Apr 28, 2017

All That Jasmine!

Star Jasmine (not a true jasmine, but feh) grows like a weed here in San Diego:
You see it (& smell it) everywhere in spring; it can be a vine or groundcover; it's evergreen.  A super-performer, if you will.

We have ~6 star jasmine in our backyard, but I'm also trying a couple other jasmines, including Madagascar Jasmine (it's the vine, below; the plant in front of it is Australian tree fern).

Madagascar Jasmine (Stephanotis Floribunda) is also known as the "wedding flower" as it's fragrant, sturdy, & often used in arrangements.  Ours is new and hasn't flowered yet, but Jason recently built up the trellis in this corner, so I was able to unwind and train the vines. 

Here is an example of a healthy, flowering Madagascar Jasmine:
It has a very beautiful, rich green leaf--lighter on the underside.  It apparently likes sun up top and shady roots with moisture, & that's exactly what we've given it.  Here's hoping it revels in its new location!

We are also growing a South African Jasmine, which becomes a lush shrub. This is what it might eventually look like:

"Um, why so much jasmine, Holly?"

I can answer that!  Jasmine is (usually) easy to grow, beautifully fragrant, white doesn't compete w/ color schemes, it's evergreen, it tolerates some drought, and it helps create a subtropical look. 

I know our star jasmines will thrive.  But I'll be watching the Madagascar jasmine closely.  Plants from Madagascar are gorgeous.

Apr 18, 2017

More plants? Yes please!

Because I've planted out the yards and now have to WAIT for stuff to grow, I of course decided it was time to plant POTS on the patio...after promising myself I wouldn't do that anymore b/c when it gets hot, they need daily water.

But, did I listen to me?  Not likely.

Here are the pot groupings in rather harsh afternoon light.  Note the barren spots behind them. You can see why I was so tempted, can't you?  I am like a child where it is HARD TO WAIT.

Here is a grouping in morning light. Jason's trellising he's making for our vines is in the background:

You can see that I'm attempting to keep to a cohesive color palette (yellow, hot pink, and white). I've included some super-performers that do well in our HOT HOT HEAT: bougainvillea, lantana, vinca, calibrachoa, and golden oregano. 

Here is the other cluster, a more sensible one with succulents, including burro's tail:

So now I'm out there an extra 10-15 minutes every morning, tending to these.  But I sorta love it :).

Apr 13, 2017

Canna these come up now?

I planted seven 'Futurity' yellow canna in the back yard. They look like this:
Well, um, only one of 7 has come up.  And now I'm worried I planted 6 of them UPSIDE DOWN.

They have to stretch for the light in order to emerge, & if you plant them upside down, they get CONFUSED.

My great-uncle made this same bulb blunder, so maybe it's in my blood?

Apr 4, 2017

Native Favorites.

I just learned a new expression. It's probably an old one for many native gardeners, but new to me: First year: sleep.  Second year: creep.  Third year: leap!

This certainly seems to be true of the front yard.  Some of our plants are really taking off (the 'burst lemon' monkey flower, for one), but the rest are definitely a little sleepy at 3 months old.

Here are a few of my favorite plants, & what I hope they'll look like in year 3+:

Salvia Clevelandii 'Pozo Blue.'  I've always wanted my own cleveland sage!  These remind me of growing up in SD and going to the mountains (Cuyamacas) with my family, my girl scout troop, etc.

Island Bush Poppy.  A "gotta have it" native plant.  I've killed one already, but our 2nd one is holding on at about 4 inches.  SAD.

Bladderpod.  Isn't that a BEAUTIFUL name? Ours has just taken off & hopefully will one day look like this. It smells like popcorn!

Verbena lilacina 'de la mina.'  We have 6 of these, & NONE of them look like this:

Ah, someday...