Thursday, June 20, 2019

My 2019 Garden Bloggers Fling plant haul...

Plant shopping opportunities were scarce during the 2019 Fling in Colorado, which I've been calling the Denver Fling, but we spent a day in Ft. Collins and a day in Boulder, so we definitely saw more than just Denver.

While I was on a bus visiting gardens Andrew was out and about exploring the city. He sent me photos of a plant filled window at the Queen City General Store...

I tried not to be to jealous, I mean I don't really need more plants, do I?

Thankfully I didn't return home plant-less. Here's the final haul, back home in Portland.

The little sempervivum at the bottom of the plant pyramid (above) came from this clump... the garden of Linda Boley. When I asked her about the odd knuckled leaves on a few of the plants, she said that was her “pine-cone sempervivum” and asked if I wanted one, of course! She then proceeded to pull one out of the ground and hand it to me, as well as doing the same for two friends who walked up and admired it. What a generous lady with a great garden...

See how the tips resemble a pine cone?

The Denver Botanic Gardens gift shop provided shopping opportunities.

Complete with rusty cacti...

...and Little Pickles!

While I loved the name, the plant itself wasn't something I needed to bring home.

I was tempted by the Puya alpestris, but didn't want to torture the poor thing.

There were a few great containers, but the fact we flew to Denver kept me from even looking at the prices.

I did however succumb to the temptation of these cuties.

Aloinopsis spathulata, aka hardy living stone

Full sun, well drained soil, Zone 6

My other two plant purchases weren't actually purchases but rather gifts. Andrew and I returned to the Denver Botanic Gardens on Monday (after the Fling proper had wrapped up) and ran into Panayoti Kelaidis (Senior Curator and Director of Outreach at the garden, as well as all around amazing plantsman). Just a few minutes of talking with him and he was working to connect us with Kelly Grummons (the cactus man) for a garden tour. So after a wandering the DBG for a bit we then set off to meet this kind (and very knowledgeable) man who spent a couple of hours touring two complete strangers around his garden and through his small retail greenhouses. I fell hard for that blue agave...

It's Agave parryi v. neomexicana x utahensis, or deep blue form New Mexican agave (available here). It's hardy to Zone 5, and of course needs excellent drainage. Isn't it a beauty?

That's it on the left. The other plant, Echinocereus triglochidiatus...

...was one I fell in love with in the greenhouse. The larger 4" pots weren't for sale, as he's saving those to gather seeds for propagation.

But I got one of these smaller guys, they're so pristine! The deep red claret cup flowers were a feature of many of the gardens we visited during the Fling, if my plant blooms someday it will definitely take me back.

There were a few other plants I was seriously lusting after at Kelly's place, this petite opuntia (below) topped the list, but he didn't have any available on site. Meet Opuntia polyacantha 'Peter Pan', so called because it never matures and never blooms. Forever staying in this, it's juvenile form. Yes, I've already ordered a pair...

Weather Diary, June 19: Hi 70, Low 54/ Precip 0

All material © 2009-2019 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Wednesday Vignette, crevice garden heaven

I'm back from a week in Colorado and the 2019 Garden Bloggers Fling. As usual I went a little crazy with the photos (over 2,000...) so it's going to take awhile to work through them all.

We saw fabulous gardens and met some really wonderful gardeners. I'm left with memories of rocks, lots of rocks. Rocks in crevice gardens, crushed rock mulch, boulders in the landscape, stacked rocks...and on and on. Plant-wise, sempervivum top my list, along with opuntia and yucca. Sure there were lots of iris, peonies, poppies and the like, but you know me, pretty flowers don't keep me entertained for long.

Several years ago I wrote a story for the Oregon Association of Nurseries on crevice gardens. For that story I had the pleasure of interviewing Kenton Seth, of Grand Junction, CO, he's a leader in the design and building of crevice gardens here in the U.S.. One of the gardens we visited on the first day of the Fling, Carol and Randy Shinn’s garden, included a couple of Kenton's creations. I look forward to sharing more images from the Shinn's garden, until then I hope you enjoy this trio of vignettes.

Weather Diary, June 18: Hi 73, Low 55/ Precip 0

Wednesday Vignettes are hosted by Anna at Flutter & Hum. All material © 2009-2019 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Gypsophila aretioides

Gypsophila aretioides is one of those cushiony plants I love, but I'm smart enough to know I probably wouldn't have success with. Why? How about this description from the Missouri Botanical Garden: "Easily grown in somewhat dry, sandy-gritty, well-drained soils in full sun. Prefers alkaline soils (pH7.0 to 7.5). Add lime to acidic soils. Soils must have good drainage. Plants may not survive winter in wet, poorly drained soils. Likes to be left undisturbed once established."

