Monday, October 15, 2018

October Bloomday

October, a month that can be both miserable and gorgeous here in Portland. Miserable when there's nonstop grey cloudy skies and rain, gorgeous when we get those crisp sunny days when the colors of autumn shine. We're currently in the midst of gorgeous and I'm loving it. For this month's Bloomday post I walked out the backdoor and started snapping photos as I came across blooms, they're posted in that same order...
Anemone 'Honorine Jobert' has been blooming since early September. I will find a place in the garden to plant her (she's currently in a container) and welcome her spreading ways. Maybe then I'll finally feel like I can cut some of these beauties and bring them inside?
The volunteer 'Sungold' tomato is the only tomato still in the garden. The others were pulled last month. This one has several fruit, which may or may not ripen, and a ton of blooms. I'm enjoying it's determination to just keep going, even though it's October.

I cut back all the Impatiens omeiana in the heat of the summer, when they'd been so trashed by insect damage they ceased to look good. Whaddya know? They regrew and are blooming again.

Schefflera brevipedunculata
Schefflera delavayi blooms (the frothy bits) and Clematis tibetana var. vernayi...
So many Clematis blooms!

And really, the Schefflera blooms are the perfect complementary backdrop.

That bee, heading into the flower on the top right-ish side? He dive-bombed me a half-dozen times while I was taking these photos. I was definitely annoying him.
Abutilon Nuabyell, in bud and flower — as it has been most of the summer.

Ditto for Abutilon Nuabatang...

After its eruption of flowers last week, the Passiflora lutea has slowed. There are still buds though, so I am hopeful.

Leo is still looking grand (Leonotis leonurus).

The golden Syneilesis aconitifolia kept catching my eye, as though it was a yellow flower that needed to have its photo taken.

Passiflora 'Amethyst Jewel' is not slowing down! (P. 'Snow Queen' was a no show)

I don't think I've shared the small white flowers of Persicaria microcephala ‘Red Dragon’ yet this year, even though they've been blooming for months.

I thought the Bougainvillea was done for the season, then I spotted a couple of small blooms — it's been going since May.
Mahonia eurybracteata 'Soft Caress'

A dried up Bromeliad flower, that still looks fantastic.
Venturing out to the front garden now, and the Cotinus coggygria 'Royal Purple' wanted to strut its stuff in a photo, I obliged. But that Schizostylis coccinea ‘Oregon Sunset’ is what I was aiming the camera at.

Isn't it fabulous?

Okay, not flowers, but rather seeds...Amosonia hubrichtii.
Rosemary.     

Not flowers but fruit, Poncirus trifoliata.
Mahonia x media 'Charity', on the verge.

T
x Fatshedera lizei ‘Annemieke’

Close-up
Hakonechloa macra

The race between the Tetrapanax papyrifer buds, and the killing frost, has begun. Will this finally be the year they bloom all over the Pacific Northwest? Only time will tell...

Verbascum blattaria, from Tamara.

She gave me three plants, one of which had stems with brown seed pods, but what do you know, there are flowers! Love the basal foliage most of all.

Finally, my long suffering Loropetalum chinense var. rubrum 'Hindwarf' is throwing out a few blooms. If only it got more water! That's a wrap on the blooms here, check out May Dreams Gardens and all the bloggers sharing flower photos over there.

Weather Diary, Oct 14: Hi 70, Low 42/ Precip 0

All material © 2009-2018 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Friday, October 12, 2018

My new green wall (where I realize my garden is so much bigger than my house)

I've spent the last 4 or 5 months gleefully adding vertical elements to the garden, like the Tillandsia that festooned Clifford, our big-leaf Magnolia.

And the virtual Bromelaid and Tillandsia party I put together on the dead Schefflera branches...

Not to mention the hanging planters on the trellis...

And this trio on the Passiflora 'Snow Queen' trellis...

Then there are the Bromeliads I added to the anti-raccoon fencing around the stock-tank pond (which was successful in keeping the little masked bandits from taking a swim!)...

And of course there's the DANGER planter...

This is all to say that I realized I needed to come up with a way to overwinter these non-hardy vertical elements that kept them well lit and easy to care for.

And I did! But I had no idea just how many plants there were, tucked in here, and there, until I carried them all down to the basement...

Meet the new green wall...

My low (no) cost solution was to use some of the left-over rolled wire fencing I bought to protect the stock-tank pond, and hang it from one of the beams in the basement. 4-ft wide by 8-ft tall...plenty of room! Well, turns out it's pretty full. I mean there's still a little room for air-circulation...

But I'm amazed at how quickly it filled up. The garden swallows dozens of plants, the house — not so much.

While this idea was first and foremost practical...

I must admit what I love about it is how beautiful it is.

Since putting it up I've done laundry twice and found myself just staring at the plants.

I grab the spray bottle and mist them...

And admire them.

One day earlier this week was very grey and rainy, I was working downstairs and walking past these plants a few times I'd completely forgot about the outside conditions — it was summer again, if only in my head.

Now all I need is one of those light therapy boxes for seasonal affective disorder and I can spend winter in the basement oblivious to what's going on outside.

Ha! Not quite...

But this will be a nice diversion.
Since my desk (crafts and sewing, not so much computer work) is directly behind the new green wall, I've hung a clear shower-curtain liner at the back to contain the over-spray. It's on a make-shift rod so I can pull it back when I'm not spritzing, for air-flow and to spray the back of things.

The white and chartreuse containers are from the kitchen department at IKEA, caddies that are meant to hook onto their utensil rails, they made great (cheap!) plant pockets...

Hard to believe it's so narrow when viewed from the side.

And yes, I will be taking down the Tillandsias to give them a nice soak in the sink every once and awhile, they do love a little swim time.

(Andrew's studio in the distance)

Yep, I am officially in love with my new green wall...

Weather Diary, Oct 11: Hi 70, Low 45/ Precip 0

All material © 2009-2018 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.