, the P. rebeli larvae emerge and begin to feed on the seeds and flowers of this grassland plant. After the P. rebeli reaches its fourth larval instar, it drops to the ground to be picked up by Myrmica schencki ants and brought to their nests.
Female P. rebeli prefer to lay eggs on G. cruciata growing in clumps rather than individual plants, and on the taller plants, as they are less shaded and allow the eggs to grow and develop faster.

 Another view of the gentian.  It has two stems with tiny blue flowers, with four petals beginning to open now.  It seems to have been a successful transplant.
The iberis at the corner of the junction of the stone paths.
 I like this rock.  It is going to be the feature rock in the smoke tree bed.  It is surrounded by Armeria that need far better drainage.  There is a white one.  I must get some good drainage rock around them.  I need to keep the silver sedum from growing into their allotted space.
 The smoke tree looks good with its under planting of silver/red sedum with the red Mrs. Bradshaw geum in flower.
 This is the transplanted saxifragias from the back rockery, and the lewisia  down a bit from the saxefragias.

Saxifragia paniculata - Grows on the top level of the little rockery next to the 
 Mossy red saxifragia.  Have added chicken grit and pea gravel and a bit of compost from the back bin.
      *****Moved to front little rockery reno on June 11, 2020 

Saxifragia - Mossy Saxifrage  Alpino Rose– red – woodland edger
      Saxifraga Arendsii - Sun to part shade, height 4 - 6 ", Spread - 12 inches
 Blooms: April - June.  Saxifrage form a low evergreen cusion of tiny shiny leaves. Small star shaped flowers appear in Spring.  Excellent in rock gardens. 
        *****Moved to front little rockery reno on June 11, 2020. It is beside the paniculata on the top level with the gold small rocks and has a small pieces of tufa rock between this one and the above paniculata. They both have top dressing of the chicken scratch stuff.
Since this photo I have moved the Saxifragia that was in the Butchardt Gardens Cement pot, into this little back rockery.   I gave the pot to Paul S. along with other plastic and terra cotta pots.  He was happy to get the cement pot, as it has 'historical significance' in the alpine gardening clubs.  It came from Rex Murfitt's home before he moved out to the retirement home.  We have since lost Rex.  Paul is taking good care of his saxifragias.  
Saxifragia  in Butchart Gardens cement pot from R. M. Home:   
        Gerard Manley Hopkins'   clone burseriana
Certainly one of the better burseriana's, selected by H.L.Foster 1972.  Close to the typical var. but more dense and compact growing.  Like most burseriana's best in a very well drained soil because in our climate burseriana's suffer from too much moisture in autumn and winter.  Splendid of course in tufastone and in a through.  Slower growth and rooting.
        - I have a piece of this one in the big tufa rock with the Lilac Time
        - bloomed early Spring 2020 with large white flowers close to the foliage.The foliage looks rather like pine needles
 The far end of the little rockery showing the hebe, the wulfeni and the aubretia.
 The lewisia from Cannor.  There were 2 lewisias in the pot when bought.  Only one survived.  Not sure which color it is.  Hope it is the orange/gold one.   
Lewisia cotyledon 'Rainbow

Featured snippet from the web

This strain of our native Siskiyou Lewisia contains a stunning range of flower colors. Pink to orange to white to yellow and permutations in-between. ... Excellent, long blooming, easy to grow container plant but not difficult in the ground given rock garden conditions. Drainage is crucial, in average to enriched soil.
Saxifragia - Mossy Saxifrage  Alpino Rose– red – woodland edger
      Saxifraga Arendsii - Sun to part shade, height 4 - 6 ", Spread - 12 inches
Blooms: April - June.  Saxifrage form a low evergreen cusion of tiny shiny leaves. Small star shaped flowers appear in Spring.  Excellent in rock gardens. 
This mossy saxifragia and the others are doing much better since I moved them.  This one is even starting to bloom again.   
-Paniculata from the back rockery moved to the front in May 2020
Best planted in cool summer climates in part shade locations. Prefers moist, gritty, well-drained soils in part shade. Good tolerance for morning sun. Established plants have some drought tolerance. New rosettes form at the stolon ends or at the base of the rosette, resulting in plants sometimes expanding to form small colonies. Plants often struggle (thin out in the middle) in hot, dry and humid summers south of USDA Zone 6. Plants are difficult to grow well in the St. Louis climate.
Saxifraga paniculata is a circumboreal species that is native to rocky ledges and crevices in Europe, eastern Asia and North America south to New England and the Great Lakes. It is a stoloniferous perennial that typically forms a spreading basal rosette (to 6" tall) of flat, leathery, finely-serrate, oblong to obovate leaves (each to 1.5" long) with silvery encrustations on the margins. Flowers (each to 1/2" diameter) bloom in elongated clusters atop upright stems rising well above the rosette to 12" tall. Flower color is variable, ranging from white to creamy white to pink to yellow sometimes with purple spotting. Flowers bloom mid-June to August. Plants of this species are divided into three subspecies: S. paniculata subsp. paniculata (central Europe), S. paniculata subsp. cartilaginea (Causcasus) and S. paniculata subsp. laestadii (Norway, Iceland and North America).
Saxifraga paniculata is an alpine species of flowering plant in the saxifrage family, with native distribution in the temperate northern hemisphere. Common names include alpine saxifrage, encrusted saxifrage, lifelong saxifrage, lime-encrusted saxifrage, livelong saxifrage, White Mountain saxifrage,(aizoon) and silver saxifrage.