I love that they start off with the word "easy," but then go on to a long list of very specific requirements. Easy for who? Certainly not someone with a winter-wet climate and clay soil, like me.

Other desciptions I read online all reference it's dense, hard feel: "The stems and tiny narrow, grey-green leaves are so closely packed that the plant feels hard to the touch." (source) and "Forms hard creeping cushions with very tiny foliage." (source) and "Gypsophila aretioides is a half-hardy alpine plant, ideal for growing in containers and rockeries, where its closely packed stems and leaves form an almost impenetrable carpet." (source)

Of course all those descriptions only make me want it even more...

Weather Diary, June 17: Hi 81, Low 58/ Precip none

All material © 2009-2019 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Monday, June 17, 2019

All you're missing is a banana tree...

Twice in the same week I had garden visitors look around the back garden and declare "all you're missing is a banana tree!" Both times we were standing about here, in front of the chocolate Albizia julibrissin.

So I moved slightly to the right, laughed, and pointed back there...

At my Musa basjoo.

It's hardly an impressive specimen—crammed up against the house and screened off by other plantings—and it's really only visible as you enter the garden.

But it's there, none-the-less. Soldiering on.

What are the chances that two different people (both men, if that matters) would—in the same week—look around my garden and feel the absence of a banana tree? Interesting.

On an unrelated note I planted a Clematis 'Polish Spirit' at the banana's base. So far there are no buds, but the vine is growing.

Won't big purple flowers look lovely against those large green leaves?

Weather Diary, June 16: Hi 82, Low 54/ Precip none

All material © 2009-2019 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Friday, June 14, 2019

June's Bloomday for 2019

I'm a blogging rebel; Garden Blogger's Bloomday isn't until tomorrow, June 15th, but I'm posting today. What can I say...

July is usually yucca month in my garden, but the warmth this week is pushing them ahead, I took these photos a couple days ago and they've progressed beyond this stage, they may not hold on until July's bloomday. Here's Y. 'Color Guard'...

And plain old Y. filamentosa.

The yellow button blooms of Santolina chamaecyparissus echo the Callistemon sieberi flowers behind.

Callistemon sieberi

The blue of Parahebe perfoliata always catches me by surprise.

Verbascum blattaria

There are three large, woolly, verbascum sending up bloomspikes in the front garden. I think this one is V. olympicum, although I'm not sure as they're all offspring from plants that bloomed long ago.


Amsonia hubrichtii

Indigofera amblyantha

There are going to be so many Acca sellowiana (pineapple guava) flowers this year!

Grevillea rivularis

Echium russicum

Moving into the back garden...just one flower is open on the Clematis recta 'Purpurea Select'.

Callistemon viridiflorus, I love this yellow/green color, and there are so many flowers on the plant this year.

Lomatia tinctoria, resting on a nearby Yucca aloifolia.

NOID Sempervivum

NOID Saxifraga (so many Saxifraga flowers this year...).

Magnolia macrophylla, and photos can be deceiving, these flowers are more than 20" across.

Abutilon megapotamicum 'Paisley'

Grevillea juniperina ‘Molonglo’

Paris polyphylla - Heronswood form

Alchemilla mollis, at the bottom edge of the photo. I liked all these shapes and shades and thought this photo was more interesting than including just a close-up.

Clematis repens 'Bells of Emei Shan'

Thalictrum 'Evening Star'

All the other podophyllum have finished blooming, but P. 'Spotty Dotty' is still going.

Lupinus sericatus

A white sarracenia flower with a trio of Darlingtonia californica.

And the Darlingtonia are making seeds!

A survey of other sarracenia...

Alstroemeria 'Indian Summer'

Bougainvillea 'Moneth' (aka 'Purple Queen')

Euphorbia 'Excalibur'

Iris x robusta ‘Gerald Darby’, in/over the stock tank pond.

And finally the bright and wonderful Grevillea 'Ned Kelly', which is growing in a container. For more Bloomday fun visit our hostess May Dreams Gardens.

Weather Diary, June 13 Hi 87, Lo 57/ Precip none

All material © 2009-2019 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.