Echium This Year

Echium fastuosum aka Echium cadicans:
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Due to a double-whammy, last year's relatively cool summer followed by a winter of generous rainfall , the neighborhood Echium fastuosum is having a good spring.  Not a great spring, because we're too far inland for this plant to really thrive.  Down right by the ocean, flower spikes will be at least double the size of those in our neighborhood, and the plants will be quadruple big.

A modest inland patch of Echium, perhaps 4x4':
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This patch was a wizened stub in the drought of '06-'08.  It has roared back.  
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Quite a nice clump at 10' wide and 6' tall, but it would be triple the size in the summer overcast of Newport or Long Beach:
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Grand with a Yucca backdrop:
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Each spike is a bee magnet:
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These plants were utterly miserable in the drought years, though they are the survivors.  I saw many others die.  They do not appreciate 5% relative humidity for long periods of time.  They appreciate a coolish summer and a wet winter.

Besides admiring the neighborhood Echium,  there were other plants of interest.  This Hibiscusy shrub I see here and there.  Beautiful and constant display of flowers in the warm months; bedraggled and half deciduous in the rainy season.  The big flaw is that when it starts to bloom much of the foliage turns yellow, spoiling the show, for me at least, because the unyellowed foliage is beautiful.  But lovely at this moment with the sun gleaming down on it:
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And a purple Solanum so springtime fresh:
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A Pyracantha (P. coccinea lalandei?), snowy with bloom:

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And Monsieur Tillier by the side of the road.  Would that the side of every road had a Monsieur Tillier somewhere, waiting to be admired. 
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I also took a peek at the neighbor's Austins.  Nice!  Might be 'Tamora':
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And embracing a pillar...it looked like 'William Shakespeare 2000', but then again, it didn't.
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Crisscrossing wires on eyehooks screwed into the stucco provide support.  Canes are just slipped here and there under the wires for arrangement.  It works nicely, because the rose is just big enough, but not too big.


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'Eden' nearby, taking a brief respite from Rusting herself to death to produce a bloom:
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I like to look at neighborhood gardens.  Local tourism.

Comments

  1. Thank you for the fine Echium show...I am drooling!

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  2. Could be...no fragrance at all that I could detect. Does 'The Dark Lady' have fragrance?

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  3. i must have taken a million photos of echium so far this spring, trying to catch one with a bumblebee on it. your photos are SO much better! bravo!

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  4. Where are you that you have such early bloom? I am in Seattle area, and its been a long wet slog of a spring.

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  5. Hi brittanicals, I'm in Southern California. The plants here respond quickly to the winter rains, which were plentiful this year. They hurry to bloom before everything starts to dry out in June.

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