All photos in this post by Beloved. The blogger was doing a lot of talking and shopping.
For more than a year, we've been staying home except for masked grocery store shopping and the rare curb-side pickup. Very fortunately we were able to get our second vaccine dose last week, so we're within a few days of being "fully vaccinated". No plans to go out much more until something like herd immunity is reached and very few cases are reported in our region, but we went somewhere low risk, to see a friend for a brief visit.
Beloved and I made an early morning trip to Plant Depot in San Juan Capistrano to meet up with Gerhard from Succulents and More™ for some plant-talking and plant shopping. Outdoors, mask required, distancing very easy at opening time on a weekday. On the weekend Plant Depot is mobbed. The garden center business is one bright spot in the Age Of Covid-19--many more people suddenly had time to garden.
There were multiple signs near the cash registers asking shoppers not to block the areas leading to the registers, indicating a mobbed-on-the-weekends situation. It being 8:00 am on a weekday, we almost had the place to ourselves.
No madding crowd:
Only crowds were on the shelves and racks:
Fun ensued. Plant Depot was fabulously well stocked. Beloved took some great photos. Plant talk, and plant shopping.
24" box of Echinocereus:
Discussion of the virtues of Gasteria acinicifolia occured:
Checked out the indoor plants briefly:
I'm looking for Rhodanthemum 'Casablanca':
Nope, they didn't have it. It seemed as though they had everything but Rhodanthemum 'Casablanca'. Oh, well. They did have Calylophus 'Southern Belle' which I've grown for a few years, liked a lot, wanted more of, but have not seen for sale in years.
Now where did I leave the cart?
Plant Depot was redoing their pond the last time we were here back in 2019. They did a nice job.
The pond is now smaller than it was. It appeared to be difficult to maintain and was quite shallow. Now the plants are completely redone and the pond is a little deeper, which is better for the koi.
The one thing the pond lacked was a skimmer. Speaking as a koi pond owner of 15 years, koi ponds need need skimmers.
Otherwise you get this:
There were some out-of-the-common Aloes for sale, like A. dawei, and A. sabea:
Our visit with Gerhard was short, because his itinerary was jammed full and Beloved had to get back for a work day video conference, but it was fun to visit with him, fun to go somewhere besides the grocery store, plus--plant shopping!
A few purchases, yes. Long-looked for Calylophus 'Southern Belle'...
Just starting to flower:
Another Aloe rubroviolacea, because the one planted on the front slope a few years ago is a stunner. A. rubroviolacea eventually offsets, not lavishly, after some years. Several years in the ground, ours is still solitary (no complaints). In nature, it grows on steep rocky slopes above 7,000 feet elevation in the mountains of Saudi Arabia and Yemen.
The new one:
The old one. Lens cap on a lower leaf to give an indication of size:
Last one: a new plant I'd seen but did not buy at my local nursery: Didelta 'Silver Strand'. The plants at PD were a lot healthier. 'Silver Strand' is a hybrid of Didelta species marketed in colder climates as a "spiller" plant for summer containers. Here it would potentially be a perennial. Plants in the genus Didelta are native to the north and western Cape areas of South Africa and parts of Namibia. No clue how it will do here, but hey, it's silver!
Garden long, and prosper!