Some Plants, Mostly Xeric

Euphorbia and friend

All seen recently at the San Diego Botanic Garden

There were some sculptures for sale at the garden.  This one is pretty nice.
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Nature's version of sculpture, Aloe barbarae, even better.
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Aloe classenii had ghostly grey flowers that contrasted with sun-darkened foliage.
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This may or may not have been Aloe vaombe.  The bent trunk is interesting.
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A writhing mass of Aloe leaves.  I forget the species.  I thought it was vanbalenii, but it might not have been.
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Aloe spicata aka sessiliflora, which I didn't realize got that tall. 
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Aloe wickensii, which shields itself from fierce sun and possibly herbivores by closing the older outer leaves over the more tender center of the plant.
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The green version of Agave titanota, some of which are called FO-76.  I like the white version and blue versions better, but this trio looks happy.
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Aloe suzannae, a critically endangered Aloe endemic to one small area of Madagascar.  Goats are eating the seedlings and there are very few plants left in the wild.  The one at the Huntington looked very bad last I was there.  This one is thriving by comparison. 
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This Pachypodium was blooming, and right at nose-level.  It had a delicate sweet fragrance.
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This tree fern grew its way into trouble--full sunlight.  
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This Kauri--well, to show you its height, look down at the bottom of the photo, at the variegated Furcraea.  The Furcraea is six feet tall.  
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It's educational seeing what has grown and what has struggled from one visit to the next.  On my first visit I remember being stunned by an exquisite Encephalartos horridus;  on this visit it was badly sunburnt and in severe decline.  

The succulent lady got replanted a bit.  She's looking better again.
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My favorite plant of the visit was this Yucca rostrata with all its dried lower leaves intact and untrimmed, giving the base an elegant swelling sweep.
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I wonder if the garden over estimated the xeric abilities of this Aloe glauca.
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I ended up getting an Aloe glauca of my own over at nearby Solana Succulents, where I also got the beautiful Tillandsia xerographica.  My glauca will get a little more water.  
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  1. Some incredible plants in this post, especially that huge Kauri!

    1. Very exotic tree, eh? The one at the Huntington is even bigger, and much older.

  2. That rostrata is beautiful, and so are the other plants. I'm still on two minds whether to leave the dried up lower leaves on trunked yuccas but when it does form a skirt like that it looks very attractive.

    1. That one looks particularly graceful. The ones with patches of leaves fallen out makes the trimming method more understandable.

  3. Are there any Aloes that will form a trunk when grown in a pot (so an be brought indoors in winter)? I admire trunk-forming Aloes so much, I should be growing my own, right?

    1. 'Hercules', dichotoma, plicatilis for sure. The pot will get very heavy, so get one on wheels. I can maybe get you a fan of plicatilis if you like, a neighbor mentioned she had some to give away.

  4. Love it! My kind of place. We're tentatively planning a trip to San Diego next summer, so I'll finally get to visit the SD Botanic Garden myself.

    Shriveled Aloe glauca: There's a house I drive by semi-regularly, and their front yard is one mass of Aloe maculata. Fine, I have no problem with that. Except that they NEVER irrigate them, so during late summer and into early winter they look terrible. Worse than that Aloe glauca even. In the winter, provided we have rain, they do come back but they never really look good. Moral of the story: Even succulents can't go for nine months without water!

    Writhing mass of Aloe leaves: Looks a bit like Aloe cameronii to me. What do you think?

    1. Not cameronii foliage is more vertical than that. I wish I'd taken a photo of the tag, but I got lazy.

      I'd like to see a photo of that maculata it on your blog?

  5. I need to get to the San Diego Botanic Garden one day soon. The succulent lady looks great but I was particularly impressed by the Yucca rostrata. I think this may be the first time I've ever seen one with a "clothed" trunk. It looks like a skirt - very elegant.

    1. It's not nearly so far a drive as going all the way to SD city proper, it's just over the OC border.


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