Sunday, November 29, 2015

Fall Project 2015 #2

Because of the holiday week, progress has been slow.  Also yesterday Something Very Bad (retina detached?) happened to my left eye, so progress may stop entirely for a while, but in the meantime, plants removed, and the design pondered.  I pondered while I dug out/moved/tossed.  For example, I started thinking something like this, photographed perfectly by Gerhard at Succulents And More, in front of the wall, with the 'Hercules' Aloe staying right where it is, and a lot of the Dymondia groundcover, especially right next to the street, to hold in soil and keep things tidy.  Perhaps the same pairing of 'Blue Flame' and 'Blue Glow' agaves around the mailbox post, and--a few Agave parryii truncata, and that's it. 
Can one have too many Agave parryii truncatas? 

However I have a whole lot (15+) of 'Joe Hoak' grandchildren now.  I must use them somewhere.  'Joe's yellow and pale green look okay with the Dymondia...
 ...but blends a bit into the wall color.  Not enough contrast?
The "normal" color of the same Agave looks better against the same color wall, but enough of those there.

Perhaps something shrubby right against the wall, such as a blue-ish Leucadendron, with the row 'o 'Joe' in front? 
 It seems right to have some shrubby-ness, because of the shrubby plants on the other side of the driveway.  Too much of a change, if one side was too minimal, right? 
Pondering from that angle, I wondered:
(instead of plants in front of the wall), what about a band of identical Agaves grid-planted to extend the strip of slate squares?  Too contemporary (and stark) for the house style? 
 
More ponder:  I like love the Leucophyllums on the front slope.  How do they look against the wall?  Sort of cool.  They have the great virtue of being slow-growing as well.  'Blue Flames' or 'Joe's in front of them? 
I got this big 'Molineux' rose moved to the spot (red mark) formerly occupied by 'Gold Medal' and 'Irish Hope', which is when and where the eye disaster occurred.
 Hopefully you forgive the disjointed nature of this post--want/need to keep my mind off this eye disaster thing until an appointment with an eye-disaster doctor.

Further pondering on The Project was interrupted by pondering whether to move this seedling Aloe from the Project Area or toss it, and then by seeing Aloe flower scapes emerging on the front slope. 
 As far as I can tell it is a cross of vertical growing A. cameronii...
 ...with pendent A. hardyi, which is one of the ones with flower scapes appearing.  The seed came from hardyi, which was blooming at the same time as cameronii, hence my guess.  Five separate scapes on hardyi, so I guess it's happy enough, despite some scorch from the summer heat.
 Aloe cryptoflora is relatively uncommon in cultivation.  This plant's first flower.  It's from summer-rainfall areas, so I was diligent about watering it this summer, though it turned red with stress (not diligent enough, probably). 
 Aloe vanbaleni:
 Aloe capitata peeking out!  Yay!  Such a charmer
 First flowers emerging on A. suprafoliata:
So, that's where The Project is at.  Wish me courage on the eye, if you would.  Luck I have, now and then, but courage is lacking. 

29 comments:

  1. Dear Hoover, I am so sorry to hear about your eye injury, good luck and courage for the eye specialist, I hope your eye will be back to normal very soon.
    Meanwhile your garden project is looking wonderful, the succulents on the link look beautiful too.
    xoxoxo ♡

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    1. thank you for all your kindness dianne, it is a gift.

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  2. I do not at all like to hear of eye disasters..and do wish you both luck and courage ! And I'm confident you will make the right choice.

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  3. Jeez ... I can sympathize with you. Same thing happened to me in June. Love to work in my garden even more because I can see it. Courage. Good fortune. All that and more. Keep us posted.

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    1. Hope you are all better now! thank uou!

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  4. Oh no! I hope you get in to see the eye doc first thing tomorrow. I'm sending good wishes your way.

    As to the new design, I think you're asking yourself the right questions. I'm terrible at visualizing things in my head when it comes to the garden and almost always have to lay things out before I can make decisions on positioning. I love the display shown in Gerhard's photo but I expect that finding perfect size matches isn't easy and may be difficult to maintain over the long-term.

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    1. thank you kris for the good wishes they help.

      when i can see again, in the meantime i'll have to use my inner imaginaion.

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  5. No, one can never have too many Agave parryii truncatas. Detached retina!??!??!! How the heck? Sending you all the possible good vibes I can muster. Because I know what ever you can come up with for the project at hand will be lovely, that's how you roll.

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    1. thank you loree! good vibes received and most appreciated!

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  6. Lots of courageous energy coming your way! You've so many choices for your project area and all of them including agaves. Lucky duck! The answer is no, one can never have too many Agave parryii truncatas or Agave ovatifolias or Agave 'Blue Flames.'

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    1. thank you kind sir! no never too many blue agaves.

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  7. Wishing you great courage with the eye disaster. I had disaster surgery last January for a macular hole in my left retina. Detached retina is serious and may set you down for a while. Good luck with all. I do enjoy watching your garden from afar.

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    1. Hope your surgery made everything better--not seeing anything in the garden but a blurr is :(

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  8. I'm pushing what little courage I have your way, southward, for as long as you need it. I think you will look fetching in a patch as you heal your eye. The genius docs will have you fixed up in no time, and I'm sure will lecture you endlessly on the risks we plant folks take with our eyes.

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    1. I can be like Lazy Eye in 'Moonrise Kingdom'. ;^) thanks for the touch of courage it helps!

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  9. The issue with your eye is very unsettling. I hope you get good news from the doctor. Please keep us posted.

    I like the idea of leucophyllums against the wall with agaves in front of them. I think that would look timeless. I also like the idea of a grid of agaves to mirror the pavers. 'Blue Glow' or anything solitary. Actually, 'Snow Glow' would look great (varietated sport of 'Blue Glow') but they're still hard to find.

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    1. you remind me to move the snow glows I put up on the slope to where they are close and can be constantly admired. too far away up there. thanks!

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  10. Oy! Or rather, Aiy! I hope your appointment is VERY soon - don't they want you in immediately for something that potentially serious?

    On the agave design, you're right: a grid of agaves is a bit severe for your house and garden style. The Leucophyllum is lovely as a backer for agaves. I think the warm new growth color on the Leucodendron would be even more striking against that wall. Then echo it with some of those rather lovely stressed aloes. Done.

    Thinking positive thoughts for your eye being a minimal issue despite the signs. And get in there quick!

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    1. thanks, good ideas for me on the project. thankks so much for the courage!

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  11. Wish you courage to deal with your eye disaster. Hope it's not as bad as all your fears. I often need to be brave when dealing with anything to do with my health (especially at night when I wake up and can't get back to sleep for worrying).

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    1. thank you! you are not alone with that night-worry stuff.

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  12. Keeping everything crossed for the eye Hoov. Luck and courage.

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  13. Also meant to say congrats on being named to Thumbtack's list of garden bloggers to read!

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  14. I do hope your eye heals soon.

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  15. Ye gods! Sending you the best, bravest, oak-strong, chaparral-tough mojo from Inlandia, with white sage for healing, and running off to your latest post for updates.

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  16. As someone who had vision wrecked in one eye by sudden-onset glaucoma last year, I am very, very sorry to hear of your eye troubles and I hope some very fine ophthalmologist puts it right in short order. Will be thinking good thoughts for you.

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