Bloom Day February 2018

Magnolia stellata 'Royal Star'

This month the blooms can be easily grouped.  The major group is  South African and Australian winter bloomers. 
Grevillea 'Peaches and Cream' 
 'Robyn Gordon'
 'Ned Kelly' is far less vigorous a grower than 'Superb' and the rest, but it has grown and is producing the odd flower. 
 Eremophila glabra, for hummingbirds.  I haven't seen them at it but this plant is in an out-of-the-way place. 
 Leucadendron 'Reverse Polarity', reddening up
 Phylica pubescens tiny flowers are hard to see.  The arrow points one out:
 South African daisies are their own group.  Just a Gazania seedling, as an example.  The 'Burgundy' Arctotis and orange Gazanias make a stunner of a combination, but I didn't get a shot of that.  Sorry!
 A couple of "garden" Gerberas.  Smaller flowers than the florist type, but unlike the florist types, these plants are happy and long-lived in a garden. 

A third group is Winter/Spring annual volunteers.  Alyssum of course, too ordinary to photograph, easy to pull where unwanted.  

Nasturtiums sprout everywhere in the back gully garden.  In recent years I've let them do their thing because the back gully garden was difficult to maintain due to the back neighbor's weed-tree jungle.  Now that the old neighbors are gone and new neighbors have cleared out most of the mess, the back gully is gardenable again.  Perhaps I'll pull all the Nasties.  The bees have the Grevilleas.
 Cerinthes always manage to appear.  I leave them for the bees, though since planting Grevilleas, it doesn't seem so necessary. 
The odd out-of season group:  Roses mostly in a leafing-out state post pruning, but the odd rose is always to be found.  Also Fuchsia, Pentas, Salvias, and normally spring blooming succulents all blooming early because of the warm winter, and a surprise volunteer or two. 
Echeveria prolifica(?)
 Surprise Volunteer:  Impatiens sprouted from a space underneath the tile on the pond wall, which stays moist because of a tiny leak in the shower filter sitting on the wall.  Hah!  What a place to grow!  And bloom!
Another unexpected plant:  a Nemesia fruticans seedling.  I bought a couple of Nemesias more than 15 years ago, and still get the occasional seedling.  Less and less seedlings over the years, so this one was a surprise.  Cute little thing.
Cut back hard a couple of months ago,  Salvia 'Amistad' rapidly grew back in our warm dry winter.  Hummers love it.  Several buzzed past my head while I took the photo.
 A Fuchsia blooming.  Normally Spring and early Summer are their show times. 
 In a cold wet winter, Pentas survive here but look poorly.  This year they look as happy as they do in Spring. 
 'Fred Ives' in one of his many beautiful color variations is starting to push out flower stems. 
'Fourth of July' Rose.  It's mostly still leafing out. 
 Last group:  much loved edibles:  Avocado and Lemon
'Meyer' lemon will bloom here off and on year round.  My sad little tree, moved three times, finally has a significant bloom.  Hoping for some delicious fruit...
 'Fuerte' Avocado--also hoping for some delicious fruit from these flowers next winter.  Our crop this year was near-nothing because last year the tree bloomed just as we got some rainy weather.  That's okay--the tree deserved a year off.  Hardly a spectacular flower, but the fruits more than make up for them.  I hope the bees can leave Grevillea 'Superb' long enough to pollinate a few of these:
So many flowers, many more than I included in this post.  The puppies got huffy waiting for me to take the photos.  

Happy Bloom Day!

Comments

  1. Oh your marvelous Grevilleas - swoon. The fragrance of citrus blooms always reminds me of your delightfully warm climate. As always, Boris and Natasha steal the show with their cuteness.

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    1. When the Valencia oranges bloom in spring and the Cara Cara a little while after that, oh, the fragrance is the best! Nothing beats orange bloom fragrance.

      B&N use their adorability to great advantage.

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  2. Oh they look so lonely peeking out from under the door!

