From Ancient Greek λευκός (leukós, “white”)

A trio of 'Joe Hoak's at their best, and the young Leuco/Leuca spermums and dendrons behind them look good, too.  'Joe Hoak' seems to have an extra layer of tissue, a translucent white, that gives it that ghostly beauty. Could it have a greater ploidy than its less enthralling source, Agave desmetiana? 
Greek "leukos" means "white".  Leucospermum is "white seed".  Leucadendron is "white tree", referring to Leucadendron argentea, Silver Tree, that needs cooler summers than I can offer it.  
Looks awesome in Santa Cruz
 Silky silver. 
Oh, all the silvery plants I have loved, some of which have been lost, and more than once. 
Leucodendron 'Mostly Silver' must have L. argentea in it.  Killed it. 
 Leucadendron 'Pisa', also with some L. argentea DNA.  Killed it. 
Remember Stachys 'Bello Grigio'?  I do, not fondly.  Killed it.  Four times.
 Lupinus albifons died about an hour and a half after I took the out-of-focus photo, which is why there is not an in-focus one.  I'm not taking responsibility for this death.   The plant had a single tiny thread of a root, one half inch long.  Annie's sent out a plant waaay too young.  Maybe I'll try again. 
 Exquisite Senecio cadicans 'Angel Wings' grew happily through the fierce heat of a roasting summer, and died abruptly as the weather began to cool off.  I miss it.  Maybe it would survive as a house plant, but probably not in my house.  The Centaurea ragusina behind it has thrived--what's its problem?
  Leucophyllum candidum 'Thunder Cloud',  Greek phylon (φῦλον, "race, stock"), related to phyle (φυλή, "tribe, clan").  Candidum Latin, white.  White race?  Yikes, let's not go there.  

There are green Leucophyllums, but I like the silvery white.
Because it hasn't died? 

Leucophyta brownii (phyta:  from Ancient Greek φυτά (phuta), plural of φυτόν (futon, "plant"), from φύω (phup, "to bring forth, to produce, to put forth, to make grow") is the newish genus name for Calocephalus brownii.  There are dwarf versions, better because regular or dwarf, Leucophytas are short lived.  If you water them too much, they die.  If you don't water them enough, they die.  Sometimes they die anyway.  Short lived, but they are so cool.  A six pack of the dwarf type is inexpensive, making short-lived quite tolerable.   
The dwarf kind, amidst Dahlia dregs, not dead yet. 
Planting is being planned, if not performed.  I started digging out the stumps of the Cypress cut down recently.  This will be difficult.  I will do it a little at a time. 
 Once the stumps are out, the area could work for the now-recovered Callistemon 'Slim' that just barely escaped dying in the nasty heat wave of early July.  The Arctostaphylos 'Louis Edmunds' could then get 'Slim's spot.   'Louis' was always meant to have this spot, but 'Slim' was in desperate condition, so I put it there temporarily to try to save it, which--worked.  
Because it's green? 
So it goes here, garden-wise.

Comments

  1. I've killed my fair share of some of those same plants. My Senecio candicans are technically still alive but they were badly damaged by something - probably snails or slugs. I cringe every time I pass the 2 plants near the front door but I haven't removed either yet. I may try cutting them back, baiting around them, and wait awhile to see what happens.

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    1. "technically still alive" is something! Better than I did. Mine got mealy bugs guarded by ants. Didn't kill the ants quick enough.

      Not a snail or slug here anymore. Drought and rodents got them all. This is not so bad.

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  2. That intro photo of the three Joes...wowsa! What Agave dreams are made of. Tree dreams are made of Leucadendron argenteum, lord help me if I ever live somewhere I could grow that beauty.

    Leucophyta brownii Is sometimes available here as an annual...when I see it, I buy it.

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    1. You would not build a little green house around argenteum for the winter and warm with lights? The Kuzma specimen is quite impressive!

      Same here with Leucophyta. I see it, I buy it.

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  3. Very interesting entry, besides some agaves I don't have any silver plant . I am devoted worshiper of green in the garden, I grew up reading English, German and Swedish gardening books and I have an obsession over the green lushness of temperate climates, and obsession doomed to fail since despite the high humidity of my area when summer arrives all gets wizened and yellow.

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    1. I love grass-green lushness, love it, but it is difficult here to keep green from turning brown. We gardeners all have different challenges, don't we?

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  4. Slim looks like it is even growing. That should make you feel better. That stump work looks grueling.
    It is too bad that all that silver and white is so difficult to grow. I don't know how anything lives with so many 100 degree days that occur in your area. Better luck next year.

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    1. 'Slim' is growing, yes indeedy. That is a very tough plant! I have so many silver plants that are easy. I guess the problem is I try every one I see for sale, and not all of them are easy.

      Yes, like baseball, there's always next year. :)

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  5. Your trio of 'Joe Hoak' is breathtaking! "If you water them too much, they die. If you don't water them enough, they die. Sometimes they die anyway." Just about spit my coffee out reading that. Looks like a lot of work taking out those stumps. Looks like a job for a strong, young college student who'll work cheap.

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    1. 'Joe' is a looker alright. It's rather a marvel. Pollinators don't care, so how did 'Joe' evolve to be so elegant?

      Just a few minutes a day on the stump. This morning it was my little hand pick, figuring out what was roots and what was soil. I'll get them! Home wasn't built in a day.

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  6. Despite being familiar with the role of tetraploids in daylily hybridizing (many colchicine-induced) and in irises (mainly from use of tetraploid and hexaploid species), and in different rose species and some trees, it never occurred to me that the phenomenon exists in succulents. I imagine a lot more is getting documented as hybridizers and nursery people develop and select new forms. Those 'Joe Hoak's and companions are a most satisfying picture.

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    1. Yes if you are even a bit a daylily person than ploidy comes into play. After wondering about 'Joe's extra layer of frosty white tissue it was then that I looked up ploidy in Agaves. I was surprised to see Agaves have lots of ploidy variations--pentaploids, hexaploids...

      A row of 'Joe's are so good at creating a visual rhythm.

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  7. Oh, yes, the silvers! Another one I could never grow is the silver morning glory. I remember when one 'Joe Hoak' was a rarity, and look at that trio!

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    1. If only the variegated attenuata, and the white-variegated ('White Rhino') version of victoria-reginae were as common as dirt...if they were, they would still be dazzling.

      Silver morning glory! (Convolvulus cneorum) Of course! I've killed that, too. See them for sale frequently, and am still slightly tempted to try again. Never have. San Marcos says "short lived", but a month is too short.

      The Salvia argentea which is a biennial is a lovely plant. At least that one has the excuse of being a biennial.

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  8. My Greek is a little rusty, as is my Latin. I often thin about my high school where both Latin and Greek were taught-there was even a Greek Club. I was assigned to Latin based on my scores on the entrance exam. I hated my 3 years of Latin , but I'm glad for it now. I know it's not a public school class, and I wonder if he privates still offer it.

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    1. Latin was still offered in the LAUSD when I attended; the aspiring physicians all took it. I took French which was awful, wish I'd taken Spanish, so much more useful here in CA. I'm waiting for the phone app where you can speak into the phone in one language and it translates for you into another and sends it out the speaker. Now that would be useful. Or is there one?

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  9. Silver trees battle to survive even in their limited natural habitat. On the slope of Lion's Head above Camps Bay where I grew up. A mountain fire too soon, or too often is a disaster.

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    1. The Giant Panda of Proteaceae? They seem to thrive on California's Central Coast, between Santa Barbara and Santa Cruz--no frost, usually a cool wet winter, usually a cool, overcast summer. (I would like that, too!)

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