Flo, Meet Eddy. Eddy, Meet Flo. Grassy Lassie, Meet My Soil.
Yesterday morning Monsoonal Flo met Catalina Eddy above our garden. The warm humid monsoonal moisture that rotates north-westerly from Baja Mexico and points east ran right into the cool, moist air rotating in from the Pacific, creating a darkly brooding sky. Now a darkly brooding sky in Southern California is a rare thing, and a darkly brooding sky in summertime is even more rare, so as a native Californian, naturally I ran for the camera.
In other parts of the world, no doubt you are thinking: "Clouds. What am I missing?" While here we're all agog: "Will you look at that? Clouds! Wow!"
Then it even rained a little, even more amazing.
Rain drops! (Look close)
But then the sun came out, and it was California again, so time to get to work. I had a box of Aloe 'Grassy Lassie', a gift from a neighbor, to plant. I chose a variety of spots, most of them irksome spots that needed something, to see what will make this hybrid happy: dry shade, shade with some moisture, part shade, and full, blazing sun with arid soil. We'll see what happens. My neighbor found the plant less than satisfactory. No cheerful spikes of orange blooms, as promised. Will I get the same results? I saw it last year at Rancho Soledad, where the foliage was a gorgeous bronze from winter chill (or as other parts of the world deem California winters, "beach weather"). Above gorgeous bronze leaves rose warm orange flowers, and the effect was impressive. But my neighbor got green leaves, dead leaves, and no flowers. So now I will try.
Part sun, dry:
Fairly shady, regular moisture:
Two other garden-buddies gave me a clump each of this dinner-plate-sized Aeonium. Both have done well plopped into hot conditions. They would be luxuriant in more shade.
Same plant, different buddy:
Aloe ellenbeckii, blooming again in front of the bougainvillea, despite a blazing location. You never know until you try.