    Lovely Bloomday offerings Hoov, I am so thankful you grow the Grevilleas...I can't get enough of them.

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    1. I'm glad you like the Grevilleas, I post so many photos of them, afraid it is too repetitive, but they do bloom like crazy--at least most of them do.

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  3. I love that opportunistic impatien! You've got a great Bloom Day show. The Salvia 'Amistad' had me issuing an involuntary sigh - I've tried it in 2 different locations, only to have it die out within a single season and I can't figure out why.

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    1. I'm up to four 'Amistad's. The hummers love them. Were yours getting enough water? They like their water.

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  4. On the Nasturtiums in the gully, quoting from the alternate lyrics from the New Christie Minstels for Tiptoe Through the Tulips:
    "Won't you come along and STOMP, through the Nasties with me". ;-)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GZ_wkH4AUeM
    P.S. When I was a boy the way I heard that song sung, it was "MONSTER MASH through the Nasties with me".

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  5. how kind to supply them with an observation hatch.

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    1. It wasn't intended, but it has worked out well for them!

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  6. Boring question, but it's a compliment really, what camera or lens do you use to take such exquisite shots?

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    1. It's a pretty old Sony Alpha 65 with an imperfectly functioning 18-250 mm lens.

      The plants do 99% of the work, just being as beautiful as they are.

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  7. That star magnolia is a delight to see, and also a bit of a surprise. I thought they needed more winter cold than your garden offers. It's also not as far out of sync with my z6-7 region in bloom time as your roses and daylilies; the earliest magnolias will be flowering here in a month, barring a reversion to deep cold between now and then. (Please no!)

    There's a sheet of winter aconites open today in front of a swath of sweet box (also blooming, but nondescriptly) that would be enough to turn me into a garden blogger just to join in in a February GBBD -- if I had a camera. First day of doing a little something useful out there since before Christmas: cutting the old leaves off the hellebores. Another photogenic opportunity missed, as the before & after is so dramatic; old foliage burned as never before by the record persistence of deep freezes, and the new flower shoots already showing color in the buds -- oddly further along than usual for this date. An ideal task to start off the gardening year.

    The hummingbirds are two months away, but a flock of twenty robins spent the afternoon in the lawn, chowing down on worms. The wheel is turning!

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    1. May the wheel turn to warmth for you.

      The M. stellata was something like 75% off, and we'd seen one growing and doing fine at the Huntington, so I thought I'd try it. It doesn't seem overly thrilled with low-humidity, but it seems to be okay. Love those flowers.

      Lots and lots of songbirds here--so many a Cooper's Hawk has started hanging around...

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  8. You do have a piece of Eden. So much color. Wonderful!

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  9. Lots of good stuff. Oddly enough, my favorite was your fuchsia shot because I have a hard time with them. I think they want a lot more water than I've given them. *It*, I should say. I only have one left. 'Old Berkeley' from Annie's.

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    1. Fuchsias are not heat lovers. I'm surprised mine are doing as well as they are--they are at their best here in Sunset 24--moist ocean air, they love it. I grew up in Sunset 24 and our entire garden was Fuchsias for many years.

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  10. I'm also a little surprised to see the magnolia. It's almost enough to get me a bit jealous seeing this plus all the heat lovers like avocado and lemons all doing well in the same garden. What a variety and beautiful photos as usual!

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    1. I went to Lowe's this morning for a tube of caulk and there were several M. stellatas for sale. Poor things. Mine got one of the most moist places in the garden (not saying it's moist soil there, just the most moist moist) and part shade that becomes near full shade in the winter, to help it rest. I think I've had it 3 years now. Long term, I have my doubts.

      Lemons don't need that much heat since they don't need to be sweet. Grapefruit are the heat lovers--inedible without it, and for me not particularly edible with it. Avocado prime zone is Sunset 23, relatively mild compared to further inland.

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    2. Looked it up, I think I bought it around June of 2014. It hasn't grown much, maybe a foot.

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