Bloom Day September 2021



Not flowery month.  It's been hot, and our dry winter meant plants have less reserve strength.  A few have died. 

Leucospermum 'Flame Giant'.  Too dry.

One of the screening Pittosporum tenuifolia selections. 
Several large branches on it died last year, so this isn't a surprise.  Unfortunately just as it screened out the neighbor's bathroom window, the screening branch died.  And now, the rest of it.  Too hot, too dry.
And one of my very favorites, Centaurea ragusina.  It was several years old, so also not a surprise.  I fear it got too dry, though this plant is probably not long-lived.  I replaced it right away with three Graptoveria 'Fred Ives' rosettes laying around.  They actually look better in the spot (lower left, indicated by arrow):
The Centaurea's foliage was so brilliantly white-silver, it distracted from everything else.  There are two others in the garden to enjoy. 

Best to forget losses and focus on flowers.  

Last month's Drimia maritima is finishing up:

This Drimia bulb announces it has split into two by sending up two flower stems:
Aloe reitzii:
Dahlia 'Duet':

Dahlia 'Holland Festival', flopping but supported by one of the 'Ebony' Crape Myrtles:

The 'Ebony' Crape Myrtles grow slowly.  They also flower slowly--a little at a time, instead of all at once.  Not a bad thing.

 Also tall and narrow growing and displaying red flowers, Melaleuca (Callistemon) 'Slim':

A couple of Proteas.  'Brenda', a little past prime (too hot to go outside for a few days--missed this one's prime)...

...and an out-of-reach 'Pink Ice':

A few scattered Daylilys.

The Eriocapitella has peaked:
What has managed to overcome the heat, surprisingly, are the long-established roses.  

'Julia Child':

'Belinda's Dream':

'Ducher'.  This one is actually new this year.  The flowers are smallish.  A China rose introduced in 1869:
The nights are starting to cool off.  The light is becoming more slanted and softer, creating shadow patterns and rich contrasts.  

Autumn is on the way, hooray!   More Bloom Day posts from all over via meme host Carol J. Michel.  Click on for links to more September flowers. 


  1. In the Drimia bloom duo photo (#7), there are tall spike in the background to the right... I was curious what it may be.
    'Julia Child' is spectacular and I'm loving your 'Ebony' Crape Myrtles.

    1. Alluaudia procera, from Southern Madagascar.

      I dote on those Crape Myrtles!

  2. I love seeing your beautiful roses. The Leucospermum - ouch! I've been surprised at just how many plants have died off this year. There's a large section in the middle of my back garden that's just burned out. I cringe every time I walk by but, with the weather cooling, I can at least get started on digging out the aster and Liriope spicata I never should have planted.

    1. Glad you like the roses. They are sort of out of fashion these days.

      Never developed a fondness for that particular Leucospermum--colors were not gaudy enough.

      Liriope, yeah....I've got a minor problem with it myself, tangled in with extremely prickly 'Tamora' rose.

      Hooray for cooler weather at least for a few days!!!!!

  3. So sorry about your Centaurea ragusina. I lost one, too, although the 2nd one is doing fine. Oddly enough, it gets blasted in the late afternoon, but it might get a bit more water.

    1. Not a huge deal since I had just bought another. I tried looking for seeds in the spent flowers several times this summer, not sure if the flowers were not pollinated or what the seeds look like. Scattered the flowers around on the off chance they might produce some seedlings.

      The Acacia glaucoptera seedling (one survivor left) has grown a bit--I hope to get it into the ground to really get going when it cools off in October.

  4. Gosh, your Roses and your Dahlias are breaking my heart. Someday, I'll have enough sun for Dahlias. ;-) Gorgeous blooms, all!

  5. So sorry to see your losses. :( I feel like I've watered my garden more than any year previously, and it still looks tattered after those triple digit stretches we had. One thing I started doing that made a difference though, is watering my 70' magnolia grandiflora. It was dropping so many leaves, I would fill our green bin, as well as those of 4 or 5 neighbors every two weeks. The leaf cover was ankle deep on any given day, and I really thought I was well on my way to losing the tree. Since giving it a weekly deep soak, the massive leaf drop has slowed down significantly. That makes me very happy, as you can probably imagine. But yeah, drought is an awful thing, and we're getting closer to an actual drought up here too. This has been a very bad year in terms of precipitation.

    1. Yes that nightmare heatwave the PNW suffered. The advice here is if nothing else, water the trees. You did the right thing for that Magnolia.

      Hope some rain soon for you!

  6. I find it fascinating that your lovely roses are managing the heat, when other plants are dying around your garden. Maybe it's to do with the irrigation the roses get? We are dust-dry here and in Astoria. I cannot wait for this weekend's rain even though I don't want summer to end!

    1. The roses are on the flat areas, and adjacent to walls which hold in some of the moisture. They are as pampered as they can be here.

      Best wishes you get a good rain this weekend!

  7. Still many lovely things happening. Very neat you have Protea, one of the coolest flowers ever. Always amazes me how well dahlias do in your drought prone area. We had a hot summer, I watered them and babied them and they still are pathetic specimens compared to yours. Discouraging but will just have to enjoy my few specimens.

    1. Thanks! The Protea are cool--so lucky we can grow them here.

      Dahlias like warm soil--they do pretty well here if they get enough fertilizer and water.

  8. From protea to daylily, a jump from the common to the exotic (as defined by my experience).

  9. Oh, so pleased to see the 'Ducher' rose! They're said to be tough as nails. I've had them on my wishlist for a decade now, after seeing several at the National Arboretum in early October. They were the best-selling roses in the place, no contest -- both foliage and flower. (Not everyone is as fond of white flowers as I am, admittedly, and I'm especially taken by semi-double and loose doubles).
    OTOH that packed double 'Julia Child' is a knockout, and seems to be so reliably year after year. Looking at that picture (because unable to take my eyes off it), I finally got the jokey allusion of its name: it's the color of butter!

    1. Tom Carruth, hybridizer of 'Julia Child' met Julia and worked with her on choosing the rose that would bear her name. He said Julia picked that rose "because it was the color of her favorite French butter". :^) JC has proven itself here as very worthy of the name. Great rose.

      I can recommend Antique Rose Emporium as a source. All the roses I got from there have been excellent, and at a fair price.


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