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.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

A hanging succulent display, and thoughts on garden touring

We return to Santa Barbara and enjoy an up-close look at this succulent display...

Instead of a tile mosaic, or painting, tucked into the niche above a water basin these homeowners display a bit of succulent artwork.

It's precisely these kinds of discoveries—touches unique to garden and it's location—that make garden touring so rewarding.

On the eve of two large multi-garden tours I will be taking part in this month, I'm anticipating all sorts of wonderful surprises, new plant crushes, and ideas I will need to try out in my own garden.

I'm also reminded of a conversation I recently had with a neighbor. I'd warned him a group of 50 or so people were set to descend upon my garden the next day. He was a little confused.

Q. Why are they coming?
A. To look at my garden.
Q. Do you have some sort of rare plants?
A. I suppose a few unusual ones.
Q. What will will they do?
A. Look at my garden, ask questions, write down plant names, take photos.

His expression told me I hadn't done an adequate job of explaining. Some people watch sports, some people play video games, some people collect stamps. Other people tour gardens. Life is good.

Weather Diary, June 12: Hi 98 (a new record for the day), Low 68/ Precip 0

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

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

A horticultural still life, at the Ruth Bancroft Garden

I love stumbling upon a work space at a nursery or public garden, somewhere not intended for the public eye. A spot where the people responsible for keeping the garden, and propagating the plants, move through, or spend time. I believe that's what this table in an out-of-the-way back corner at the Ruth Bancroft Garden represents.

It's an interesting collection of things, don't you think?

I visited the Ruth Bancroft Garden in April, before Gerhard and I traveled to Santa Barbara for the Bromeliad Summit. There will be pictures of the garden in the future...

Weather Diary, June 11: Hi 97 (a new record high for the day), Low 60/ 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 11, 2019

Jana Olson's Berkeley garden

I've written about my visit to Marcia Donahue's garden last December (with my then fellow Pacific Horticulture Society board members), as well as our stops at Keeyla Meadows and Raul Zumba's gardens. We made one other stop that day, at the garden of Jana Olsen.

Jana's home is tucked into a corner on a very step hillside in Berkeley. Some people might consider the site un-gardenable, but not Jana.

Unfortunately she had to run off to a meeting soon after we arrived, so we didn't get the benefit of touring the garden with its creator. In her brief welcome it was obvious she's a warm and generous lady who enjoys what she's created.

That's a very happy fern... am I the only one who thinks of glue dots?

Rather pretty too.

OMG! It just gets better! Palm tree or fern? (fern)

To get to the back garden you pass under a deck. Because Jana isn't the type to leave any space unimproved, this dark area is dubbed "Grotto of Santa Basura" and decorated with the collected trash (Basura is Spanish for trash) found in the ravine behind her home during clean up (now a garden with a stream running through it).

Next is the Graveyard of Rusty Tools...

Here's where you might want to click over to the blog Quirky Berkeley and read the story on Jana: Jana Olson’s flamboyant confidence of style. As for our tour we're back out into the afternoon light and heading down into the ravine...

A timing reminder. This was December 7th. A beautiful day that felt like the best autumn day back home in Portland.

Cordyline 'Cha Cha'


I was awe-struck. The (now) cracked and crumbling retaining wall was the work of a previous homeowner.

Rather than demolish it and pay to have it hauled away (every piece hauled back up those steep stairs and under the deck/through the grotto) she turned it into a feature. In her words: "Yeah, I was thinking since we live in earthquake country, why not emphasize it?  (Although I think the wall is collapsing do to soil movement and lack of footing).  Anyway, it sat there for many years in its crooked state before I decided to embellish it..."

And embellish it she did...

Of course it helps to have artist Marcia Donahue as a friend.

Her pieces definitely add a touch of class to the installation.

As do the plants Jana chose, I believe this Agave vilmoriniana?

From above, looking down.

I could barely tear myself away. This was just so damn cool!

I did eventually move on, where I enjoyed Marcia's turkey tail fungus.

And more ferns.

At the bottom of the ravine was this slippery passage to the other side. I'm a klutz and wasn't wearing appropriate shoes (I never am). I chose to retrace my steps and meet the group back at the top (really I wanted to walk past the broken wall again...).

Looking up towards the house...

And of course, because this is Berkeley, there were bromeliads just tucked in here and there like it was no big deal.

And spider plant? (sorry, that's all I know this houseplant as)

Back up by the house we came out of the shadows and into the sun.

What a garden! Thank you Jana, for sharing it with us. I do hope to return someday.

Weather Diary, June 10: Hi 86, Low 58/ Precip 0

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